to my paradise! My blog focuses on all things related to digital scrapbooking. Look for an occasional freebie download as well as scrap/photo related tutorials. Comments are always welcome!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

More CT news

Exciting news for me... I am now starting this month to be on another CT...this one is with Becky Vosburg. Becky sells at Scrap Orchard and Oscraps. So far the kits I have used are so versatile and I have only touched the tip of the iceberg within them. Becky has an eye for color and I just love her stuff! Here is a preview of the latest kit released and a LO with Fruity Freshness combined with Blueberry Fields.

This LO was inspired by a challenge at Scrap Orchard to scraplift someone elses standout LO...(This is lifted from Jememifer22's original) The little model had a blast making faces for me!

CREDITS: Fruity Freshness and Blueberry Fields - both by Becky Vosburg (B-Creative)

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Desktop Calendar Freebie

I have finished September's calendar with Franziska's New kit Dusk Dew. Everything about this kit is just gorgeous! Click the image to see the detail and I KNOW you'll want this kit!

Packed with two sizes: 1280 x 800 and 1024 x 768
Download here. (Cat not included!)

CREDITS: All from Dusk Dew by Franziska Altmann (with permission)

These were created with this stunner of a kit:

You don't want to miss this one. Dusk Dew at Sunshine Studio Scraps

Til next time ...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Really cool "FOOD ART"

OK, I know I am off-topic, but...look at these.

I love to see art in everything. Each picture was created entirely with food. Aren't they just so cool? I wish I knew who to credit. Whoever made these has an amazing talent!

Click each image to see the detail.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

A day full of blessings and new LOs

I woke up today with a start...thinking "Oh no, did I forget to pay my credit card bill?" It's usually due the third week each month and I usually pay by the 1st week. Something told me I did not. So I jumped up and signed on to see...and it is not due til next Tuesday. Whew, that was close. I worked so hard to clean up my act regarding finances and this would have been very bad.

The next thing on my mind was a scraping sound when I used my brakes on the car. I have a 5yr old Honda and it has been immaculately cared for since day one. We had just had all that water and debris blowing around from TS Fay...so it was either from that or I needed brake work. It turned out to be rust formed around the brake lining...my brakes are still great. Thank God for my mechanic.

Thirdly, I had this issue with my kitchen sink not having full force for hot water and it was driving me nuts. A friend came over and looked at it and it was a simple fix.

Three days ago I had a problem with my USB router and was not getting internet connection. I lost a whole day of productivity and grumbled til I fixed it. I was not feeling the most thankful that day, but when my attitude changed, the outcome did as well. I guess I need to remember to be grateful for all days, no matter how they begin!

I did a couple more LOs with the latest kit from Franziska for her CT. I had a serious creative block for a whole week and I remember when I saw the kit I couldn't wait to get started and those great ideas at the time flew out of my head. It came back last night a bit and I hope these do it justice.

CREDITS for BOTH: Dusk Dew by Franziska Altmann

These were created with this stunner of a kit:

It's amazing to see the diversity the other Creative Team members are coming up with using Dusk Dew. You can see more LOs by others in this gallery. The papers alone are breathtaking. You don't want to miss this one.

Til next time...

Monday, August 18, 2008

Key West Respite

Saturday, we went to Key West for a day of relaxation and shopping, but not in that order! We live in the north end of the Keys, but I dislike the crowds and traffic going up toward the mainland, that I often rationalize a trip into Key West instead. Going over all the bridges and seeing the different colors of blue water is just the ticket!

I have been to the Key West Butterfly Conservatory before, but my daughter had not. She was enchanted by all the flying things around us. I kept hearing "Mom! look at that!!" I couldn't keep up. I did spend a little more time this visit with the birds throughout. They are so sweet and tiny and their colors are gorgeous! The little yellow guy below seemed to be posing for me!

This was the third scrap for Ziskas kit. I got the next kit she just released called Dusk Dew. The LOs the other CT members have done so far have blown me away...

Sunken Garden Add on and frame from Paper Garden Freebie both by Franziska Altmann

We stopped on Duval Street to see our friend Allan and have a lemonade, and we happened to see a wedding reception arrive across the street. If you look closely, you can see the groom's flipflops! I'll bet she was wearing 'em too! Best wishes to those newlyweds, whoever you are!

Til next time...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Found some great photos

I was digging around in the 'Big Box-O-Photos'...you know, the cardboard box everyone has crammed full of decades of photos that never got organized. I found these photos of my favorite cat ever. He held a special place in my heart.

