One good thing about long layovers at airports (at least those who are kind enough to have outlets for laptop users) … you get ‘stuff’ done while you wait … and … the bonus for the airport? with a laptop travelers much more patient!
After I finished my set of Postcards from the Edge (see yesterday’s entry) I got to thinking … (HEY! no snickering!) … I would probably LOVE to have groups of the postcards all set up and ready for adding to a layout. This is the result – what do you think?
Three groups of Postcards - Ready, Set, GO!
I’m thinking I’ll go through my photo collection from last winter’s trip down PCH (ok … for you mid-continenters, that’s the TLA for Pacific Coast Highway … a trip I highly recommend – LA to San Francisco in Feb – beautiful!) and have several pages done LICKITY SPLIT!
While spending my day in one airport or another, one plane or another yesterday I decided to add to My Store! These postcards can be used individually to enhance a layout or they can be the focal point of your layout! There are seven inspirational words – all cards have a thin black line accenting the photo area. One set of the postcards includes staples. You can embellish the cards by adding a date or location in small print on the lower right corner … just like the cards you find in the gift shops when you are traveling!
Cards are ‘photo ready’ for any 4×6 image. They come in PSD and PNG format, with and without shadows.
Postcards from the Edge - Digital Elements
Okay … by now you know I LOVE Quick Keys, right?! So today I’m going to share 4 of my favorite quick keys that help me work with the Layers Palette without EVER moving my mouse over to it!
Changing the ORDER of my current layer
- CTRL + [ will move my current layer down one layer at a time
- CTRL + ] will move my current layer UP one layer at a time
Changing the ACTIVE layer
- ALT + [ moves ME to the next layer down (changing the active layer to the layer below where I was)
- ALT + ] moves me to the next layer UP (changing the active layer to the layer above where I was)
OK . . . I know . . . right now you are thinking WHY WOULD I CARE? I mean, really! How hard is it to just go to the Layers Palette and do this stuff there? Am I right? Well … here are a couple time I can say I totally depend on these tools!
Creating a new Text Layer – sometimes I quickly switch to the Text Tool, click, and start typing ONLY to discover that my text is BELOW something in my layout and I can’t see what I’m typing!!! Aargh! Well … no problem! I just press CTRL + ] until I can see the text and then I’m ready to continue typing!
When I need to make custom shadows . . . I definitely use these commands then (see my tutorial for details)
When I am duplicating layers (CTRL=J) and want to quickly change their order in the Layers Palette … no need to go get that mouse until I’m done.
I KNOW there are more so will come back and add them as I discover them! You may want to check this post off & on as it’s likely to change!
DigiScrappers! This one’s for you. We all do it … once our page layout is done, we save several ‘versions’, right?
- Full-size, layered PSD file (300 ppi)
This you keep just in case you need to make changes once the proofs are printed.
- Full-size JPG file (300 ppi)
This is flattened and will be used for final printing. It must be printed on a square paper/book OR converted to an 8×10 canvas or a 12×18 canvas etc prior to being printed.
- Web-size JPG file (72 ppi)
This file is for display in your online gallery(s)
So, you find yourself going to the Image>Resize>Image Size menu (Elements) or Edit>Image Size (CS) to change the ppi size right? Well … see if these quick keys don’t speed things up for you just a bit!
Likewise, if you ever need to expand your canvas beyond your current size,
pops you into the Canvas Size dialog box!
I decided to do a makeover on the page I made for Ms. Scarlett last week. It’s not really ‘extreme’ … just a little different twist. The day we took the photos it was SO HOT in the bathroom we (baby, mama, grama) were all ‘buff’ … I told you it was a sweat lodge right? Anyway, I decided to blend into the background a photo that “Mama” took of Grama (me) and Baby … seemed like a nice play on the title …
My baby was holding Her baby … and I was holding My baby’s Baby … without further adieu … here it is …
Today, I’ve been working on some layouts and doing my quick custom shadows ‘thing’ and got to wondering . . . do you suppose anyone else would like to know a quick way to get them done? So, just in case you are interested . . . here’s myway . . . no explanations, no sidebar, just the steps!
- Click on the layer that is needing a custom shadow!
- Press V
- CTRL + J
- CTRL + [
- CTRL + U
- TAB 3 times, type -100
- Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur . . . type 5 (adjust as needed)
- CTRL + T (Free Transform . . . we are going to warp the shadow now)
If PSCS … activate WARP (icon on top menu bar)
- Now, let’s bend, stretch, warp our shadow as desired (grab the control boxes to do this).
NOTE: If you are using Photoshop Elements … press CTRL+ALT+SHIFT and then click and pull the corners to warp as desired.
If you need some tips on this, check out THIS tutorial (PSE users)
- Type a number between 3 and 7 until you get a shadow with appropriate ‘look’
That’s it! I have it so memorized that I no longer really think about it … my fingers just have the ‘Rocking Motion’ d-o-w-n … bodda-bing-bodda-boom.
IF you wait and do all your custom shadows at the end of your design process it’s even quicker because your Filter can just be reapplied by typing CTRL+F (making step 8&9 ONE VERY QUICK STEP!)
So . . . go forth and create! Have fun! Tell your story!