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Digiscrapping 101: Now what?
Jul 13th, 2011 by Karah

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(Originally posted January 2009)

Alright – ready for round two?

So by now you have your software… right?  Riiiiight?  ;)

Well what are we waiting for then? Let’s dive in!

Now I have to preface this by saying that I use Photohop CS3 so  any screen shots or things that I post will be from that program.  But it should be ok.

So you have your program.  Have you installed it (if not, that would be step #1).  Have you opened it (let’s do that right now!)?  Have you played around in there?  No?  Well, we need to change that.

You will be overwhelmed.  I can guarantee that. There are so many menus and icons and options that it just makes your head spin.  DON’T WORRY!  You WILL figure it out – it just takes practice!!

Now I’m going to give you a few little gifts to practice with.  This download will contain a few papers, elements, and alphabet letters.  You will want to make a special folder on your hard drive that is JUST for scrapbooking – and believe me, it’s gonna fill up FAST.  So when you click on this download, just save it to that Scrapbooking folder, extract all the files, and you’re ready to go.

http://blueflombingo.com/stuff/downloads/kfredricks_digiscrapping_101.zip

Now when you download a digital scrapbooking kit, the papers should always be 12×12 files (unless otherwise noted).  If you want to scrap in a different format (8×10, 8×8, 10×10) you just need to resize the file – it’s pretty painless.

Alrighty.  Ready to jump in and get your feet wet?

First, go to file>open and browse to that scrapbooking folder where you saved the download I gave you.  Open up the turquoise paper.  On this paper you will create your layout.  Your page.  Your canvas.  Your masterpiece.  Whatever you want to call it.  This is where magic happens.

Now I’m going to show you how to put together a layout and you can copy it if you’d like or you can get all funky & do your own thing.  This is just how I do it – every person does it their own way.  And honestly, I never do it the same way twice.  LOL.

So next you’ll need to choose a picture (note: I almost ALWAYS choose my pictures first, but for this example I chose the paper first because it’s all I have to work with).  So after you open your picture, just drag it over to the layout (the turquoise paper).  You can then close your picture file if you would like.

Now we’re going to get creative.  Let’s open the green dots paper that you downloaded.  Now this paper is the exact same size as your layout so what we will need to do now is crop it down.  We will get into doing shapes and things in a future post.  For now we’ll keep it simple.  We’re just going to crop it into a smaller square.  And if you are totally lost, this is what the crop tool looks like.  You will click on it and then use your mouse to draw a square on the paper – then double click in the middle of the square when you are done. **hint** if you hold down the shift key while drawing the square, it will guarantee that your square is perfect!

Drag your new square onto your layout and arrange it however you want.

Now before we go any further, we must learn about layers.   Each item you drag onto your layout will be on a new layer.  This allows you to move things around and rearrange things however you want.  On the right side of your screen, you should see your layers palette.  You can even drag those layers around to rearrange them!

Ok – on to our next paper.  Let’s open up the light green one!  Now this one I’m going to crop into a rectangle, just to shake things up a bit.  I’m going to drag this layer behind my photo layer.

So now that we have our papers in place, let’s embellish!  Embellishments, or, elements are the absolute COOLEST part of digital scrapbooking.  If you can imagine something, I can almost guarantee that it’s been created.  You will be amazed!  The elements I have given you in this download are fairly simple one but they are still cute! :)

First I’m going to open up the frame.  Now here is where you have some options.  I have given you a frame WITH a shadow and WITHOUT a shadow.  Not all designers will provide you with a pre-shadowed version of an element.  But I do with elements that don’t have basic edges.  So for this, I’m going to choose the shadowed frame.

Now you’re free to embellish more if you’d like.  When you’re done, it might look something like this:

The next step is to add shadowing.  I will be doing a shadowing tutorial at a later date so for now, just try to think about how the REAL shadow of those items would look.  You should add a shadow to EVERY item on your page, besides the background paper (unless an item came pre-shadowed).

