Wednesday, February 22, 2017

CS Blog Hop February 2017- Succulents

I could not wait to see what this kit had in store for us but I kinda knew that the greens would be exactly like those funny little plants that you see at the check out in the garden department at Lowe's or Home Depot.

In any case, I have decided to create a layout with the most unlikely photograph!

Some of you may have seen on my facebook that my husband and I went to the Kennedy Space Centre for a long weekend and of course we had to see the Atlantis Exhibit.  A plug here for this.  It is the most spectacular exhibit I have ever seen.  What you are looking at is the REAL Atlantis that flew several times to the International Space Center and back safely.  You really do not get the whole idea of size with this single photo but I can truly state that it is HUGE!!!

Anyway I have also opened up a blank 12" x 12" document on a transparent background as I always do.  Now to open up all the components of this wonderful Succulents kit and see what I can do with the colors and goodies in the kit.

Be right back.

I opened up all the stuff that came with the kit and chose the background which seemed to have a toning color to the photo in it and made a new layer beneath the photo and brought in the background.

As you can see it seems to be a lot wishy washy so I am going to darken it and give it some texture as well.

To do that, on the layer go to image>adjustments>hue and saturation>  There you can play around with the sliders and adjust to where you would like it to be.  You can see that I upped the hue and saturation and made it much darker.

Once you are happy hit enter or OK.  I have also given the photo layer a fairly severe drop shadow and a black stroke.

Now on to the goodies.

One of the stamp sheets has the perfect phrase for this photo so I selected it and made it a brush using the edit>define brush set tool.

Also, I added a premade paper strip which I colored to match the background and have stamped with the wording in a toning color.

Now I wanted a small bow so chose one from another kit and recolored it to work.

As I said, this is the most unlikely photo to use with the succulents kit but I think it works.

I do hope you enjoy your visit to my blog today.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

CS Blog Hop Jan 2017 - Color Me Happy

Happy New Year everyone.  I do hope you all had a wonderful holiday period no matter how and where and when you celebrate.

Come New Year's Day and I could not wait to get on my computer and see what came with this spectacular kit to start 2017 off with.  I did notice that there is a great brown in the color palette of this kit together with a great yellow.  Combined those two colors would probably make a good sepia!

That being said, I opened up a brand new blank canvas 12" x 12" at 300 ppi and brought in a photo of a friend of mine when he was a baby.  This friend has given permission for me to use this photo.

Then I opened up all the goodies and papers that come with Color Me Happy.

Since we do not get plain papers in the digital kit, I went ahead and created some blank layers which I filled with the paint bucket tool with colors selected from various components of the kit.  You can see the several layers of different colors behind the photo below.

Now is the time to get creative and blend the colors to match the sepia of the photo.

To do this, you can play around with the opacity and order of the layers until you find some kind of happy medium.  I am off to do that now.  The top orange layer I took down to 15% opacity and the next layer down (the dark yellow) I took down to 20% opacity.

Here you can see that the tone seems to be a really good match to the sepia in the original photo.

The next thing I decided to do was to try and create something that looked a bit like tea stain digitally so that I could add a link to Lisa's technique blog challenge this month.  That actually proved a whole lot easier than I though it would be.  I just went to my trusty Club Scrap overlays.  I could not find a really good overlay from my CS stash, so I found another and clipped the dark brown to the overlay so as to maintain the transparency of it.  Then merged those two layers and brought in the new overlay below the photo layer.

While looking for a good overlay I also came across CS Inked edges Vol 1 which were released ages ago, and I have brought one of those in as well and used it on the edge of the background and on the edge of the photo.

Now I am going to make a separate layer with the text that I want to use which is actually a poem written by the owner of the photo.  He has also given permission for me to use his poem.  Here is the wording:

As I laid my tied body down in bed to fall asleep, scattered images started to unfold
as special thoughts of you started to creep.

Oh, how I wished I were back in your Life once again, sharing those special moments
we had when you were my closest friend.

A smile came across my face just thinking of those special times, my thoughts were deep until
the phone range its forgotten chime.

It was you that called and when you spoke my pulse started to race, you said our absence has
been too long meet me at our special place.

As I waited for you to walk through the door, I made a vow never to let you go and always love
you even more.

The door started to open as your glistening smile entered through, my hear skipped it's beat as
you looked at me and said "I Love You".

