Regular Photos Group Photos Watching the Action Nature Photos That Face!

Regular Photos

These are the photos I will use for this section. These are representative of what you might have in your photo collection. Grant it, you won't have these photos but you will have group photos of family lined up at a wedding, a candid shot of someone watching the action going on and staying well clear of it all, a nature photo that you like, and of course a single photo of one of your children or grandchildren.


I know enough about photo editing software to be dangerous to my own photos and software. I use a Mac and the iPhoto program that comes with it and the "Preview" software that resizes, crops, and saves my photos. I DO NOT know anything about PhotoShop and the other softwares of that kind. Nor do I know about Windows photo editing programs. This is a guide to help you understand the concept of Cropping Photos and is not an instruction manual on using any photo editing software.

Click on the photos within the boxes below to see a larger version. Use your browser "BACK" button to return to this page.

American Flags

American Flags

Watching the process

Watching the Process

Thistle Blooms

Thistle Blooms

First Birthday

First Birthday

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Group Photos

Group photo of people on a bridge holding American flags

This photo was taken on May 24, 2010 as my husband and I were traveling on I-70 through Kansas in our "Day Jobs". The bug spatters on the windshield don't detract from the awesome display of our American flags flying on this day. Some time later I learned that this was a community wide display of gratitude at having their family members safely home from their tour of duty in our military. I don't, personally, know any of these people. This photo is being used as an illustration on cropping for group photos. You will see the results in the next picture. Again, this is not an instruction on HOW to use photo editing software.

Cropped group of people flying the American flag on a highway bridge

As you can see I cropped out most of the sky and the highway below. I've selected the center bridge portion showing the ribbon of highway going beneath the flag holders. The people on the left and right have been cropped out of the picture. To me, this makes more of a visual statement of the event than the original photo does. You don't see the highway sign in this photo so you don't know where this takes place. You just know there is a group of people atop a highway bridge displaying the American flag.

Do you have a group photo you wish to use in its entirety and have a copy of the same photo cropped to zoom in on a particular person or thing in the event? Maybe a group of people surrounding a birthday cake? You make a copy of the group photo then crop everything out except the cake. You then have both the group photo and the cake in your layout if someone forgot to get a close up of the cake.

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Watching The Action

My sister keeping watch

This is a photo of my sister staying well clear of my husband guiding her husband (in the truck) back to hook up to the boom. She was unsure if stuff would break and go flying everywhere but she wanted to see what was taking place.

My sister standing clear of the action

To emphasize my sister "watching the action" I cropped the photo to show only my husband and my sister. All the rest of the stuff was not needed to tell this story. You can see the back up lights on the semi truck as my sister's husband is backing to the boom, you can see my husband lining up the boom to be hooked into the fifth wheel, and you see my sister watching at a distance from the action.

Do you have photos of your children playing in an athletic game or some kind of gymnastic event? Do you want to have a photo of the event and a copy to crop everything else away except the look of concentration or accomplishment on your child's face? This is an example of cropping to do just that.

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Nature Photos

Thistle bloom near rocks

This photo was taken outside a hotel somewhere in our travels. Just at the top of the photo is a busy state highway with a lot of traffic. The rock wall in the photo runs for quite a long distance. This thistle was growing between the asphalt pavement of the parking lot and the rock wall.

Thistle bloom

In this photo I have cropped out everything else except the bloom and part of the rock wall. Since I don't remember where this photo was taken, the batch I took of this area will more than likely be put on a page dedicated to blooms in my travels.

Do you have photos of your flower, herb, or vegetable garden you want to make a layout of? Is there a particular flower, herb, or vegetable that makes you smile when you see the main photo? Make a copy of that photo and crop out the bit you want featured. You will have the one photo that shows the entire garden area and a close up of one particular bit.

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That Face!

My grandson's first birthday

This is my Grandson's First Birthday celebration and he is "Celebrating". I just love the mess he is with chocolate all over him. With children's photos it is fun to crop bits and pieces of them to tell your story. This photo was sent to me by my daughter from her cell phone so the original photo started out pretty small. The cropping I will do for this example will be fairly small but it is intended to give you some ideas on how to "play" with your pictures. Make sure you have several copies of the main photo to do your cropping with.

My grandson's eyes smeared with chocolate cake

Look at those eyes! The chocolate smear makes me laugh when I look at it. I'm not sure if he is having "chocolate overload" or not by the look in his eyes.

Chocolate smeared mouth of my grandson

Chocolate everywhere! His nose, cheeks, chin, fingers, and his mouth. Do you think he is enjoying his cake? I'm enjoying looking at the mess and remembering when my children were little like him and how much fun it was to watch them eat their cake.

Birthday cake eaten with fingers

The last of the cropped photos of my grandson is the decimation of the cake. His little hand is covered with chocolate, the cake shows the evidence of that little hand mauling it. These photos will be featured on a page for his First Birthday - when I get to it. Every one of them will be used to tell this story.

These cropped photos have pixelated badly. The photo was taken with a cell phone camera and not a digital camera. I have cropped it too deep and now have bad photos of that precious little guy.

Do you have photos of your child doing something similar? Have you thought about having several highlights of the event told in little snippets of photo? This is a fun way to do this. If you have a regular digital photo that has not been reduced in size, your cropped images will be larger than mine are. You might even be able to enlarge the snippets to show more detail. This is the way to take one photo and make several to go on a layout. Have fun cropping.

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