Seven Are Going To Win-Will It Be You?

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Today is the LAST day to get these goodies at this super low price! After today, these products will head to the designers’ stores for full retail vaule.

When you become a member of The Digi Game, for ony $7.50 a month you get over $50 worth of high quality products from seven different designers each month. You also get the Playbook, an interactive ebook with layouts, tips, tricks, links to other resources, and a video tutorial showing you ways you can use the supplies! When you subscribe to the annual membership, you get TWELVE months for the price of eleven! That makes it less than $7 per month!

A new member (MrsPeel) left this in comments from yesterday:

Hi…well am sure I’m not in the right place, but I just wanted to say how happy/grateful/amazed I am with becoming a member…
I had gotten playbooks when they were free and bought DigiFiles before (which I still use btw) so when Vivie from ViVa showed me the November files she bought, I had to come and become a member….absolutely LOVE the files for November and the way everything is done is just perfect. I am a bit slow on reading online, sometimes I get confused and if it is difficult to navigate the site, I ll give up,,,which wasn’t the case at all.
Super amazing value for the Digi-Game.. will try when am in better health to come read a bit more, just downloaded the EveryDay Life too, thanks so much :)

Here’s a closer look at everything included during November:

Dianne Rigdon: A Kit Is Born

Aja Abney: There’s No Pressure

Charlize Creations: I Was Intrigued

Deca Designs: A Scrap Addict

Yin Designs: Real Life Keeps Happening

Anna Aspnes: Think Less – Do More

Pink Reptile: Happy With This Clutter Free Hobby

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The interactive ebook “Playbook” is filled with tips, tricks, tutorials, links to more resources, and a video tutorial. Even the advanced digital scrapbooker can learn something from this packed book. This month, some of the subjects covered include:

Elements
Inspiration
Journaling
Layout Design
Moving Things Around
Paper Techniques
Photos
Planning
Playing
Shadows
Templates
Title Tricks
Word Art Tricks
and a video tutorial

And if all of that isn’t well worth the value (which it is), The Digi Game members also get access to exclusive kits every four months they are subscribed AND a bonus kit just for joining!

Story of Everyday Life is the first the exclusive kit that Digi Game membersget access upon subscribing:

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Good Life is the 2nd exclusive kit that members get after 4 active months:

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My Journey, My Life is the 3rd exclusive kit that Digi Game members get after 8 active months:

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“My Life at Play” goes out to those that have been active members for 12 months:

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NOW…for the FUN part! Leave us a comment sharing one thing you enjoyed about The Daily Digi, The Digi Files, or The Digi Game during October! We will randomly select SEVEN people from the comments below to win $10 in product from one of this month’s contributors.

Digital Scrapbooking Guide to December Daily

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Wild Blueberry Ink’s completely digital December Daily from 2010.

This time of year, each year, digital and paper scrappers alike find themselves asking, “Am I going to do December Daily this year?” Most of the scrapbooking community will follow along with Ali Edwards as she creates her album during December. You might want to also check out Ali’s digital scrapbooking supplies that work very well with December Daily.

If you are thinking about doing your own December Daily album, we have pulled together some resources and inspiration for you. One thing to note though: I thought for a long time that December Daily was about doing one Christmas thing each day during December. It’s not. It’s about documenting one thing in your life each day during the month of December (real life and festivities).

Now, onto the resources…

We have a December Daily Pinterest board that we will be updating with digital ideas or albums that can be adapted to a completely digi format.

We have done lots of December Daily posts in the past:

Katrina Kennedy has a December Daily category on Capture Your 365. She also has some December Daily Photo Ideas you can take a look at.

Anna has a GREAT album for December Daily. You can read about it too. She also did a guest post on organizing a December Daily album.

The Lily Pad released a special collection called Document Yuor December and our readers can get an exclusive discount

Code: TDD25
25% off entire DYD purchase good through 12/10/11

DYD:  Half Rounds

Cheers To December

Tag-a-long Element Pack

December Stories

Puddle Jumpers Christmas

Duly Noted: Backgrounds & Datestamps

 

The Lily Pad also has some great inspiration in their gallery, you will need to be logged in to see the originals:

This collection is perfect to make your december daily or your 25 days of Christmas album. It’s a great way to capture your everyday stories of December and turning it into an album. Special offer till Nov. 30, purchase 25 Days to Christmas | Layered Templates and receive the kit for free!!!

