How To Alter Photographs For Scrapbooking Purposes

Here are some tricks and ideas that you can use if you want to know how to alter photographs for your scrapbooking pages and layouts.
I often see questions like this online:
“I have a lovely photo of my daughter, but she is standing in front of a scruffy drainpipe.  How can I disguise this?”
“How can I make my photos look more interesting?”

How To Alter Photographs

Here are a few ideas and tricks you can try that range from low-tech to to alter photographs

The easiest option is to stick something over the offending area on the photograph.  This works well if you use several overlapping embellishments to ‘frame’ the part of the photo you want to be seen. Say for instance you use flowers.  Try having several flowers around the outside of the photograph and some straying into the photograph to cover up the offensive spots.

The other thing you could try is to cut the person out of the photograph.  This works well if the person is fairly large within the photograph.  If not crop digitally and reprint so that the person is larger.  You could then give your layout a cartoon or collage look, or even make the cut-out three dimensional.

If you are lucky enough to own image editing software like Adobe Photoshop, you can use the lasso tool to draw around your person and cut them out in this fashion, which will be neater.  You could also use the software to blur the background if you prefer not to cut the person out.

More Tips on How To Alter Photographs:

  • Another thing to try that is quite popular with scrapbookers is to cut the photo into a shape, like a heart, thus removing the offending piece.
  • Place double sided tape onto the offending area and sprinkle craft sand or glitter onto it.
  • Use stamps to alter the area in question.
  • Frame the focal part of the photograph with feathers or shells.
  • Black and white photo’s look great if you add in bursts of colours by using image editing software.
  • Sandpaper your photos lightly to get an aged effect.
  • Use a fancy edge cutter to add an interesting border to your photo.
  • Make a shaker box over your photo with movable beads and particles within to disguise a boring photo.
  • Try bleaching your photograph. Wet it first in clear water, then dip into a solution of bleach and water. Remove after a few seconds and dip in clear water again. The length of time you leave the photo in the bleach determines the amount of discoloration that will occur. Do not try this on your original copy.
  • Cut the photograph into a tag shape and blend it in with your other tags on the page.
  • Make a frame by tearing around the edges of the photograph.

How To Alter Photographs Digitally

There are also a great many free apps available for owners of smartphones and computers which allow you to edit your photographs in whichever manner that you choose.

Here are some of the most popular free apps:


Photoscape X







Google Photo’s

Photoshop Express

If you prefer software you can use on your desktop, why not try the free version of Serif’s photo editing software.  It is called Serif Photo Plus, and although it doesn’t have as many features as Photoshop does, you can still do a fair amount of editing on your digital photographs, including red-eye correction, color correction and there are some basic filters you can use to improve the overall look of the photo.

PhotoFiltre is another free tool you can try and is available as a free download on the photofiltre website.

If you know of any other creative ideas on how to alter photographs please comment below.

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