We raced with open arms to each other as our love burst at the seams, but before we could
touch the alarm rang, it was all a dream.

All alone I felt as a pillow in my arms just laid, disappointment entered the blood
as the vision of you started to fade.

For now, that is all I have to hold, but at least I have my thoughts and they will never grow old.

As I laid my body down again a smile entered my face, wide awake I shall begin my day and
your memories will never be erased.

OK, the text layer is now in place and I decided to increase the size of the photo and move it to the bottom right of the layout.

It is now time to create the embellishment that I would like to use.  I opened up the sheet of stamp images.  Back shortly when I have made what I think will work.

OK Back again.  Here is what I came up with.  I used that cluster stamp in the middle of the bottom row of images and one of the border strips to make what you can now see.

Just went off in search of a bow and found one that works with the tone of this layout.  It came from May 2008 so I think it is Body and Soul.

Anyway this is what it looks like now.

I do hope you like what I have done so far.  Now the only thing to do is to add tea stains!  For that I went off to find the wonderful cup stain that came with memoirs!  I loved that kit which came in July 2009.

This is the stamp.

To make it into a stamp, go to edit>define brush preset> enter.  At this point I added several layers and lightly stamped in a matching color and in various places and orientations.

Here is the completed layout.

I hope you like this layout.

Also, a heartfelt thank you to Robert Vanelli who kindly gave permission for me to use his photo and poem in order to create this.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

CS Blog Hop Dec 2016 - Shades of Winter

I am in stressed out mode about my blog entry for this month.  It started as wanting to do an animated gif but that did not go so well - obviously I need a whole lot more practice playing with this concept - not something I have time for right now.  So this month I am doing a basic layout using the components from this totally delightful kit.

First off I opened all the components from Shades of Winter and created a blank 12" x 12" canvas at 300ppi as I always do.

Also opened up a wonderful photo of my friend Jayne with her fur baby - Archie!

I have brought into the layout part of one of the quad backgrounds and enlarged it to fit.  Now I want to make a gradient overlay using some of the colors from within the photo and once done, I will edit it to allow for opacity of not more than 40% so the original pattern of the background shows through.

Now I am adding a few of the really lovely elements from this kit.  Be right back.

Here is the finished product.


I would also like to take this opportunity of wishing you all a wonderful, happy and healthy 2017.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

CS Blog Hop November 2016 - Paradise

OK so it is 1st November and the new kit is here, downloaded, unzipped and installed and Photoshop CC and my Adobe Bridge are now open and I am looking at a blank canvas!

It took a while, but I have now opened up ALL the lusciousness from this wonderful Paradise kit.  I think CS has outdone itself with the vibrant color palette this month.  Just gorgeous.

All these super colors make me want to go off and do all the challenges for November in the forum.

What I have now done is build a template to use with a single photo.  I decided to use a single photo as my background here and this one seems to have a really nice tropical feel to it, which I think will work with the colors and elements in the kit and the photo that I have in mind.

Those of you who know me well are probably wondering what I am doing now.  Well after several minutes of playing, I have brought in my photo and played around with the shadows and added a few layers and this has now happened.

These water color style leaves and hibiscus flowers are amazingly awesome - Jac you have outdone yourself with these!!  Anyway,  I am now playing around with embellishing this photo and you will have to wait and see what I have come up with momentarily.

Here you are - the finished layout.

I hope you like this layout.  The colors are just drop dead gorgeous and the digital kit really does speak to me so you have all probably seen all kinds of stuff in the galleria from me.

Please enjoy the holiday season and stay safe.

Friday, November 25, 2016

CSBlog Hop - 2016 Garden Holiday or Christmas Thyme

No sooner than Karen puts out a call for interest in a blog hop for this cute Christmassy kit than I have to open everything in the kit up and see what I can do!!

Now open up a blank canvas on a transparent background.  In this case I am making a card so chose 7" wide x 4.5" high at 300ppi.

Looking at the printables, I really like the one on the bottom left and I think I will use a selection from that one as my background.  Of course, I will rotate what I choose by 90 degrees.

Once the selection is made, and pasted into the new file, duplicate the layer and rotate it by 180 degrees and then you can go ahead and play with the opacity.  In this case, I reduced the opacity by 50% of the second background layer.  Then I used an eraser brush to erase some of the center part of the merged background.  You can play around with flow and opacity at this stage also.

Here is what the top layer looks like after being erased.

