Linky Party at Common Ground

It's Monday and time to join in the fun at Common Ground's Linky Party.  My submission for today's party was a group ( lot ) of old glass coasters.  I remember my Mother using this type caster ( or is it coaster? ) under our sofa...but today they are probably used mostly for altered artwork - such as a faux paperweights.

Here is my party item which can also be found on Etsy:

Cynthia and Co. Common Ground Linky Party - Glass Casters

Wanna see the other goodies at the party?


Butterfly Project - My Contribution

I wrote about the Butterfly Project, at The Houston Holocaust Museum, last May and said I would post the art I was going to contribute when it was done.  It has taken me awhile but here is what I made.

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 1

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 2

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 3

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 4

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 5

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 6

Cynthia and Co. Butterfly Project 7

The Butterfly Project was begun to remember the children who died during the Holocaust.  There were approximately 1.5 million (children) who lost their lives in Europe so the museum sponsoring this wonderful exhibition is collecting 1.5 million artist's for each child.

The little piece pictured here is made of all recycled goods.  I used an old T Shirt for the pillow, lined it with recycled muslin, striped it with 40's cotton calico and attached recycled satin ribbon.  The butterfly is cloisonne and is something I found at a yard sale.  The photograph of the child is from Lisa's Art.  I added overlays and the butterfly wings.

There is still time to send a butterfly if you want to create something yourself to contribute.  For more information click this link:

For more information about the Houston Holocaust Museum go to

For Lisa's Art click this link:


ATC Swap with Art Joy Stuff

Kimberly at Art Joy Stuff is hosting an ATC swap titled "April in Paris".  Today I mailed off my cards and decided to show you what I submit for this fun event.  It is a 6/6 swap so I made six cards of the same image which I designed on Photoshop (first) from one of my own CDV photographs.
cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 1
OK, first I have to apologize... I had to use my iphone camera and some of these images show better than others...sorry for the blurs...

If this little girl looks familiar it might be because I tried to  make her look like a baby Frida Kahlo.  The original photograph that I purchased showed this child with a slight hint of her own uni brow so I emphasized that stopping short of going totally cartoon-ish.  And Frida wouldn't be Frida without flowers in her hair and a dark cat sitting beside her so I added those elements to the Photoshop'd image.

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 2

The quote I used is, of course, one of Frida's quotes.  When I researched her I found most of her famous sayings were a little dark in mood so I was happy to find this more care-free quote to use for little baby Frida..."feet what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?"

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 3

I bought the original CDV because she reminded me of my niece, Gina, as a child.  Beautiful child and beautiful adult with a sweet kind face...I think Frida must have been a sweet baby as well.

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 4

Frida Kahlo has been a favorite with altered artists for a long time.  I have never ventured into that genre until now but I can honestly say I had a great time working on this.  When I have received the cards back from other artists who participated I'll post them here so you can see the other wonderful ideas and visions folks came up with...

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 5

The last few photographs are from the first card I made - and decided not to enter into the ATC swap with Kimberly.  It was "cute" but didn't have as many embellishments and was flat - not 3-D except for the glaze I used to make the child stand out more.

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 6

The little girl for this card came from Lisa's Altered Art Creations and I added background, overlays etc. for the theme of April in Paris.  No Paris themed project would work without an eiffel tower monolith looming in the background - oui?  And because she is holding a parasol I added the caption "rain or shine".

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap

cynthia and co. april in paris atc swap Art Joy Stuff 7

Here is a link to Art Joy Stuff:

Here is a link to Lisa's Altered Art:


Mother's Day Vintage Photo's for Free...Vintage Printables

It's been a few weeks since I have posted some free vintage photographs for you to use...since Mother's Day is coming up in May I am posting, today,  six ( 6 ) free public domain photos that I have altered somewhat.  These have overlays and effects and should be ready to print.

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child

cynthia and co. free vintage photos - mother and child


Monday Linky Party

Hi all.  I just joined my first linky party with a wonderful little blog called Common Ground.  I added my vintage finial found in New Orleans, Louisiana to the linky party.  I really enjoy this blog because as her tag line says she has "a little something for everyone"...of course much of the something is vintage so I LUV, love, WuV everything seen!

Cynthia and Co. Vintage Finial in Common Ground Linky Party

If you want to view the listing on Etsy you can see it at:

and then hop over to the party.  Very cool stuff today.


