The best tip we can give you in learning how to scrapbook digitally is NOT to feel like you have to learn everything about Photoshop. You really just need to learn a few basics and you will be able to scrapbook on the computer just fine. The tools we will spotlight below are really all you need to know about to digital scrapbook. As you get more and more advanced with your digital scrapbooking you may enjoy learning how to use the other tools but don’t worry about learning all of them at once.
Some advanced tips are listed below. Don’t try to learn those until you have mastered the basics.
The Marquee Tool
Selects an area of your image. When an area is selected that is the ONLY area you can work with until you deselect the area.
Tip: Notice if you right click on the marquee tool in the toolbox you’ll find other options. I never use the line tools but I use the circle marquee all the time.
Tip: After selecting something with the marquee tool you’ll notice your cursor turns to an arrow. You can use that arrow to move the location of your selection (or use the arrow keys). If you want to physically move the image you’ve selected make sure you are on the right layer then use the move tool in the toolbox to move the image.
Tip: If you want a perfect square or circle click shift while dragging.
Just as the name suggests, the move tool helps you move things around your screen. You can use your move tool to move pictures from one document to another as well as move pictures (layers) around your scrapbook page. For example if you have a picture file and a scrapbook paper file both open on your screen you can use the move tool to drag the picture onto your scrapbook page.
Practice doing this: Open (file, open) a scrapbook paper from one of your Digital Scrapbook Memories’ cds. Then open (file, open) a picture that you want to scrapbook. Click on the move tool in the toolbox then click on your picture. Keep your finger down on the left mouse button as you drag your picture over to your scrapbook page. You will notice the mouse changes from black to white as you start to move your picture. The mouse will turn into a different white arrow with a square and a plus sign when it is over your new document.
Read about common mistakes.
Use this tool to cut your picture or entire document. Click on the crop tool then click and drag the crop tool to the size you want. Double click in the center to complete the crop. If you do the wrong size you can right click in the center of your document and hit cancel.
A common mistake
Tip: You can enter the exact size your crop should be by changing the options in the options bar after the crop tool is selected. I would recommend if you enter an exact size that you always put 300 pixels/inch with your measurements. You can then crop as much or as little of the picture you are cropping and the computer will make that crop the size you instructed it to do.
Use this tool to paint brush strokes on an image. After you click on this tool in the toolbox you will find all sorts of fun options in the options bar including a drop down menu where you can choose from all sorts of different brushes.
Learn advanced brush tips (coming soon)
Use this tool to erase any part of an image. You can only erase the layer that is selected in your layers palette. You can erase with a number of different brushes by clicking on the drop down menu in the options bar.
Tip: Change the opacity in the options bar (after your eraser tool is selected) for different effects.
Paint Bucket Tool
This is a useful tool that will spread the same color of paint as far as you want it to. Click on the paint bucket in the toolbox then select the color you want to you use in your color palette. Click once in your document to pour the paint.
Notice: If you are on a new layer the paint will fill the entire layer. If you are on an existing layer that already has picture on it the paint will only fill the color you clicked on. Try it.
Click on the text tool then click where ever you want in the document you are working on to get started typing. Click once on your new text layer in the layers palette when you are finished. You can change the size and font in the text options bar. You can change the color by double clicking the text layer in the layers palette then selecting another color in the color palette. If that doesn’t work choose the color you want then double click on your layers palette to highlight your text first. Then click on the foreground color in your toolbox. It will bring up a new options box where you can choose any color then click ok.
Note: When you create text your text will always be put on a separate text layer in the layers palette. You can not do everything with a text layer that you can with regular layers unless you rastorize (or simplify) the layer. If you have a message pop up asking you if you want to rastorize (or simplify) the layer it’s ok to click yes but once that is done you can’t change the text. Your text will become a graphic.
If you have ever wished you could match perfectly to your photos this is the tool for you! Use this tool to select any color in your picture. You can then use the brush or paint bucket tool with the color selected. Isn’t digital scrapbooking the best?
Foreground and Background Colors
The box on the top shows your foreground color. The box in the back shows your background color. The foreground color is the color that will be used when you are using the brushes and paint bucket. You can change the color by clicking on a color in your colors palette or by clicking on the foreground color itself you’ll find hundreds (thousands?) of great colors.
Note: The background color will be used later when you start to learn more advanced techniques. You shouldn’t have to worry about it as a beginner. If you ever apply a filter and have a weird color come up try changing the background color to a better color.