How, When, and Why To Use A Gray Card

Are you learning to shoot in manual mode? Do you get frustrated when trying to figure out how to expose for your subject?

A gray card may not be an everyday tool,  but in some situations it absolutely does the trick to get exposure correct.

So what is it anyway?

A gray card can range from a $2.00 piece of paper to a $100 system. I use the 12 inch Lastolite Ezybalance Card available for under $30.

Why would you use it?

Your camera doesn’t see in black and white. Your camera records tones ranging from black to white. Take a look at your camera’s histogram and you’ll see this grayscale range. Blacks are to the left and white on the right.

Right there in the middle of the white and black is middle gray. Middle gray is the color we want to expose for to ensure all of our colors are represented in their truest form.

A gray card finds middle gray, helping you to determine the correct exposure in a given situation.

How do you use it?

Yes, we skipped step 4!

Here are those same five steps in a bit more detail.

  1. Place your gray card in the same light as your subject at the same angle.
  2. Point your camera at the gray card. You can focus on the center, but it isn’t necessary.
  3. Adjust your meter until it indicates a “correct exposure” by lining up the indicator to the middle.
  4. Remove the gray card from your scene if your subject will allow it!
  5. Ignore your light meter (it will bounce all around as it continues to read the light) and shoot.

When can you use it?

You can use it in almost any situation when you want to get your exposure correct.

I use it when:

  • my subject is a difficult to meter color
  • when I want the best results possible
  • when I have time
  • when I’m shooting for someone else

You’ll be surprised at how much a simple extra step can change your photographs. You won’t need to use it for every photo, but when you really care about your results it can make the difference you are looking for.

Have you used a gray card?

Julia Makotinsky: A Designer First

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I remember watching Julia in the designer Apprentice Competition and being so impressed with her designs. I also remember equally excited when she won a permanent spot as a designer in that store! Julia’s designs are crisp, clean, and filled with whimsy at the same time (not an easy thing to do). I’m happy to be welcoming her back again! Let’s take a closer look at “Sweet Life” that is included in The Digi Files this month:

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Here are some layouts created using Julia Makotinsky’s contribution:

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Layout by Karen. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Font: Darcy Baldwin Mouseketeer Kim. byTiffany Tillman.
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Layout by Jacki. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky.
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Layout by Heddy. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky.
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Layout by Lauren. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Freehand doodles by Lauren.
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Layout by Aaron. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Shadows by One Little Bird and Jennifer Barrette; Photo actions by My Four Hens.

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

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city: New York for the past 20 years. Moscow, Russia for the first 18.
family: my hubby and our 2 cats

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I don’t post many layouts to the galleries myself, but I do create them for the photo books. I always loved looking at printed photos when I used to shoot with my film camera, now that I use digital one I print my own personal photo books from our vacations, celebrations, parties and things like that. I just finished my project 365 for the last year which turned out to be 120 pages thick 🙂 can’t wait to print it now.

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I started selling my designs in 2008 at Little Dreamer Designs after completing an Apprentice program and being invited to become one of designers there. The program took 4 weeks to complete, and while competing among others I learned a lot from Michelle Coleman as she was giving us various assignments to complete, and she is the one who believed in me and gave me a chance to become a designer. I haven’t stopped learning and trying something new still, it’s a never ending process for me. I became a designer first, scrapper second.

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books, magazines, searching the web. If it’s a seasonal theme than the season itself.

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Computer: When it comes to computers and all the technical stuff I am absolutely clueless as to how much RAM I have 🙂 I am such not a technical person. All I know is I have a PC (Dell) which runs on Vista and LG monitor. My husband knows about computers, so I trust him with all this technical stuff 🙂

Program: Photoshop CS5, Illustrator, SketchBook Pro, Art Rage.

Camera: I have a Sony SLR, and had it for a few years now. Looking at Cannons as for future purchase, but still happy with my Sony.

Anything Else: I also have a bamboo tablet which I use every day and can’t be without it 🙂 looking to get a new Inkling by Wacom but so far it’s unavailable.

