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Making a Heritage Wall

19 March 2011

Images of our ancestors adorn our heritage wall.

Growing up, my family took a lot of photos. My dad loved to take pictures — a hobby he infected me with. I was even the photography editor for my high school yearbook. As an adult, family photos have been the staple on my Facebook posts.  So it pains me to think that I have very few photographs of the generations that came before me. Many photographs were lost because of fire, migration and plain neglect; and I can only envy those who have well-kept ancestral homes to honor images of their lolo‘s and lola‘s.

My desire to teach my children about the family tree resurfaced when we moved into our new home.  I decided to dedicate a wall on my far-from-ancestral home to photographs of my children’s ancestors.

The accent wall was painted in muted green, while the frames are finished in aged hues of brown, gold and silver.

1.  Choose your wall.  I chose a wall in my living room and painted it with a different color to provide accent.

2. Choose your photographs.  My selection centered around our direct ascendants.  I had to talk to some cousins to find some images.  For others, I had to crop out large family group photos (weddings mostly) to find the image I needed.  The command of Adobe Photoshop came in handy for tweaking the color hue and saturation on the old photographs — I created a mix of colored, black and white, and sepia images.

3.  Have your images printed by a reputable photo shop.  When printed on home printers, photographs tend to warp and fade, especially when the frames are exposed to moisture and sunlight.  In my experience, the thickness of the photo paper and imaging chemicals matter.

4. Select your frame and matting.  This would depend on the number of photos you have, the available space and the decor of the rest of the room.

5. Plan the layout before hanging.  I usually lay the frames out on the floor first before I put them up.

6. Hang and enjoy. Remember to match the mounting hardware with the type of wall and the weight of the frame.

Here are more photo ideas from elsewhere on the web …

Photo Canvass

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