Adam and his baby soother

Adam is 5 weeks old today! Last Wednesday we saw his first smile, or perhaps it was trapped wind because he was just after feeding but it was a beautiful sight to behold. He has smiled since too, and was especially cheerful this morning!

Adam loves his baby soother though. He sucks on it like Maggie out of the Simpsons does. Non-stop and with feeling!
If a soother or dummy isn’t nearby and it’s available, a hair dryer works wonders for relaxing him. The sound soothes him and he can go from screaming the house down to docile and a gurgling baby in seconds when the hair dryer is switched on. It’s magic.

Technique: This is a high key portrait created using two layers.
1. Original image is the bottom layer.
2. Duplicate that layer.
3. Convert top layer to b/w using channel mixer.
4. Apply Gaussian blur to the top layer. I used a 75 pixel wide blur.
5. Change mode of top layer to screen.
6. Add white layer mask to top layer and reveal eyes from original image by painting over them with a black brush. Use an opacity of 10%.
7. Merge layers and save. Layers should be separate when resizing so you can unsharp mask the bottom layer.

Hope that is of use!


  1. Anthony Reply

    Great shot. What a cute kid. :)

  2. Donncha O Caoimh Reply

    Thanks Anthony! I think I hear him crying again…

  3. edt Reply

    A very handy technique. My Adobe Elements5 software has the capacity to do your method. Tried it on some flowers that are high key lit, it works a treat TY. Regards from a sunny late autumn Sunday afternoon in New Zealand.

  4. Suzanne Reply

    Bless my cotton socks, my soft focus nephew!
    Looking forward to seeing ye again soon.
    Love Suz xx

  5. Flickr: patio_ Reply

    What a handsome boy you have there. Who does he favor?
    You or Jacinta? My money goes on the mother. Pat & Linda

  6. Flickr: frenchsvilla Reply

    Congrats donnacha. are you getting any sleep?

  7. Flickr: xeer Reply

    patio – hehe. I don’t really know! People say he looks like me but I can’t tell.

    frenchsvilla – sleep? On Saturday night he was feeding every 2 hours but last night we did manage to get about 4 hours sleep in one go. It was heaven!

  8. Baby Store Reply

    That pictures is simply amazing. He looks like a little angel sent from heaven!

  9. Jane Reply

    Absolutely gorgeous! Mine is now 14 months, and she’s a little darling.

  10. baby websites Reply

    Your baby looks gorgeous and the pic looks amazing. btw, thanks for the techniques sharing.

  11. Wicker Reply

    What an amazing picture – so cute!

    .. and thanks for those tips on to recreate the effect.

  12. Goonie Reply

    Hey, your boy is really handsome, mine is 18 month old now :)

  13. Vill Reply

    A little Angel from heaven? What a beatuful baby :)

  14. plioz Reply

    my oh my … i bet even with original picture this baby will still look adorable …

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