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One tip that I used to use a lot is for photos that are too dark. I would open this photo in Photoshop, select it’s layer in the layer’s pallet, duplicate it (Ctrl+J) and set the duplicate layer as screen mode. Then depending on how dark the original photo is adjust the opacity of this layer and merge both layers together. I use Totally Rad actions now for too dark photos and I love them, but I still use this quick tip every once in a while. It saves time and it works too 🙂

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I try to design at least one Christmas/Holiday kit each year and this is the reason behind this kit. I had fun designing it as It all came together so perfectly. Sometimes I start a kit and get stuck half way through, then get new ideas and keep going/changing what’s been done in some ways, adding and deleting stuff until I’m happy with the finish result. This kit simply click from the beginning. I was on a roll, and enjoyed every minute of it.
Winter is my MOST favorite time of the year, I do love cold weather and snow. It’s just fun for me 🙂

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Christmas Sketchbook :: Collection
I started this kit as I was trying to learn this new program I bought called SketchBookPro. It’s a sketching software, fun to use and the more I played with it, the more I loved it. I bought it right before Christmas, so the sketches I was playing with were all winter/Christmas related, and then it turned into a kit, and later I added more sketches to it as a request of one of my CT member. Having so much fun the first time I couldn’t say NO, and the add-on pack turned out to be a hit!

This kit is one of my favorites, and most popular release as well. It’s just different from all of my other kits and that’s probably because I love it myself J I do plan to release more holiday kits using the same sketchbook look, one of them is already in the shop and called Halloween Sketchbook. I’m guessing Valentine/Love kit is next J so stay tuned!

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Here are some of my favorite products by Julia Makotinsky:

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

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Save 30% at Studio Julia Makotinksy Designs with coupon JM30-DDS, good through March 31st.

Go have a look in Julia Makotinsky’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 Julia Mokotinsky

The following layouts were created using “Sweet Life” by Julia Mokotinksy and included in The Digi Files during February, 2012:

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Layout by Kim Lund, additional supplies: Template by Amy Martin. Fonts are Fling and Courier New.
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Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Template: Scrapping with Liz, Fonts: Love Ya Like a Sister, DJB Digi JenLin
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Layout by Karen. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Font: Darcy Baldwin Mouseketeer Kim. byTiffany Tillman.
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Layout by Jacki. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky.
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Layout by Heddy. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky.
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Layout by Lauren. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Freehand doodles by Lauren.
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Layout by Aaron. Supplies: Sweet Life by Julia Makotinsky; Shadows by One Little Bird and Jennifer Barrette; Photo actions by My Four Hens.

How to Properly Pin to Pinterest – a tutorial

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There has been a lot of attention this past week on copyright issues and Pinterest. I’ve seen a wide range of opinions and posts on the subject. I think one of the most informative articles was from a fellow female techie, Greek Geek.

We’ve seen copyright issues explode since the dawn of the internet. While I agree that copyrighted material does need to be protected, I don’t want to see laws and enforcements such as SOPA to be passed either. It’s a fine line.

I believe that most of the pinning and not linking to the original source on Pinterest is innocent. It is easy to make mistakes when pinning. Just yesterday, Katie and I discovered the the pinlet I installed on my iPhone (follwing the directions in the Pinterest app) does not link to the original source. As far as I can tell, it has been happening since the last Pinterest app update. I have been carefully pinning from my iPhone for months, not knowing that the source wasn’t being linked. I’m unsure if this is just a problem with me and my phone or something others are having as well (and maybe not even know it).

I feel that most of the copyright issues found on Pinterest can be fixed with education. I decided to share some how-to tips for pinning that I’ve discovered during my time as a pinner. I believe, if each of us does our own part to watch our own pins, we can contribute to the overall health and vitality of the Pinterest ecosystem.

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Not all site owners want their images pinned. How do you know if sites are okay with images being pinned? Pinterst now has some code in their help section that site owners can add if they don’t want to be pinned. If a pinner tries to pin on a site with the code, they will see a message about the site owner not wanting images to be pinned. Until people start installing the code though, the only way to know for sure is to ask. I’m going to use my own rule of thumb that if a site has a “pin it” button to make it easy to pin, they they are okay with things being pinned. As for The Daily Digi, we are okay with things being pinned, especially when pinned correctly!

