Photoshop Friday : Creating a Custom Diamond Pattern

Hey there! I'm excited to bring back some Photoshop Friday fun! Below you'll find a helpful video that will show you how to create a custom diamond pattern! This great technique will add a great design element to your pages!

In addition to the video tutorial, you will receive a layered PSD template to make your own digital layout and you will receive a PDF instruction sheet. Not only do these PDFs have all of the video instructions in written format, but they also are full of gorgeous layouts from our Creative Team. They will show you how to take the technique you learned and apply it to a different layout for a whole new look. How cool is that?!

Here is a look at my layout and a sneak peak of the template that you will be working with today.

Step 1: Downloads

 


2. Click here to download PDF. Make sure that you have the most current version of Adobe Reader found here.

Step 2: Video Tutorial

Here you can watch the video tutorial. It was filmed in Photoshop Elements, but it works the same in Photoshop CS3/CS4/CS5.

Step 3: Complete & Share

Create your layout with the Photoshop Friday template and customize it with your own pictures and digi supplies. When you are done, tag us or share it on my Facebook page, Pinterest it and let the world see the beauty you've created! I would love to see your creations!

Explore Your Family History: 3 New Classes

Hi there!

If you're like me, you probably have a box (or bag, or envelope, or more) with a whole hoard of vintage photos. Perhaps they're from your own childhood, or those of previous generations. For six weeks, starting June 28, I've got THREE new classes that celebrate our heritage, and I think you'll find that stash of vintage pics handy as you learn to restore vintage snaps AND build your own gorgeous projects with them! 

I've designed the courses to begin one after the other, for a full SIX WEEKS of family history goodness, plus a discount for registering for all three courses! Check that out at the bottom of the post. 

Check out below for a chance to WIN a free Family History Bundle ($118 value!)

Family History Course 1

Four-Generation Family Tree Poster

This one-week course begins June 28, and features a detailed video and the poster .psd we'll use to capture FOUR generations of your family in one place! This course is great for beginners! I'll show you how to add the photographs to each block in the tree, how to add an overlay so all the pictures are the same tones of black and white, AND help you make the cute name bracket you can see in this sample:

Plus, you'll even get a discount for the printing of this 16x20 beauty, to get it off your computer and into your home for all to enjoy! 


Family History Course 2 (begins July 5)

Family History Album, 2016 Edition

Okay, this one right here - is important. Even if you never do another family history project, you NEED to do this one. This album captures an overview of the lives of the three generations that came before you: your parents, your grandparents, and your great-grandparents. In class, I'll show you how to search for, gather photos and stories, link up, plan, and create a gorgeous 20-page album. You might not know a lot about these members of your family, so consider this an opportunity to get to know them. If you DO have a lot of information on "Your Three Generations," consider this an opportunity to capture the essence of their history in an easy-to-read book for all your family members to enjoy. 

Basic Photoshop skills are required, and we'll have great fun telling stories in class, too! You'll receive a discount on printing this as a 12x12 or 8x8 photo book!

*You can begin gathering photos and stories of your "Three Generations" now, to be ready for class to begin!


Family History Course 3

This Old Photo: Restoring Vintage Snapshots (2016 edition)

This is a before and after example from the photo restoration class : This Old Photo!

This is a before and after example from the photo restoration class : This Old Photo!

This Old Photo is a complete remake of my original 2012 class of the same name. In this three-week class, we will focus on photo restoration in Photoshop: bringing those beautiful vintage snapshots back to life!

The tools and techniques for photo restoration are completely different from those we use to edit modern photos. I'll show you how to repair photos, including fixing rips, scratches, folds, dirt, and spots. I'll also show you how to repair color shifting in early color photos, as well as restore black-and-whites and sepias to their original glory.

When we restore photos, our goal is to remove the signs of aging, while honoring the photograph for what it is: a snapshot of a moment in time. These memories and their stories are waiting for you to bring them back to life! I can't wait to share the experience with you! Class begins July 19!


Family History Course Bundle 

Poster, Album, and Restoration for one Great Price!

I've designed each Family History class to follow right after the other: SIX weeks of awesome education, storytelling, technique building, and creative fun, for one great price! Essentially, you'll be getting the poster class for FREE by registering for the entire bundle. Check it out!

If you're as excited as I am, enter at the bottom of this post to win! Five Lucky, Lucky people will win a free Family History Bundle ($118 value!)

Photoshop Friday : Using the Type Mask Tool

Hey there! I'm excited to bring back some Photoshop Friday fun! Below you'll find a helpful video that will show you how to use the type mask tool! This great technique will add some flare to any photo, making it look even better than before!

In addition to the video tutorial, you will receive a layered PSD template to make your own digital layout and you will receive a PDF instruction sheet. Not only do these PDFs have all of the video instructions in written format, but they also are full of gorgeous layouts from our Creative Team. They will show you how to take the technique you learned and apply it to a different layout for a whole new look. How cool is that?!

