Monday, May 31, 2010

all aboard for digi freebies

I’ve joined the monthly challenge at Stuff to Scrap to create a minikit based on a colour palette and theme and then give it away as part of a blog train.  The theme was ‘summer romance’ and the colours blues and greens.  I decided to focus on words to create this kit which contains:
  • 2 pattern papers
  • 12 word tiles
  • 1 title
  • 1 set of striped stars
  • 1 journaling block
  • 3 photo overlays (or journallingblocks)
  • 2 ribbons
you can download the kit here.  This is my first time taking part in this blogtrain and I will be very interested to see how many times the kit is downloaded. 
For more loveliness head over to Mommy Me Time Scrapper

Saturday, May 29, 2010

photo a day week 21

every photo in this set records an event rather than an item of routine, just happened that this week was like that.

Also a challenge for the project.  My sister’s dog of 15 years died, very sad and so quiet now without her.  For the photo a day project my dilemma was how to record the event.  I wanted her going to be the subject for the day’s photo but did not want to take a photo of her when she was unwell (and not looking herself). The project is about a photo on that day so I couldn’t just put in one I’d taken of her earlier, although she has featured earlier in the year.  I didn’t think a photo of her burial was appropriate either.  So I decided that I needed some evidence of her being around and took a photo of her food and water bowls – out for the last time.  Not something I had thought about having to deal with when I started this project.

Here is the collage for the week

photo a day21

1. unpacked some of the things that I have had in storage for a year

2. took part in the ‘All about me’ bloghop

3. viewed some properties for sale

4. sad day – Belle, my sister’s dog died, aged 15 – last time her food and water bowl are out

5. birthday flowers from my Nan

6. birthday malteaser cupcakes

7. celebration family dinner

Thursday, May 27, 2010

dingbats – 2nd attempt at images

No, I’m not being rude to you.  Dingbats are me latest fun technique to collect and use on the computer.  For those of you not familiar with dingbats, it is the name for fonts which create symbols instead of letters.  For instance in arial I get a b c   but in the dingbat font called

dings 1

This variety is one of the things that I love – dancers to dinosaurs with everything else in between like clock hands ( timeface),  StarWars characters (forced reentry) and coffee cup stains (cafeina).
Another reason that I like them is that once the fonts are loaded they are available in all programmes I use –  word (and the rest of Microsoft suite); livewriter; picasa and photoshop elements.  Loading is easy – for instructions try here.

All of these fonts are free to download.  I tend to use dafonturbanfonts and dingbatdepot mostly.  WARNING browsing through dingbat font sites can eat up time (I speak from experience).

As well as the three above, recent favourites (the ones on yesterday’s layout) are

dings 2

Recently I have used them to create a digi pattern strip on this layout about feeding parrots.  I use the dancing people on my weekly collage of photos.  Last year I used the StarWars dings (forced re entry) along with quotes to create cards for my nephews.

I also used the running N circles ‘c’ to create some background paper and elements for a digi minikit that you’ll see here on 1st of June.  I find dingbats easier to use than shapes in Photoshop word because the text tool keeps then in a straight line and evenly spaced.

The wonders of photoshop elements also means I can use dingbats to jazz up a brontosaurus! (paper by Spencer in with love kit from Design House Digital)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

is this addiction?

I’ve been using dingbats a lot recently and have been thinking I should do a post about that and list some of my favourites.  I will do that post later in the week. 

When I sat down today to decide how I would display the dingbats I kept being drawn to using a photoshop elements layered template – in other words to create a digi scrapbook page.  This has happened several times recently.  I start to think through the layered templates that I have as soon as I think about a story or idea that I want to tell.

I think I’m getting addicted to digi pages and layered templates.  But I haven’t made a page about that (yet!).  Anyway here is the dingbat page and I promise I will post telling you about these  7 and maybe some others later in the week.

i love dingbats web

Template by Kate Pertiet.  Title fonts – Happy for ‘dingbats’ and Just me down here for ‘i love’. 

Do you have phases of feeling addicted to a particular technique or crafting style?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

photo a day week 20

After all that fun with the bloghop its back to routine and the weekly photo collage. The dominant green in the background of most of the photos shows the wonderfully sunny weather we have been having in the UK this past week.

photo a day20

1. waiting in Terminal 5 @ Heathrow airport

2. driving over the border into Scotland

3. apple blossom

4. watering the seedlings in the polytunnel in my Dad’s garden

5. good clothes drying weather

6. bins day

7. lunch outside with my nephew

Saturday, May 22, 2010

inspired by Stacy's 'All About Me'

Welcome to my section of the blog hop Mel has organised, inspired by Stacy Julian's free class on Big Picture Scrapbooking called 'All about Me'.  If you have just come over from Elizabeth at Hooting of an owl then you know what this is all about.  If you have come here some other way and want the background then head over to Mel's fab blog - she also has the full list of people on the hop.

