Brittany Hopkins

75 posts.

Quick Collage Basics: Week Five

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 Five: Recoloring the Background

Another way you can customize a photo collage is by recoloring the background to match your photos.

WEBrecoloring1

1. Open the photo collage you’d like to use and duplicate the background layer (Layer>Duplicate Layer). Begin building the collage as normal, making sure all of the photos are placed above both background layers.

WEBrecoloring22. Use your Eye-Dropper tool to pull a color from the photos. (I chose the gray that is on the monument in the middle of the horizontal photo.) Make sure your original background layer is selected, then choose your Paint Bucket tool and click on the transparent background.

Here are some examples of collages with color backgrounds.

Michelle Rubin chose a blue color to complement the red of her dad’s car.

Kim Crothers filled her collage background with patterned paper.

Melissa Inman changed the collage background black for contrast.

Have you tried changing the background of your collage? Do you have any tips or tricks for your fellow scrappers? Check back next week for step-by-step info on how to replace a photo block wtih digital elements. And if there are any Quick Collage techniques you have questions about that I haven’t covered, let me know!

Missed a week?

See Week Four: Deleting Excess

See Week Three: Combining and Deleting.

See Week Two: Stretching and Resizing.

See Week One: Flipping and Rotating.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:
1 Comment


Show and Tell

Our October issue hits newsstands today! If you already have your copy, you might have noticed a couple fun projects in “Show & Tell” (page 68).  Dina Wakley designed the album showing the Maya Road Square Canvas Pocket Binder Album, and Laura Craigie designed several projects featuring the Cosmo Cricket Material Girl line.

We didn’t have enough room in the magazine to show all of the projects. So, for your further inspiration, we’re including them here!

Cosmo Cricket Material Girl projects by Laura Craigie

101568967

The layering on this page looks effortless and keeps the focus on the photo.

SOURCES Cardstock, paper trim: Bazzill Basics Paper. Patterned paper, stickers, chipboard accents: Cosmo Cricket. Font: Bookman Old Style. Ink, blending tool: Ranger Industries. Pen: GelWriter.

101568969

Small strips of patterned paper create multicolor background on this tag.

101568982

The chipboard button adorning the tops is such a creative twist on the typical tag.

SOURCES Patterned paper, chipboard accents: Cosmo Cricket. Stickers: Cosmo Cricket (“thank you,” “sweet”), Pink Paislee (“Sara”). Stamps: Hero Arts. Ink: Ranger Industries (antique linen), Staz-On by Tsukineko (black). Pen: American Crafts. Ink blending tool: Ranger Industries. Hemp cord: Darice.

101568981

A little bit of patterned paper and a flower accent go a long way toward dressing up a box of candy.

SOURCES Patterned paper, stickers, chipboard accents, buttons: Cosmo Cricket. Pen: Unibal Signo. Punches: Fiskars. Baker’s twine: Divine Twine. Plastic box: Melissa Frances.

101568980

Want to learn how to make this dimensional flower? Laura has a great tutorial on her blog!

101568983

Most people probably don’t think of anniversaries when they see the Material Girl collection, but this card proves that it can be used for nearly anything.

SOURCES Cardstock: Bazzill Basics Paper. Patterned paper, stickers, chipboard accents: Cosmo Cricket. Pearls: KaiserCraft. Stamps: Hero Arts. Ink: VersaFine by Tsukineko. Punch: Fiskars.

101568984

The embossed cardstock on this card is from one of the two collections Core’dinations and Cosmo Cricket have worked together on. Core’dinations has also partnered with Graphic 45, Jillibean Soup, Stacy Julian, and Jenni Bowlin Studios to create embossed cardstock.

SOURCES Cardstock: Core’dinations. Patterned paper, stickers, chipboard accents: Cosmo Cricket. Stamps: Hero Arts. Ink: Staz-On, VersaFine by Tsukineko. Punch: EK Success.

Maya Road Square Canvas Pocket Binder Album by Dina Wakley

101568994

Splattered paint and chipboard accents add artistic decoration to a canvas pocket perfect for holding memorabilia.

101568989

Vibrant photos pop off the black-and-white patterned paper. Coordinating paper, accents, and journaling blocks are used throughout the entire album to give it a cohesive look.

101568990

To play up the Parisian feel to the album, Dina inked the edges of each page and photo.

101568991

Balance out smaller photos with a large print almost the same size as the album page.

101568993

Finish the album with another pocket for holding memorabilia.

What new products are you most excited about? Have you made projects using them? Post them in the gallery—we’d love to see them!