Ready to get started? Today we are going to learn how to use the Type Mask Tool!

Here is a look at my layout and a sneak peak of the template that you will be working with today.

Step 1: Downloads


1. Download the template here.
2. Click here to download the JS-Texture Brushes. (Right click and save.)
. Click here to download the Aura font.



4. Click here to download the PDF. Make sure that you have the most current version of Adobe Reader found here.

Step 2: Video Tutorial

Here you can watch the video tutorial. It was filmed in Photoshop Elements, but it works the same in Photoshop CS3/CS4/CS5.

Step 3: Complete & Share

Create your layout with the Photoshop Friday template and customize it with your own pictures and digi supplies. When you are done, tag us or share it on my Facebook page, Pinterest it and let the world see the beauty you've created! I would love to see your creations!

Hello Future Me - Free Printable Cards!

May is Mental Health Awareness month. From depression to anxiety to schizophrenia to PTSD and other mental illnesses, mental health issues affect 1 in 4 people. 

Having positive reminders, little notes that you can hang on your mirror, on the visor of your car, in your wallet, anywhere you can see daily is important. I have just the printables for this occasion! 

Check out the Hello Future Me collection of FREE printables. The first card in the collection is the You Are Totally Awesome card! Each card is 4x4 inches, which prints GREAT on 4x6 photo paper. 

Click here to download the first card.

Keep an eye out for this week's Photoshop Friday, which will feature an instructional video on how to print the Hello Future Me cards on letter sized paper! All of these cards print amazingly on 4x6 photo paper, too! 

Photoshop Friday: Adding Texture to a Photo

Hey there! I'm excited to bring back some Photoshop Friday fun! Below you'll find a helpful video that will show you how to add texture to a photo! This great technique will add some flare to any photo, making it look even better than before!

In addition to the video tutorial, you will receive a layered PSD template to make your own digital layout and you will receive a PDF instruction sheet. Not only do these PDFs have all of the video instructions in written format, but they also are full of gorgeous layouts from our Creative Team. They will show you how to take the technique you learned and apply it to a different layout for a whole new look. How cool is that?!

Here is a look at my layout and a sneak peak of the template that you will be working with today.

Step 1: Downloads




2. Click here to download the PDF. Make sure that you have the most current version of Adobe Reader found here.

Step 2: Video Tutorial

Here you can watch the video tutorial. It was filmed in Photoshop Elements, but it works the same in Photoshop CS3/CS4/CS5.

Step 3: Complete & Share

Create your layout with the Photoshop Friday template and customize it with your own pictures and digi supplies. When you are done, tag us or share it on my Facebook page, Pinterest it and let the world see the beauty you've created! I would love to see your creations!

May: Mental Health Month

Did you know that May is Mental Health Month? One non-profit organization that is leading a campaign for awareness in May is NAMI: The National Alliance on Mental Health. I haven't - or I hope I haven't - made any secret here about the fact that I have depression. It's pretty severe. It's pretty chronic. It interferes with my life off and on even with 10+ years of stable meds and therapy. It sucks. 

It sucks in a way for which I really have no words. If I had my deepest heart's desire, it would be that I didn't have depression. 

When I was in high school I was the only person I knew who had something wrong up there (tap forehead). That was oh, 25-ish years ago. Nobody wants to admit to being a wacko, right? And anything that can't be seen really MUST be all in your head

Honestly, the stigma is part of the pain.

Stigma Free

Now, a couple decades and many thousands of conversations later, I know that I'm not the only one. I'm far from the only person I know: NAMI says that 1 in 5 Americans is affected by a mental health condition. Also I love Mayim Bialik, so be sure to watch this little clip here:

 

So you and I are in charge of whether or not it's ok to tell people out loud that you have depression. Or bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia, without stigma. Or that your husband or son or daughter does. That it's ok to be brave and say "I have this struggle that you can't see, but it's a struggle all the same." And then, if you hear that from some courageous person, to give that person the respect they deserve, not only for the day-in-day-out struggle, but for their bravery, too.

On May 2, NAMI organized to have the Empire State building lit up in green in honor of National Mental Health Month.

My Story: Through the Deep Waters

I wrote a pretty grueling blog post right after the death of Robin Williams, in August of 2014. It talks in pretty detailed ways about my own struggle, some of the lowest points I've had, and some of the strategies I use (and keep using) to keep myself in a place where I can forge ahead. 

You can find that blog post here: Through the Deep Waters

What You Can Do

There are several ways you can actively participate.

Your Turn

Since it's May and we're talking about Mental Health, what do you think should change about the conversations we have concerning those who struggle? What about access to or the stigma around getting mental health care? Or maybe you're interested in alternative or integrated therapies? Mental health insurance? Specific ways we can all fight the "aloneness" that everyone with mental illness feels? What else?

Looking forward to hearing from you. 

-JS