The arrival of Autumn marks a season of decline.  Northerly winds bring a chill to the Carolina air.  As the Earth tilts ever so slightly away from the sun with each passing day, daylight hours wane.  Late afternoon shadows and low slanted sunlight kiss the tops of trees and filter through leaves.  The sun creeps toward the horizon, bathing the landscape in warmth and the subdued but dramatic hues of gold and flax.
Much like the Autumn season, this time of day is transient, and if you don’t pay attention you might miss it.   If you’re like me, maybe you make a point to capture this pre-twilight scene as much as possible, before Autumn’s splendor fades into winter grays.  Whether it’s in my backyard or atop the Carolina highlands, you’ll find me outside on most fall afternoons, chasing that fading fall light.
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

While the beauty of Fall may be fleeting, feelings evoked from the season don’t have to be.   Inspired by our North Carolina mountain image above and this beautiful gallery wall on Pinterest, I decided to encapsulate the natural and organic palette of Autumn’s falling light through updated family photos in my dining room gallery wall.

Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

To showcase some of my favorite family photos and fill out the back wall in the dining room, I created this symmetric gallery wall layout a few years ago.  Using light wood modern frames and a simple layout, this design has been perfect for swapping out images for the seasons.

Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

For this Fall season, though, I was ready to warm up the space and get some family prints back on the wall.   Never really impressed by the over-saturated, predictable reds, oranges, and yellows that dominate most fall decor, I wanted this space to call out those softer gold and flax colors of the season.

After choosing ten of my favorite family images (no easy feat!) I altered the colors in Adobe Lightroom, primarily playing around with the images’ vibrancy, adding contrast, and bumping up the exposure until I achieved the desired effect.

Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

For printing, I use an awesome Mom-and-Pop store in Mooresville called Hailey’s.  They cater more to the trade doing a lot of blueprints and construction plans, but they produce high-quality prints at a fraction of the cost of the national chain printers.  Hailey’s also printed all of the summer palm prints and the beautiful summer seascape prints that currently reside in my living room. 

I used Adobe Indesign to create a mockup of the prints in the frames.  By saving thumbnail images of the prints first, I could swap them in and out of my “virtual” Indesign frames, creating the perfect layout before purchasing the prints.

Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

The end result is stunning! Playing off the blue-gray wall color (Sherwin Williams’ Cityscape), my light wood frames and toned down images soak up the organic warmth and beauty of the Autumn season.

Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail
Strawberry Basil Mint Smash Cocktail

So what do you think? Are you as captivated by the late afternoon slanting light and falling shadows as I am?  Or do you embrace the more vibrant and playful colors of the season?  Share your thoughts or contact me for help on creating your own personalized gallery wall.