Tutorial: Using the Paper Camera App to make Appliqué Patterns

January 20, 2017

This is for my fabulous students who have been patiently waiting for me to write up a tutorial. 

Paper Camera by JFDP Labs is an app that I use to begin the journey from this:

to this!You go girl! We only work on construction of the portrait in the last hour of my Playful Portraiture class and she went home and finished this hunky boy all in one evening.

We had a fabulous time at the East Cobb Quilter’s Guild taking selfies and making faces using this app. Yes, the current reviews of the app are terrible. The last time it was updated was November of 2016. But – for what I use it for, I still love it. If you find another app that can do this, let me know and I’ll review it.

When you open the app – this is what you see. You might have to give permission for the app to access your camera. Click yes. Now -see those little arrows on the bottom right of your screen? Click through them until you see the….OLD PRINTER filter. Lots of dots. Kind of cool. If you are going to take a selfie next you need to look for the little camera icon with the circling arrows in the top right corner of the photo. See it? Click it and the camera will turn to the front of you device so you can see your own funny face.

Hello there! Just for practice take a picture. You do that by clicking the blue button with the picture of a camera on it on the far right of your screen. If you are right handed this is very convenient, no?

Now, the important thing to pay attention to when you take your picture is the dark and light – the shadows. Move yourself and your camera around until your face is mostly in the light. Tip yourself up towards the light and see what happens. Take as many pictures as you need to practice. Get up close and silly with your eyes. Look around in different places – especially right into that tiny little dot that is the camera lens. 

If by chance you have a different photo in your albums that you took somewhere, sometime, elsewhere you can use that in the app as well! Right above the little blue camera button on the far right is a bookish looking icon. 

Click it and it will turn green and open up your device’s photo album. Click the photo you want to open it in the app.

Now you can click the arrows through again until you find old printer. Slide the little slider-thingies (that’s an official word!) back and forth until you have an image mostly in black and white then click the green down arrow. (Up arrows in a box usually mean send, down arrows in a box usually mean save.)

Next, look at the bottom left of the screen. You should see the last picture you took in the thumbnail. Click on it and you will see the photo all big and silly.

If you click on the green set of three photos icon in the top left here you will then see ALL of the photos you’ve taken. If you want to email yourself a picture to print click the blue box in the upper middle with the send arrow.

If you want to back out to the camera setting you click the red arrow on the upper right. If you want to select certain photos to delete click the green box with the checkmarks in the upper left.

You can also double click the “home” button to go back to the home screen or to bring up all the apps you currently have open. I have my photos app open so I click on that. In my photo album I can see both the unfiltered original picture and the filtered version. I find it easier to send photos from the Photos app than from Paper Camera. 

And – like I said…. it’s buggy. Sometimes we mysteriously couldn’t find the photos in the app. Mine freezes when I’m trying to send from within the app. Ah well. When it works – it’s great!

Next up…. How to open this fabulous silly face in a different app and make a pattern from it.


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