I find it fascinating to peek inside someone's mind or inside their everyday life! We are all so different in how we approach things and how we see the world, whether the glasses we look through are rose-colored or blue. I think that's one of the reasons I can get so lost in other people's blogs! I have to be careful or I will lose all track of time.
Today, though, I thought I would give you a peek inside my mind.
I am often asked how I find my inspiration and how I get started on a design project for Scrap Girls. Sometimes that's not such an easy question to answer. You might be surprised by some of the things that inspire me - or more than likely you might scratch your head and say "Huh? How on earth did she design a digital scrapbooking kit from that?" My source of inspiration can be the color of a pebble, the shape of a leaf - anything.
Usually I start out with a photo, or a page ripped out of a home decor magazine, or a sales flyer with colors that caught my eye. Then I put together a color palette and start sketching out some paper and element designs in my design notebook.
Here's my Vanilla Sky Nano Collection and the photo that inspired my color choice.
Not what you expected, right? A photo of my boys' new shoes - who knew? You might be wondering why it didn't inspire a boy's kit - and I don't have the answer to that. All I can say is that it's always an adventure to start out on a path and see where I end up!
Layout by Syndee Nuckles
Why Do We Have Three Sign-Ups for Scrap Girls?
One of the questions I get asked most often is, "When I go to the Scrap Girls Boutique to sign into my account, why doesn't it recognize me automatically? I get your newsletters every day, so shouldn't it recognize me?"
Good question – and here's why: Scrap Girls actually has three different locations that you need to sign up/register at to use all the parts of our site.
First, there's the newsletter. If you are reading this, you have already figured out that part. This sign-up location simply requires an email address, and no further information is needed.
Second, we have a Boutique, which is our place to go shopping for all those amazing Scrap Girls digital scrapbooking products. Until you make your first purchase with Scrap Girls, you will not be signed up for a Boutique account. During the checkout process, you'll put in all your account information.
To do this, simply add the items you want to purchase to your "shopping bag." Once you are ready to checkout, click on the words "Shopping Bag" in the upper left area of your screen.
Then, you will be redirected to a page where you can review your order. If everything looks right, then click on "Proceed to check out."
Once you are brought to the next page, choose "Check out and create a customer account now!"
From there, the Boutique will walk you through creating your account and finalizing your order.
Please keep in mind, if something stops or delays the completion of your order process, then your account will not be set up. You must complete the order process once for the account information to be saved to our system. You will need to go through the above steps again, including filling in all your information and completing your order.
Finally, the third place to register is the Scrap Girls Forum/Gallery. This lets you take part in all the community aspects of Scrap Girls, and this is where the fun really starts to happen! This is a separate sign-up from either the Newsletter or the Boutique, because we use a third-party solution for our Message Board. The company we contract with manages the Message Board and Gallery, and since it is their primary business, they take care of the huge database that is required.
To register, go to the home page of Scrap Girls (www.scrapgirls.com) and click on "Forum" in the top banner. At the next screen, look to the upper right corner and you'll see the link to register.
Once you have clicked on that link, the site will walk you through all the steps necessary to register for the Forum/Gallery. That's it!
Three places to register, three ways to participate and benefit from all we have going here at Scrap Girls. If at any time during your sign-up processes, you run into any issues, please email me at [email protected], and I'll be happy to help you out!
And if you're new to Scrap Girls, then let me be the first to say, "Welcome!"
Article written by Angie Briggs
Now with exclusive MEMBERS-ONLY Club content!
Join the Scrap Girls Monthly Club and you can have fun with the newest traditional digital and printable scrapbooking looks while saving! (A $40.87 value for $9.99 or less!)
The Scrap Girls Club contents are released on the 1st day of the month (or the closest business day to the 1st).
With the Scrap Girls Club, you will receive:
- 1 Collection Biggie
- 1 Paper Super Mini
- 1 Word Art Mini
- 1 Embellishment Mini
- 1 Assemble Your Own Zoom Page Set
- 1 Designer's Choice Item
April's Scrap Girls Club designed for you by Angie Briggs
But that's not all! Club members now receive these three exclusive, club-only items!
