Posted on

Mother’s Day Photo Card Ideas: Selfie to Sentimental to Serious

Mother’s Day is this Sunday. You still have time to get her something great or plan something special. You know what mothers really love? Photos — especially when they’re of you. We put together some ideas to help you make your own Mother’s Day card using Autodesk Pixlr.

The Selfie as Mother’s Day Card

Maybe you like to take selfies. If so, you and mom are both going to be very happy with the new Pixlr MOM sticker pack. Take a photo and add a flowery MOM sticker. Maybe include a nice crafty border. You have an instant Mother’s Day card. This is probably one of the easiest ways to surprise your mom. You can take as many selfies as you need until you get one that’s just right. Still don’t like the way you look in your selfie? Ask your mom to take a selfie with you by her side. Add your stickers and effects and surprise her with it. She’ll appreciate that you took the time to make something creative with her that’s also a snapshot of a moment in time — that time you and mom had fun taking selfies.

Selfie as Mother's Day Card

Inspirational Quotes, Sentimental Feelings

The typical printed Hallmark-style greeting card at your local drugstore (how much longer will those be around?) is syrupy sweet. Sometimes sickly sweet. I always ask myself, “Is this really the kind of cheesy sentiment my mom will respond to?” Turns out — yes. I think back to all of the cards my mom gave me on my birthday and other special occasions. When they weren’t designed to be funny their sentiments were all about deep seriousness, sincerity, and emotional well-being. They were flowery and full of cliches — but I recognized that my mom genuinely responded to the sentiment expressed. She might not have been able to say deeply serious things to me face to face, so she did it with sentimental cards. If you’re worried that you’re veering too far into sentimental territory, maybe you are. Then again, maybe you’re hitting the really sweet spot with something like this:

Inspirational Quote for Mother's Day

Straightforward and Simple

If you want to go the sincere and traditional route, dig into Pixlr and uncover all the other stickers and overlays that will complement these MOM stickers. Grab a word art quotation from the Inspiration stickers or maybe something lovable from the Amore sticker pack. (There’s even one about moms in the Amore pack.) If you really want to make your card have an interesting sheen, use the Stylize options to turn your photo into watercolor,  silk, or pencil art. You can control the amount of stylize effect you add, so even just softening up your photo with these effects can make your photo look more like traditional art. That kind of painting effect is something you see a lot of on traditional greeting cards. You can do it more strikingly like we did in the photo above, or just do it in a subtle way like we did here with pencil effect just on the bottom half of the photo:

make a mother's day card

The opposite side of the sentimental spectrum is outsized creativity. If your mom has her own tattoos or sneers at anything unoriginal or loves modern art then by all means get as creative as you can. Again, you can use the Stylize effects, but use some of the more radical ones like Halftone or Litho. If you need to add texture or interestingness to your photo, there are literally hundreds of overlays that will add strong or subtle effects to your photos.

Make Hilarity Ensue

Or, just make something fun or even silly. I would wager that most moms do not want a silly or comedic card with dumb puns on it. But some moms do. If your mom is one of those — congratulations! Super silly moms are the most fun kind of moms. So don’t hesitate to create your own message using the text options in Pixlr. You’ve got a ton of crazy fonts to use if you need them to make something like this:

Fun mother's day cards

Those are just a few ideas to get you started, but we always like seeing what Pixlr users make. If you make something you’re proud of and want to share, tag it #pixlrmom. We’ll feature a few of our favorites all week on the Pixlr Instagram account.

 

Posted on

The Best Cosplay at ECCC Seattle: 10 Outstanding Looks

What a wonderful fan convention that was ECCC. We attended Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle last year, but this year the cosplay was even more outstanding. The Western Championships of Cosplay was full of amazing looks, of course, but the quality of cosplay out in the hallways sometimes rivaled the contestants. We were fortunate to be able to pick out some of our favorite characters, but we also had tons of amazing cosplayers just show up wanting to get their photo taken. If we could’t fit you in (it was a busy four days), we hope you’ll find us again next year. If we did have you sit for a photo shoot, make sure to download a high-res copy. It’s just dying to become your Facebook profile photo for the next three months.

Here are some of our favorite looks from Saturday and Sunday at ECCC….