Now that I found a bunch more great photos, there will be some scrappin in the days ahead!

CREDITS: Mums the Word Addon by Pineapple Plantation Designs

Til next time...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

New Challenge Kit

This was a challenge posted on Scrap Orchard where you had to use every piece at least once. I usually use less than half. It took some doing to get it not to be too busy, but it came out OK. You can still snag this very pretty free kit here.

CREDIT: Apple Cart Challenge #3 by Ziggle Designs

2nd of 3 for Ziska. I'm am dying to get the third done so I can get a new kit. I have my eye on a certain one. This is of my daughter and her best friend of 9 years. The photo on the far left is their very first meeting. It was so sweet as they checked each other out. Hmmm...I am going to have to do another LO with that as the focus!

CREDIT: Sunken Garden Add-On by Franziska Altmann

Til next time...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

What exactly is digital scrapbooking?

Turning THIS into THIS:

KIT: Blueberry Fields Forever by B-Creative Designs

Shown here is an example of the power you have to edit the artwork to fit your need. I took two papers, a box frame, one embellishment and a PS brush to get this. However, the photo extraction is more advanced.

Lately, there has been a huge interest and I have been getting alot of questions about this from friends and family, so I will try to explain what this is.

A little history...
Traditonal (paper) scrapbooking gained a huge following in the 90's. Many people wanted to preserve their photo albums in a way that included a personal artistic touch. It still is wildly popular, but a paper scrapper has to buy alot of physical items: papers and embellishments, special pens, special cutters, etc. And all this stuff takes up space. Some people devote a closet or entire room to this. Trust me, if I had the room and the money, I would too. I tried to start paperscrapping about 2 years ago. I trekked over to the store and bought a complete kit for $30 that would have made a dozen or so pages. I drooled over the cute little stickers, word art and buttons hanging there in the aisle, but had to pass on most.

I went to scrapping parties, which I must say are really a blast. The personal face-to-face time with fellow scrappers is the one thing Digital Scrapping lacks. Of course there are forums, where enthusiasts like to check in often and share ideas and talk about just anything. One way to get the best of both worlds is to do both. Some even do Hybrid Scrapping (click here
to learn more). When all was said and done I decided to stick with digital only. My favorite Scrap Community is at Scrap Orchard. They are a very talented and encouraging group of ladies. My most complete gallery is there.

So, what is digital scrapping? Imagine making unlimited pages with the same artwork? Imagine making an error and with a quick click or two, it is fixed? With paper scrapping when you cut and paste your layouts, they are permanent and you only get to use those materials once. There is also the possibility of making an error, which is hard to correct once the adhesive has set. Imagine if your hand slipped when you tried to write in the journaling. Digital Scrapping allows you more control in the page design. Here
is another source explaining more about digital scrapping.

Photo correcting/ image editing software (like Photoshop) used to be very expensive. I believe because of the masses of scrap hobbiests going in the digital direction, they have been able to sell a version (Photoshop Elements) that is affordable at $80-100. It's almost as good as the full version.

You don't have to be designer to do layouts either. If you are completely new to this and want to join in, you can search the web for alternative programs and tutorials to help you. A few come to mind..Paint Shop Pro, Corel Draw, and Photo Paint. I stick with Photoshop, as most tutorials are made for it.

For a true beginner, look for things offered for free called Quick Pages. All you do is plop your photo in a new layer behind it. My August Calendar freebie is an example of that. You can also buy pre-made Brag Books, where you get about a dozen or so ready-made matching QPs. And over there in the sidebar are links to hundreds of freebies, including complete kits! Be selective on what you take, or you will clog your hard drive with stuff you'll never use. Many freebies are offered by designers-in-training, but occasionally you will get a gorgeous full kit by top designers. Always thank the designer when you download. If you want guaranteed quality go straight to the stores that sell them. You can get a nice full kit on average for $6.

Got your attention? Again, click on some of the links over in the sidebar pertaining to scrap sites. Spend a little time navigating and you'll get the idea. With me, it started about 1 year ago...I was learning about Photoshop brushes (a whole other animal) and stumbled on a scrap site. I saw a list of tutorials on how to do things like make a page curl, make a texture or special effect...and I was hooked.
Here is where it all began for me.

After I made a few layouts (LOs), I decided I liked the appearance on screen better than printing them all out. I find that most color printers for the home cannot do the color justice on a printout. So, what to do...I had heard about blogging and up til March last year had no idea how to set one up. Well, with determination and little common sense, I had success. Since March, this blog has been a learning process, getting better everyday. I will be speaking on blogging (and digi-scrapping) again in Key West this November - watch for updates on it.

