Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Gallery Standout!

One of my newest LOs was highlighted on the Gallery Standouts site... so excited!

CREDITS - everything from SSD:
- Layered Up In You #2 Template by Lauren Grier
- Alpha from About A Boy Triple Dip
- Doctor Doctor kit by Grier/Bennett
- Petite Pebbles Alpha by Misty Cato
- Font: Century Gothic

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

December Daily Album

Last year I really wanted to commit to doing the December Daily Album challenge that Ali Edwards took on, but I didn't do it. And after Christmas was over with, I wished I had.

Many people played along (pics here) with the December Daily 2008 Album Challenge, and at the end of the month they all had beautiful albums to show for it. I, on the other hand, had a couple hundreds photos on my camera and no scrapbook pages finished.

So this year I've decided that I'm going to do it - no matter what. I'm going to do digi, possibly some hybrid... and I need to get on the ball with planning out the album: what kits? what templates? what size?

Megan Turnidge has some awesome pics of the start of her album, which are a real inspiration for me! So that's my goal this week - to get started on planning out this album.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Scrappers Give Thanks!

Simple Scrapper is doing an awesome charity event right now called Scrapper Give Thanks.

Simple Scrapper has teamed up with Operation Write Home to send blank handmade greeting cards to deployed men and women to send home to their loved ones.

Get all of the details here:

What a fun event for such an amazing cause! Sign up now! Feel free to grab the blinkie below to share the love!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Design by Dani Birthday!

Today is the LAST DAY to get your layouts in for a chance to WIN BIG! DETAILS HERE.

The Dani's Girls have put together some awesome birthday/party/celebration freebies to celebrate! In case you missed any of them, here's a list of the goodies:

Party Garland by Becky
Mini Candy Bar Wrappers by Tracy
Celebration Frame by Melissa
Template by Fairon
Card & Matching Tag by Sara L
Page Border by Me

And don't forget about the October Desktop Giveaway!

Hope you all are enjoying the first days of fall... I know I am. I'm so excited to take lots of leaf/sweater/football pics to scrap!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A little photo editing...

Goes a long way!

Lately I've been working to improve my... umm... skills behind my new Nikon D40. Before a couple of weeks ago it had never been off of Auto Mode. Sadly, when I'm out and about and really taking a lot of pictures, I still don't feel comfortable enough shooting in Manual, for fear I'll miss a good shoot because I'm fiddling with the camera - or actually get a good shot, only to find that it's out of focus due to my lack of skill.

So until I learn what I'm doing, I still reply on Photoshop to get me where I need to be. I may not be comfortable with my using my camera on any mode other than Auto - but I can Photoshop like a mad woman. I'm also pretty comfortable with Adobe Lightroom. For awhile I used as a crutch for my not-so-good photos, but I'm getting better...

Here's a shot I got of Wes at the park a couple of weekend ago. He was crawling through the tunnels and kept peeking out... this is a shot that I probably wouldn't be able to get again if I tried. The original is cute, but is pretty BLAH. The revamped one really pops, shows true color, and redirects the focus to the center of the photo.



Friday, March 13, 2009

Spring is in the Air!

It might still be in the 40's here in West Virginia, but everyone has spring fever for sure! There are lots of awesome spring kits coming out... here are two coming out this weekend! Can't wait to scrap with both of these kits...

Serendipity by Jen...

In Your Easter Bonnet by Dani...

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Black & White LO

I'm really loving all black and white layouts right now. Here's one I cranked out today using Kasia's Black & White Memories kit from Shabby Pickle. The black ribbon hanger is from Jennifer Barrette's Teen Angst kit...

Another awesome charity kit

Zoe Pearn has a charity kit out called Close to my Heart that is absolutely gorgeous. If you purchase it before March 31st, the proceeds go to benefit the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal. The Close to my Heart bundle pack is only $10, and it's HUGE!

Here's my first layout with this kit...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Fixing a Blurry Photo

I hate it when I take (what I think is) a really good picture, and then when I download it and take a closer look, it's blurry - or even just not as sharp as I'd like.

Here's a super simple way to sharpen up your photos. Since this technique takes advantage of Lab Color, this is best used on color photos.

Open an image (in this case RGB mode)

Image > Mode > Lab Color
In the Channels pallet Click the "Lightness" layer. (This shows only grayscale.)

Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp mask
-- You may need to adjust, but keep the Amount between 50 and 150%, the Radius between 1.5 and 4 pixels, and start with the Threshold at 1.