People who came back again and again

We had a number of people who dress differently each day come back. This fellow sat for us no less than three times at ECCC. As you can quickly see, he some talent with fabrication. He’s especially experienced at creating items out of fiberglass, which of course looks about as professional as can be. The two swordsmen were some of the most polished cosplayers we saw at ECCC. And one of them is his wife! Kudos to her for her sewing prowess (and patience with his labor of love). Thanks to everyone who came back for more!

cosplay amazing

Cardboard Knight

This fellow made this entire suit of armor out of cardboard. He really maximized what you can do with cardboard and rivets (very smart use of corrugated cardboard in spots). The details are very impressive. If you zoom in you can see the finger greaves. You can even see his eyes peeking through, which is a testament to our photographer Michael’s attention to detail.

cardboard knight cosplay

Mad Max Family Time

This family sat for us last year for a few different cosplay looks, and they came back this year with a stunner. The entire family joined in to create a Mad Max group that was easily the most impressive of any Mad Max themed cosplay we saw this year. All of them are amazing, especially the “Immortan Joan” look. Thank you @coregeek, @emmy__jonesy, and the rest!

mad max immortan joe cosplay

The Vikings

This couple is driven by this guy’s obsession with vikings. Not just the TV show The Vikings. He’s into all things viking, and boy does he know his stuff. We spotted his shield from far away and knew we had to have them pose for us. Turns out he built this shield the way the original Vikings used to. It’s covered in canvas, which helps keep the wood from splitting when hit by swords and spears, and the entire outside is made out of rawhide that is super hard and reinforces the entire shield. He told us all about it, including how he couldn’t find the right materials he wanted so he went and bought tons of dog chew toy rawhide, soaked it to make it a little more malleable, and then formed it and set it on the shield. Resourceful — just like a viking.

viking cosplayers

Barbarian

This imposing fellow sounds as loud as he looks. Actually, much louder. He turned heads everywhere at ECCC with this barbaric cosplay. His spittle-flying lunges at our camera were frankly awesome. It was a real pleasure to have him pose. He’s a real expert. Does it for a living, in fact. Nice bear head, bro!

barbarian cosplay eccc

Hell Messiah of the Cenobites

Hellraiser is horror canon, so you always expect to see at least a few people doing one of the iconic looks from the movies. But we don’t think anyone has done it quite this well. This fellow also sat for us more than once. In fact, he showed up for photos four (five?) times during the four days. Sometimes he would wear two looks per day. That’s commitment! We’re a fan of all of his looks (which you can find in the Cosplay Gallery), but this Cenobite interpretation is probably our favorite of his many cosplays.

cosplay hellraiser

Steven Universe

One thing I find interesting about the rising popularity of cosplay — and of fan conventions themselves — is that it’s occurring during the rise of both superhero movies and this new Golden Age of Television. You’ll see all kinds of cosplay inspired by both animated and live action TV, and this Steven Universe character was well done — and she really went for the poses we asked her to take.

cosplayer steven universe

The Flash

We like how some cosplayers go for alternate looks of characters. Sometimes those are alternate comic book story lines and sometimes they are conceptual interpretations. This alternate Flash was interesting and different, but what really blew us away was his enthusiasm for Pixlr. He’s a long-time user and we loved hearing about his experiences with our apps. Front of the line, @titancosplay. Your flattery is welcome here.

cosplay eccc flash

Princess Mononoke

Some of the cosplay we see is through the roof with details and looks like it took weeks or even months to make. But we’re also really impressed by people who do simple things really well. It only takes three or four of just the right pieces using the right colors and details to make stand-out cosplay — especially when the person who embodies the character really believes in it. This Princess Mononoke was understated but also outstanding.

princess mononoke

Pixlr Staff of Power Photo

We definitely have a favorite of all the photos we took at ECCC. To us, our favorite photo is the last one we take — our staff photo. This time around, we had a smaller staff than we did at C2E2, but the photo turned out just as epic as that last one in Chicagoe. We admit it, we’re biased to choose this one as our favorite. Even though we try, it’s impossible to be completely objective when judging cosplay. And it’s completely impossible to not pick this photo as our favorite because we felt the same rush that all the other cosplayers who had their photo taken at our booth this week felt. When our expert photographer Michael poses you and makes you reach for that last 5% of emotion when you think you’ve already given 100% percent, and you step down from your pose and see how epic you look on a big 55-inch screen that’s broadcasting your photo to the entire convention — well then it’s going to be your favorite photo no matter what. Thank you, Michael, for your amazing work, and thank you to everyone who sat for a photo shoot!

