Creating pregnancy documentation letters in photoshop

2 week old baby and mommy
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I’ve seen similar projects around, but most I’ve seen had help. This was a solo-non-studio DIY job. And it’s not as hard as you may think. Finally, I’m going to share that today. I’m sorry it’s taken me about a year to produce, but better late than never right? Hopefully it’ll help some newly pregnant moms looking for a fun way to document their pregnancy.

I asked if you preferred a photo or video tutorial and most people seemed to say photo so get ready for a doozy post! If you’re a visual person, I think this quick video is the easiest way to get the general idea of what I do in Photoshop, but if you are a step-by-step kind of person, read below.

Keeping the written letters in a safe place

First off, for the letters, I created a Google Drive document I can update my pregnancy letters on the go. Whether I’m at home, on a break at work, waiting around and I have my ipad, I can update the document with my thoughts for the week and have access to it anywhere. I can also quickly see if I mentioned something the week before or not. I try to keep them to the point so I can fit the letter on the photo without shrinking the words too much.

After that comes the photo-making process

Maternity self-portrait

1. Find a spot to take a couple (or 30) photos, against a wall. A wall with a solid color makes for easier editing later. I usually take them in the afternoon as the sun is setting and shining through my room. I’m standing between two windows so it’s nice and bright. The walls behind me are blown out (extremely bright) but that’s ok because I end up making them as white as possible in photoshop and editing out the windows.

2. I set the camera on a tripod and use a wireless remote with a 2 second delay so I have enough time to hide the remote before the shutter snaps.

3. I take several photos from the side angle, and from the front, then pick my favorite of each to edit together.

Now for editing the photos.

1. Open up your two photos in photoshop. If you shoot in RAW mode, Photoshop will give you the option of editing the color temperature, exposure, and white balance before you start your photo editing. I usually set the white balance to the wall behind me, so it’ll change the colors to be correct in case the sun was making me look extra warm, or if I forgot a bedroom light on.

2. I edit both the pictures to my liking (erasing my gray hairs, etc… Kidding… kinda).

3. Flatten your image then copy the “background image” to open up on your other photo. For instance, I copied my “standing sideways” photo and opened it up on top of my “standing forward” shot.

4. Position the photos where you’d like them to be. Remembering to leave enough space for texts on the sides.

5. Select the photo that’s on top of the other and use the eraser tool to erase all of the excess wall that you don’t need. Carefully erase the photo as much as you can, leaving only a blank white wall behind both photos.

*6. Sometimes I’ll add a white shape layer underneath both photos then erase everything aside from my body, so the area behind my photos is completely white.

Now it’s time to add text

creating-photoshop-text-path-addition

1. Select the shape tool, then click the + path button, so the shape is actually a “path” for your text” and select the general area you’d like the text to go. Going as wide and as tall as you’d like the text to end up.

creating-text-path-subtraction2. Now, let’s say you have an arm, or a bit of your belly that you don’t want text to go over in the photo. Go up to the top of your screen and select the -path button and have the shape–whatever you want, oval, square, triangle, whatever–to de-select the areas you don’t want text. You can do this numerous times subtracting parts where you don’t want the text to go.

3. Take the text cursor and place it anywhere on the additive shape. Begin typing!

pregnancy photoshop edit tutorialHave fun with colors, fonts and make each one unique.

Any questions? Let me know! Hopefully this is a little bit of inspiration to help inspire you to document your pregnancy. Please share with your friends!

Fun pregnancy letters! How awesome would this be for a baby book? This is a free detailed tutorial with step-by-step instructions to recreate on your own. No studio or photographer needed.

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CK says:

This could not have come at a better time! Just found out we are expecting #3 (which will be our last) and I didn’t really document the other two kids’ pregnancies, this will be fun for this one and to be able to incorporate my girls into the weeks as well as to how they are dealing with mommy and her wonderful symptoms/mood swings 😉

Congratulations on your pregnancy!! How exciting! Stick with it. I promise it’s SO worth it!!

Jessica says:

I love love love how you documented your pregnancy…It is refreshing, fun, and creative! So glad your sharing this tutorial!-www.urbanhomenomics.blogspot.com

Thanks for the tutorial. I don’t have photoshop but I think I can wing it. I think this was my favorite photo project of yours!

Mari Corona says:

You and your family truly are beautiful inside and out and it shows in your writing and pictures. Thanks for share 🙂

Love this tutorial…I know I’m FAAARRRR too lazy to do this project…so I’ll just stick to usin’ my cheapo way – Picmonkey and 5 minutes is all I need LOL BUT I will do Rohan’s bday letter/newsletter to family with your technique so THANK YOU for sharing!
xx
Dani

Jennifer says:

Yay! Thank you for this! I’m 15 weeks pregnant with our third. I am definitely going start doing my weekly pictures like this now!!

Lisa Hung says:

I wonder if this post was made 2 years ago, it would be great fun to documenting my pregnancy as you do. Its value would be priceless for me

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What an amazingly useful and detailed post! You’re a saint for teaching like this.

These are so cute! I really like the high-five photo, it looks really fun. Thank you for showing your Photoshop tips they are very helpful.

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Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a former journalist, and lifelong creator striving to make the world a better place. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day by cherishing our individuality and celebrating our differences.



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