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Wild Blueberry Ink sent over a link to her December Daily from last year as a source of inspiration. She also is working on an advent style December Daily this year.

December Daily is a short, stress-free project to document this busy time in life. Remember, there are no rules! Do it, do it for YOU, and enjoy the process!

P.S. Tamara was the random winner from yesterday’s post all about Dianne! She won $10 in product from Dianne Rigdon 🙂 THANKS to everyone who joined in!

Dianne Rigdon: A Kit Is Born

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Dianne Rigdon is one of those designers that will always have a special place in my heart. She was one of the first designers and digi scrappers that I got to know in digiland in 2004. I remember admiring her designs and her layouts as a brand new digital scrapbooker. She once made some super fun, shabby, paisley brushes that I had requested in a forum and I was over the moon with excitement! Over the years, I have been able to work with Dianne at various sites and projects and appreciate her as person as much as I do a designer. I have always loved Dianne’s shabby, weathered style and it is a thrill for me to welcome her  back to The Digi Files again. Let’s take a closer look at “Be Merry” that is included in The Digi Files this month:

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Here are some layouts created using Dianne Rigdon Design’ contribution:

LO1Layout by Kim. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Template by Cindy Schneider.
LO2Layout by Karen. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Word art by Ali Edwards.
LO3Layout by Lauren. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Suzy Q by CD Muckosky (alpha); doodles by Lauren Reid.
LO4Layout by Katie. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design.
LO5Layout by Anne. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Ttemplate by Yin.

You can see more layouts created with this kit on our “Team Inspiration” page.

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InTheStudioWith
Dianne Rigdon is a wife of 20 years and mom of three kids and two dogs.

STORE

BLOG

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

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This one is SORTA hybrid…..I painted Ian’s room then scrapped it. lol

LOMMHappy Day kit.

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I was doing some web design. I was looking for resources (pre-google lol) and I stumbled upon digital scrapbooking sites. One was Scrapbook Bytes. I joined up, signed on, plugged in, and the rest is history. 😉 That was 2004 I believe.

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Well I love the process so I can keep coming back to it. What gets me started is just some crazy idea will come into my head – either a style I want to emulate or a theme from a magazine or something in real life. I just sort of get a flash and have to quick write it down and pretty soon, if I have the time, a kit is born. 😉

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Computer: I’m a PC. 😉 I have a nice big view sonic monitor and a screamin fast gateway fx.

Program: Still using PSCS3.

Camera: Canon. I hardly take pictures anymore. Why is that? I need to get back to it.

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OhLife.com is a great way to keep track of life’s daily stories. I haven’t started using it but I love the concept. You get a daily email and you can quickly journal the highlights of your day. This would make it easier to do a day in the life or a photo a day or whatever projects you want to get involved with. All the extra stuff is stripped away – it’s just about the stories. You could use it as a final product or use it for scrap inspiration.

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Ok I’ll pick Summer Livin because I adore this wallpaper I made with it – it’s still on my screen.
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People are still buying kits from last year – it just trickles in here and there and I don’t analyze my kit sales because I am too busy to bother and I am afraid it will spoil my fun. 😉

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Here are some of my favorite products by Dianne Rigdon:

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Here are some more inspirational layouts using Dianne Rigdon’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

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Go have a look in Dianne Rigdon’s store! We will randomly select a winner from the comments to win $10.00 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify!

Inspired by Dianne Rigdon

The following layouts were created using “Be Merry” by Dianne Rigdon and included in The Digi Files during November:

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Layout by SharonS, additional supplies:
LO1Layout by Kim. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Template by Cindy Schneider.
LO2Layout by Karen. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Word art by Ali Edwards.
LO3Layout by Lauren. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Suzy Q by CD Muckosky (alpha); doodles by Lauren Reid.
LO4Layout by Katie. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design.
LO5Layout by Anne. Supplies: Be Merry by Dianne Rigdon Design; Ttemplate by Yin.

Surviving December

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For many of us, the holiday season means that daily routines are put on hold. While we’re busy enjoying parties, school concerts, holiday traditions and visiting family and friends, important things like healthy eating, exercise and down time can get pushed aside.