Club Exclusive! JIFFY Easy Page Album
Club Exclusive! Designer's Gift
and a Club Exclusive! Color Palette
Creating Drop Shadows
Have you ever seen digital scrapbooking layouts that make you want to reach out and touch the elements on the page? Well, the secret behind those unbelievably realistic layouts are drop shadows.
The best way to approach this technique is to think about which page elements would have shadows if your layout was created with actual paper. Papers, embellishments such as flowers or buttons, and alphas all cast shadows in the physical world. However, elements such as typed text or paint strokes do not cast a shadow, therefore you wouldn't add a shadow to them on your digital layout.
Let's explore how to actually create the drop shadow within Photoshop. Click on the element you wish to shadow in the Layers Palette. Then, click the small fx symbol at the bottom of the palette. This will bring up a menu of various layer styles; choose "Drop Shadow" from the menu.
You should see this dialog box:
Here you can adjust the settings of the drop shadow. I don't change the default settings for Blend Mode, Opacity, and Angle. However, the Distance, Spread, and Size settings are going to change depending on what type of element you're working with. An easy way to remember what each slider does is to relate it to how shadows occur in real life.
Here are some general tips for adjusting these settings:
Distance: The further an element is from the base of the page, the further the shadow stretches out. For example, a paper that is only lying on top of another paper will need a smaller distance setting whereas a flower stacked on several pieces of paper will need a larger distance setting.
Spread: Elements that have defined edges, such as paper or buttons, cast compact shadows that do not spread out very far from the element. Elements that have softer edges, like flowers, create softer, less defined shadows that spread out a bit further from the element.
Size: The bulkier an item is, the bigger its shadow will be. Papers are thin, so the size of its shadow will be on the lower end of the spectrum. Items such as buttons are bigger and will cast a larger shadow.
If you don't want to memorize these tips, you can always find a ScrapSimple Style in the Boutique that will have these preset shadow settings for various types of elements. I often use ScrapSimple Tools - Styles: Basic Shadows 6501, ScrapSimple Tools - Actions: Realistic Shadows - Basic 11301, and ScrapSimple Tools - Actions: Realistic Shadows - Firm Materials 11302.
To make the process even faster, I add shadows to multiple layers at one time. It's really simple to do: Ctrl+Click on each layer you wish to select and then access the Layer Style Palette as described above. I like to group similar elements together, so I select all paper layers to add shadows with the appropriate settings for papers. Then I continue with the next group of elements, such as flowers or buttons and add shadows appropriate for those items.
So that's it! Keep these tips in mind and you'll be creating realistic, "paper" layouts like this in no time!
Layout by Ashleigh Bronner
Article written by Ashleigh Bronner
Learn to make digital scrapbooking layouts and more! – Scrapbook Software Secrets Revealed
Find out how easy it can be to learn how to create digital scrapbook layouts, edit photos, use and make brushes, recolor papers and embellishments, make your own simple backgrounds and embellishments, save and share your layouts and much more!
Ready to learn advanced techniques? – MORE Scrapbook Software Secrets Revealed
Learn to use paper templates, embellishment templates, custom shapes, styles, and brushes to make your own supplies. Learn advanced clipping mask and lighting blend techniques. Learn to make and use patterns. Learn to make brushes from your own doodles. Learn to extract images from photos. Learn work flow techniques that will speed up the layout creation process and advanced photo editing skills and much, much more!
Layout by Angie Briggs
Designer Freebie by Angie Briggs coordinates with her Being With You Collection Biggie,
part of this month's Scrap Girls Club offering!
Today's freebie designed by Angie Briggs
* There is a "free download" button on the details page for each gift. You don't need to put them in your shopping cart unless you are shopping for other items. Also note that if you are slow reading your newsletter, you may find this freebie has already been retired, as the freebies are only available as gifts for about two newsletter cycles.
ScrapSimple Clubbers Chat
Monday, April 4th - 5:00PM MT
Join April (April Showers) and Angela (angelaNussbaum) on Monday, April 4th at 5pm MT for a chat and challenge using this month's ScrapSimple Club. Did you know that every time you create a layout with the ScrapSimple Club and upload it into the ScrapSimple Club Gallery that you could be chosen to be featured in the Newsletter and receive a prize? Well, join us for the chat so we can encourage and inspire you and help with any questions that you may have. Let's get those ScrapSimple Club layouts done and uploaded!
