CONGRATULATIONS! to our April 2014 Member of the Month Therese S.
Member Name: Smoky
What program do you use to digital scrapbook?
I alternate between an ancient version of Photoshop (run in WINE) and Gimp. I also use DarkTable for some photo editing.
Are you a Mac or a PC?
Isn’t that redundant? I don’t use Mac or Windows, but I am an avid fan of Linux Mint (flavor – MATE).
Tell us the make and model of digital camera that you use.
A Sony H-7, which recently took its 9,999th photo and started over naming files at 1. Maybe it’s time for a new camera?
Name one thing that every beginning digital scrapbooker should know.
Scrap for yourself. Your layouts may look different than everyone else’s, but that’s all right. I’ve found that I’m ultimately happier with an album of layouts that represent my own style, even if it’s not conventionally popular.
If you could be transformed into a digital scrapbooking embellishment, what would you choose and why?
Something with wings – a bird, a butterfly, a dragonfly, etc. I tend to include one of these somewhere in almost every layout I create.
What time of day do you find that you do your best scrapbooking?
I’d normally say at night, but I’ve been getting up literally BEFORE the chickens lately. Actually, I’ve been waking them up when they see the lights come on in the house! I’m usually in bed at a fairly early hour. Scrap Girls designer Jacqui Smith inspired me with her story of how she became a morning person, so I thought I’d give it a try. I’m doing more scrapping in the afternoons now, but I’d probably be more productive if I could darken the room.
What is your favorite snack?
Is coffee a snack? No? I’m not sure that I have a favorite, but I guess I’m drawn to crunchy, salty, spicy snacks. Pickles, baby carrots, habanero Cheddar, spicy boiled shrimp – these are the things I love to snack on.
What is your least favorite household chore?
Finish this sentence. “I couldn’t live without…”
My husband. He’s my best friend!
Digital scrapbooking supplies used:
Tutorial created Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Windows Vista
In January, we hosted two Australian students for 10 days. One of the students, Sheena, is an equestrian just like my daughter, Erinn. To help break the ice and give the girls some relaxed opportunities to get to know each other, we took the girls horseback riding. Sheena and Erinn hopped on Moose bareback – Sheena was even barefoot! – and the two spent the afternoon getting to know one another from the back of the horse! Cathy and Belle took their turns as well. The camera was shooting like crazy so as not to have one undocumented moment.
When it came time to download and look at the pictures, there were lots of less-than-perfect shots. In some images, Sheena and Erinn were looking away or their big helmets hid their beautiful smiles or shadowed their faces. As Moose moved into an unexpected canter, I lost focus through the lens, or the photo was captured with Moose half out of the frame. A few of the photos turned out very nice, a great pictorial of our first day together with the students. In the end, there were dozens of photos, with only a few really good ones; but the series of photos, even the less than perfect ones, told the whole story better than the few I considered scrap-worthy.
For this assignment, I wanted to show you one way that you can create a nice layout using multiple photos, even with those that you might consider “unusable.” With all of the software tricks and fabulous digital scrapbooking supplies, your possibilities are endless as to how many photos you may use in a layout, and sometimes many are needed to tell the whole story! You can make an “unusable” photo into an “imperfect” photo with a few clicks. In the following layout, there are nine photos included to tell the whole story. I decided to let the less-than-perfect photos tell their story from the background – and use photo masks to blend them well.
First, I created a new 12×12-inch document. All of the photo masks from ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Pocket Plus Photomasks were opened and brought into my software. At that point, all of the masks were randomly arranged onto my layout. I didn’t pay any attention to orientation. They were just lined up shoulder-to-shoulder on my page. The page was nothing but black masks lined up throughout.
Next, I opened the series of photos from the afternoon. The photos were simply placed over the masks and clipped to each one. I didn’t pay attention to the quality of the photo – I just chose the ones that best told the story. Once all the photos were on the page, it became clear as to how to resize or rotate the masks to maximize the space available and to tell the story in a sensible manner.
Changing the Blending modes on the photo masks helped to soften the imperfections, hide the blurriness, and blend the photos into the background. All of the photo masks had the Blending modes adjusted. After playing around with them, all but one was set to Color Burn. Color Burn was the best choice to keep the colors saturated, which was the desired look. For dramatic effect, one photo mask only was set to Luminosity. By changing the Blending modes, I could focus on having all of the photos present necessary to tell the story, but do so in an artistic, digital manner.
After the background photos were set and in place, the primary photos were selected for the layout. These photos were the “hero” shots – those with direct eye contact, full framed and “the cream of the crop.” To do this, a full width frame was selected from Memories of Home Embellishments – Frames. The best images were then placed under the frame. The Blending modes of those images were left as Normal so they would stand out against the background images and really emphasize the story. A minimal number of embellishments were added to the layout, and voila! I have a completed layout with nine images, five of which I had originally considered not worthy of scrapping!