I made a mini that is tall and thin (2x4).  This is the front page, using a tag, some stickers and a rub-on letter, all attached with a brad.

The project has a list of questions so the mini contains a series of photos that provide evidence of the answers.  I decided to focus my answers on my life over the last 12 months because it has been unusual - I have been a nomad - no fixed address; most of my possessions packed away; living in a range of different places.  That's why I used the balloon sticker on the cover.

I typed onto the full size photos and for the smaller ones I hand wrote on that page.  These show:
  1. coloured pens - something I packed in bulk
  2. a quote 'often the main skill I bring is a positive attitude'
  3. something that inspired me - with very basic materials people still incorporate beauty in practical ways
  4. Internet was something I used daily and would have sorely missed
  5. my travel coffee plunger was another daily necessity
  6. What next? was my 'word for 2009' indicating curiosity and flexibility
  7. markets were a 'must see' in every place I visited
  8. lizards are a symbol I use a lot and I stencilled them on all of my luggage

Stacy specified only one self-portrait because the rest are evidence.  I used the photo of me as a canvas for the three words that describe me - independent, versatile and curious.  The other pages are:
  1. a note on the project - my record keeping and narrative self couldn't complete the mini without these!
  2. strawberries as a symbol of my favourite season - summer
  3. taking local buses was something I was proud of achieving in each country
  4. I collected photos of my feet (an ongoing tradition)
  5. my nature love is beaches
  6. and the colours I loved were all the bright ones that I saw everywhere
This wee album really does say a lot 'about me' and it was quick and fun to do.  I plan to repeat it next year to reflect the next 12 months.

Thanks for stopping by.  Now head over to the fabulous Deb at PaperTurtle - her album is sure to be a delight to see.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

some answers

Elephant & others Luangua
leopard Luangua (12)
hen day three 055
Hippos Luangua (59)
These photos illustrates my answer to the first question posed by Mel:
1. Where in the world did you spend your most memorable day ever, and what did you do? Zambia, Africa. I was on a safari holiday with my parents, sister and two nephews. Up at dawn to tour the park (elephants, zebra, giraffe, hippo, antelope, birds) then yum food and lazing at the camp and sitting overlooking a river and watching hippo. Then another drive as the sun was setting, including some night driving when we saw a leopard. Amazing.

2. What is your favourite time of year, and why? Summer, love the long hours of daylight and the heat and wearing fewer layers of clothes

3. What is your favourite time of day, and why? during summer early evening, in winter any bit of daylight.

4. What food would you find it very hard to do without? Coffee and bread

5. What colour makes you feel happiest? Purple in all its variety (in part because some people think it is eccentric or weird)

6. What's the nicest thing anyone's ever said to you? (Or the most recent nice thing?) Recently I was one of the facilitators for a workshop for indigenous Australians who would be doing work in their communities encouraging participation in elections – at the end one of the participants said it was the most interesting, welcoming and useful workshop he had attended in 26 years working for the public service.

7. What's the nicest thing you've ever said to anyone else? (Or the most recent nice thing?) Recently I was able to talk positively about someone’s skills and enthusiasm at work so that they got a new interesting challenge.
8. Who would be guest of honour at your dream dinner party? So hard, could think about this for ages but an immediate response – Cathy Zielske or Bob Geldof. In different ways I like their approach to life.

9. What's your favourite bird? after the last few months in Australia has to be the raucous cockatoo

10. What word or phrase do you find yourself over-using? ‘clearly’, ‘also’ and anything that leads to a ‘?’
And to find out even more about me come back at the weekend when I’m part of Mel’s bloghop where we have all done something prompted by the BPS ‘All About Me’ free class. For my mini I responded to the prompts in relation to the last 12 months when I was a nomad.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

spring is bursting out

Amazing lush growth everywhere – flowers and leaves and fruit – in my Dad’s garden.  This weeks challenge on scrap weekly was to make a layout featuring the seasonal plants. 

I’ve decided to experiment with some digi layouts that are not my normal simple and graphic style, because it is so easy to do different things when it is all using free digital elements. 

spring web

[template was part of the ScrapArtist birthday fun.  Pattern papers and stitching from Stuff to Scrap May blogtrain minikit by ScrapSis)

It is very different from my normal approach – things on an angle; photos overlapping; using pattern stitching. I have found that having a digi layered template makes it easier to experiment with a different style.  I  like how it looks.