Monday, April 4th - 7:00PM MT
What is NSBR? It's a non-scrapbooking related chat! We talk about everything, including some scrapbooking and usually chocolate. It's a great chance to meet new friends, catch up on what everyone is up to, and just relax. If you have a problem, we'll lend an ear or a shoulder to cry on. Have some great news to share? We'd love to celebrate with you. So join us, Carla (CRS) and Lei (Bride) at 7pm MT!
Life Moments Chat and Crop
Tuesday, April 5th - 12:00Noon MT
Join Debbie (B&K Mom) in the chat room on April 5th at Noon MT for the Life Moments Chat and Crop. These chats are focused on building a scrapbook all about you - one layout at a time. This week we will be scrapping Family Traits: Do you have your Mom's eyes, Dad's height, Aunt Gerty's sense of humor? Do you and your sister sound exactly the same on the phone? Did your child look just like you as a baby? Let's give credit where credit is due and scrap the Family Traits you possess or have passed on. So dig through your files, write down your memories, and be sure to join us in the chat room!
Creative Cards Chat
Tuesday, April 5th - 6:00PM MT
Do you use your digital supplies to make cards? Do you want to? Instead of going to the store every time you need a card, you can save money and have fun making cards with your digi-stash! Make a note of any cards you might need for the upcoming month and join April (April Showers) and Theresa (tiza126) for the once-a-month Card Chat on the first Tuesday of each month at 6pm MT. Can't wait to see you there!
Project SG Chat
Tuesday, April 5th - 7:00PM MT
Join April (April Showers) and Shannon (tinkerbell11) to hear all the details about Project SG! You can win prizes for taking part in this Challenge. It is never too late to start - see you in the chatroom at 7pm MT on Tuesday, April 5th!
April Message Board Game: BINGO!
Join us for an exciting game of Springtime BINGO on the Message Board Forum in April! Pick 25 words from the list provided and send them in an email to [email protected] with a subject line that says "BINGO CARD - your Scrap Girls Message Board username" by Saturday, April 2nd at Midnight MST in order to play in the first round. The first round will begin on Monday, April 4th. If you miss the first round deadline, you can still play! Just send in your BINGO card at any time during the month, and you'll be eligible to begin playing when the next new round starts.
Each day, a member of the Welcoming Committee will call five random words from the BINGO list. Match just 15 of those words to win a BINGO. You must be first to call "BINGO!" in the game thread to win that round. After a winner is called, the boards will be cleared and a new round will begin the following day.
Each winner will receive a $5 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique! We like to see lots of winners, so please remember that each person can only win one round during the month. Have fun!
For complete details, visit the Monthly Message Board Games folder on the Scrap Girls Message Board.
April Monthly Layout Contest: Earth Day was started in the United States in 1970 and it went global in 1990. For April's Monthly Layout Contest, we want you to show us what Earth Day means to you or what you are doing to make our precious world a little greener. Post your layouts in the April Monthly Layout Gallery before Midnight MT on April 30th. Be sure to list your credits in the description or under the EXIF Properties. If your layout is one of the two chosen, you will win a $10 gift certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique!
Club Concepts Layout Contest: Post your new layout using the current club selection (either the Scrap Girls Club or the ScrapSimple Club) in our Scrap Girls Club Members Gallery or the ScrapSimple Club Members' Gallery. Be sure to list all of the Scrap Girls products you used. If your layout is chosen, it will be showcased as a Club Concepts layout winner, and you will win a $5 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique!
Check our message board calendar if you have any questions about what is happening at Scrap Girls. All event times are given in Mountain Time Zone unless otherwise noted. Need help converting time zones? Check out the World Clock - Time Zone Converter. (Use 'USA-Utah-Salt Lake City' as the location for the Mountain time zone.)
Haven't received your prize as a contest winner? Please send an email to [email protected] and we'll get it out to you right away!