As digital photographers and digital scrapbookers, there are more than a few of us out there with massive numbers of images on our hard drives – many of them imperfect but worthy of telling a story. While you’re designing your next layout, consider how many photos you can get on your page, and discover how Blending modes can assist you in telling your story. We can’t wait to see your layouts in our Scrap Girls Gallery!
Digital scrapbooking supplies used:
Tutorial written by Amy Flanagan
Sketch Tuesday is back and better than ever! We now have the Layout Team on board making layouts based on the sketch to give you even more inspiration. We would love to see your sketches in our Blog Challenges Gallery and you might just win a prize!
Here is an original sketch created by Andrea-Rose Hutton
It’s All About the Cake by April Martell
Afresh Collection Biggie
Fresh Paint Paper Mini
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Paper Flowers
Bless This Nest Collection Biggie
Ragamuffin Collection Biggie
Lemonade Stand Collection
Dazzle Collection Biggie
Hello Baby Collection Biggie
Spring Whimsy Collection Biggie
Brush Set: Say It – Birthday
ScrapSimple Word Art Templates: Retro Text
Dad’s 80th Birthday by Sue Maravelas
Flea Market Collection Biggie
Flea Market Word Art Mini
ScrapSimple Tools – Styles: Emboss and Engrave Super Biggie
Lettering Delights Mother’s Typewriter Font
Character Lunch by Melanie Cockshott
Value Pack: Main Street USA
Main St USA Embellishment Mini Scatters
Pocket Life: Main Street USA Cards
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Plastic Pockets 3×4
Time to Celebrate by Monica Lebsack
ScrapSimple Word Art Templates: Here and Now
Action Pack: Mega Lift PS
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: DateLines
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Crepe Paper
ScrapSimple Paper Templates: Months Biggie
ScrapSimple Tools – Actions: Punched Out 6301
ScrapSimple Paper Templates: Lemonade Stand Biggie
ScrapSimple Tools – Styles: Basic Shadows 6501
ScrapSimple Tools – Styles: Embed 1801
Easter by Diane Lardieri
My very favorite part of spring is the flowers! I can’t wait to see the crocus, tulip and daffodil buds opening, washing the world in bright colors! This winter seems like it keeps going on and on, so I decided to bring a little spring inside before Mother Nature was ready. I made some paper daffodils that are so easy, the whole family can make them!
Here’s what you’ll need:
Paper Baking Cups, two sizes
Green Straws, Pipe Cleaners or Floral Wire
Scissors or Craft Knife
Small Dish or Plastic PlateWater
Pencil or other round object for rolling the petals
To get started, I chose 2 different sizes of baking cups. Any color will work, but I used yellow. In a small dish or plate, I mixed in some drops of yellow food coloring and red food coloring and mixed in a little bit of water. How much of each depends on the shade of color you want and how bright you want it. Dip the edges of the baking cup into the food coloring and let it sit for a bit. It takes a minute for the paper to absorb the water. The longer you leave it in the food coloring, the more color you will have on the edge of the cup and it will be darker.
After dipping the baking cups, set aside to dry.
While the cups are drying, open up a new letter sized document in your digital scrapbooking software. A daffodil has 6 petals, so I opened up Syndee Nuckles’ ScrapSimple Embellishment Template: Flowers Biggie and chose number 3. I resized the template to 6.25 inches wide. Next, I found a yellow paper in Julie White’s Magic Vacation Collection that I really liked and clipped that to my template. I changed the blending mode to Overlay, Opacity at 100%. Then I duplicated that layer and changed the new layer to Overlay, Opacity at 32%. This took away the grey tint to my flower.
I printed two copies of that flower onto cardstock. Then I reduced the size of the template to 5.75 inches and printed 3 copies. I cut each one out and inked the edges with distress ink. Then I rolled the petals back using a pencil for a little dimension.
I attached the smaller sized baking cup to the smaller flower using glue dots, being careful not to place a glue dot in the middle of the flower. Once attached, I cut a small “X” in the center of each flower so I can place the stem there. I used green plastic bendy straws for a fun look that the kids loved! Make sure to put the long end of the straw through the front of the flower so any flaps are pushed to the back and out of sight. You could also use pipe cleaners or floral wire as well.
Once you assemble your flowers, add them to a vase and enjoy! It’s really that easy to bring in a touch of spring! We’d love to see what you create, so post some photos of your finished projects in the Scrap Girls Hybrid Gallery.
Tutorial Written by Carla Shute
Digital Supplies Used:
Winner of the April 13th Weekly Layout Contest:
(Click on the image below to be taken to it’s gallery page)
Movie Night by lorac
Digital scrapbooking supplies used:
Artsy Spirit Collection Biggie
ScrapSimple Paper Templates: Art Journey
Merrydale Collection Biggie
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Art Doll
Movie Magic Collection
Congratulations lorac! You may retrieve your gift certificate by emailing [email protected]
Want a chance to win Scrap Girls’ Weekly Layout Contest?
Simply post your digital or paper layouts that use Scrap Girls products in our online Gallery, and if we choose yours, you’ll win a prize! To be considered, don’t forget to list the Scrap Girls products that you used in your layout.