 

Posted on

C2E2: The Best Cosplay via Beat Down Boogie

We’re big fans of Beat Down Boogie on YouTube. If you’ve never checked out their YouTube channel and you like seeing amazing cosplay, you should probably visit and subscribe. The Beat Down Boogie team goes from event to event around the country capturing the best cosplay looks at each fan event. It’s a labor of love for them, and they have a lot of fans around the world. In fact, we wanted to congratulate them for passing 600,000 followers this past week. That’s huge!

Of course, going from event to event and paying for hotels and food and everything else that’s involved in capturing it all isn’t free. Labors of love sometimes require benefactors, and we’re proud to sponsor Beat Down Boogie and help them keep their video fun train rolling. Check out their most recent video from the Chicago event a few weeks back, which was just released in the past few days:

Thanks for the shout-out at the end of the video, Micah! We hope you had as much fun as we did at C2E2. We can’t wait to see your Emerald City Seattle video when it’s done.

Posted on

Western Championships of Cosplay Winner: @allierosemarie

eccc cosplay champion

We’re proud sponsors of Cosplay Championships around the country, including this week’s Emerald City Comic Con Western Championships of Cosplay. These cosplayers are engaged in a race of one-up-manship that just keeps getting better every year. We’re fortunate to get access to the contestants right before they walk into the judging room, which gives us some time to ask them about how they made or conceived of their costume. We have a gallery of photos of all of the contestants at events.pixlr.com, but we wanted to congratulate the Best in Show, 1st place Western Champion.

Congratulations to Allie Rose-Marie Leost (@allierosemarie on Instagram) with her amazing portrayal of Warcaster Allison Jakes. The armor and construction was impeccable. Super colorful, totally bad-ass weaponry, and overall a very complex look. What really stood out was the “smoke” exhaust that emitted from her back. That kind of detail is always impressive. We salute you, Alley Cat Cosplay!

eccc cosplay champion

Posted on

10 Best Cosplay at ECCC Seattle: Our Favorites from Thursday and Friday

We’re fortunate to be capturing some the best cosplayers at Seattle Comic Con this week. If you’ve followed Pixlr long enough you know we started taking photos of cosplayers at fan conventions a few years back. Just a simple photo booth and a camera and some enthusiasm for learning more about cosplay construction. Since then, as our enthusiasm has grown our setup at fan conventions has evolved and gotten better each time. And so have the photos. We have a whole big bunch of them on our Cosplay Gallery, and here are some of our favorite looks from Thursday and Friday at ECCC:

Skyrim Family

This Skyrim family was at #ECCC for their very first cosplay. Holy cow! Pretty amazing for a first time. It’s hard enough to create one amazing look, but they did three — one for dad, one for daughter, and one for son. Best first timers we ever met. Well met, indeed. Thanks for posing for us!

The Dark Crystal

Remember The Dark Crystal? You don’t always see deep Jim Henson cosplay, but we actually saw a few Henson-focused cosplay looks at ECCC that were pretty darn great. People who do Henson cosplay care about the details and they have a real artistic bent. This one was definitely a winner. This kind of voluminous costume can be hard to capture, but our photographer Michael has a way with posing people. Epic.

Princess Mononoke

These two creative souls took the idea of forest spirits from Princess Mononoke and went deep. And then went deeper. Still deeper. We love this kind of conceptual cosplay that takes an idea of a character and interprets it in a wholly unique way. We worship you, spirits.

mononoke

Edward Scissorhands + Topiary Guy

Everyone loves Edward Scissorhands. He’s one of the most unique fictional characters ever created and he’s completely, wholly original.  Our photographer found just the right pose to make this one stand out. The topiary he’s trimming is actually a fellow in a full bush costume who worked in tandem while they walked the floor at ECCC. Talk about original. One of the best cosplay teams we’ve ever seen.

Marceline the Vampire Queen

We see a few Marcelines from Adventure Time at cosplay events. It’s a popular costume, but this one really stepped up and posed wonderfully for us.  She nailed the spirit of the character and gave it a nice edge.

Snake Eyes from GI Joe

This man in black really was enigmatic. We have no idea what he really looks like underneath here, but what we saw in this Snake Eyes was pure bad-ass. Capturing all-black costumes can be tough, but this one uses a lot of light to make all the surfaces shiny and the creases and folds stand out. Great pose and some great editing to bring out the mystery of this always mysterious character.

He-Man

We saw this He-Man last year at ECCC and caught a quick photo, but this year he really stood out. Thanks to him for sitting for a longer photo shoot to capture this classic “I have the power” pose. Replicating the look of a movie poster or in this case the intro to the cartoon is always a good idea.