I did a little research and found some ideas for having a healthier and happy December:

Making Food Preparation Easier

December is a great time to renew your friendship with your slow-cooker. While you’re out all day long, shopping or visiting, it is busy cooking you a lovely dinner. You walk in your front door and the house smells like a lovely feast! Here are some sites to try:

In addition to your slow cooker, you can make some meals ahead. Here are some meals that you can double. Try making one for dinner tonight and freeze the other half to have on a busy day:

And lastly, some good comfort food is always welcome in December. If you haven’t made it yet, you should try Bake Potato Soup. Put on a pot today. You won’t regret it!

A Little Pre-Planning

You can do a lot of things in November or early December to make the rest of the month go smoothly. Some ideas:

  • Pop on a favourite movie, print out your Christmas card address list and get those cards done! If you’re really keen, you can even stamp the addressed cards and have them waiting by the front door to be mailed the next day.
  • Pre-bake freezer-friendly treats to have on hand later for entertaining or gifts. Things like sugar cookies, jam-filled thumbprint cookies, and gingerbread cookies freeze beautifully and you can pop them out whenever you need them.
  • Buy multiples of gifts. For example, you can have several bottles of wine on hand to give as hostess gifts or the same gift cards to give to each of your child’s teachers.

Organization

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My family runs on Google Calendar. My husband and I each have our own calendars, plus we have calendars for the kids. (I also have calendars for each of my creative teams, but that’s a whole other post!)

I love that I can check my husband’s calendar (and vice versa) to make sure that we avoid scheduling conflicts and overextending ourselves.

You can check out more about Google Calendar in Steph’s post here.

Moving More in December

I’ll be the first to admit that this isn’t my area of expertise. But, here are some ideas to get us all moving this December:

  • Build a snowman. Or a whole snow-family!
  • Take part in your favourite winter sports: ice skating, skiing, snow-shoeing…
  • Clean the house. (I can get a lot of cleaning done while listening to The Digi Show on my iPod.)
  • Hop on that treadmill/stationary bike/elliptical machine in your basement. Make the time go faster by watching a favourite Christmas movie or listening to music.
  • Go for a winter walk and enjoy the neighbourhood Christmas lights.

Making Time for Down Time

I love the busy holiday season and visiting with family and friends. Some of my favourite memories though are the quiet ones spent at home with my family.

  • I look forward to quiet evenings spent with the fireplace on and two little kids snuggled up with me on the couch while I read The Night Before Christmas out loud.
  • We listen to Alan Maitland’s recording of The Shepherd each December. It wouldn’t be the holidays without it.

Those are some of my holiday survival tips. If you have some tips (or recipes!) please tell us in the comments.

Just a note – no affiliate links were used in this post.

Making Custom Christmas Cards

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Custom Christmas cards and calendars are one thing that often bring people to explore digital scrapbooking. There are a lot of different ways a Christmas card can be created and customized using Photoshop and Photoshop Elements. In this post, you will find information for:

  • creating a card using a drop-in quick page card (including a tutorial for the beginner)
  • creating an infographic Christmas card (for the intermediate to advanced digi scrapper)
  • creating a card using a layered template (including a tutorial for the beginner)
  • product suggestions
  • inspiration and ideas
  • printing ideas (including a tutorial for uploading custom designs to Costco)
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I love creating Christmas cards! I love looking at all of the GREAT designs available. I’ve recently found though, that sending Christmas cards with a family photo on them is mostly a U.S. tradition. Here’s an infographic showing some of the history behind Christmas Cards (click to see larger image):

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Layered Quick Cards and Templates

First off, we have some layered template cards. I created a tutorial for making a card using a layered template similar to the ones below to help those that are new (I use One Little Bird’s templates in my tutorial). The tutorial also shows how to adapt the card to fit Costco’s Custom Card size for printing:

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Quick Cards

Next up are some super cute drop-in quick cards. I created a tutorial showing how to use cards similar to these. The tutorial also shows how to adapt these cards for printing as a Custom Card at Costco :

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Our team member Kim Lund (a.k.a. Miss Kim) contributed a card to this collection of free cards on Becky Higgins’ site. They come in 4×6, 5×7, and Costco’s 6×7.5

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If you really don’t want to do them yourself, CD Muckosky has an option of having her customize them for you to print at home:

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Infographic

I have seen a couple of infographic cards around and I love them! Here are some examples:

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Something like this could be adapted to a Christmas card:

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If you would like to create an infographic card, I found a Google Doc Template that has customizable infographic images. Once you are done customizing, you can export in a PNG or PDF to use in Photoshop.