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There is a “proper” way to pin. Navigating to the exact page URL or source that includes the image and pinning from there, is the right way. Let me share an example:

Let’s pretend that this past Friday, I wanted to pin the main image on the homepage, here at The Daily Digi. On Friday, if you came to TheDailyDigi.com, Here’s what you saw:

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Notice the URL in the address bar:

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If I were to pin the main image from that Retail Therapy post, with the URL as it is now, (thedailydigi.com) then anytime anyone clicks my pinned image, it will direct them to thedailydigi.com and whatever is on the homepage at that time is what they will see. They will not know how to find the original post the image was pinned from.

The proper thing to do, would be to click on the title of that post:

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When you click that post title, it will put a direct URL to that specific post in the address bar:

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Now, if you pin the image from there, when people click on the image you pinned, they will be directed back to the original post.

Feel free to practice with the image from today’s post Winking smile

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Before you repin, check to be sure the pin links to the original source. As much as possible, pin and repin directly from the owner. Sometimes, people will grab an image from Pinterest, put it on their site and link back to the source. Just go to the original source and pin from their. Try to give credit where credit is due.

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If an image has a copyright symbol and/or “All Rights Reserved” it probably shouldn’t be pinned. This is often seen on Flickr. I know that many people upload to our Flickr group to share their layouts with others. I know that there are designers that require team members to upload layouts to our Flickr group with their product. I also know that most of those people would delighted if I pin their layouts.

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If in doubt, ask. If you are in doubt about site, person, or images being Pinterest friendly, ask.

If you would like something to add to your own blog or site to let people know that you are a Pinterest friendly site and you are okay with pinning, I made this image to share:

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The numbers in this post and the alpha in the feature image can be found in Vicki Stegall’s store.

Life Before Scrapbooking: Telling Our Stories, Pt. 1

We all have created our first layout.  We’ve all had the day when for the first time, we tried our hand at this cool thing called scrapbooking.  For many of us—myself included—that first page has led to many, many more.  I have hundreds (probably close to 1600 now?) of scrapbook pages, all telling part of my story. I love them.  And yet, there is a huge part of my story missing: all the years before I started scrapbooking.

From time to time I have gone back and done a few pages from the past. However, the majority of my pages are from the time I started scrapbooking and after. My oldest child was two at the time and my second child was one.  Any stories from before that time are noticeably missing.

As my family starts to pack up and return to living in the States for the next year, I know I need to start sorting and purging.  And with all of that comes the realization that I need to actually do something with the big Rubbermaid tub of photos and memorabilia I have. It’s time to stop lugging it around and actually tell some stories.

Over the next few months, I am going to be sharing some of my journey with you. I hope you will come alongside me and start telling some of your old stories, too. We’ll have fun together.

But first, a few good reasons to blow off the cobwebs, find those photos you actually printed, and do something with them:

1. There is a lot of joy to be had in looking through old photos.
As I started sorting through photos, I got lost in a sea of memories. I looked at pictures from my daughter’s birth, my short-lived life as a P.E. teacher (who me?!?), our first few homes, friends from high school, and more.  It was thrilling and a flood of memories came.  There is joy in looking back! Check out the post from Steph that asks, “Can Scrapbooking Really Make You Happy?” This picture? Our first family meal, February 2003.

2.  All of the moments of our life before scrapbooking are just as important as the ones afterward.
One of the reasons I scrapbook is so that my kids will really know me.  I want them to know the real heart and mind behind the person they call “mom.”  Part of that is making sure that I tell them all of my story.  My life didn’t begin the moment they were born or the first time I put scissors and glue to my photos.  Who I am is a product of many years previous and I want them to know the whole of me.  This picture? Self-timer photos on the campus of the University of Michigan on the day I missed my flight for my semester abroad in Israel.  Newly in love, I was thrilled to have an extra 24 hours together!

3. People grow and change!
I love seeing how much the people I love have changed over time.  When we are in the moment, we think the terrible-two’s will last forever or that our home will never sell. But times has a habit of marching on and it is fun to see life “then and now.” This picture? This sweet girl, Hannah, was in 8th or 9th grade at the time. She is holding my now nine-year-old daughter. And Hannah now has a little girl of her own who is about this size!

4. Looking back gives us a new perspective on the present.
When we look back into our past, we are struck with how much life has changed.  Kids become adults, crises become golden opportunities, and new things become the clutter we are trying to get rid of.  Looking back gives us perspective.  It helps us realize  that the present will be tomorrow’s past and we can’t live our lives as if today is the only thing that matters. This picture?  This is 16-year-old me, pretty sure that life was over.  I was sad, lonely, hurt, and convinced that my only hope in life was hanging onto a thread-bear relationship.  Needless to say, life wasn’t over when our relationship was and now I am blessed with an amazing husband and five incredible kids. And that boyfriend I was trying to hang on to is also happily married.

5. History repeats itself.
I clearly remember all of the moments when my dad was trying to get all four of us kids looking at the camera and smiling.  “Chin UP, Janet!” There were lots of frustrated words and a few tears.  And now, as I beg my kids for just ONE photo when someone isn’t staring off into dreamland or holding themselves like they need to use the bathroom, I realize that history repeats itself and sometimes, that’s just fine. This picture? On the left, me and my three siblings (I’m in back.) Easter, probably around 1984.  On the right, my sweet crew, February 2012.

6.  Sometimes, it’s just good to laugh at yourself.
Hair spray, curling irons,  shoulder pads, Sun-In, and knitted sweater designs. Need I say more? Circa 1995.

 

So are YOU ready to find the joy in looking cialis best price back?  Then join me in this journey!

Retail Therapy for a Long Weekend

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Supplies used: Shop Till You Drop by Lisa Sisneros

We are headed into a long weekend here in the U.S. with Monday being President’s Day and a holiday for many. I am hoping to grab some new goodies and do a bit of scrapping this weekend! Here’s what’s going on around digiland this weekend:

Today is the last day to enter our contest here! We would love to see what you come up with!

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Studio Basic has this super duper bundle for only $10.90:

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Scrap the adventure of a lifetime with this African safari inspired kit by ViVa Artistry. Lost World is a beautiful collection filled with wonderful prints, wild animals and lots of vintage elements that will transport you to the middle of the banana republic. Great for all those zoo and safari photos, traveling shots, as well as fun and wild art journaling pages.

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Pink Reptile and ValC Designs have a beautiful new collab that is being released this Friday. It’s all about Friendship and it’s all about Colour and it’s 20% off from Friday through Sunday! Also make sure to check both of their FB Fanpages because they both have an addon gift for you too.

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Liz has a new set of templates out. The title says it all. Use these to Journal or Not. They would look great either way. Grab them for 20% off now until 2/23.

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Sahlin Studio and One Little Bird has a new kit out this week, Worn.
It is 20% off all weekend!

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Jennifer Labre is giving our readers an exclusive coupon this week! 30% off anything in her Oscraps store.

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Yin completed A Day In The Life and has this free template to share on her blog!

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It’s Elemental by Tiffany Tillman – Embellishing Strategies for Digital Scrapbookers – Elements are the single component that sets our scrapbooking albums apart from photo albums and journals. We fill-up our pages with neat little pieces, which highlight our personality and unique creativity. It’s Elemental is like a roadmap for embellishing. You’ll move past filling up space with neat little pieces and actually use elements with purpose. Register before February 19th for a $5 discount!

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Miracle of Love is my take on the Spark Project.  Studio Tangie, Studio Flergs and I have done our second instalment of the Spark Project.  One of us chooses a “spark” with a twist and we all see what we come up with! The inspiration this time was Miracle and Wonder and the twist was to include a window. Miracle of Love has a soft airy feel and includes lots of collage and stamped pieces! The Miracle of Love Value Pak is the best deal and includes the full kit, date tags, cards and hearts!

Miracle of Love also has Quick Pages and Templates available separately.

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Dunia has a new kit, Pride and Joy:

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Scrap your most “harmonious” moments in life with this new kit from Secret Stash. Sweet Harmony is lovely, musical and all about being in sync with one another.

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New press cards (perfect for project life) are 20% off thru Feb 19th.  Purchase the bundle and save even more!

