affinity photo

December Daily : Adding Texture to Digital Embellishments

TextureTutorial

One of the things I just love about the physical scrapbook embellishments Ali and her team produce are the unique surfaces and textures they are made from or printed on. Fabric stickers, rubber tags, cork trees, or wood veneer words–when these items are released in her shop, they sell out QUICKLY!

Mobile memory keepers and digital scrapbookers use the digital version of these physical products. As mentioned in my previous post, the digital versions do not have the texture added to them. Side note: I did notice that the digital version of the adhesive enamel icons and the hexagon transparency die cuts actually have a foil treatment added to them. Those embellishments are in the December Daily 2019 Digital Main Kit. A flattened version as well. 

So what can a we do if we love the look of those different textures but are working with pixels? Fake it and make it!

In this tutorial I’m going to demonstrate how to add texture to some of those digital embellishments to make them look like their physical counterparts. If you want to follow along with the video, you will need the following:

Affinity Photo App on your iPad

December Daily 2019 Digital Variety Sticker Bundle by Ali Edwards

December Daily 2019 Digital Fabric Circles by Ali Edwards

Fabric background texture jpg

Cork background texture jpg

Those background textures are something you will have to search for on the internet. Look for some free ones using keywords like “free cork background texture,” or something along those lines. The ones I am using I purchased through Shutterstock several years ago.

I think you guys are really going to like this video! Click the link below and get ready to have some fun! Leave a comment with any questions below!


December Daily: Adding Dimension to Embellishments–Chipboard + Puffy Stickers

9B8DBD96-7B21-4F8C-B3A9-5C94B04CBA48

Hey there mobile memory keepers and December Daily fans! Did you find the Modifying Template Tutorial helpful? Please remember to drop me a line if you have any questions. I am more than happy to help! Today I wanted to share with you how I am adding a little bit of dimension the December Daily digital embellishments I’ve purchased at AliEdwards.com. In previous years, adding dimension to those embellishments is something I would do as I was building a page, if at all. But this year, I wanted to challenge myself to see just how much I can make these digital goodies look like the real thing, and that required working ahead.

If you are familiar with Ali’s digital products, you know that traditionally they are “flat” compared to their physical versions. So, for example, if one of Ali’s physical embellishments is made of cork, like these hexagons…

Hexagons

…the digital version is not going to have a cork texture, but most of the time, the colors will be similar to the physical version. You can see what I mean by the digital version being “flat” in the photo below. And there is nothing wrong with this!

Digita-hexagon

I know there are some mobile memory keepers and digital scrapbookers out there that wish those products came looking similar to their physical counterparts in texture and dimension. But this girl is glad they don’t! By keeping them in their most simplistic form (meaning shape and color), it gives the app-scrapper or digital scrapbooker more flexibility to change color, add their own texture, or keep them flat. This also gives one the opportunity to develop their design skills when using the app!

I will be covering how I add dimension and/or texture to a variety of different digital embellishments in this, and upcoming December Daily Prep videos. But before you click the link below there are two things I need to point out:

  1. I do not add drop shadows to any of my embellishments prior to placing them on the page. Drop shadows is a very personal thing! Some like a heavy shadow, and others, like myself, prefer something softer. I also think it is hard to place a shadow on an embellishment beforehand because you never know what type of background you will be putting it on. I take into consideration how light or dark the background is when adding drop shadows to my embellishments.
  2. I do not add any dimension or texture to those embellishments labeled as “die cuts” or a standard sticker. In my opinion, those don’t need anything more than a light drop shadow added to them.

Got it? Good.

In this first video we are going to start off easy and go over chipboard and puffy sticker embellishments. In my opinion, these are the simplest objects to add dimension. If you want to follow along with the video you will need:

Affinity Photo App on your iPad 

2019 December Daily Digital Main Kit from Ali Edwards

December Daily Digital Puffy Sticker Set from Ali Edwards

Click the video below to watch. Let me know if I can help you with anything by leaving a comment!


December Daily: Modifying Templates

73A8A6FC-48B2-4532-AA17-8F28044826DE

During the calendar year of an avid memory keeper, November is a month when we start to plan how we are going to document the holiday season. In addition to planning a family photo shoot or scheduling fun holiday outings, many of us are gathering our scrapbook supplies, getting ready for that month-long, once-a-year project we know as, “December Daily.” If you are unfamiliar with this project, you can read all about it here at aliedwards.com.

I thought by switching over to mobile memory keeping, I would be missing out on all of the fun the traditional scrappers have when prepping foundation pages or organizing their supplies to get ready for December. But I found that not to be the case at all! There are several things that I do to prepare and I am going to use the next few posts to share with you what they are.