The Daily Digi has a Christmas card board on Pinterest where we’ve assembled some ideas and inspiration for the intermediate to advanced digital scrapbooker that might want to make their own card from scratch.

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Printing

Most years, I have just printed my cards as 5×7’s and bought some 5×7 envelopes at the office supply store. You just can’t beat the 27 cents that Costco charges for their 5×7’s. Last year, I figured out how to upload my own design to the Costco Custom Cards that are 6×7.5 and include envelopes (I think non Costco members can order and have them shipped. See my tutorial for uploading a custom design here). I haven’t decided for sure what I will do this year…it might be a photo card along with an infographic.  I love the shaped cards that I found at Black River Imaging, but haven’t decided if that’s the direction I will go or not.

There are, of course, lots and lots of places to get cards printed. Persnickety is my go-to printer for layouts and they do cards as well at reasonable prices.

 

Printing Custom Cards at Costco

Once you have your card designed at 6×7.5 and saved as a high quality jpeg, you can upload it to Costco for printing (see this post for card ideas). My understanding is that you can order these and have them delivered via mail if you aren’t a member at Costco.

I know it can be tricky to figure out how to do it, so I thought I would post a little tutorial:

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You will need to set up or log into your account in the photo area. Then go to 6×7.5 Greet Cards:

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Click create:

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Click on the more tab and then select the Custom Template:

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Here’s where you upload your card. If you designed it 7.5×6 instead of 6×7.5 then you might need to rotate it after dropping it on the canvas:

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Once you’re happy with it, click continue. Click through the rest of the screens making sure you double check settings and your photo. Then just add to your cart selecting how many you want. You have to order a minimum of 50 cards for $14.99 including envelopes, then you can order quantities of 25 after that.

Tutorial: Creating a Custom Christmas Card in Photoshop Using a Quick Card

This tutorial was created at the request of my neighbor and friend, with the beginning digital scrapbooker in mind. This tutorial will work best with a PNG file that is designed for you to drop your photo into it. I will be using a card from Becky Higgins’ site that is 5×7 and adjusting it to work with printing Custom Cards at Costco. The cards on Becky’s site are available in 4×6, 5×7, and the Costco Custom printing size of 6×7.5)

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The first thing you want to do is create a new, blank canvas. The size of your canvas will depend on the size you will be printing. For this tutorial, I will use the Costco Custom Card size (which comes with envelopes)

To create a new canvas go to:
File> New

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The following window will open and this is where you will enter you canvas size. When creating something that will be printed, you always want to enter 300dpi as the resolution. Since this is for the custom cards (that come with envelopes) at Costco, we will use their sizes (6×7.5 OR 7.5×6) (you can do other sizes as well though). Make sure inches is selected as the measurement in the dropdown box. Your window should look like this:

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Now, you will have a blank canvas that looks like this, the checkerboard tells us that area is transparent:

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Now, open your quick card by going to:
File> Open
and navigating to the location on your harddrive you saved your card.

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The file will open in a new tab in Photoshop (that is the default setting). We need to change this so we can work with all of the windows; go to:
Window>Arrange> Float All Windows

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Now, it will look something like this:

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Select the window with the Christmas card in it by clicking on it. This will activate the layer and details for this window.

Now, we are going to grab the card and bring it over to the blank canvas that is sized for Costco printing. The red arrow in the image below shows where the Layers Stack is located (when a layer is selected, it is blue, just like below):

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In the tools, we need to select the Move Tool. Here’s where the tools are:

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The move tool is at the top and looks like this (click on it to select it):

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Now, make sure that “Auto Select” option is NOT checked:

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Hold down the shift key and click anywhere on the Christmas card, drag onto the new, blank canvas (while holding down the mouse button and the shift key), once on the new canvas, let go of the mouse button, then the shift key.

Holding down the shift key while moving things into a new canvas will make it so it’s automatically centered on the canvas. Your canvas should look something like this:

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If for some reason, everything didn’t center and you want to try again, just go to:
Edit> Undo (or Ctrl+Z) and try it again.