Thor and Captain America

Two great tastes that taste great when they clash. We love this classic versus pairing, and they both completely went for it with their poses.

ECCC2016_DAY_2-084

Journey

Have you ever played Journey? It’s one of the most artistic video games we’ve ever seen. We won’t spoil it for you, but it’s a simple but subtly profound game that’s sure to surprise you. This cosplayer surprised us with a simple but elegant costume that we’ve never seen anyone cosplay before. Beautiful.

ECCC2016_DAY_2-075

Captain Phasma

We loved this first-rate First Order commander, Captain Phasma. The way the light reflects off of this costume is remarkable. The gun, the gloves, the helmet — everything is spot on in this one.

Those are our favorite ten of the bunch, but favoritism is always subjective. Exercise your subjective muscles and take a look at the rest of the batch in our Cosplay Gallery.

Posted on

Join Pixlr at Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle

eccc

We’re proud to be a sponsor of events like Toronto’s Fan Expo, New York Comic Con, and in just a few days Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle. If you happen to be heading to ECCC this week (April 7 – 10), look for us!

Free photo shoots for cosplayers

As always at these fan conventions, we’ll be offering free photo shoots for cosplayers. We’ll have a photo wall set up near the Atrium Lobby (next to the Peace Bonding station), and we’ll be grabbing some of the most creative cosplay we see. If you want our professional photographer Michael to capture your hard work and creativity, please stop by and tell us you heard about it on the Pixlr blog. We’ll no doubt be very busy, but if you’re a blog reader we’ll do our best to get you on our list.

Building up the Cosplay Gallery

Each day of ECCC, we’ll take the best photos of each shoot and upload them to our Cosplay Gallery at events.pixlr.com. These are high-quality, fully downloadable images that anyone can flip through and enjoy (and download). We’re almost certain you’ll find something amusing and fun in this gallery, so go check it out!

Championships of Cosplay

We’re proud sponsors of the ECCC Western Championships of Cosplay, which means we get first crack at photographing all of the entrants. It’s one of our favorite parts of these fan conventions, and we hate to break it to anyone who lives in Toronto, New York, or Chicago, but Seattle may be our favorite fan con for cosplay creativity. There’s just something about the creativity of people in the Great Northwest that seems to result in stellar cosplay. And last year someone proposed marriage during a photo shoot. We’re hoping they’ll be celebrating their first anniversary this year. Heck, why don’t you two come on by for another photo.

Can’t make it to Seattle? You can follow us on Instagram for a few choice shots. It’s the fan con lite lite lite version of attending.

 

Instagram Artist Spotlight: Priska Wettstein

aurora

We’ve been profiling some interesting Instagram artists lately, and this time around we want to introduce you to Priska Wettstein. “Hotel owner and part time picture taker” as she describes herself, she is a social media artist from frosty Dawson City in Yukon, Canada. Coveting ravens, arctic scenes, and wild nature held within a painted, dreamlike atmosphere, Priska’s work will not disappoint. In addition to her intriguing composition and artistically edited works, she sometimes includes thought provoking quotes, phrases, and poems as part of her work. Priska’s stunning use of color and texture will pique your imagination. It’s a feed full of considerable inspiration.

Priska is the owner of the Aurora Hotel (think Northern Lights). Referred to by Priska as the Land of the Midnight Sun & Aurora Borealis, Dawson City and its surrounding area have been featured in well known literary works by such writers as Jack London (some of his most famous works include The Call of the Wild and White Fang), Robert W. Service (known for poems from his book, Songs of a Sourdough) and Pierre Berton (writer of Canadian History). Pierre Berton’s childhood home in Dawson City is also a well-known writer’s retreat. Judging from her work, it seems fitting that Priska Wettstein, hotel owner, artist and writer, is part of this frostbitten landscape. She pulls unusual beauty from it regularly and shares it with the world.

You can follow Priska Wettstein on Instagram, check out her website, PriskaWettstein.com, and find her works available for purchase (mainly for fiction book covers) at Red Edge Images.

 

pixlr-IG-Artist_PriskaWettstein_IG

Posted on

Easter Content Packs: Get ‘Em While They’re Cute

Easter is a time of hope and rebirth. And bunnies! Easter is probably the cutest holiday, so we thought we’d add some cuteness to Pixlr this week. You’ll find a new pack of borders, overlays, and stickers in the web and mobile apps that are pretty heavily focused on tweeting birds, adorbs bunnies, and flowers, flowers, flowers. Maybe Spring hasn’t quite sprung where you are, but in our neck of the woods March feels like it’s about to go out like a lamb. Sunny skies and warming temperatures. We’ll leave these packs in the app through Easter Sunday — and a few days beyond. 

Posted on

C2E2 Champions of Cosplay Winner: @msmajorsam

We’re proud sponsors of the Champions of Cosplay events at ComiCon conventions like ECCC, NYCC, and this time around C2E2 — the Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo. We love the creativity people show by meticulously crafting their costumes, so it’s really a no-brainer for us to sponsor these events. They make a lot of creative people very happy.

As we’ve seen over the past few years, the competition at these events has become fierce. The C2E2 Crown Championships of Cosplay is the largest cosplay competition in the world, and this weekend was the final stop in ReedPOP’s 2016 “Quest for the Crown” global cosplay competition circuit. So, yeah. Lots of impressive contestants from around the world.

The Winner!

Huge congratulations go out to @msmajorsam from Australia for her amazing fabrication of her Sakizo Julietta Necromancer cosplay from Fantasy of the Dream. It’s a deep manga character that really only exists in drawn form, so the character is open to quite a bit of interpretation. She showed incredible attention to detail in this cosplay, with skulls, horns, and all manner of papery, gauzy, colorful details. It’s undeniably beautiful and a great choice in what must have been a really difficult judging process. The talent in this competition really was spectacular.

To get an idea of the other entrants, check out our Cosplay Gallery for the Championships of Cosplay. As sponsor of the event, we were given early access for photo shoots before the judging, and as always it was a true pleasure to talk to each person and find out more about how they make the things they make.

Posted on

C2E2 2016 Cosplay: Saturday’s Ten Finest

Each day we attend a Comic Con event, we like to gather up our favorites of the day and celebrate those people who were excellent at both posing for us and displaying their cosplay fabrication talents. Boy, was Saturday a busy day. We had a line outside our booth of people who wanted to get their photo taken, and just by looking at the Cosplay Gallery for Saturday, you can see why. Our photographer, Michael, is in absolute top form. He’s playing with dramatic lighting to make these photos as epic as they can be. Here’s a few standouts….

Rick Grimes

The Walking Dead is pretty popular these days at cons. The dead just keep coming. When this fellow showed up at our booth with a bag full of weapons and a uniform, we were worried we had done something wrong. We seriously thought he was real law enforcement for a few seconds. Totally sold it and blew us away with his quick posing skills.

HyperFocal: 0

Legolas

Solid elf cosplay here, and he was excellent at posing down to the smallest detail. We took a lot of these photos because he was so good. These two were our favorites (among many).

HyperFocal: 0

HyperFocal: 0

Obi-Wan Kenobi

We wanted to make sure this Obi-Wan got a great shot out of posing, so we asked him to do a number of things, including letting us toss him his lightsaber to get a force pull photo. Thanks for not minding on the first try when we missed and it clattered to the floor! Second time’s the charm.

HyperFocal: 0

Destiny

We really love it when someone takes a genre or a game character and adds their own interpretation to the cosplay. This Destiny character has all kinds of color and flair — and he posed for a lot of athletic shots.

HyperFocal: 0

Yu-Gi-Oh!

We’ve seen a lot of great Yu-Gi-Oh cosplay, but it really works great when the dude who is playing it has abs of steel. Great enthusiasm in helping us get some dramatic lighting poses in.

HyperFocal: 0

Man at Arms

Top-shelf He-Man cosplay here. This guy had the mouth to back up the cosplay. A nice cartoonish bad-assery costume.

Destiny Warlock

Destiny guns and art design details are some of the absolute best out there, and it’s hard to make into a strong costume. Most of it has to be pretty high quality or the whole thing falls apart. This helmet and gun and everything else was spot on. Worthy of the franchise.

HyperFocal: 0

Thor

We immediately recognized this Thor as someone we had seen previously at NYCC. She was a standout Loki in New York, and we were thrilled to make her acquaintance again in Chicago. Thanks for joining us again for a photo shoot! You look fabulous. Again.

HyperFocal: 0

Hawkman/Nightwing Combo

How many feathers does it take to make a very full and realistic set of wings? According to our subject here, about 600. All dyed the same color, which isn’t as easy as it seems when you realize that “water off a duck’s back” is a saying with some science behind it. Truly outstanding cosplay here. And a fearless willingness to scream on cue.