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Take Your Photos from Average to “Wow!” in 10 Seconds Flat with Paint the Moon

Last week I posted on photography tips for kids and mentioned that I would soon be trying my hand at Photoshop actions.  Today I’m back to share my results.  The actions I used were from a truly lovely photography shop and blog, and MPMK’s newest sponsor, paint the moon.


For me, Photoshop actions are all about taking the mystery and TIME out of using Photoshop.  As a Photoshop newbie, it can take me quite a while to edit my photos.  I often find myself with TONS of them piling up on my hard drive, waiting to be processed.  Lately I’m even hesitating to take more pics of the kids just because I don’t want to add to the stack.  This is terrible because my whole motivation for buying the fancy camera in the first place was to have lots of great pictures of them.


Because of this problem, I wanted to ensure that these paint the moon actions would make my photos look more professional fast (like “snap my fingers” fast).  So I put them to the test by only allowing myself 2 clicks to get from the “before” to the “after”.  Below are two examples of what I ended up with, one each of S and C.



I have to say, I was pretty psyched about my results.  I love the vivid colors and the way S’s eyes pop and C’s hair shines.  The “after” photos just make the “before” photos seem so flat and lackluster.


It literally took about 10 seconds to process each of these and the great thing about these actions is that they’re completely customizable.  So if I wanted to spend a little more time at it I could have played around with each automatic edit and the degree to which it was performed (on a sliding scale from 0 to 100 percent).


As I mentioned before,  this is a sponsored post and paint the moon was kind enough to provide me with a few actions free of charge so I could test them out.  Which is great for me, but there’s some great news for you too.  If you head over to paint the moon, you’ll find some of their actions offered absolutely free (and a few more if you “like” their facebook page).  Trust me, even though they’re free, these actions are still really cool.  In fact, they were the only thing used to process the photos above.


So head over to paint the moon and get started with their actions today.  I’m positive you’ll be hooked just like me in no time.  I already have more actions on my birthday list and I finally have hope that my personal blog will no longer languish untouched because I don’t have time to edit my pics.  (That sound you hear is the grandparents doing cartwheels!)


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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Jill GG (good life for less) July 20, 2011 at 12:44 pm

I just recently discovered Paint the Moon and have LOVED playing around with photos, especially for my blog… I’m a huge fan! :)



Art For Little Hands July 20, 2011 at 1:30 pm

When you posted about paint the moon before I looked and loved the stuff, but couldn’t afford. This is so nice. I am glad you shared it. I just now need to figure out how to download and use. I have PSE, but have never messed with actions. Figuring this out is being a trial this morning, but thanks so much for letting us know about the freebies. It will make me see if buying is worth it for me.


Steph at ModernParentsMessyKids.com July 20, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Hi Art for Little Hands,

Figuring out how to download actions can be challenging the first time (for all actions, not just paint the moon’s) but once you do figure it out it’s pretty straight forward.

Fortunately paint the moon has a lot of really helpful info. – see here:


and be sure to scroll to the section that says “For Elements installation, please download PDF instructions here” for the step-by-step PDF. If you’re still having trouble just email them. Annie was absolutely fabulous in helping me figure it out!


Katie July 24, 2011 at 1:40 am

These look so good, you’re tempting me to buy Photoshop (even at the Canadian price)! Which actions did you use on your pictures here?


Steph at ModernParentsMessyKids.com July 25, 2011 at 5:07 pm

Hi Katie,

Sorry it took me a while to get back to you (I’m on vacation!) I actually only used paint the moon’s free actions on the photos above. But I have “the essentials” and use them on every photo I take! And miracle makeover is definitely on my wish list :)


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