Layout Tips - Lesson 1

We could all use a little help making our digital scrapbook layouts really pop in the galleries, right? I had asked my creative team to give me some of their tips telling me what made their layouts pop & I shared some of my tips with them. There were so many great tips being shared that I thought it would be great to share them with you here on the blog.

I decided to split this post into a few different "lessons" since there were so many great tips being would be too long if I tried to share it in one post.

I'm just going to share what my CT & I shared with each other.

This week's lesson is about photos, photos, photos.

Me: Make sure you use awesome photos or do a little photo editing to make your photos look really nice With some photo editing you can make a bad photo look pretty good.  I will either run an action on my photos to give them a special touch or I will just brighten them up a bit (Image>Adjustments>Brightness Contrast) or I play with the curves a little bit (Ctrl+M). Some of my favorite actions sites are My4Hens, MCP Actions & Indie Actions. Sometimes these places have free keep your eyes out. Oh & I just discovered the MCP Actions have some GREAT video tutorials.

Here's a great tip from Tiff about including pics of yourself in layouts & maybe a more comfortable way to do that.

Tiff: I know a lot of people don't like to take pictures of themselves, or are not usually in pictures. I have found that I'm a lot happier with pictures taken of myself in the mirror. I think it's because the mirror image is what I'm used to seeing, so I feel more comfortable with that.

Oh & did you know Tiff has a photo-editing tutorial right here on the blog?

Christine: I always, or at least 95% of the time, use some sort of action on my photos. If I don't I will play with the lighting/contrast a little bit. I have a lot of old photos that I scanned and there is only so much you can do with those...I really need some good tips of fixing those. (Anyone have any good tips for Christine?)

Dagi: I use PS lightroom for editing my photos and I love it! There are so many free LR presets out there.
(Hmmm, I need to check this out!)

Some great tips & thing to try out. Let me show you a little example of a simple photo edit that you can do to make your photo stand out. I'm going to just brighten up my photo with the technique that I shared at the beginning of this post. You can either do this to the photo before you add it to your digital scrapbook page or you can edit the photo as it is on the page you are working on. Sometimes I'll think a picture looks okay but after I add it to my page it just needs something extra to make it pop out. You can easily do this photo edit as it is on your page, just make sure you are on that photos layer. Go to Image>Adjustments>Brightness Contrast & you'll adjust the brightness & contrast there.

Here is the photo before any edits:

Without any edits.
Here is the photo after I brightened it up a bit. I set my Brightness to 40 and my Contrast to 30  (the settings won't be the same for every photo). I play around with it on each of my photos. Be sure to turn the preview button on and off so you can see the before and after. It really can be a lot of fun!

40 brightness, 30 contrast
Here is the photo again with an action. I used the Indie Kick Color Action from Indie Actions. Actions are a super fun, super easy ways to edit your photos. You simply download and install the action into photoshop and then run the action on your photo. Just a click of a button and you'll have a super awesome photo. Make sure you run the action on the photo before you add it to your page though, otherwise all sorts of crazy might happen on the page you are working on.
Edited with Indie Kick Photo Action.

Okay, that's all I have time for now but be sure to come back next week for a little lesson on shadows! The CT had a LOT to say about this subject!


Carolyn Albro said...

Thanks for the tips, great idea for a post.

Anonymous said...

Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [04 Oct 09:00pm GMT]. Thanks, Maria

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Maira Gall