Let’s be sure to save (saving often is your best friend Winking smile ). Go to:
File>Save As
and navigate to where you want this file saved, it already has the name Costco Christmas Card, (if you added that in the beginning when you created the canvas).

Because of the design of this specific card, we need to move it to the top or the bottom of the canvas to make room for our photo (other cards might land exactly how they need to be).

To move the card, be sure the move tool is still selected, click on the card, drag it to the desired location and let go of the mouse (or use the arrow keys). Here’s what mine looks like (I left a little bit of a border):

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Once the card is in place, we are ready for a photo. We need to open a photo by going to File>Open and navigating to the location that your photo is saved. Select the photo and click OPEN. Here’s what my screen looks like now:

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We are now going to move the photo onto the card using similar steps as we did before. You can see in the screen above, my photo layer is selected because it is blue. Once that layer is selected, choose the move tool by click on it:

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Hold down the shift key, click on the photo, drag into the window with the card, lift off the mouse button, let go of the shift key. Here’s what it looks like now, but don’t panic if yours doesn’t look exactly the same at this point (you just want to make sure that the photo is on the canvas with the Christmas card:

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Let’s do ourselves a favor and save:Go to:
File>Save

The photo layer needs to go behind or below the card layer (so we can tuck part of the photo behind the card and ensure that they flow into each other instead of having a break).

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With the photo layer selected (by clicking on it), we will drag that layer down and drop it in-between Layer 1 and Layer 2. This is how it will look when it’s ready to be dropped (notice the thick line between the two layers):

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Here’s what my card looks like now:

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You can see that the photo isn’t lined up that well, so we can move it by selecting the move tool again and making sure that the photo layer is still selected (highlighted in blue) in the Layers Stack. Then, move the photo into position.

NOTE: If you need to make your photo smaller to fit, you can do that by: holding down the shift key, clicking on one of the corner transform controls, and dragging toward the center, (see image below and see this post for more information on resizing in Photoshop, including a video). Holding down the shift key will make it so your aspect ratio of your photo stays the same (in other words, your family won’t look like they were in a funhouse mirror). After you are done resizing, hit enter to commit the changes or click on the check mark on the top menu bar:

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Here’s what things are looking like now:

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It’s that time again, save: Go to:
File>Save

Because we are making this card to print at Costco, we need to put something in the empty, transparent area (where the checkerboard is on your canvas). (If you are using a card that is sized to the exact size you will be printing, you will not need to add an additional color here).

In the Layers Stack, select the bottom layer:

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In the Tools (on the left side of the screen, where the move tool is), select the Foreground Color by clicking on it:

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That will open the Color Picker dialogue box like this:

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When you put your mouse on the canvas or Christmas card, you will see it becomes an eyedropper. This is how we will match the color. I’m going to click on the red part of the greeting and match it.

Now, to fill that bottom layer with this color, we will select the Paint Bucket Tool (Note: if you don’t see the Paint Bucket, it might be hiding under the Gradient Tool, just click and hold the Gradient Tool until you see the Paint Bucket and then you can select it :

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Gradient Tool:

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With the Paint Bucket Tool selected and the bottom layer of the stack selected, just click on the transparent part of the canvas (where the checkerboard is) and the color you selected will fill that bottom layer. Here’s what my card looks like now:

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Now, save again Go to:
File>Save

If you want to add some additional text, select the top layer in the stack:

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Now, select the Text Tool:

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You will want to create a text box by clicking in the upper left corner where you want to the type to start and dragging until the box is the size you want.

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Just start typing. You can also change the font (in the top menu bar), spacing, sizing, etc. Once your done adding your text hit enter or the check mark to commit the change. You can then use the move tool to change the position of the text as you wish. Here’s what I have now:

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Let’s save the layered PSD file one more time: Go to:
File>Save

Now, we need to save a jpeg so we can upload for printing. We do this by going to File> Save As. In the drop down File Type box, select JPEG:

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Now, you are ready to upload to Costco for printing.