Some Freebie ( free ) Vintage Photos

Cynthia and Co. Free Vintage Photo 1

Cynthia and Co. Free Vintage Photo 2

Cynthia and Co. Free Vintage Photo 3

Cynthia and Co. Free Vintage Photo Girl and Doll 4

Cynthia and Co. Free /Vintage Photo Girl Boy and Flowers

I didn't clean these up.  I am just posting as I found you'll have to edit a little if you want them in more perfect condition. (You'll have to use your Photoshop skills on these babies!)   Also, I tried to pick all with a similar theme - little girls with their dolls except for the last one which is a brother and sister vintage photo.

Enjoy!  Also, if you want to see some of my edited, altered vintage photos click my Etsy shop on the home page.  Thanks for stopping by...enjoy.



French Kissed Postcards - "Kissed Again Challenge"

The very awesome blog French Kissed Postcards is having a "Kissed Again" challenge for digital creators to submit their interpretation of an image from French Kissed Postcards (either the blog or a purchase from the Etsy site).  I happened to like the image Trishia posted today of an Edwardian Beach family so I chose it for my entry.  Below is the original that I pulled from her blog:

Cynthia and Co. Kissed Again from French Kissed Postcards

The original is a great photograph with a sea of interesting faces but I felt it was too monochromatic for your eye to "set" on particular subjects.  The first adjustment I made was to add a touch of color with a sky overlay.  Below is the image:

Cynthia and Co. Kissed Again from French Kissed Postcards Image 2

The other step I took for this step was to crop out the bottom margin so that the girls along edge were laying evenly across the bottom.  By doing so the photograph doesn't have as much "movement" but I like it better because the girls are more "grounded".

Cynthia and Co. Kissed Again from French Kissed Postcards Image 3

I did a couple things next.  I enhanced the girls along the bottom for a focal point.  I duplicated the image and then erased everyone but the girls.  They now have more prominence and a place for your eyes to settle.  Another step was to crop the photograph down to remove some of the subjects.  I hated to remove some of the folks but there were too many faces to look at...yikes...sorry!

Cynthia and Co. Kissed Again from French Kissed Postcards Image 4

Step 4 was to add a snapshot border for more interest.  It also serves to contain everything so your eye doesn't wander off the photograph.

Cross Process Image 5

In image five ( 5 ) I added Cross Process and then de-saturated a tad bit.  The sky is still somewhat visible but not as prominent.

Sepia Image 6

For image six ( 6 ) I added a sepia look and then de-saturated.  It turned more pinkie than sepia and I kind of like this look.

Old Photo Image 7

My last adjustment shown above was to use the "Old Photo" look.  The sky is gone but the ladies along the bottom still take center stage and continue to be the focal point of the picture.  So that is my spin on this fun little photograph of beach people from the early 1900s.  The girls along the bottom will thank me - the others (not so prominent along the edges) are gone for now but I know someone else will find a way to leave them in their interpretation of this great old photo.

In closing I want to thank Trishia for posting this photograph...and for putting the challenge "out there"!!  Head over to French Kissed Postcards - its a fun place to visit!


Freebie ( free ) Vintage Photographs

Additional free images for you today.  I have worked on the originals, a little, so they have deeper colors and their backgrounds are (somewhat) cleaner.  Just a few...because I am also working on images for my store...

Cynthia and Co. free vintage photograph - girl, boy, bunny

I love the first photograph of Edwardian children with their bunny.  The original was tiny so I enlarged it and when doing so it became a little blurry.  If you use this for a feature photograph it will have a soft focus.  If you use it for a background, with mostly the bunny showing it should be fine.

Cynthia and Co. free Edwardian photograph - girl and her dolly

The above photo with an Edwardian girl and her dolly was in very good shape.  I did enhance the image a little but for the most part this is how it shows on the original.  She should be good for all projects.

Cynthia and Co. free 1920s 1930s vintage photograph - boy and action doll

The photograph above is from the 1920s or 1930s and the subject is a little boy with his action figure doll, however, because boys were dressed in more frilly clothes (back then) its hard for me to be certain this is a little boy...I guess the masculine doll, who is dressed more boy-like than the boy, tells it all.  I did paint his clothing and the dolls clothing but the face was in good shape.

Cynthia and Co. free Edwardian photograph - girl and dolly - spooky

I like this girl...she has been enhanced but I didn't remove all of the white pixels...I used her for a spooky witch image at Halloween and it turned out, well, spooky.  You'll have fun with this one...

Cynthia and Co. free vintage image - corbel, bracket, architecture

This last image is a nice graphic of a corbel...this works great as an overlay for just a hint of interest in the background without overpowering your focal point...the photograph itself.

Happy Day...thanks for stopping by...Cynthia.


Photo Restoration from Cynthia and Co.

