I’ve been getting a lot of questions lately on how I put our family cards into scrapbooks.
While I wish I could answer each of you directly (I really wish I had the time!), I thought I’d put together a tutorial to share.
Here are a few basics before I begin:
– I use Photoshop or Photoshop Elements to create my pages (for the tutorial below, I used Photoshop).
– Tip: I didn’t have the funds to purchase the entire Photoshop program when I started, so I signed up for the Photoshop Creative Cloud from Adobe. Basically, I pay Adobe a small fee each month and get full access to Photoshop. This is a great alternative to purchasing the program up front. (Find out more here: Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud)
– To date, I’ve had three (going on four) books printed by both companies and the cards look amazing printed out!
Alright, let’s get started!
1. First, you need to scan your cards. Make sure your scanner is set to save your images as JPEGs at a resolution of 300 dpi. (See screenshot below.)
2. Start scanning! Scan whatever you want to keep. I usually scan the inside and outside of each card, along with the envelope.
3. Once all of your cards are scanned in, it’s time to edit. Open your first card in Photoshop. (See photo below.)
If your card opens sideways, you can easily rotate it. (Image > Image Rotation)
Then, select the crop icon. Make sure to set the crop resolution to 300 dpi.
Using the guides provided, crop your card until you like the way it looks. You can also fix the color, shadows, erase smudges… Whatever you want to do!
Now save the file. (File > Save As) Save it where you can easily find it later.
Name the file something you’ll easily recognize, and make sure to save as a JPEG.
4. Now, it’s time to start our scrapbook page! First, start a new project. (File > New)
When the new project box pops up, fill in the dimensions you need. *Remember to set the resolution to 300 dpi.*
For example, I’m creating pages for my digital scrapbook. The pages are each 12″ x 12″. I want my layout to spread across two pages. So I’m making my project 24″ wide by 12″ high (the total size of two pages laying side by side).
5. Open the folder where your card is saved. Once you find the card, select it and drag it into Photoshop.
Your card will appear on your blank page. If you like the way it looks, click the checkmark above to set the card in place.
6. I always add shadows to my cards. It gives them a 3D look and makes them seem more realistic.
To do so, click on Layer > Layer Style > Drop Shadow.
Feel free to play around with the shadow settings. I always use Opacity: 50%, Distance: 20 px, Spread: 0%, Size: 42 px.
When you like the way it looks, click “OK”.
7. Once the shadow is set, you can use the transform controls to rotate the card and move it around the page. There is no wrong way to lay your cards down!
8. Continue to edit your cards and drag them into your project. Keep adding shadows and rotating each one until you like the way they look.
Photoshop automatically adds each card as it’s own layer. You can adjust the order by switching the layers on the right-hand side of the screen. (I usually make cards top layers and the envelopes bottom layers.)
Here are screenshots of my project as I continued to add cards:
9. Once you have all your cards laid out the way you like, save the file. (File > Save As)
First, save as a Photoshop file (*.PSD). This will allow you to go back and edit things if needed.
10. Now, save the file again. This time as a JPEG file. (File > Save As)
Flatten the image. (Layer > Flatten Image)
Save the file. (File > Save)
Once you have flatten an image and saved it as a JPEG, you can no longer edit it. That’s why it’s so important to save both a Photoshop (.PSD) and JPEG file.
11. If you created a single page layout, you are done!
If you created a double-paged layout, like I did, you’ll need to crop each page and save as individual JPEG files. (It sounds harder than it is!)
First, select the crop icon. Type your dimensions into the preset boxes. I’m going to need two pages that are each 12″ x 12″ at 300 dpi.
Drag the guides over to the far left, until you reach the end of your project. (See photo below.)
Once you have the file where you like it, click the arrow to crop.
Here’s what my page looks like:
Now save the file as a JPEG (be sure to rename it – otherwise, it will save over your project). (File > Save As)
As I mentioned above, rename the file when you save it!
Now, go back a step. You can do this by clicking (Edit > Step Backward) or by hitting CTRL + ALT + Z.
Going back one step will un-crop your image. Now you’re going to crop it again, but this time, crop the second page.
Once again, save this file (with another new name!) as a JPEG. (File > Save As)
And that’s it!
If you like, you can find more inspiration by flipping through my baby books. Just click on one of the book covers below: