Digiscrapping 101: Now what?

(Originally posted January 2009)

Alright – ready for round two?

So by now you have your software… right?  Riiiiight?  😉

Well what are we waiting for then? Let’s dive in!

Now I have to preface this by saying that I use Photohop CS3 so  any screen shots or things that I post will be from that program.  But it should be ok.

So you have your program.  Have you installed it (if not, that would be step #1).  Have you opened it (let’s do that right now!)?  Have you played around in there?  No?  Well, we need to change that.

You will be overwhelmed.  I can guarantee that. There are so many menus and icons and options that it just makes your head spin.  DON’T WORRY!  You WILL figure it out – it just takes practice!!

Now I’m going to give you a few little gifts to practice with.  This download will contain a few papers, elements, and alphabet letters.  You will want to make a special folder on your hard drive that is JUST for scrapbooking – and believe me, it’s gonna fill up FAST.  So when you click on this download, just save it to that Scrapbooking folder, extract all the files, and you’re ready to go.


Now when you download a digital scrapbooking kit, the papers should always be 12×12 files (unless otherwise noted).  If you want to scrap in a different format (8×10, 8×8, 10×10) you just need to resize the file – it’s pretty painless.

Alrighty.  Ready to jump in and get your feet wet?

First, go to file>open and browse to that scrapbooking folder where you saved the download I gave you.  Open up the turquoise paper.  On this paper you will create your layout.  Your page.  Your canvas.  Your masterpiece.  Whatever you want to call it.  This is where magic happens.

Now I’m going to show you how to put together a layout and you can copy it if you’d like or you can get all funky & do your own thing.  This is just how I do it – every person does it their own way.  And honestly, I never do it the same way twice.  LOL.

So next you’ll need to choose a picture (note: I almost ALWAYS choose my pictures first, but for this example I chose the paper first because it’s all I have to work with).  So after you open your picture, just drag it over to the layout (the turquoise paper).  You can then close your picture file if you would like.

Now we’re going to get creative.  Let’s open the green dots paper that you downloaded.  Now this paper is the exact same size as your layout so what we will need to do now is crop it down.  We will get into doing shapes and things in a future post.  For now we’ll keep it simple.  We’re just going to crop it into a smaller square.  And if you are totally lost, this is what the crop tool looks like.  You will click on it and then use your mouse to draw a square on the paper – then double click in the middle of the square when you are done. **hint** if you hold down the shift key while drawing the square, it will guarantee that your square is perfect!

Drag your new square onto your layout and arrange it however you want.

Now before we go any further, we must learn about layers.   Each item you drag onto your layout will be on a new layer.  This allows you to move things around and rearrange things however you want.  On the right side of your screen, you should see your layers palette.  You can even drag those layers around to rearrange them!

Ok – on to our next paper.  Let’s open up the light green one!  Now this one I’m going to crop into a rectangle, just to shake things up a bit.  I’m going to drag this layer behind my photo layer.

So now that we have our papers in place, let’s embellish!  Embellishments, or, elements are the absolute COOLEST part of digital scrapbooking.  If you can imagine something, I can almost guarantee that it’s been created.  You will be amazed!  The elements I have given you in this download are fairly simple one but they are still cute! 🙂

First I’m going to open up the frame.  Now here is where you have some options.  I have given you a frame WITH a shadow and WITHOUT a shadow.  Not all designers will provide you with a pre-shadowed version of an element.  But I do with elements that don’t have basic edges.  So for this, I’m going to choose the shadowed frame.

Now you’re free to embellish more if you’d like.  When you’re done, it might look something like this:

The next step is to add shadowing.  I will be doing a shadowing tutorial at a later date so for now, just try to think about how the REAL shadow of those items would look.  You should add a shadow to EVERY item on your page, besides the background paper (unless an item came pre-shadowed).

So here is my finished layout!

Now you’ll want to save your layout.  I ALWAYS save a layered copy (a .psd file or a .tif file) of my layout just in case I ever need to go back and change anything.   But if you want to print your layout or share it with friends on the web, you will want to save it as a .jpg file.  And remember – these files are BIG so please resize them to approximately 600 pixels by 600 pixels before you try to share them on the web!

*phew* I know that was a lot to take in but I hope you are starting to feel a little bit more comfortable with your program!  I’ll be back in a few days with your next “lesson” ! 🙂

One thought on “Digiscrapping 101: Now what?”

  1. Thank you, someone finally showed me how to get the supplies from here to there. That was great. I bought a CD, but I forget how to do this and that before I get on PSE to practice what I just watched. I am a paper scrapper and new at that. Still I have seen plenty of digi pages to know I would like to learn. However since I went crazy and bought all the supplies and tools, I don’t think I better do digi all the time or my husband will have something to say! Keep the Blog going! Thank you, so much. M

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