I've started restoring vintage photographs for hire.  Since I have been living and breathing Photoshop and photo manipulation for the last year it seems a natural progression for me to offer this service.  Whether you have old family photographs or have an instant ancestor you would like to "revive" I can assist.

For a sample of some of my work I have decided to use a sweet little photograph offered at The Graphics Fairy - just about the coolest website on the Internet for free vintage photographs and graphics!

Cynthia and Co. Photo Restoration - photo from The Graphics Fairy

The original photograph, above, is ever so cute but a little grainy and has some white spotting where the original was damaged.  Through photo manipulation those flaws can be removed to provide a lovely image that looks (almost) good as new!

Cynthia and Co. Photo Restoration - vintage photograph little girl

In the midway photograph, above, you can see how the little girl's face has been smoothed, the white pixels under her chin have been removed, and the background has been touched-up.  For this example I chose to NOT paint her face but leave her in a more natural state.  Many times, when tinting a photograph, I will paint the faces, clothing, etc. of the subjects but she seemed like a more natural kind of girl!

At this point, I could have left the image alone.  I've removed most of the flaws that appear and I've brought her face out into the light.  She looks good. 


Think how cute the photograph could be if it were "altered" just a little...

Cynthia and Co. Photo Restoration - vintage altered photo Victorian girl

OK, depending on your taste, this could be considered more than "a little" altering but this is how things fell into place while I was working on her...

You might wonder why I went to all of the work to smooth out her face if I were going to cover it up again with a graphic.  I didn't plan on adding a "mask" to her face but when I added the background graphic I liked the way part of it layed over her a Mardi Gras I left most of the lines and didn't erase them.  The birds were taken from an old Victorian Postcard that originally was in full color - since color wouldn't have worked here I "desaturated" it and used only a portion, the birds, for added interest.  The perch, that the birds are sitting on, is from the background graphic just shown in a different position.  An outside border was added for interest and the overall photograph has a slight yellow / ecru tint to make it appear warmer.

I'm pleased with the "after" version.  I believe I stayed true to the emotion of the original vintage photograph and used images appropriate for a little Edwardian girl.

For more information, if you would like to use my services, the Etsy ad is in the top right of the home page...just click the image.  Or click below:

If you would like a copy of the "midway" version of the photograph without the "midway" watermark just email me and I'll email it to you "free of charge".

If that is too much trouble and you just want the image in it's before state click below:

Thanks for visiting.  Enjoy!!

Cynthia and Co. free vintage photo restored just for the asking


Marianne Clancy on Etsy (maclancy)

I collect vintage photography.  I have several other collections including Tea Leaf (ironstone) Porcelain Puppies and Figurines, Blue Willow (everything) Teacups and Saucers (who doesn't collect teacups?) but photographs have been occupying my time of late.  So many to find, so little time!

If you collect (anything) you probably know about Etsy an online source for handmade items and collectibles.  If you collect photographs you may already know about Marianne Clancy.  Her shop is top-notch for those looking for antique imagery.  Today I am going to share just a few of the tintypes and other non-paper images she has to sell on her Etsy site. 

I looked for a definition of tintype photography and found this on

"While most early photo processes involved paper or light metal plates, tintypes (aka ferrotypes) used a sheet of thin iron. Patented in 1856, tintypes are recognizable by their yellowish color and small sizes. The smallest plates are called gem tintypes, and are common in lockets or jewelry. Like daguerreotypes, they tend to tarnish easily. This medium was popular for many years, due to its higher developing speed and easy-to-clip material, making it ideal for framing."

The above image may technically be a dag (daguerreotype) but it is non-paper so I included it today because the image is so clear and enchanting!

When I look for images to purchase I look for subject matter first and quality second because I can do retouching digitally.  Other considerations for me are overall composition, the story the photograph is telling, the balance of light, medium and dark hues.  And most important, for me, are the face and eyes of the subject (if the photograph is a portrait or candid shot).  You will notice today's shared images all have dear, sweet faces...sullen, perhaps, but full of charm!

I marvel at the quality of her collection.  I have to be honest...I wish I knew how she sources these because finding vintage photography isn't difficult...but finding exquisite vintage photography IS difficult.

Marianne's prices range from $5.00 (ish) on up.  These I have shared today are in the "on-up" category but they are reasonably priced considering the overall quality and subject matter.

I love, love, love the above baby photograph.  Ofcourse, I am drawn to her eyes!

You can find MaClancy on Etsy at  She offers all types of vintage (antique) photography including snapshots, CDVs, cabinet card photos, etc.  You can also find greeting cards and large archival photos that have been restored and printed on acid-free paper.  Take a hop over and visit.  I'm sure you'll find some little orphan photo waiting for you!