In this past year, since trolling so many sites, I got interested in offering freebies myself. I think my layouts are better than my first mini kit, so I may stick to LOs for now. I am on my first Creative Team for a shop designer, with another possibly in the wings that I applied for. Maybe later, when putting a kit together seems easier, I will offer another one. One thing I find, kit designers usually don't have the time to do LOs, and vice versa.

Something else that is gaining interest...Scrap for Hire. I haven't done that yet, but would consider it. Typical projects could be "kids sports," "weddings," "new baby" or any theme you would like.

So, what happened to that $30 paper kit I bought? I let my daughter have it to do some traditional scrap pages.

In short, digital scrapping is a very inexpensive, creatively fulfilling hobby. I love digital scrapping!
Check back in often...My posts are not usually this long!

Til next time...

Friday, August 8, 2008

Busy week!

I had an eventful week to say the least. I was approached by the local community college library (actually not so local- Key West which is 100 miles away!) to give another scrap seminar in a couple months, and I got a call tonight to give a newspaper interview on the subject of blogging and digiscrap. Ah, gee!

I held on to this photo waiting for JUST the RIGHT KIT, glad I did! Becky at B-Creative Designs gave me a free coupon to pick a kit from her store; thanks Becky! If you look really close it almost looks like the pattern in her dress is the same as the paper!

I know my daughter will probably never forgive me for this outfit, so shhhh!

CREDITS: Blueberry Fields Forever by B-Creative Designs and a stamped heart.

Also, I have had an extremely frustrating last few days, due to printer shopping. I made the error of buying a floor model color laser at a huge price cut. Turned out to have cost me much more in the end...my time! I had to deal with customer service several times only to find I had to return the huge behemoth. You should have seen us trying to get it out and into the car. I had to use my rolling desk chair! LOL. Poor Nat ended up with this thing on her lap with me teetering to keep it off her. We managed. I was never so glad to be rid of something! I ended up getting a little Canon to tide me over for a while. Can't beat the price and it actually had better color results. But bottom line is---you can't duplicate the richness of color as shown on a properly calibrated screen. Guess that's why I love doing this!

Here is the first for week 3 for Ziska over at the Orchard, DST and Sunshine. I have a lot of catching up to do!
I liked this particular kit alot...you can visit Ziska's store here.

CREDITS: Sunken Garden Add-on by Franziska Altmann

Til next time...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Two more for CT week 2

This was always a bittersweet time for Nat. She loves volunteering at the shelter, but everytime she comes home she begs for a cat (or a dog!) Here she is a couple years ago, I think...

CREDITS: Charmed Meadow by Franziska Altmann

From my trip to the Butterfly Conservatory last fall with my sister.

CREDITS: Charmed Meadow and Paper Garden by Franziska Altmann

Til next time...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

I adore you...

Week 2 CT layout #1...slow going but got the first one done. I had a hard time deciding between two completely different angels, but settled on this one because of the line of sight created. I did alot of color manipulation and color overlays to get the mood right. The photos cover Natalie between age 1 and 2, falling asleep with the ever-present thumb in mouth; eating jello at Nannys; and Easter outfit. These three photos are favorites from that year.

CREDITS: Mostly Charmed Meadow and Paper Garden Freebie (tag) by Franziska Altmann; Triple frame by Bridget; Fairy- by Kubivet. Note on paper: levels adjusted from the darkest one in Charmed Meadow.

Til next time...

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Special Delivery!

This is one scrap I started a while back and put on hold because all the alpha ideas I tried were just not working. Well, thanks to Ziska's kit that I got for free for CTing last weeks LOs I found a perfect match! This is just a weird little LO but hopefully it all works together well. This was from 2005 Earth Day beach activities where Toot decorated a goofy pair of shades. I love this pose of her!

CREDITS: All from Bohemian Summer by Michelle Coleman except alpha-from Charmed Meadow by Franziska Altmann

My best friend's youngest, loves to play dress up. She clomped into my kitchen in her fluffy heels and I had to take her photo! This one was also uploaded a while ago to some galleries but I wasn't thrilled-seemed something was missing. I did scrap it in record time...probably 5 -10 minutes. Anyway, I added stitches today...I think it is complete now.

CREDITS: All from Heart Song mini by Ellie Lash

Now I have to make 3 more CT layouts so I can earn another kit...so I'd better get busy!

Til next time...