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Chocolate lovers of the world unite! For all things chocolate, look no further than Chelle’s mouth watering, stomach growling, taste bud tingling new release…Chocolate Lovers. The best part, it is calorie free!

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A Wise Old Owl digital scrapbook kit by Meredith Cardall, is perfect for celebrating the friends you cherish, as well as outdoorsy photos!  Meredith created a custom coupon code, just for fans of The Daily Digi. Use the code  TDD35Owls to take 35% off the original price of A Wise Old Owl! This offer expires 02/21.

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It’s never too late to celebrate the one you love! Sweet Nothings, the latest kit collection from Lisa Sisneros Designs, is brimming with all the sweetness and romance of love–from oodles of roses, romantic papers, 2 whimsical vintage alphabets, plus several charming add on packs…you’re sure to fall for this one! Save 20% off the Sweet Nothings collection through this weekend at CatScrap…don’t miss out! <3

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Christine Chodil has some new stamp frames out:

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Heather T. has come up with some more fun wordart photomasks: WordyShapes!

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Baers Garten Designs has new pirate kit and quick pages in her store It is 20% off through February 19th.

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A charming new collection from Studio Vivarant.  The Palest Spring Bundle now on sale. Save 42% off the original price.  Visit for detail on a matching blog freebie.

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Creashens has a new super fun kit out:

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For the first time since fall of 2010, Sweet Shoppe Designs is hosting an opening call in search of stand-out designers to join their team.  Perhaps it is you?

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Krisi’s Kreations has out this versatile template – use it for a legal pad, as a folder for cards and more.  20% off until Sunday!

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Traffic Jam by K Studio ~ 20% OFF through Friday at After Five Designs, and comes with a FREE with Purchase Add-on Shot!

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CD Muckosky has this super cute new set out:

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Finally, we released a new episode of The Digi Show this past week; answering YOUR questions! How to decide printing a book or individual layouts; why designers don’t continue to sell their stuff when they retire; why designers retire; organizing and organization software.

We are also looking for our listeners to share their “Product Picks” with us via voicemail or the survey box on the site. We will be sharing them in a future episode! Smile

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P.S. Cheryl was the random winner chosen from the feature on Ziggle Designs from yesterday. She won $10 to Ziggle Designs store! Smile

P.S.S. Stefanie was the random winner selected from Darcy Baldwin’s feature comments. She won $10 in product from Darcy!

Ziggle Designs: I Love Being Crafty

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I’m very excited to be welcoming back Kami from Ziggle Designs to The Digi Files this month! I discovered Kami several years ago because of her designs and have really enjoyed getting to know her better over the years, working with her as a store owner at Scrap Orchard. I love the way Kami themes her kits and how well the theme flows throughout the collection.  She has a great eye for color and her googly-eyed characters always make me smile. Let’s take a closer look at “Love Bots” that is included in The Digi Files this month:

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Here are some layouts created using Ziggle Designs’ contribution:

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Layout by Karen. Supplies: Love Bots by Ziggle Designs; Template by Janet Phillips; Striped edge overlay by Anna Aspnes; Font: Transformers.
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Layout by Kimberly. Supplies: Love Bots by Ziggle Designs; All Roads Lead Home (staple and scallop), PxlCafe; Fonts: Impact, Hero.
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Layout by Jacki. Supplies: Love Bots by Ziggle Designs.
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Layout by Anne. Supplies: Love Bots by Ziggle Designs; Fonts: Gimme Space, Arial Narrow.
 

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Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Template: Aprillisa, Font: SF Heidi

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Hey Guys! My name is Kami and I live in Southern California. I’m married to my first love- Ryan. We just celebrated our 18th anniversary—which seems somewhat mathematically impossible since I swear I am only 25. We have a beautiful daughter, Zoe and she is pretty much our whole life.

We have a few furry friends cohabitating with us. They help me out when I need a snuggle and keep us entertained. Zoe and I dote on them and even though Ryan pretends he doesn’t care for them- we find him sneaking in a snuggle or two every once in a while.
Not only are my husband and I both Army brats, he also served in the Army, so we don’t really have a “hometown”. We ended up in Washington when he got out of the service and a few years later, we relocated to California. Prior to that, we lived in Arizona. So I guess you could say we’re West Coasters…. LOL!

I love being crafty and have various random (and multiple) craft projects in the works at any given time. It drives my husband batty- but after 18 years, I gotta figure he’s resigned to it. My daughter is very crafty as well, so we have fun making a mess together!

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This is my current favorite layout. Zoe and I took a trip to Chicago last summer and I really cherish the time we got to spend together- just the two of us. We had so much fun. While we were at my cousins wedding, waiting for the wedding party to finish up their photo shoot, Zoe asked me to take some pictures of her without looking through the view finder. I held the camera away from me and just started clicking away. The pictures turned out beautiful and her playful, spunky spirit was really evident (she’s not a huge fan of getting her picture taken, so often times her personality doesn’t come through in photos).
Tip: On the journaling, I used a dark brown color for the font and changed the blending mode to color burn. I lowered the opacity just a bit, so it picked up the texture of the paper underneath and looks more like it’s typed on the paper.

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I started paper scrapping in 2001. I went with a friend to a scrapbook party and I was immediately hooked. At the time, it was just me and my husband so I have lots of albums of our cats doing- well a whole lotta nothing, which is what cats tend to do. When my daughter was born in 2004, I found even though I had an awesome reason to scrap- I didn’t have the time or space to get all my supplies out and make layouts. I kind of stumbled across digital scrapbooking. I was very familiar with Photoshop because of my photography business and one day it occurred to me that I could just make my scrapbook layouts in Photoshop. I did a little Google search and discovered the wonderful world of digital scrapbooking and never looked back! I do still use paper products for craft projects & hybrid, but when it comes to scrapping layouts- I’m 100% digi.

I started designing in 2006 for my photography business and then eventually joined a store in 2007. In 2008, my sister and I opened Scrap Orchard. These days, I spend more time running the site than designing but every once in a while, inspiration hits and I just have to go “create”.

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I think challenge inspires me. I get an idea and I want to know if I can “do” it. Often times a whole collection will stem from just one idea for an element or paper that I had. I love the holidays and I’ve noticed that lately, that’s when I really want to set time aside to design something.

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Computer: I have a custom-built desktop. I am fortunate to have a “geek” for a husband and he’s got me hooked up. I’m pretty hard on my computer- I expect it to do a lot and keep up with my ADD tendencies, so he’s put together a system that can *mostly* let me work on multiple things at one time and not crash on me. I use a PC. I know…I know… But I’ve tried using a Mac and I just don’t “get it”. I love my PC. I have 4 GB of RAM, a RAID 1 hard-drive, a quad-core CPU and dual-monitors (although I’m thinking adding a 3rd). I keep my palettes on one screen and use the other screen as my canvas. [Other than the fact that I have two monitors- I had to go ask Ryan to explain my computer for me].

Program: I use PSCS5 (64 bit) and Illustrator CS5 to design.

Camera: I have a Nikon D200 and my iPhone 4 Camera (which is actually a pretty awesome little camera).

Anything Else: I have a Wacom Intuos3 Tablet, an Epson Perfection 4490 Photo Scanner and a Western Digital EHD.

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A tip on designing: “Snapshots” in PSCS! I will end up with about 10 different snapshots of an element by the time I’m done. I love that if I make some changes I don’t like, I can just jump back up to a point before I made the changes and go in a new direction. Sometimes I’ll flip back and forth between the snapshots, trying to figure out which one I like best or what changes I should make, etc. It’s almost become second nature for me to take a snapshot now, because I use them so much! I don’t think I could design without them.

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My favorite product is probably Boys of Summer. Everything about this kit was a challenge. It took me a long time (I think I spent 2 whole days just on the tree/tree house) but I loved every minute of it. I designed this one in CS4- probably about a month before I upgraded to CS5 and now I look at it and see all the things I would do differently in CS5! LOL But I still love it!

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Three-Ring Circus is probably my most popular product. I think it’s pretty versatile and everyone can always use a circus kit…. heehee! I designed it about the time that Zoe was entered in to a competition in the LA County Fair and I knew I was going to have some Fair/Circus photos to scrap. I created a County Fair Add-On so I could scrap some of my pictures of her with the different animals and at the different exhibits. I wanted a more vintage look to the kit so I looked at some vintage circus images and put together the palette.

