Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tuesday Tip - Textures

Have you seen the beautiful photo art that has been popping up all over lately? Have you ever wondered how to make photo textures work on your images? Well that is what today's Tuesday Tip is all about! I'm going to show you how in a few short steps you can start on the adventure to making your photos a work of art!

Step One - You need to select a photo...photos with with some background work the best. Edit your photo in either Lightroom or Photoshop. The photo below has been edited in Lightroom using a preset from the Pixel Fairy Princess Season's Collection Open your selected image in Photoshop or PSE.

Step Two - Select a texture you would like to overlay you photo with. This takes a lot of trial and error, every texture will not work for every photo. As you become more accustom to using textures you will get a feel for what will work. Just play! I have selected a texture from the Pixel Fairy Princess Original Eclectic Texture Collection. Place the texture in a layer above your photo.

Step Three - Using the blending modes experiment and see which mode blends the texture with your photo the best. At this point you might also want to add a layer mask to your texture and using a soft brush conceal the parts that cover the skin of the person in your portrait.

Using textures in this way is really only the first step in turning your precious photographs into works of art. If you are interested it taking your photo art to the next level and beyond, come join us in our Photo Art Class. Registration is open and the class also includes the materials we will be using!

Don't forget to join us every Tuesday for a new Tip....and check out the Pixel Fairy Princess Photography Blog for a Try It giveaway every Tuesday as well!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Great Question!

I need feedback and I love questions and this morning Jennifer had a great one - What is a brush?

I hope that she doesn't get mad - But I am just going to post a little bit from her e-mail.
I guess I'm still a little confused what brushes are to start. Is that flower thing is that an image you started with or is it a brush? Is a brush kind of like a stamp?

Yes - the flower is a brush.
I wanted to tell you that a brush is very similar to a stamp in traditional scrapbooking. You can "stamp" a brush or you can paint with a brush. In the technique that I did the tutorial for - we are "stamping" more than we are brushing. Brushes themselves come in many forms - flourishes, Alphas, Dingbats and traditional strokes.

Here is a link to Scrap Girls Brushes - you will find all sorts of goodies - like words and quotes too!

If we think of this type of BRUSH technique as STAMPING - we control the amount of INK we put on the brush by adjusting the Opacity and Flow(in CS3). For my additive technique - I set my brush to 100% opacity and for my subtractive technique - I adjusted the opacity. I stated arounf 65% and moved it down every few mouse clicks. Not being a traditional scrapper and NEVER having stamped - I think that the subtractive technique is one of the benefits of digital scrapping - but like I said - I really wouldn't know the traditional method for this.

When we talk about STAMPING in Photoshop - we are talking about using tools like the healing tool for retouching image or cloning to remove an unwanted object. We can discuss those too if anyone is interested?

Let me know if this helps :D

Friday, September 19, 2008

Let’s Talk About Brushes

This is the first in a series that I want to do on brushes. I want to start very simple and progress.
I will be working in Photoshop CS3 - but I am also doing it in Elements at the same time so that I can alert Elements users to any differences.

As you see in Figure 1. I have opened a blank white sheet on which we are going to play with brushes. Today we are going to create a distressed accent. The reason I have chosen this is because I think that you should learn this technique first - add and subtract.

Figure 1

The first thing is to get your brush tool and select a brush. Today I am going to use Diane Miller’s Serene Brush Set. For learning this technique - I suggest starting with a large brush.

Figure 2

I simply left click the mouse one time and an imprint of the brush I want to use is applied to my paper. Notice that I created a new layer for my brush stroke in the layers palate. This is the additive concept that we will build on. Today, this will be the only thing we add to the layout.

Now - I want to give it a grunged look. For that I am going to use my eraser as a brush. Your erase can be used in three different mode - brush, pencil, and block. You will find the mode selection at the top of you window under you main tabs. This tool bar will show you the brush you have selected, the size, mode, and opacity. Get comfortable with these. Make sure that your eraser is in brush and for our subtractive technique I am going to use Brandy Valenzuela Grungelle for distressing.
Figure 3

I am going to turn the opacity down to about 50 -60% and start SLOWLY left clicking my mouse. DO not drag your mouse.

Figure 4

You will see how the top part has a worn and faded look. I am going to switch brushes and subtract some more from the leaves. I like to switch brushes during the subtractive portion because it geive an more realistic effect.

Figure 5

Here is my almost finished product. I used 3 different brushes to subtract from the original. I stayed on Layer on for the entire technique. I used large sized brushes very few strokes. This technique take some practice - but it is very important.

Now - to finish it off I add a sheet of paper from Thao Cosgrove’s Life’s Canvas Collection and use the clipping mask feature to “glue” them together!
Figure 6

Please post some of what you do in the Pixel Fairy Princess Flickr group :D

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Brushes -

I am working on a new tutorial. Thanks for all the comments about wanting to know more about brushes. I am going to do this a little different - and just need to take a little survey from those folk who actual come to this site. I don't know where followers of the blog are - so please take a minute and answer the two poll questions.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Text on a Path

As many of you have noticed – I have really been playing with my type lately. There are several ways to do this – the easiest is being to buy a collection like Valarie Randell's Collection Text on a Path. In a recent LO called Together I used Syndee’s Nuckles new Borderline2 Template and had my text follow the curves. Here is how I did it. You must have Photoshop CS3 to do this as Photoshop Elements does not have vector features like this – Sorry.

So lets look at the LO I am creating today of Princess-in-Training – my little trooper! I am going to use Thao Cosgrove's Ornamental Ink Brush Set right on my image. Here is where I am in the Layout.

BTW - you can click on the images to enlarge them.

Fig 1

I am going to select my freeform pen and draw a line that follows the curve of the swirl. I like to make sure that I have the rest of my LO pretty much set so that I don’t have to move the text once I do it.

Fig 2

Here is what it looks like after I draw the path I want to follow.

Fig 3.

I am now going to get my type tool and line it up with the path I just drew. I left click with my mouse and a text box appears with my cursor ready to go. One trick is to make sure that you have left justification checked - otherwise you might get frustrated.

Fig 4

Now I type some text.

Fig 5

See how easy that was – and fun :D

I will let you in on another secret – to draw my line, I use a Wascom Bamboo tablet and pen. They are a ton of fun and so addictive.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Hilton Head Island

I thought that I would go head and share this with you - I know - I normally don't do and I will try not to make it a habit.

This morning I had a wonderful shoot on the Beach with Princess-in-Training and Prince Charming. There is something so priceless about a little girl running on a beach in a pretty white dress - simple joy. As she danced, this is the song that played in my head. It is funny - these are just some of the spontaneous images I captured - but these are the ones that capture my heart! Tomorrow she will get up early and we will go to the hospital to begin our fifth series. It has been so nice to go all summer with no surgery. I will scrap these over this coming week and post them ;-D

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Blending - the Very Basics

Okay - bear with me - I actually did this tutorial a while ago and never uploaded it - yes - me bad! The thing is that I don't know where I put the text for this one - maybe it has somehting to do with using three computers :D

Let's wing it - this is actually really easy!

So - here we have Princess-in-Training and the nice vignette and photo to work with from the last tutorial. Let's open a 12x12 workspace and drag some paper from Syndee Nuckles Collage Art Collection into the workspace.
Now, drag the image you are working with onto the workspace. Notice that you can see where things are located in the layer palate. This is important because we are now going to move the two pieces of paper into place so that fill up the workspace.
If you will look at the layers palate you will see that my dark orange paper is directly below my green paper and you cannot see it.
Now I am going to open the blending modes found at the top right corner of the layers palate. It is very important that my top paper layer (the Green Paper) is highlighted in the layers palate.
Now for the fun! I am going to use the overlay blending mode to change the color of the orange and get the handwriting to look as though it is on the music!
Pretty cool and super easy!
Try using the multiply mode and the others
to have fun with you papers!