So here is my finished layout!

Now you’ll want to save your layout.  I ALWAYS save a layered copy (a .psd file or a .tif file) of my layout just in case I ever need to go back and change anything.   But if you want to print your layout or share it with friends on the web, you will want to save it as a .jpg file.  And remember – these files are BIG so please resize them to approximately 600 pixels by 600 pixels before you try to share them on the web!

*phew* I know that was a lot to take in but I hope you are starting to feel a little bit more comfortable with your program!  I’ll be back in a few days with your next “lesson” ! :)

So what is this whole Digi-Scrapping thing?
Jul 13th, 2011 by Karah

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(Originally posted February 2008)

Recently I have had many “real life” friends express interest in digiscrapping, wondering how to start, so I’ve decided to blog some of the basics for everyone who is just thinking about starting out.

Let’s start with an excerpt from the Blue Flombingo website…

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By now, the term “scrapbooking” is as well-known as the terms “knitting” or “quilting.” What started out as a small industry has exploded into something HUGE that is constantly growing, changing and expanding. You can see this at any local craft store – where there used to be a few racks of scrapbook goodies there are now rows and rows. There are the scrapbook albums. And the papers. And the embellishments. And the storage systems. And the cutting systems. And the list goes on and on.

Recently, however, there has been a new movement among scrapbookers. Many “scrappers” have decided to transition from “paper scrapping” (scrapbooking in the traditional style of photo prints, papers and adhesives) to digital scrapbooking (or “digiscrapping”). There are so many incredible programs available today that ones options are practically endless.

Why DigiScrap?

I was a “paper scrapper.” I was a strict paper scrapbooker for approximately 12 years. When I first heard about digital scrapbooking and saw some samples of what it looked like, I SWORE I would never make the transition. A few years ago, however, I began feeling very overwhelmed. I have four children and I am a photographer, which means that I have bazillions of pictures. I do not have space in my home to set up a scrapbooking table or area, as many people are able to do. While I enjoy getting together for scrapbooking parties with friends, I usually end up talking too much and hardly get anything done. So in April of this year I succumbed and thought “what would it hurt to do a few digital layouts?” I did one. Then another. And then another and another and another. And in one week, I had finished 5 layouts! This is compared to the 5 layouts I had finished over the previous 4 months. I was immediately hooked.

While some people really love the appearance of “real” scrapbook layouts, the digital designs that have been coming out recently are created with the intent of APPEARING real. I have seen some digital layouts that make me I feel like I could reach out and touch them through the screen (and have had people actually reach out to touch elements on some of my printed pages as well!).

One huge benefit of digital scrapbooking is the delete or undo button. Don’t like where you put that picture? Undo. Don’t like how you cropped that photo? Undo. Misspelled in your journaling? Undo. And then there are the limitless options available through the photo-editing software. Have a picture you think might look better in black and white? Change it. Have a background paper that doesn’t quite match the picture? Re-color it. Have an alphabet you’d like to use, but think the letters are too big? Shrink them. The options are literally endless.

Getting Started

For people who are unsure about making the change, there are so many digital scrapbooking freebies available online for download. All you need to do is download a free kit or two and play around for a bit. It may be awkward at first – you may not know what you’re doing and may need to practice a little. But once you have everything figured out, you’ll be amazed at how EASY it really is.

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So with that out of the way ….

Step #1

The first step is deciding on a program. There are a LOT of options out there – the best thing to do is download the free trials many of them offer and play around with them for a bit to see which one you like the most! Personally, I recommend PhotoShop Elements (PSE) to everyone who asks what they should use. It’s a fantastic program, packed FULL of features. More than everything you’d need to edit your photos and do basic to advanced digital scrapbooking.

Here are some links to some of the more popular programs out there…

PhotoShop Elements

Paint Shop Pro

ACDsee Photo Editor

Coming soon … I have my program - now what???

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