Want to see past winners of the Weekly Layout Contest? Visit the Weekly Layout Winners Gallery on our Forum!
Winner of the March Layout Contest:
Congratulations to Joyce (princessrunningfingers), the winner of the February Layout Contest! Joyce will receive a $10 Gift Certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique for her effort.
Digital scrapbooking supplies used:
ScrapSimple Digital Layout Templates: Art Journal
ScrapSimple Embellishment Templates: Art Doll
Exotic Words Word Art Mini
Just Before Dawn Collection Biggie
Congratulations Joyce! You may retrieve your gift certificate by emailing [email protected]
Send an email to [email protected] to collect your gift certificate.
April 14-19th Forum Chat & Challenges Schedule
Looking for IFF (Inspiration, Friendship & Fun)?
The fun is hopping over on the Scrap Girls Forum with a month-long game, a layout contest, chats and a new challenge almost every day. Here is what we have coming up this week:
- Monday April 14th - Random Challenge by Valerie T
- Tuesday April 15th - Newsletter Challenge by Tiza
- Wednesday April 16th - High Noon Crop and Challenge 12 pm ET (Patterned Paper Challenge)
- Thursday April 17th - Art Inspiration Challenge (Faberge Eggs) (Monica) & Heritage Crop 8 pm ET by April
- Friday April 18th - Friday Freebie Challenge by Andrea
- Saturday April 19th - Saturday Color Challenge by tinkerbell11
We are playing the Boutique Alphabet this month. Check out the game thread in the forum to find out how to play.
Monthly Layout Contest:
The April Monthly Layout contest theme is Traditions. We all have traditions, religious, family, big, small, serious or silly. Post your layouts about your traditions, using mostly Scrap Girls products, in the April Contest Gallery before midnight ET on April 30th to be eligible for a $10 gift certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique! See the forum contest thread for more details.
Visit our Challenge Category to see what great challenges we have going on. We hope to see you there!
We are excited to bring you a new series here on the blog where we interview Scrap Girls Product Designers & Creative Team Members about their layout design process. We hope this will give you insight into the inner workings of their creative process and inspire you along the way!
This time we are interviewing Product Designer Doris Castle!
Where do you find inspiration for your layouts?
When I’m online, I like to look through the galleries of my favorite artists. When I’m not online I like to flip through the pages of store catalogs and see how they showcase the product photos. As I watch tv, I envision layout ideas in the commercials and sometimes the opening theme song and credits of shows.
What is the first thing you do when beginning a layout?
First I decide what type of layout I want to make based on the photograph. Do I want it to include multiple pictures that tell the story of an event? Or do I want to capture a moment of time with a special individual photograph? Then I decide what kind of emotion I want to evoke. I decide if the photo is one that is amazingly precious and I want to take a slice of time of my daughters innocence or do I want to show her silly and goofy style. From there I pick out a collection or a few collections and pieces that seem to coordinate with my idea.
Would you say that you have a ’system’ or do your layouts seem to fall into place as you go?
They definitely seem to fall into place. I usually start with one idea of what I want to do. But as I go along, I let my creativity and emotions take over and just see what I end up with; which is usually totally different than I intended. I love to feel the flow of creativity and letting myself go into the layout without any rules or plans.
Is there a products or tool/technique that you use on most layouts?
I really like creating clusters of embellishments together for a layered look. I like there to be lots of interesting tidbits to look at. When layered bunches of embellishments, it’s especially important to shadow each of the pieces. Sometimes I like to create custom shadows for each embellishment and have them go in different directions, because natural light tends to shine in and give multiple angles of shadows.
What is the one piece of advice you can give our readers?
I remember a long time ago, when I started digital scrapbooking I enjoyed submitting my layouts to magazine submission calls. One magazine had a requirement of including a title and journaling. At the time I didn’t like sticking to that rule, thinking that my layouts could speak for themselves and this was stifling my creative energy. Now, I stick by that rule of always including a title and journaling and have added including the date as well, because I feel that a layout has to capture a story. Whether it’s a story of a moment, an idea or a series of time; but there is always a story to be remembered. I want to recollect and show that story with all the senses I can, including words that tell of emotions as well as the facts.
1 – I started by placing my photo onto the layout. I liked the freedom and rock and roll attitude of my daughters outfit, so I included a vertical picture that showed her outfit and her free-style pose. I added a collaged mask in the background to give it some interest of new patterns.
2 – I added lighting and highlights to the photo to give it a glowing look and to emphasize the gorgeous sun rays already in the photo. I also used a painterly embellishment from the kit and placed it onto the edges of the photo.
3 – I created a journaling card by using the square of a paper and placing the words “Dance” and “like no one is watching” on top to give a theme to the layout. Then I added my journaling.
4 – I added embellishments to coordinate and support the theme such as flowers and appropriate word art phrases.
5 –I then added some squares of papers in the background to add more patterns and interest to the layout. I finished by adding an complementary photograph.
Digital scrapbooking products used: