Monday, April 14, 2008

Photoshop - WOW!

I was really blown away by the "Introduction to Photoshop" session I attended at Scrapbookers Paradise on Friday. The large south location of SP has recently opened a new "Fusion" digital scrapbooking area for the public to use with 12 brand new computers all loaded with up to the minute software to create some amazing layouts! WOW!

So, this past weekend when SP held it's annual Camp Croppin' at the nearby Carriage House Inn, some of the sessions spilled over into the store (which by the way was open until 11:00pm...I love late night shopping!) and Alisha Shaw from Digital Scrapbook Memories came over to teach the introductory class. She was great & knowledgeable, and she really made everything I had been confused about in Photoshop a lot easier to understand. She walked us throught the confusing world of layers, and we made our first layout right then during the class. When I got home, I practiced some more, and I think I may be getting the hang of it! Here are the two layouts I made that night with Photoshop:

"High up in the Sky" by Noreen Smith. 12 x 12 digital layout. PSE6 software; The Garden kit by Digital Scrapbook Memories; Stereofidelic and Tahoma fonts.

"Fearless" by Noreen Smith. 12 x 12 digital layout. PSE6 software; Moody Blues free kit from; Comic Sans ms font.

I think I will mainly use Creative Memories StoryBook Creator plus software for most of the digital layouts I I mentioned before it just seems more intuitive to me. But I will continue to practice using Photoshop so I can help others with it if needed. It also does have some amazing capabilites that I would like to learn how to use.I guess it just reinforces that it's never too late to learn something new...take a risk, take a class, take a leap of faith! You can do it!
On another may have noticed a change to the look of my blog. It's been changed to "match" the new Sharing Memories website I am working on! I am excited about the website and I hope to have it go online within the next month. Until then, I will (try to) keep my blog up to date and filled with some good stuff for you!
Happy Scrapping...

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

New Layouts

Wow...two posts in one day! I must be trying to make up for not posting for over a month!

Anyway, I had some time tonight to finish off a few digital layouts I have been working on and so I thought I'd post them!

"All Mine", by Noreen Smith. 12 x 12 layout, CM StoryBook Creator Plus software and Everyday Kit

"Blue", by Noreen Smith. 12 x 12 layout, CM StoryBook Creator Plus Software; Shabby Princess Promise Kit

"N" by Noreen Smith. 12 x 12 layout, CM StoryBook Creator Plus Software and Shabby Cottage Kit

I'd love to hear what you think about these layouts, especially as I am still so new to digital. I am doing a lot of single page spreads in digital, whereas I do mostly 2 page spreads in my traditional scrapbooks. I will post a couple of traditional 2 page spreads from HALLOWEEN '07 in the next couple of days.

Happy Scrapping!


Back in the saddle

Sorry for not posting for so long...I have continued to have health issues with this pregnancy that have taken a physical and mental toll on me. After lots of tests and Doctor's visits, my Doc finally has said enough is enough and has ordered me of work permanently until baby is born. This is a good thing (obviously it helps my health and that of baby) but a bit sad in that I am permanently leaving a school that I have really enjoyed working at for the past two and half years. But, since my deareast wish is to be a SAHM/WAHM after this second baby is born, I have to keep my focus looking ahead and not behind. the time I have been off I have been researching more and more about how my passion and knowledge for scrapbooking can become a viable and fulfilling business. I have some great ideas gleaned from the web and from talking to trusted confidantes. I am going to continue my Creative Memories business, because I truly believe that they offer the best quality and variety of scrapbooking albums and products AND the best options for beginner digital scrapbookers (more on that later in this posting!) More so, I feel they are by far the best, most reliable and integrity driven direct sales scrapbooking out there (witness the demise of yet another direct sales company "Top Line Creations" just last week!).

What I am going to do is ADD to my business - I am working on building a scrapbooking website that hopefully will become one of your favorites! It will have lots of info on scrapbooking trends, styles, products, techniques and tips, and I hope to build a large gallery of layouts and sample projects to provide you lots of inspiration. I also want to offer more education opportunities (after all, that's what I do best!) in the form of online courses, as well as in-person classes. A colleague and I are working on securing a more permanent and regular home for our workshops/crops and hope to involve a wider variety of consultants and paper crafters. And, I will also be accepting commissioned albums - scrapbooking for those who don't want to do it themselves. I am really excited by and looking forward to these new aspects of my business.

So, as the old saying goes,"When God closes a door, somewhere he opens a window" is very true...although my pregnancy complications have prematurely ended my traditional career in education for me, it has also presented me with opportunitites I never expected.

Now, on to some fun stuff...

I think I already mentioned how much I am loving digital? Well, recently I was inspired to use CM's StoryBook Creator Plus software to create some 4x6 photo cards. YES, CARDS! Imagine never being at the mercy of the big photo developers again in choosing from only a handful of designs that don't really "match" your photo for the holidays. Imagine only paying for a regular sized photo (maybe 0.12 to 0.18 cents?) instead of up to 0.99 cents per photo card! Imagine never again buying "store-bought" invitations for kids birthdays or showers etc. It was a bit mind boggling to say the least to think of how many ways I could use these little gems. SO, I whipped up 6 different ones to just give you an idea of what you can do. It literally took me about 5 minutes per card, and now I can send them off to any photo developer (like Wal-Mart or Costco) and have professional looking cards done quick, easy and CHEAP! I am planning on doing up some more of these for my upcoming retreat, Mother's Day and of course, as baby announcements!

Here they are:

And finally today, the teacher becomes the student. I am really looking forward to attending a session on learning how to use Photoshop Elements. A LSS Scrapbookers Paradise is offering classes and I figured I should know how to use this software so I can have more knowledge when comparing it to CM'S StoryBook Creator Plus. My session is this weekend, so I'll let you know how it goes next week.

Have a great day...Happy Scrapping!