Tutorial: Creating a Custom Christmas Card In PSCS5 and PSE To Print At Costco Using a Template

This tutorial was created at the request of my neighbor and friend, with the beginning digital scrapbooker in mind. This tutorial will work best with a PNG file that is designed for you to drop your photo into it. I will be using a card from Becky Higgins’ site that is 5×7 and adjusting it to work with printing Custom Cards at Costco. The cards on Becky’s site are available in 4×6, 5×7, and the Costco Custom printing size of 6×7.5)

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The first thing you want to do is create a new, blank canvas. The size of your canvas will depend on the size you will be printing. For this tutorial, I will use the Costco Custom Card size (which comes with envelopes)

To create a new canvas go to:
File> New

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The following window will open and this is where you will enter you canvas size. When creating something that will be printed, you always want to enter 300dpi as the resolution. Since this is for the custom cards (that come with envelopes) at Costco, we will use their sizes (6×7.5 OR 7.5×6) (you can do other sizes as well though). Make sure inches is selected as the measurement in the dropdown box. Your window should look like this:

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Now, you will have a blank canvas that looks like this, the checkerboard tells us that area is transparent:

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Now, open your quick card by going to:
File> Open
and navigating to the location on your harddrive you saved your card.

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The file will open in a new tab in Photoshop (that is the default setting). We need to change this so we can work with all of the windows; go to:
Window>Arrange> Float All Windows

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Now, it will look something like this:

ScreenClip(115)

Select the window with the Christmas card in it by clicking on it. This will activate the layer and details for this window.

Now, we are going to grab the card and bring it over to the blank canvas that is sized for Costco printing. The red arrow in the image below shows where the Layers Stack is located (when a layer is selected, it is blue, just like below):

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In the tools, we need to select the Move Tool. Here’s where the tools are:

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The move tool is at the top and looks like this (click on it to select it):

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Now, make sure that “Auto Select” option is NOT checked:

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Hold down the shift key and click anywhere on the Christmas card, drag onto the new, blank canvas (while holding down the mouse button and the shift key), once on the new canvas, let go of the mouse button, then the shift key.

Holding down the shift key while moving things into a new canvas will make it so it’s automatically centered on the canvas. Your canvas should look something like this:

ScreenClip(116)

If for some reason, everything didn’t center and you want to try again, just go to:
Edit> Undo (or Ctrl+Z) and try it again.

Let’s be sure to save (saving often is your best friend Winking smile ). Go to:
File>Save As
and navigate to where you want this file saved, it already has the name Costco Christmas Card, (if you added that in the beginning when you created the canvas).

Because of the design of this specific card, we need to move it to the top or the bottom of the canvas to make room for our photo (other cards might land exactly how they need to be).

To move the card, be sure the move tool is still selected, click on the card, drag it to the desired location and let go of the mouse (or use the arrow keys). Here’s what mine looks like (I left a little bit of a border):

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Once the card is in place, we are ready for a photo. We need to open a photo by going to File>Open and navigating to the location that your photo is saved. Select the photo and click OPEN. Here’s what my screen looks like now:

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We are now going to move the photo onto the card using similar steps as we did before. You can see in the screen above, my photo layer is selected because it is blue. Once that layer is selected, choose the move tool by click on it:

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Hold down the shift key, click on the photo, drag into the window with the card, lift off the mouse button, let go of the shift key. Here’s what it looks like now, but don’t panic if yours doesn’t look exactly the same at this point (you just want to make sure that the photo is on the canvas with the Christmas card:

ScreenClip(119)

Let’s do ourselves a favor and save:Go to:
File>Save

The photo layer needs to go behind or below the card layer (so we can tuck part of the photo behind the card and ensure that they flow into each other instead of having a break).

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With the photo layer selected (by clicking on it), we will drag that layer down and drop it in-between Layer 1 and Layer 2. This is how it will look when it’s ready to be dropped (notice the thick line between the two layers):

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Here’s what my card looks like now:

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You can see that the photo isn’t lined up that well, so we can move it by selecting the move tool again and making sure that the photo layer is still selected (highlighted in blue) in the Layers Stack. Then, move the photo into position.

NOTE: If you need to make your photo smaller to fit, you can do that by: holding down the shift key, clicking on one of the corner transform controls, and dragging toward the center, (see image below and see this post for more information on resizing in Photoshop, including a video). Holding down the shift key will make it so your aspect ratio of your photo stays the same (in other words, your family won’t look like they were in a funhouse mirror). After you are done resizing, hit enter to commit the changes or click on the check mark on the top menu bar:

ScreenClip(102)[3]

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Here’s what things are looking like now:

ScreenClip(122)

It’s that time again, save: Go to:
File>Save

Because we are making this card to print at Costco, we need to put something in the empty, transparent area (where the checkerboard is on your canvas). (If you are using a card that is sized to the exact size you will be printing, you will not need to add an additional color here).

