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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tuesday Layout Highlights

Summer is officially here although the hot weather seemed to arrive quite a while ago.  Hope you're enjoying the summer so far.  It's time to browse through the Dream Big Designs gallery at ScrapOrchard.  Week after week, you can find such amazing pages.

Take a look at this beautiful page called iPod by Kristiegai using 'Swim Bike Run'.  The 2 banner shaped papers are fabulous.  The black fan flowers really make a pop.  And having lots of brown paper for the background really focuses your eye to the center of the page.  Fabulous layout!

This page has lots of splashing fun happening.  The photo blend is adorable.  This page is called Easter Sunday 2012 made by Greenmother using 'Splash Zone'.  The water splash droplets coming out of the photos is so cool.  It's a gorgeous page that shows so much summer joy!

Tune in next week for another look at 2 layouts from Cheri's gallery.  Until then, have a wonderful week!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Happy Monday!  Today's awesome freebie was created by CT Jennifer using Cabin Critters!
Check it out:

Check out the kit:

and the graffiti:

and of course, the awesome alpha!:

You can pick up the awesome freebie at Jennifers blog here - Make sure you leave her some love!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunday Helper - Using The Depth Of Field Tool

About 2 months ago I upgrade from Photoshop Elements 7 to PSE10.  There are so many new editing tools that this version offers.  Naturally, I'm still behind in my investigation of what these new tools can do for you. I decided to check out what the Depth of Field tool could do for me.  If you've taken some photos but didn't adjust your depth of field settings to blur out the background when you took the original photo, you can still make some adjustments afterward to "fake" that effect.

Here's my before shot.  As you can see, I've got all of the background greenery in focus.  So let's try to blur out that background to make the hippo stand out a bit more.

Start with the Guided Edit mode.  Under Lens Effects, select Depth Of Field.

You'll need to chose a method - either Simple or Complex.  I tried Simple but it didn't give me enough control over how the image was processed, so I recommend you skip right to the Complex method.

You'll be guided through 3 simple steps.  The first thing to do is click on the Quick Selection Tool which allows you to trace around the area that you want to keep in focus.

Draw around the hippo and you'll see how you get the marching ants.  Inside this shape will stay in focus.  Second is to click on the Add Blur button.  This will create a blur around the entire hippo outside of the marching ants.  And finally, you can use the slider bar to increase the amount of blur.  If you don't like the effect, you can always reset to get back to the original photo.

Here's the after photo.  See how the hippo pops out a bit more?

With portraits, you can blur out the noisy background behind the main focus of Pooh Bear hugging my 2 boys.  Here's the before:

And now after the background was blurred.

Another wildlife example.  Before:


By adjusting the sliders, you can make the blur very slight or very dramatic.  It's all a matter of taste.  Give it a try this week.  Hope you have a fabulous week!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tuesday Layout Highlights

Wasn't it fun this weekend honoring our Dads?  Father's Day is so much different than Mother's Day -- somehow it seems less formal but more fun!  Dad is in charge for the day.  Hope your Father's Day weekend was filled with warm family memories.

And now it's time for showcasing 2 spectacular layouts made with Dream Big Designs kits.  It so wonderful all the neat pages you'll find in Cheri's ScrapOrchard gallery.  Lots of eye candy!  

Take a look at this fabulous and fun page called Great Wolf Lodge by Neverland Scraps using 'Splash Zone'.  I wanna go there and play!!  Doesn't it just looks like a blast?   I love the flow of this page with the journaling down one side and all the water play in the middle.  The bottom border looks like a wave pool.  And check out the amazing photo extractions!  It's a wet and wonderful layout!

Here's another page filled with action called Bike Route by Gonewiththewind using 'Bikes And Trikes'.  Look at the determination in his face.  I love the mix of soft colors and all the patterned papers.  The road signs add a great touch.  Notice how she placed the vertical stitching on one side and horizontal stitching in the top right corner.  Such a awesome page!

Thank you ladies for sharing your layouts and memories with us today!  Have a great week and keep on scrapping!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

It's Monday - and you are going to L-O-V-E the freebie created by CT angie just for you this week!  This freebie uses Cheri's most recent release (and if you haven't seen it - head over to her store to check out Into the Wild!)
check out this awesome cluster frame!

Here's the bundle:

the kit:

the graffiti:

the wordart:

You can pick up the freebie here.....make sure you leave some love!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sunday Helper - Rotating Images

Good morning and Happy Father's Day!  Hope you have something great planned for the important men in your life today!  For our Sunday Helper lesson, we'll talk about an easy to use tool called Image Rotate that is so handy!  I use it every time I'm scrapping.  Whether that be something easy like flipping an element around or maybe rotating an entire template on its side.

You'll find this tool on the top toolbar under Image and Rotate.  You'll get a pop-up box that allows you options for rotating the entire layout (which is great for rotating a template) or for rotating one element by itself (or a group of layers).  

One option I use frequently is Flip Layer Horizontal.  It takes your elements and flips it over on its side.  With this water slide element, you might have it placed where you need the water slide tube shooting out on the opposite side.  

Lots of times with borders like this scallop border, you might place it on the top and bottom of your page.  So you'll need to flip the border vertically to get an identical match for the bottom.

Another example is a photo that was taken in portrait mode but you want to flip it up straight and have it level.  You can always grab the corner of the layer with your move tool and turn it yourself, but you many not get it leveled out evenly.  Using the Image/Rotate/Layer 90 Degree Left tool will quickly flip it for you.

This is such an easy technique to use and is so useful for getting the most out of your elements and templates.  Have fun experimenting this week!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Into the Wild

Every summer we take a trip to our local zoo. We LOVE it! I love seeing all the different animals and watching them relax and play. My kids always enjoy it too and love to learn about the different types of animals. So of course I just had to create my own zoo kit! I wanted funky animals and earthy colors. So, Into the Wild was born. It was really a labor of love. I spent about 2 weeks on all the little animals and their personalities and details sure come out. It is also a HUGE kit. It has 18 papers, and over 80 elements. Plus a full coordinating alpha. You can get it all on sale in my shop for 20% off this week only. That makes the Bundle almost 40% off full price.

Into the Wild


Word Art


Dream Team Inspiration:

Have a wonderful weekend.