Categories: Scraps | Tags:
Comments Off


Quick Collage Basics: Week Four

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 Four: Deleting Excess from Shape Collages

When you delete excess photo from square or rectangle templates, it’s easy to use the Rectangular Marquee tool to select all of the area that needs to be removed. Some of the shape templates are a little trickier.

1. Open the collage template in your image-editing software.

2. Place your photo over the template block you would like to fill.

3. Go to Layer>Create Clipping Mask (or Layer>Group With Previous, depending on the version of your software) to drop the photo into the template.

4. Use the Rectangular Marquee tool to carefully select a large amount of the extra photo. Press the Delete key or go to Edit>Clear.

5. Zoom in on the area you’d like to delete. Switch to your Eraser tool, adjust the brush size as needed, and carefully erase the excess.

6. Zoom back out, admire your work, and then repeat the process to fill the rest of the template blocks.

Edited to add: I just discovered that when using the collages in Adobe Photoshop CS4, you need to rasterize smart objects before you can erase the excess. To do this, go to Layer>Rasterize>Smart Objects. If any other versions of Photoshop have slight variations, please let me know!

Do you have another method for deleting the extra? Have you discovered any awesome tricks for using the collages? Leave a comment and share your experiences with other scrappers. Then check back here next Tuesday for Week Five: Recoloring the Background.

Missed a week?

See Week Three: Combining and Deleting.

See Week Two: Stretching and Resizing.

See Week One: Flipping and Rotating.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:
2 Comments


All About Paper

In our “Simply Paper” story in the October issue (which hits newsstands next week!), we feature fun ways to use patterned paper. From crimped borders to banners to exquisite paper flowers, there are a variety of embellishments you can make using paper. (My current favorite technique is on page 50.)

What’s your favorite paper trick? Or what technique would you like to learn? Leave a comment and let me know. That technique just might end up in future blog posts or issues of the magazine!

Categories: Scraps | Tags:
2 Comments


CHA Favorites Part 2

Two products that caught my eye at the show were die-cutting tools. And we have video demos for you to see!

The first is SpellbindersGrand Calibur. This die-cutting tool cuts up to 8-1/8″ wide and also embosses. (I was really impressed with how crisp the embossing was.) All of the dies coordinate with the smaller Nestabilities and are classic shapes you can use over and over again.

Spellbinders Grand Calibur

The second is the eCraft by Craftwell, a mat-less electronic die-cutting tool.

Craftwell eCraft

The coolest things in the eCraft booth were the projects made using it.

This wreath was made using designs cut from the eCraft. Sarah and I had to have our picture taken in front of it so you could see just how big it really was.

Project Runway fans might recognize Suede from a couple seasons back. He cut designs for these dresses using the eCraft. I love seeing how scrapbooking tools can be used for other things! (And who would have thought to use die cuts on dresses?)

What new products are you excited to add to your stash?

Categories: Scraps | Tags:
Comments Off


CHA Favorites

The summer CHA trade show is always a bit like Christmas in July—seeing the new paper collections (especially the Christmas and winter lines) always gets me in the holiday spirit! Here are a few of my favorites from the show.

This wall art was made using Making Memories new Je t’adore collection. For me, it was love at first sight. J’adore “Je t’adore”! There were so many inspiring projects made with this collection, and you have to see the journaling vials—so cute!

One thing that has always frustrated me about making holiday greetings is finding multiples of sentiments. Little Yellow Bicycle solves that problem with the Christmas Delight clear stickers.

BoBunny Press put a twist on the border strip with this fun Halloween take. I loved the whole Whoo-ligans collection, but this accent really caught my eye.

I’ll be back with more later, including dresses made from a die-cutting machine and the new Spellbinders Grand Calibur!

Categories: Scraps | Tags:
1 Comment


Quick Collage Basics: Week Three

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 Three: Deleting and Combining Template Blocks

It’s easy to customize digital templates by deleting or combining template blocks.

Deleting

1. Use your Rectangular Marquee tool to select the template block you would like to delete.

2. Go to Edit>Clear or press the Delete key to remove the block.

Combining

1. Use the Rectangular Marquee tool to select an area that is slightly wider and the same height as the space between the template blocks you would like to combine. Press Control + C.

2. Press Control + V to paste. (This will create a new layer.) Use the arrows on your keyboard to move the block over to bridge the gap between the two blocks.

These are the two methods I use when deleting and combining template blocks, but they aren’t the only way! If you’ve found a method that works for you, share it with your fellow scrappers in the section below! Next Tuesday, check back in for Week Four: Deleting Excess Photo from Shape Templates.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:
6 Comments


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.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:
4 Comments


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.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:
4 Comments


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!

Categories: Scraps | Tags:
1 Comment