You could save this as an overlay/semi vignette for use with later projects as well.  If you do that, make sure you label it with something that you can remember!!!

Above you can see that I am beginning to build a card with various of the components from within the kit.

Add a stamp greeting in a toning color.

Wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas.

OK it is now Election Day - 8th November and the invitation states that we need to make 3 cards or one layout or one project so what I will do is make a layout a bit later in the week when things have calmed down a bit here.

Today is 19th November and things have not calmed down since election day but I thought I better get the rest of my blog entry done prior to the lunacy of next week and 4000 calorie meals!!!

This one is a layout utilising some of the beautiful elements of this delightful kit.  I have a stock photo of the Petronas Towers in my stash that I have never used.  This is the layout that I created with the photo.  It seemed like a good way to use some of this kit.

Your next stop is

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

CS Blog Hop October 2016 - Literature

Hello everyone

So the new kit, Literature arrived 12 days ago and in the meantime, we have had Hurricane Matthew!  The house got boarded up, supplies got stashed, bathtubs got filled, laundry (interminable) got done, basically it felt like we were preparing for war!  The hurricane came and went with a whimper luckily but it took us two full days to take the shutters off, tidy out and clean the garage so we had space to store the shutters and clean the house twice - once before the hurricane and once after.  I really have not had too much time to play around with the kit.

This is what we received.

I went ahead and opened up a new file 12" x 12" at 300ppi on a transparent background.  Then went off in search of a photo to use for a layout and I came up with a delightful picture of Luke and Leia.

I think the coloring of this photo will work very well with the Literature kit.  Also I think that I may use some of the new textures and overlays that came out recently.

Back to the kit.  I have selected the dark coral color from the quad print and filled the base layer with that color.  Created another layer and applied and cream colored gradient across the screen horizontally.  I have added one of the overlays and applied basic styles to the overlay to add a bit of depth.

Now for the photo.

I really feel that this photo needs to be blended into the background more and that the color of the background needs to be adjusted so I am going off to do both of those things.  Back in a while!  I just used a mask which I had in my stash.

Now for embellishments and text.

For text this stamp was crying out to be used.  So I made a brush out of it.

To use the brush, I make a new layer and have the brush on its own layer.  In actual fact, it is always a good idea to make a new layer for every element, word, embellishment that you use.  You can always rearrange layer order, hide layers, change layer styles or do pretty much anything in a non destructive manner.

When I made the brush preset it was at 738 I think.  When I wanted to use it I used the right facing square bracket on my keyboard to increase the size of the brush.  To decrease the size you can use the left facing square bracket.  These two keys will do the same thing for any brush.

OK now for embellishments.  I really like the semi opaque flowers that come with the kit so made a selection of that embellishment and of course made a new layer as well.

When I added the flowers, the stems hid Leia's face so all I did was change the layer order to hide the stems behind the mask.  Then made some more layers and pasted the flowers in various places and in various orientations multiple times.

I hope you can see but I have turned off the eyeball to the left of a few of the layers because I felt I had added too many flowers.  I will still turn a couple more off but I think you get the general idea.

Also added narrow stroke and nominal drop shadow to the text stamp.  I do like the scatter of these delightful flowers behind the masked puppy photo and hope you do too.

Happy hopping!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

CS Blog Hop September 2016 Garden Shed

Well who could resist playing with such a delightful kit immediately.  Well not quite immediately for me as I got very busy and spent most of Thursday 1st September in the dentist chair.

Anyway, I downloaded and installed this fabulous kit and started off by making my own overlay.

To do this, I made a transparent blank background 12" x 12" at 300ppi.  Then cut and copied part of one of the 4 way prints and played with the opacity and flow.  Added a couple of the cute semi transparent images and then on the 4 way print layer erased a very large circle using a very fuzzy and very large brush and ended up with what you see above.

Then I opened up a new transparent background, 12" x 12" at 300ppi and dragged in this overlay.  Added a white fill layer beneath the overlay and now I am ready to start.

Create a new layer above the overlay and set the blend mode to overlay.  Select your brush and color and start painting.  I make my opacity around 11 or 12%.

I hope you can see this, but the shading around the plant and the butterflies has become much brighter.

Now we can start to build the page.

I have brought in a stamp, frame and mask from my stash and I will be playing around with all these momentarily.  First I have to find a good photo to use here.

Found the photo and have come up with this.

I hope you like what I have made here.