In the Layers Stack, select the bottom layer:

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In the Tools (on the left side of the screen, where the move tool is), select the Foreground Color by clicking on it:

10[2]

That will open the Color Picker dialogue box like this:

ScreenClip(105)[3]

When you put your mouse on the canvas or Christmas card, you will see it becomes an eyedropper. This is how we will match the color. I’m going to click on the red part of the greeting and match it.

Now, to fill that bottom layer with this color, we will select the Paint Bucket Tool (Note: if you don’t see the Paint Bucket, it might be hiding under the Gradient Tool, just click and hold the Gradient Tool until you see the Paint Bucket and then you can select it :

ScreenClip(106)[3]

Gradient Tool:

ScreenClip(107)[3]

With the Paint Bucket Tool selected and the bottom layer of the stack selected, just click on the transparent part of the canvas (where the checkerboard is) and the color you selected will fill that bottom layer. Here’s what my card looks like now:

ScreenClip(124)

Now, save again Go to:
File>Save

If you want to add some additional text, select the top layer in the stack:

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Now, select the Text Tool:

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You will want to create a text box by clicking in the upper left corner where you want to the type to start and dragging until the box is the size you want.

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Just start typing. You can also change the font (in the top menu bar), spacing, sizing, etc. Once your done adding your text hit enter or the check mark to commit the change. You can then use the move tool to change the position of the text as you wish. Here’s what I have now:

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Let’s save the layered PSD file one more time: Go to:
File>Save

Now, we need to save a jpeg so we can upload for printing. We do this by going to File> Save As. In the drop down File Type box, select JPEG:

ScreenClip(114)[3]

Now, you are ready to upload to Costco for printing.

Tutorial: Creating a Custom Christmas Card in Photoshop CS5 to Print At Costco

This tutorial was created at the request of my neighbor and friend, with the beginning digital scrapbooker in mind. This tutorial will work best with a layered PSD file format or layered TIFF file format.  I’m using the layered template cards by One Little Bird Designs.

The first thing you want to do is create a new, blank canvas. The size of your canvas will depend on the size you will be printing. For this tutorial, I will use the Costco Custom Card size (which comes with envelopes)

To create a new canvas go to:
File> New

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The following window will open and this is where you will enter you canvas size. When creating something that will be printed, you always want to enter 300dpi as the resolution. Since this is for the custom cards (that come with envelopes) at Costco, we will use their sizes (6×7.5 OR 7.5×6) (you can do other sizes as well though). Make sure inches is selected as the measurement in the dropdown box. Your window should look like this:

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Now, you will have a blank canvas that looks like this, the checkerboard tells us that area is transparent:

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Now, open your layered template by going to:
File> Open
and navigating to the location on your harddrive you saved your layered template.

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The file will open in a new tab in Photoshop (that is the default setting). We need to change this so we can work with all of the windows; go to:
Window>Arrange> Float All Windows

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Now, it will look something like this:

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Select the window with the Christmas card in it by clicking on it.  This will activate all of the layers and details for this window.

Now, we are going to grab all of the layers in the card and bring them over to the blank canvas that is sized for Costco printing. The red arrow in the image below shows where the Layers Stack is:

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Here’s a close up of our layers:

2011-11-25_1231

The top layer is already selected because it is blue. Hold the shift key down and click on the bottom layer in your layer stack and that will select all of the layers, turning them all blue:

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In the tools, we need to select the move tool. Here’s where the tools are:

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The move tool is at the top and looks like this (click on it to select it):

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Now, make sure that “Auto Select” option is NOT checked:

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Hold down the shift key and click anywhere on the Christmas card, drag onto the new, blank canvas (while holding down the mouse button and the shift key), once on the new canvas, let go of the mouse button, then the shift key.

Holding down the shift key while moving everything will make it so it’s automatically centered on the canvas. Your canvas should look something like this:

ScreenClip(97)

If for some reason, everything didn’t center and you want to try again, just go to:
Edit> Undo (or Ctrl+Z) and try it again.