For my next experiment with a different style I want to push myself to use a pile of different elements.

Have you experimented with different styles recently?

Monday, May 17, 2010

delving into the vaults

Mel had a fun task on Sunday – go to the 8th folder of photos you have and find the 8th photo.  This is mine.

oct 26 1

A collage from October last year from the beach house I rented for a month.  i walked on the beach every morning when I was there.  The bottom right hand photo is from a local fair.

So  what is the 8th photo in your 8th folder?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

photo a day week 19

I’ve been on the move again.  Finished my work in Canberra and then spent a few days on the coast east of there before flying back to the UK.  Strange to be back with apple blossom and lush green after very autumnal colours in Canaberra. 

photo a day19

1. watching the UK election results on the internet

2. feeding lorikeets in big aviary

3. pelicans at Noomra bay

4. a scenic forest drive

5. pelicans, seagulls, a seal and stingray wait for scraps from the fishermen gutting their catch

6. signposts were the closest I got to seeing marsupials in the wild

7. my view for 8 hours on first leg of flights from Australia to UK

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

colour swatch challenges

I love colour – individual colours and the magic of colour combinations.  I’ve been following a number of colour swatch challenges – often I collect the palette for future use and sometimes I create a page.

This layout uses the May colour swatch from design house digital

hc feed the birds web

(template Cathy Z from Design Your Life.  The rest created using PSE)

That is my hand holding the plate of apple while the birds eat. 

Other colour challenges I follow are stacy julians’ i love color and designer digitals colour challenge. 

Both designer digitals and design house digital have a range of other interesting challenges too.

comment tile

Sunday, May 9, 2010

photo a day week 18

photo a day18

1. arm came off my glasses – love that opticians fix them for free

2. bunch of basil – wish I could record the smell

3. spent lovely afternoon making things on Photoshop Elements

4. autumn colour now dominates

5. at the airport again

6. evenings getting chilly so wearing slippers

7. pile of bribes/rewards for the people at my workshop

Most days I only took the one photo, for this project.  Unusual and I think a reaction to the intensity of week in the life.

Monday, May 3, 2010

making a digi minikit and free download

Since I started using Photoshop Elements I’ve downloaded lots of free kits and visited plenty of sites where people make and share kits.  A recent find was stuff to scrap forum which has a monthly colour challenge.  Each month they provide a colour palette and people design mini kits using those colours. 

Last month I picked up lots of nice stuff that had been made for the challenge.  At the weekend I decided to try my hand at making a minikit with the May colours.  In particular I wanted to make the kind of elements that I use – words.

Here is my first ever digi mini kit.  There are 3 12x12 papers and 15 elements (4 word twill, 2 journaling blocks, 5 phrases and 4 word tiles)

hc i'll wear purple kit

I called it I’ll wear purple because the colours reminded me of the poem by Jenny Joseph. I rather enjoyed seeing what I could do and think I’ll try their other May colour challenge for the end of the month.

If you would like the PSE digi files download them here

If you would like the elements as a word or a pdf document so that you can print them out to use then download them here

You can change them, use them etc but I would appreciate a comment and link if you use them.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

photo a day week 17

an eclectic mix – look blurred in this version but are clear individually.

photo a day17

1. my TV viewing for the evening

2. Biscuit aisle at the supermarket

3. entrance to the bridge over the mainroad leading to my walk in the park

4. working on my week in the life album

5. the weather map

6. very clear and low moon

7. energizer at the workshop – team version of rock, paper, scissors called Samson, Delilah and the Lion

Back into the routine of daily photos after the concentration during week in the life.

comment tile

Saturday, May 1, 2010

week in the life finished album


Front page is photo of me in black and white – I used a Photoshop Album from Pioneer Woman called black and white burn.  Continued with the Ali Edwards handdrawn think borders to outline text.

Pleased with the layout that I’d planned for each day and that I turned the album to landscape, because that is how I take most of my photos.

Here is an example of one day: one big photo, 4 normal size photos with journaling strips; another 4 normal size photos and a page of prints and bits and pieces.











Enjoyed writing on the photos and using the boxes to define the area for the text.  Once I had put everything into the page protectors I added journaling strips and included some more details that were not written on the photos.  I then went through and used stickers on the page protectors where I wanted to add more writing. 



Pleased with how it all came together and plan to do the project again in future years.  Putting the page protectors together beforehand and having the digi elements set up ready made it all work and made it easy to create the final album.