The Family: A Proclamation – png template update

pages 2 and 3 of my “The Family” photo book

So I finally figured out how to export my InDesign template for my “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” photo book into png files that could be used in the software of your choice. It is a multi-step process that takes two exports and the combining those files back together in Photoshop. So I haven’t gotten the whole book done but wanted to share the good news in an update. It will take me a while to process all the pages and get them uploaded. In the meantime, feel free to test out this spread and give me feedback on how you like it.


The Family: A Proclamation to the World – InDesign Template

title page of “The Family”

While I haven’t figured out how to translate this project into png files, I have cleaned it up and prepared an InDesign template to share. Send me an email to and I’ll send you the fold with the template, links and fonts I used. Here are jpgs of all the spreads from the InDesign template created in Adobe InDesign CS6. They could be used the way they are but there are issues with overlapping elements when adding photos and the placeholder text for labeling the photos. If you find them helpful feel free to use them for personal projects or gifts but not for any commercial use. Hopefully I’ll have the png images done soon.

The Family: A Proclamation to the World – 20th Anniversary

A few years ago I put together a book for my family using the text from “The Family: A Proclamation to the World”. Since this month marks the 20th anniversary of this document, I thought it would be a good time to share it. Over the coming weeks I will put together png files so that if you want to make your own book with you family photos you can do it with whatever software you like. I hope this works out to be a good way to share my projects. I’ll be happy to share an InDesign template with anyone who has Adobe InDesign. The advantage of the template is then you could customize anything in the document you would like. I was inspired to make this book by a project I found on the internet and is now available on as a photo book template.

Printer’s Tray Shadow Box

vintage items displayed in a printer’s tray via Pinterest

I’ve got a couple of similar printer’s trays that I was luck enough to pick up at an auction in the Boston area more than 10 years ago. There are tons of ideas on Pinterest using printer’s trays. I shouldn’t be surprised but I never really thought about it. Maybe I’ll have to start a new Pinterest board to collect ideas. I’ll just let it percolate for now. What do you think?

Family Tree: 8×10 Photo Pedigree Chart Template

blank 8x10 photo pedigreeAs promised here is a link to the InDesign CS6 template for my 8×10 photo pedigree. (Remember that the template file in Dropbox will look really strange but if you save it and open it in InDesign it will look right there.) Feel free to use the template for personal use or gifts. If you’re not an InDesign user, I’ve open an Etsy shop focused on products for puppy raisers and service dog handlers called The Salty Pup Shop. I’ve got both the 8×10 and the 4×12 photo pedigrees available there as custom items. Proceeds from the shop go to paying for the costs of raising puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind.


Family Tree: 8×10 Photo Pedigree Chart

Banta 8x10 photo pedigree

I’ve really had lots of fun doing photo pedigree charts for pups. When I looked into having the 4×12 panoramic printed, I realized that not everywhere prints that size. So I changed things up and designed an 8×10 version because it is also super easy to find an 8×10 frame too. I really like this size. I’ll post the InDesign template for this tomorrow.

Yes, Banta has the same grandpa on both sides. When I first found that out I thought it must be a mistake but they sometimes do that in dog breeding. Kentucky was a very successful stud. I’m sure they were hoping that Banta or one of her littermates would be a breeder. Banta was selected for breeding but she was just too much to handling and she didn’t like having her blood drawn or the other things that female breeders have to go through so she was released by the breeding department after a week. Also as you can see I don’t have photos of Kentucky’s parents yet.

Family Tree: Panaramic Photo Pedigree Chart

Fable’s pedigree

Inspire by the Colorful Clan post, I did a photo pedigree chart for Fable. As you can see I have two grandparents that I don’t have photos for. I found someone who has puppy photos of Laramie but I’m hoping to find an adult photo. I’m really happy with how it came out. I’ve uploaded an InDesign CS6 template here for your personal use. It shouldn’t be too hard to adapt it to humans. I’d love to see your project if you use the template.

Photos and Assembly

Angel from photo shoot

Because I’d like to use this project to illustrate a children’s Christmas book, today I tried to get some decent photos of all the A to Z parts before I assemble the project together. I set up a white backdrop and a couple of extra lights to shoot the objects against. It was ok but not wonderful. I got out my heat gun and worked on getting all the hot glue strings off and then taking several shots of each object. This took and while and my camera battery was flashing red by the time I finished. I sure hope that the quality of the photos is good enough to make a cute children’s book.

Next step was to decide final placement for all the parts and pieces. I thought I might need all four sides of my tree but when it got right down to it two sides for the ornaments was more than enough. I really should have made the tree shorter. I pulled out a measuring tape today and the project is bigger than I had originally planned. It is almost 60″ tall instead of being 3 or 4 feet tall. I’m not really surprised but I should have thought through some of the implications before I let the project grow that tall. It takes a lot more candy and time when it is at least 12″ taller than needed. The back of the tree will still be finished but it won’t have any of the A to Z search items on it. It took some trial and error to get what felt like a good arrangement under the tree and on the tree. Than I attached all the ornaments to the tree. The items under the tree are not glued down yet.

Tree with ornaments and packages

After attaching all the ornaments I added a bunch of large red gum balls to help fill the tree up and to give it more color. For the most part I’m happy with how it is looking. I then started the last big step of the project, gluing all the green licorice pastilles to the tree.