Let’s be sure to save (saving often is your best friend Winking smile ). Go to:
File>Save As
and navigate to where you want this file saved, it already has the name Costco Christmas Card, (if you added that in the beginning when you created the canvas).

Once it’s all centered up, then you are ready to add your photo.

We need to open a photo by going to File>Open and navigating to the location that your photo is saved. Select the photo and click OPEN. Here’s what my screen looks like now:

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We are now going to move the photo on the card using the similar steps as we did before. You can see in the screen above, my photo layer is selected because it is blue. Once that layer is selected, choose the move tool by click on it:

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Hold down the shift key, click on the photo, drag into the window with the card, lift off the mouse button, let go of the shift key. Here’s what it looks like now, but don’t panic if yours doesn’t look exactly the same at this point (you just want to make sure that the photo is on the canvas with the Christmas Card Layers:

5

Let’s do ourselves a favor and save:Go to:
File>Save

The photo layer needs to be moved so it is directly above the “photo clipping mask” layer:

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We do this by clicking on the photo layer, dragging it down, and dropping it right above the clipping mask layer. This is what it will look like when it’s lined up and ready to be dropped:

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Here’s what it will look like in the layers stack after you drop it:

ScreenClip(100)

Now we are going to clip or cut the photo to the shape of the clipping mask. We do this using the keyboard shortcut:
CTLR+ALT+G (CMD+ALT+G on a Mac)

Now, your layers stack should look like this:

ScreenClip(101)

Here’s what my card looks like now:

7

You can see that the photo isn’t lined up that well, so we can move it by selecting the move tool again and making sure that the photo layer is still selected (highlighted in blue) in the layers stack. Then, move the photo into position.

NOTE: If you need to make your photo smaller to fit, you can do that by: holding down the shift key, clicking on one of the corner transform controls, and dragging toward the center,  (see image below and see this post for more information on resizing in Photoshop, including a video). Holding down the shift key will make it so your aspect ratio of your photo stays the same (in other words, your family won’t look like they were in a funhouse mirror). After you are done resizing, hit enter to commit the changes or click on the check mark on the top menu bar:

ScreenClip(102)

8

Here’s what things are looking like now:

9

It’s that time again, save: Go to:
File>Save

Because we are making this card to print at Costco, we need to put something in the empty, transparent area (where the checkerboard is on your canvas).

In the Layers Stack, select the bottom layer:

ScreenClip(103)

In the Tools (on the left side of the screen, where the move tool is), select the Foreground Color by clicking on it:

10

That will open the Color Picker dialogue box like this:

ScreenClip(105)

When you put your mouse on the canvas or Christmas card, you will see it becomes an eyedropper. This is how we will match the color. I’m going to click on the white part of the card and match it.

Now, to fill that bottom layer with this color, we will select the Paint Bucket Tool (Note: if you don’t see the Paint Bucket, it might be hiding under the Gradient Tool, just click and hold the Gradient Tool until you see the Paint Bucket and then you can select it :

ScreenClip(106)

Gradient Tool:

ScreenClip(107)

With the Paint Bucket Tool selected and the bottom layer of the stack selected, just click on the transparent part of the canvas (where the checkerboard is) and the color you selected will fill that bottom layer. Here’s what my card looks like now:

ScreenClip(108)

Now, save again Go to:
File>Save

 

On the bottom of this card, there is a customizable greeting. Let’s go ahead and customize it!

Select the layer called “Family Message” (NOTE: if your card does not already have customizable text, then just select the top layer instead of the message layer):

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Now, select the Text Tool:

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If you don’t have text already on the card, then you will want to create a text box by clicking in the upper left corner where you want to the type to start and dragging until the box is the size you want.

Since I have text on this card, I will just click and select (by dragging) right where I want to make the edit:

ScreenClip(112)

Now, I’ll type over that name and add ours Winking smile and hit enter or the check mark to commit the change. You can also change the font (in the top menu bar), spacing, sizing, etc. Here’s what I have now:

ScreenClip(113)

Let’s save the layered PSD file one more time: Go to:
File>Save

Now, we need to save a jpeg so we can upload for printing. We do this by going to File> Save As. In the drop down File Type box, select JPEG:

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Now, you are ready to upload to Costco for printing.