Tagged photography

Our DIY Photo Studio

We are really excited about the move to Boulder, but there’s a lot that we’re going to miss as well. For me, our house is one of the major things. That might sound a kind of crazy, but you have to realize that (1) I haven’t seen our new house yet, so I don’t even really know what to expect because Joe (who I trust 100% of course) picked it out on a visit without me, and (2) I work from home. This house is not just where we live, it’s also where I’ve worked for the last 2.5 years, and where Whimseybox was born. It’s where I really got into blogging, where I posted about our home décor projects, and where we packed boxes all through the night on more than one occasion. It’s where the team comes to work every day and where I spend 99% of my time.

Another great thing about the house is that it has big windows and gets great light. That’s something that we’re really looking for in our new office. Using natural light in our photos makes them look nicer without all of the time and expense of a full photography studio. Here’s what our ‘studio’ looks like lately:

alyssa at work

In front of the living room windows we have a $20 kids table from IKEA, originally purchased when my 2yo niece visited for Thanksgiving. I saved the box and had planned to take it apart and store it after she left, but it turned out that the white table was handy. And, when combined with two foam core ‘reflectors’ tucked into each of the chairs, it morphs into a great little spot for pictures.


Just a tip, in case you’re looking for a simple and cheap way to improve your pictures.

(Oh, the irony… a post about how to take better pictures full of lousy cell phone shots!)

Cool New Find–Mosiac Photobooks

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I just learned about a new service called Mosaic that allows you to create a book of photos right from your iPhone. Patrick (our CTO at Whimseybox) got his first one yesterday and brought it over this morning. It’s really awesome and he got it just 4 days after he ordered. Their site is gorgeous, check it out.

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The packaging is stellar.

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The front cover is die cut so you can see a preview of each of your photos.

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He says you can choose from white or black paper. The pictures look great. I’m still amazed we can take these kind of pictures with our cell phones!

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Just $20 – pretty good, right? Would make a great holiday gift, or a good way to remember your holiday celebrations. But I’m going to have to get my husband to do it, because there’s no love for Android users yet :/

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Bayou City Art Festival


Once in a while I do get out of the house and away from the computer. On Saturday I braved (ahem, mid-October) heat and humidity to go checkout the bi-annual Bayou City Art Festival. The image above is the work of the featured artist Charlie Hardwick. But one of my favorites was the work of Heinrich Toh who combines different printmaking and photo techniques in his work which explores identity across time and travel. Find more of his work here. He also has a workshop coming up in Kansas City, so if you find yourself there in November go check it for me!  bayou_city_art_festival_toh1

DIY Stamped Tote Bag + Camera Strap

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Yesterday we welcomed (another!) new team member to Whimseybox. Ashley (Sugar and Cloth) joined us and jumped right into the DIY action by making this stamped tote bag with leather handles. You can find the full step-by-step tutorial on Whimseybox.

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And while she did that, I whipped up (another!) camera strap using a stamp I’d carved to make some cards a few weeks ago. You can find all the steps for this project on Whimseybox, too!

Oh, and if you post (or love finding) great DIY projects, please go check out our community features. Anyone can create an account on Whimseybox.com for FREE (you don’t have to be a paying subscriber) where you can post and share your projects. It can be whatever you like – some people post pictures of projects they’ve made from their Whimseybox and others post their own DIYs and link back to the full tutorial their blog. I’d love it if you would try it out and let me know what you think!


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A week or so ago I was contacted by Snapstagram, a company that prints and ships your Instagram photos to you. I’m recent Instagram-er (thanks to my devotion to Android) but have been snapping away since they rolled out the app a few months ago. If you’re interested in pictures of beer, Chicago and a cute 2 year old, I’m @aliciadirago. (Or you can find my pics on Statigram.)

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I ordered two rolls of pictures and they came lightning fast. All you need to do is login with Instagram and drag the pictures you want printed onto ‘roll’. Super easy and intuitive. This is a shot from a cab riding home one night. It’s either really dumb or amazing. I vote amazing :)

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No one can spend time in Chicago without visiting The Bean, of course.

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And, as promised, a really cute 2 year old. Thanks for the chance to try you out, Snapstagram. I’ll be back!