Click the preview box on and off to see the effect.
Click OK when done.

In the Channels pallet click "Lab Color" layer to restore color portion

Image > Mode > RGB (put pack to original mode)

Here's an example....
Here's a picture of Wesley with his Daddy's work hat on. I took this shot as Wesley ran by and it turned out very blurry. The final result is far from perfect - but improved. I used Amount: 140, Radius 3.5, and Threshold at 2. I then ran the Smart Sharpen filter, converted to black and white, and played around with the curves a little.

Like I said, not perfect - but it saves this photo from the Recycle Bin.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Wishing For Spring Freebie

Ever since the weather starting warming up a bit, I have been so anxious for spring! Here's a paper pack perfect for scrapping those wishing-for-spring pics.

Download: Wishing For Spring Paper Pack Freebie

Saturday, February 28, 2009

New Free Shabby Princess kit

I'm on of Shabby Princess's biggest fans. I own pretty much every product she's ever put out, and always look forward to the new releases! Freebie kits from SP are some of the most talked about digi scrap freebies out there - and for good reason! Check out the new one, Happy Go Lucky.

Here's my first LO with this kit...

Friday, February 27, 2009

Check out this charity kit

If you purchase a charity kit this month, A NEW START has to be it!

This collab kit is HUGE with over 800 megs of goodies! Yes - 800 megs!!! Even more importantly, it's for an awesome cause. Theres K organized this collab charity kit to benefit a little boy named Adrian who lost his parents in an accident 2 weeks ago.

Here's a peek at the kit...

Here's my first layout with this kit....

Don't miss out on this gorgeous kit, or the chance to help this brave little boy. Check it out RIGHT HERE for only $6.00.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Published for the first time!

I'm super excited to announce that I've been published for the first time!

My layout "I Love This Guy" is featured in the "What a Scrap" section of Issue 03 of The Daily Scrapper.

Check it out - first page, lower right hand corner.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Tutorial: How to use a layered template

I've had several people ask how to use the 2008 in Review template that I posted as a freebie HERE.

Templates are a great way to create a layout in minutes, and are sometimes versatile enough to use over and over. Here are some simple instructions on how to use a layered template...

PLEASE NOTE: These instructions are for Photoshop or Photoshop Elements only.

Open the template and save it as a new name so that your new creation will not overwrite the original template file.

Be sure that the layers Palette is visible (Window -> Layers) so that you can view the individual layers in the template.

Now you’re ready to create a layout in minutes using a timesaving template!

1. Open the first photo that you want to use, and drag it to the template. In the layers palette, activate the photo layer (a fancy way of saying – click on it!) and drag the photo above the layer where you want to photo to be (for example – a photo block).

2. With the photo layer still active, right click on the photo layer and select “Create Clipping Mask.” This will “clip” your photo into the template shape.

3. To resize or rotate your photo, use the move tool (white arrow) to position the photo, and then you can resize/rotate like you normally would:

Edit -> Transform -> Scale for resizing
Edit -> Transform -> Rotate for rotation.

4. Repeat the above steps for each photo, paper, element, etc.

5. Some template may have a layer that say “Delete this layer.” This layer is most likely being used as a “for show” placeholder for a layout title or journaling. Be sure to delete this layer before saving the final product.

6. Add your title, journaling – be creative! Move photos and elements around, rotate the entire template, add more photos or elements… the possibilities are endless. Not only will this make the template your own, but it will also allow you to use the same template multiple times!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Tutorial: Better Black & White Photos

The Daily Digi has an awesome tut out on making your B&W photos eye-popping.

I've gotten in the habit of running all of my photos through lightroom, but when I decide not to - this is the same technique I use for making "plain 'ole" black and white photos not so plain! :)

A Guide to Better Black & White Photos

Hope you all are having a great week!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A photo from the summer...

I scrapped a photo from back in August that I've really been wanting to use in a layout. Wesley and Alexis love riding the four wheeler together! I used a new kit by Inkin' Creations, called Fun Times, for this LO - the vibrant colors are awesome!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

A few new layouts...

I'm so glad that I've had a little bit of time to scrap lately! It seems like if I go more than a week without scrapping, I really get out of my groove!

We went to see Sesame Street live at the beginning of January, and had a BLAST! Wesley was amazed the entire time! Here's a 2-pager with some of the pics...

After watching Sesame Street Live, we went to dinner and then stopped at Krispy Kreme since Steve had never been inside of one before. Wesley thought it was very neat, and had his very first donut!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Baking cookies

I've been so excited to scrap these photos - and Freshly Baked by Creations by Rachael was the perfect kit for this LO!

Jordi and I had so much fun making the cookies... oh, and eating them too!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A little time to scrap

I hope everyone is having a great weekend... with temps not rising above 25 degrees, it's been the perfect weekend to wrap up in a blanket and scrap! Oh wait... that was BEFORE having a toddler! :)

I did find some time to scrap one new page with some great pics we got back in the fall.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Simply Black & White freebie

I finished up a fun, bold paper pack freebie.

Download Simply Black & White freebie HERE.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Scrapping 52: Week 2

I hope everyone is finding time in the new year to scrap more! This week's challenge is called "An Average Day."

Week 2 Guidelines...
The guidelines for this week are simple: Scrap about an average day for you. You can scrap about everything that you normally do on an average day or even just one thing that you do on a daily basis. Some examples: eating breakfast from your favorite place, scrapping about somewhere that you pass on the way to work each day, cooking dinner, etc.

I am finishing up a fun paper pack that I hope to post tomorrow!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Scrapping 52: Week 1

I will be posting one challenge each week for all of 2009. My goal is to post each Monday, but it's possible (heck, who am I kidding? It's very likely) that they could be posted later than that. I know that at some point, life will get in the way - but I'm hoping to at least stay caught up!

There is not "due date" for the challenge layout to be completed - although the goal is to keep caught up with scrapping, not procrastinate until you have an entire list of pages that you'd like to scrap! :)

Each week's challenge will have a set of "guidelines" which are set up to inspire you and challenge your scrapping abilities. But remember that the real goal of Scrapping 52 is to scrap regularly about what's going on in your life - so do whatever you want to meet that goal!

Week 1 Guidelines...
KrisCrosby has a gorgeous layout gallery over at DST. For our Week 1 Challenge, either lift one of her layouts, or create your own layout using one of her pages as inspiration. It shouldn't be hard - she has some amazing pages! If you lift one of her layouts, be sure to leave her a comment (with a link to your creation!) on the layout that you lift.

Not sure what to scrap about?
What about hopes for the new year: do you have a list of things you would like to accomplish this year? do you have a couple of New Year resolutions? or maybe "anti-resolutions"? do you have goals for a big project going on in your life (home renovation, weigh loss, etc)?

Remember that memories are precious - but unless preserved, they will be forgotten!

A little freebie for you...


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Friday, January 2, 2009

Last minute freebie

If you're like me, you're still in the middle of scrapping holiday photos! Here's a last minute paper pack that is perfect for scrapping the end of those holiday pics, or really - anything else! Enjoy!

Scrappy Christmas Paper Pack Freebie: download here.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

2009 "Scrapping 52" Blog Challenges

There are so many great challenges going on in the digi scrap community since it's a new year. "Project 365" is HUGE in digi scrapping (and paper scrapping) right now - it follows photojojo's concept of taking one pic a day for an entire year and blogging (or scrapping!) about it.

I've decided to host a string of challenges called "Scrapping 52" this year that are based on a variation of Project 365. The principles are pretty much the same, but are scaled down to scrapping 52 pages in a year using as many (or as few) photos as you want. The idea is that at the end of the year, you will have at least 52 pages for a complete scrapbook.

I often get in the habit of only scrapping "big" events - and all of the important details get left behind... a haircut that made me feel great, having a blast painting with my son, baking cookies from a new recipe that tasted great (or maybe they didn't!)... all of these details are what make up life!

So the main focus of Scrapping 52 will be to focus on EVERY detail of life - the big ones, and the little, the good and the bad, the exciting and seemingly unexciting.

Obviously the most important part of this challenge is to get some pics to scrap, which won't happen if you leave the camera at home. Get in the habit of taking your camera everywhere - the park, the grocery store, to visit a friend... Here are 365 photo op ideas from Creating Keepsakes Magazine.

I will be posting one challenge per week on my blog to keep myself (and hoping some of you) motivated to scrap at least one page per week. Some challenges will be accompanied by a freebie - a paper pack, a template, a piece of wordart, etc., and other challenges will be themed.

At the end of the day, the goal is the same... take more photos of our everyday life, and scrap at least one layout per week. That's it!

I can't wait to get started, and I hope that you'll join me!