July 2010

8 posts.

Make Every Day Count

Greetings from Chicago! The Scrapbooks etc. team is here for the Craft and Hobby Association’s Summer trade show, where tons of scrapbook manufacturers are showing off their new products.

This evening we had an advertiser appreciation party, where we offered a sneak peek of Craft It Forward, a project we’re working on for 2011. Every month we’ll issue a reader challenge to make a specific craft project and donate it to a local charity. We’ll be creating everything from birthday cards and banners to bookmarks and holiday decorations. The best part is that we’ll give you ideas and info on how you can donate your projects to charity.
We’re still months away from the official kick-off, but we’re so excited about it we wanted to tell you a little about it now. So check back here in the coming months for more info, and until then you can leave a comment if you have any ideas for charitable craft projects.

And tune into the blog later this week and next week to see our CHA highlights

Happy crafting!

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Quick Collage Basics: Week Two

Welcome to Quick Collage Basics, a six week blog series sharing basic techniques for our free photo templates. Each week I’ll post a new tutorial featuring a technique readers frequently ask about. All of the tutorials will be in Adobe Photoshop, but leave a comment if you have questions about adapting the instructions to the software you use. Missed Week One? You can find the tutorial for flipping and resizing templates here.

Week Two: Resizing and Stretching

It’s easy to resize templates to fit your page (or shrink them to use as tiny accents, as Jennifer Perks did on this nature page and the back-to-school layout shown below.) Or you can stretch templates to bridge a two-page layout.

Resizing

1. Navigate to Image>Image Size. In the dialog box that opens up, check “Constrain Proportions” and enter the new size under “Document Size.”

Stretching

1. To stretch a collage, go to Image>Image Size and make sure the “Constrain Proportions” box is not checked.

2. Enter a new width or height under “Document Size,” press ok, and see the results.

Here are some examples of layout using resized or stretched collages.

Valerie Salmon enlarged this collage so it takes up more space on her 12×12″ layout.

Melissa Inman stretched this collage before trimming it.

Jennifer Perks resized the circle collage to create a cute spinner accent.

Have you made a page using a digital template? What techniques would you like to learn more about? Leave a comment and let us know! And check back next Tuesday for Week Three: Combining and Deleting template blocks.

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Quick Collage Basics: Week One

Welcome to Quick Collage Basics, a six week blog series sharing basic techniques for our free photo templates. Each week I’ll post a new tutorial featuring a technique readers frequently ask about. All of the tutorials will be in Adobe Photoshop, but leave a comment if you have questions about adapting the instructions to the software you use.

Week One: Rotating and Flipping

Rotating and flipping collages can be a great solution if the collage includes several horizontal blocks but most of your photos are vertical, or if you’re just looking to add a little variety to your collage pages.

Rotating

1. Open the digital template in image-editing software then navigate to Image>Image Rotation.

2. Select the amount you’d like to rotate the collage by choosing one of the pre-set options, such as the 90° clockwise shown in this screen shot. To rotate the collage to a different degree, select arbitrary and enter in the amount you would like to rotate.

Flipping

1. Open the digital template in image-editing software then navigate to Image>Image Rotation.

2. Select Flip Canvas Horizontal or Flip Canvas Vertical depending on the look you want.

Here are a few examples of pages with rotated or flipped collages.


Erikia Ghumm rotated this collage counterclockwise.

Melissa Inman flipped this collage.

Amy Licht rotated this shape collage and split it across a two-page layout.

Melissa Inman flipped her canvas vertically and then horizontally to create the collages on this two-page layout.

What Quick Collage techniques would you like to learn about? Check in next week for step-by-step info on stretching and resizing the collages.

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Gallery Love

One of our favorite things to do is look at other people’s scrapbook pages, whether they are on blogs, posted in our gallery, shared on our Facebook page, or being photographed for the magazine. And since there are so many fun pages shared in our gallery, I thought I’d highlight a few of my favorites.

The fun structure and patriotic colors of this Fourth of July layout by ChristoherMom make this page stand out. I love how she incorporated the stars and stripes without making the page too busy.

To make the dots on the background, mom2patrickncolin used clear dimensional adhesive. How cool is that?

The simple strip of photos in the center of zakirahzakaria‘s page is a classic photo grouping that works well for both traditional and digital pages. The flowers in the corners add an elegant touch, but keep the focus on the photos and journaling.

I’m really inspired by the structure of this digital page by anke55mom. The translucent strip on the left side is an unexpected touch—vellum or a printed transparency could create a similar effect on a traditional page.

Which pages inspire you? Leave a link in the comments—I’d love to see them!

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Get Foxy

(Fabric pushpins by The Dove Tree on Etsy.)

Woodland creatures have been in for a while now–mostly owls, owls, and more owls! But I’ve seen foxes everywhere lately. Are they the new woodland animal trend of 2010? I kind of hope so! They’re just so cute. Here are some of my latest crafty fox finds.

1. Fox Art Necklace by pamelamichelle on Etsy

2. Moleskin Fox Journal by PixiesandBears on Etsy

3. 3-D Woodland Animal Stickers by Sandylion

4. Red Fox Longbottom Scarf by bobbin4apples on Etsy

5. Basic Shapes Dies, Fox by QuicKutz

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Favorite Summer Products

The bright, happy colors of summer scrapbook papers and supplies always make me smile. Here are a few favorites that may be perfect for your next layout or project.

DeLovely by Cosmo Cricket is, well, lovely. The mix of bold patterns and bright colors would be perfect for a beach vacation mini album.

The Boardwalk Fresh Verse stickers by Little Yellow Bicycle are just right for a plethora of summer memories.

I need this paper from Pink Paislee’s Starlight collection for a Fourth of July page. Need.

The Wildlife Cardstock Stickers from KI Memories will look great spelling out the title on a splashy summer page.

And you should definitely check out Core’dinations Core Impressions cardstock in partnership with Cosmo Cricket, Jenni Bowlin, and Jillibean Soup. I love all three sets so much, I can’t choose between them!

What are your favorite summer products?

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Crazy for Banners

Misc. Blog 001

Yesterday a box of things I’d ordered from Two Peas in a Bucket arrived from two peas. It hadn’t dawned on me until I pulled everything out of the box, but it turns out I’d bought five banner-esque items:

1.    A Maya Road canvas pennant banner album
2.    A Maya Road canvas triangle banner album
3.   Banner stickers from Jenni Bowlin
4.    More banner stickers from Jenni Bowlin
5.    And—my favorite—this stamp from Hero Arts

Oops! Looks like I have a banner obsession.  Maybe it won’t seem so over-the-top if I don’t use them all on the same project!

Have a good weekend!

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Photograph Fireworks

Camera: Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT ISO: 400 Lens: 130mm Aperture: f5.6 Exposure: 5 Mode: Bulb Setting Lighting: Natural Photographer: Adam Gershon

With the Fourth of July this Sunday, many of us will be enjoying a fireworks display. Capturing fireworks in a photograph can be tricky, but with these quick tips you’ll be snapping better shots in no time.

  • Turn off the flash.
  • On an SLR, increase your ISO and lower the f-stop. This can make photos look a bit grainy, so take a few test shots.
  • If you’re a point-and-shoot user, turn to the night or fireworks setting. There may be a delay between when you press the shutter and when the photo is taken, so try to anticipate when the blast will light up the sky.
  • Stabilize your camera with a tripod to get a crisp image.
  • Zoom in on the action, letting the fireworks fill most of the frame.

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