Kelly Tarleton's portrait

Welcome to my blog! I am a Houston portrait and wedding photographer,
and I also custom design wedding and special event stationery.
This is where I share photos of my latest portrait sessions, design assignments,
and personal projects. Take a look around to see what I've been up to and
be sure to let me know what you think. I love comments!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A press printed family heirloom

I grossly underestimated the amount of time it would take me to complete this project, so when a friend asked me to scan in oh, say, 8 pages of an old newsletter and turn it into a book in three weeks (including production time), I said sure thing! I found out sooner than later that 8 pages was really 24 double-sided legal sized pages. Which is larger than my scanner. Which meant 2 scans per side = 4 scans per page = 96 scans. Which also meant Photoshop work to merge the 2 scans per page together. In 3 weeks for a family vacation, you say? Lucky for him, I'm a sucker for family history stuff and dove in head first.

The book is a collection of newsletter pages written by my friend's grandfather on the USS Saratoga during WWII. My final photojournalism assignment in school involved interviewing and photographing WWII veterans, and I've had a deep interest in the history of "the greatest generation" ever since. The newsletter pages fascinated me, not only for the historical significance and sense of nostalgia, but for the connections these documents held to the men who published them, and to those who read them aboard the ship. There is a great sense of pride, comaraderie, and patriotism within these pages. I can't imagine the character it took to take on the challenge of boosting morale and maintaining high spirits through the pages of a newsletter. It's easy to see just how important these pages are to this family, and why it was so important to preserve them.

The pages were originally bound on a clipboard and flipped vertically to read (you can see the original hole punches on the tops and bottoms of some of the pages), so I chose to keep the vertical orientation. This is the first press-printed book I've designed and printed through my new photo lab, and I was very impressed with the quality- just like a book you'd pick up at the bookstore.

The black leather cover with the title of the newsletter foilstamped on the lower right corner. The final book measured 14 inches wide and 11 inches high.

For the title page, I used several of the pages in a background collage behind the vintage styled portrait. On the other side of the title page, I designed a dedication page to look like a V-Mail, which is what sailors used to communicate to loved ones back home.

This boxing bulldog was one of my favorite illustrations


Laney Poo August 7, 2009 at 9:03 AM  

It turned out great Kelly.

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About Kelly Tarleton

I've always been a creative person, and the one who always had a camera on-hand at a moment's notice for any occasion. Photography and graphic design dominated my life in school and I loved every minute of it. I miss that constant creative outlet and want to share more of it with my family and friends through this blog.See more of my work at my website:

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