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Here are some of my favorite products by Ziggle Designs by Kami:

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Here are some more inspirational layouts using Ziggle Designs by Kami’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

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Coupon
Save 35% OFF in Ziggle Designs’ store with code TDD_35OFF (Expires: 4/30/12; 1 use per customer; not valid on collaboration products can not be combied with any other discount or sale).

Go have a look in Ziggle Designs’ 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)!

Learning From Paper Scrapbook Pages

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Title Graphic Credits: TDD My Life At Play member exclusive kit; Fonts are Splendid 66 and The Only Exception

Even though I scrapbook digitally, I love to spend time in the paper scrapbook galleries. This is partly due to the fact that my scrapbook style tends more toward the “paper-style” of digi scrapping and partly because there is so much great inspiration in the paper galleries.

This post is going to highlight just a few of the great paper scrapbooking trends and techniques that I’ve come across, shown in digital format. There are some amazing digi scrappers who work in “paper-style”.

First though, I should say that I think realistic shadowing is the number one trick to having a realistic paper-style digi page. The Daily Digi has a ton of posts about shadowing, so I’m not going to repeat them here. Here is just a sampling:

In no particular order, let’s look at some ideas for a realistic paper-style page:

Add More Fasteners

The reason I wanted to do this post is because doing a scraplift made me realize how important details like fasteners (staples, stitches, tape, etc.) are in adding to the realism of a page.

If you’re looking for inspiration on how to use fasteners, Katie did a great post about Fun With Fasteners.

Let’s look at some tips…

Add More Papers

When I first started digi scrapping there was no doubt that the digi papers available were far more modern and on-trend than the physical papers available in my local scrapping store. Well, going through the paper galleries now is so inspiring! The colours and patterns are beautiful and fresh. I’m loving how strips of imperfectly cut pieces of paper are being used for layering. Digi scrappers are using the skew tool to make their own imperfect cuts (or digi templates that have “pre-cut” paper strips).

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By Valoriew.

Start With a Neutral Background

A quick browse through paper galleries and it becomes clear that a lot of paper scrappers start with neutral papers like plain brown kraft paper, white card stock, graph paper and lined paper.

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By dianeskie.

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By Ana.Paula.

Katie did a great post about marking go-to items like neutral backgrounds in a “favourite folder” or with a keyword tag to find them easily when you go to scrap.

Black Alphas

When going through the paper galleries, I noticed that many pages featured striking titles in black alphas. Personally, I love having a few black pieces on a page because it catches the eye. A title in a black alpha is a clear focal point.

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By trista.

2011-SSDNov-Scraplift-web

By Heddy.

Mix Alphas

I have over 530 alphas tagged on my computer right now. I probably have a ton more that I haven’t had a chance to tag yet! I think I should really be taking note of the paper scrapper trend of mixing alphas, especially neutral alphas, to form titles.

10-08-and-she_s-off-copy

By norton94.

Check out Katie’s post about digi scrapping with alphas for more ideas.

Journaling Guidelines

You’ll often see handwritten journaling written on journaling guidelines (i.e. ruled lines). Obviously on digi pages, journaling will be straight without guidelines, but it’s fun to use them anyway. They add emphasis to the journaling and ground the text.

2012_02_03-this-is-me

By MamaBee.

Use a Full Composition

Very full paper pages catch my attention. So many great details to admire! Digitally we’re lucky that we can rely on templates designed for full-page coverage.

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By Marnel.

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By Bouille.

Maybe you’ve seen some paper layouts that have inspired you to try something new in digi? Feel free to share!

Documenting Love–Digital Scrapbook Style

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Scrap Essentials No. 4 by Jenna Desai. The typewriter font by Heather Hess

Today is a day of love because it’s Valentine’s Day, but as memory keepers, we celebrate the people and things we love every time we create a page. There are so many ways to document love with digital scrapbooking, and I’ve found some wonderful pages in the galleries to inspire us to scrap our loves. Of course, it’s important to take the time to scrap about romantic love and special relationships with a significant other. I adore the message of this page and the heartfelt journaling. This is the perfect excuse to pull out those romantic kits and write a love letter. Find a special photo and you will have a treasured keepsake!

LostWithoutYou_web

layout by 4noisyboys

Don’t feel limited to only scrapping romantic pages, you can express your love for anyone. A favorite subject for many scrappers  is to tell their children how much they love them through a scrapbook page. Making a list is a great way to set the theme for the page and it also makes journaling even easier.

10ThingsILoveAboutYouLulu

page by Lunafaerie

There are many relationships of love in our lives; siblings, friends, relatives, and even pets. Capture your love for someone on a layout and include a list of the things that you love and appreciate about them.

120130timetogether4web

layout by bderby

We can also have feelings of love for objects, especially those that make our lives so much easier. Scrap about your love for a certain food, technology, tv show, or car. You can make a love list for just about anything!

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page by kfite7

Don’t feel limited if you don’t have a picture to use, it’s perfectly ok to create a page with words and embellishments to illustrate your feelings.

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layout by keldakitty

 

If you need a few more ideas:

  • Count the ways you love someone or something
  • Use the title of a song about love as a title for your layout
  • Write a love letter
  • Gather pictures of all the people or things that you love and create a collage-type layout
  • Take photos of love-related items (candy, flowers, etc.) and use them to illustrate a page about your feelings on love

Hope you all have a love filled day!

 

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Connie Prince: Honor Her Sweet Memory

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I’m super excited to welcome back Connie Prince to The Digi Files! Connie is a very talented designer and it has been fun for me to work with her over the past few years. I love Connie’s ability to theme a kit and tie everything together through colors, patterns, and elements. I can’t wait to do a little shopping with the coupon below! Let’s take a closer look at “Our Love” that is included in The Digi Files this month:

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Here are some layouts created using Connie Prince’s contribution:

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Layout by Karen. Supplies: Our Love by Connie Prince; Wordy Art by Ali Edwards.

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Layout by Trina. Supplies: Our Love by Connie Prince; All About Mom Jumpers by Crystal Livesay; Photo by Nichole Drevenak Photography.

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Layout by Heddy. Supplies: Our Love by Connie Prince; Preserve by Zinnias and Swallowtails.

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Layout by SharonS

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Layout by Chigirl

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InTheStudioWith
Hi everyone, I’m Connie Prince and I live in Georgia with my sweet family. William is my husband of almost 16 years and we have one son, Hayden. We also have two dogs (Widget and Mokka) and one cat (Pringles) who are all a very important part of our little family!

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We were so excited to have snow on Christmas Day 2010! No one in my family had ever experienced a White Christmas, so it was truly a memorable day. I really loved the photos that we captured and how happy we all felt in that moment!


Cold Hands, Warm Hearts Collection by Connie Prince

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I have been designing and growing my scrapbooking business for a number of years. For years, I was a website graphic designer and also an avid paper scrapper. So, when I found the digital world of scrapbooking, it just seemed natural to combine the two interests!

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Inspiration, I believe, for most designers comes from personal experience and exposure. I absorb my inspiration from nature, my son & his pals, color, texture, you name it and I’ve probably used it as a source of creativity!

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Computer: I have an Alienware computer, which is really cool because it’s for gamers and has lots of graphic capability. Dual monitors are a must have!

Program: Photoshop is my design program of choice!

Camera: I have a Canon PowerShot, which is always in my bag for quick shots. I also have a Canon Rebel!

Anything Else: I use an Adesso (11″) tablet for doodling in Illustrator.

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I think my biggest tip is to create what you enjoy! The entire process of creating is a lot more enjoyable if I create what makes me happy and not by trying to conform into trends that are just not my style!

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My mother passed away in July 2010 and it was created to honor her sweet memory. The creative process was very healing to me and stands as a reminder of how she lived her life by the scriptures that she loved so much.

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Main Street Magic is inspired by the magical place that so many of us love dearly! The colors are bright and bold, perfect for the fun memories that they help to record.

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Here are some of my favorite products by Connie Prince:

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

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Save 25%
at Connie’ Prince’s Gotta Pixel store with Code: 25Off-DD (Expires 3/1/2012).

Go have a look in Connie Prince’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)!