MODIFYING TEMPLATES

I start this project with the end in mind. To me, that means printing the book. I mentioned in an earlier post that my December Daily albums are printed through ZNO. ZNO is one of the few companies that print 6x8 hardbound books. I always hear of people being disappointed when they receive book they have printed at various online printing companies. Page borders may not be even, or text is cut off, etc. This was a concern of mine and after some playing around—and trial and error–I figured out how to get my pages to print perfectly with ZNO, but it takes a little prep work. In the video below I share with you my process of how I go about modifying the 6x8 digital page templates I purchase in Ali’s shop. If you are going to follow along you would need the following:

  • Affinity Photo App on your iPad (And guess what? Affinity Photo is available for half-off right now! It's only $9.99 and there is NO subscription!)
  • 6x8 page templates stored in iCloud Drive
  • A drink and a snack (the video is a little over 35 minutes🙂)

Click the image below to watch the video. If you have any questions, please post them in the comments!

It's a long holiday weekend for me and Chris here in the Sunshine State. Hopefully you have Veteran's Day off, too! Use this time to start modifying your templates! I’ll be back on Tuesday with a new December Daily Prep with Mobile Apps Tutorial! 


Project: December Daily

 

Untitled-4

Oh how I love this project! I created my first December Daily album back in 2011. We were living in Riga, Latvia and I couldn’t wait to document Christmas in Europe. I brought a good amount of scrapbooking supplies overseas with me and created an 8x8 album with whatever Christmas supplies I had on hand. In 2012 we were still in Latvia and that was the first year I purchased Ali Edwards’ December Daily Kit, with a 4x6 album. It may have even been the first year she offered a physical kit, not sure. Unfortunately I didn’t create one in 2013. We were in the middle of a move and there was just no time (PSA..NEVER move during the holiday season–just don’t). 2014 (6x8 album), and 2015 (6x8 album) were also physical albums using Ali’s December Daily Kits.

In 2016, I had every intention of creating another physical album. I had Ali’s 2016 December Daily Kit in hand and was taking photos everyday. But that thing called a full-time job got in the way. By the time I came home after work and made dinner, I was too tired to do anything else. I mean I think I did one page along with the title page, but then I gave up. See...they are right here:

DSCN6807

DSCN6808

DSCN6809

DSCN6810

 

Fast forward to the summer of 2017. British software developer, Serif Labs, introduced the Affinity Photo app for specific iPads. Affinity Photo is an app that supports layered PSD files. I was already creating my Project Life albums on my mobile device so why not try and do a December Daily album as well. I remember “translating” the physical version of Day One 2016 to an app format and I never looked back! Look:

170729_project-life-795022

170729_project-life-EFC3D7

170730_project-life-94DA2D

What solidified my decision even more to go totally mobile was that over Labor Day weekend in 2017, we took a trip to San Francisco. I was able to continue to work on my 2016 DD pages while on the plane! I had all of Ali’s digital December Daily products in iCloud Drive and could access them in Affinity Photo! This made me SO HAPPY! 2019 will be the 4th year I am creating my December Daily on my iPad, using Affinity Photo!

MY DECEMBER DAILY MOBILE TOOLBOX

Affinity

Affinity Photo: One of the things I love about Affinity is I can organize my files into projects. So I have a project for each year of my December Daily albums, another for templates, and another for the working files of the textured embellishments.

IcloudDrive

iCloud Drive: I keep all of Ali Edwards’ December Daily digital products organized in my iCloud Drive. This is the easiest way for me to access them through Affinity Photo! I can have two windows open at once on my iPad, so I just drag and drop elements from iCloud Drive to the page I am working on in Affinity! I have a folder with all of the 2019 Digital December Daily products and then a bunch of other folders with Ali’s past December Daily digitals organized into different categories. Once the 2019 season is over, those products will be broken up and placed into those various categories. I will elaborate on this further in an upcoming post.

Project-Life-Icon

Project Life App: While I do not have my December Daily album printed through the PL App, I do place the pages in the full 6x8 collage to share on my Instagram account. I’ll explain more about this in an upcoming post, too!

So that’s it! Those are my go to apps for documenting our December on my iPad. Stay tuned! I have several posts that will be published that will show you what I do to prepare for December Daily prior to December 1st! If you have created a December Daily album on your mobile device in the past, what are some of the the things you to prepare before December comes along?


What's in your toolbox?

I began mobile memory keeping in January of 2016. If you click on the Project Life link in the navigation bar above, you can see those pages. I created that album entirely on my iPhone 6S+. I used the Project Life App and, on occasion, LetterGlow, to create filler/journal cards and to add text on photos. Since then, my mobile memory keeping toolbox has grown and my devices have been upgraded. I now have an iPhone X and an iPad Pro (2017 version).  I thought I would use this post to share with you my go-to apps, where I print my books, my favorite projects, and my hopes for future memory keeping projects!

MY GO TO APPS

Project-Life-Icon

Project Life App: This is the app I use for all of my pages. I had a very short relationship with digital scrapbooking, where I was using various layered templates to put pages together on my Mac using Photoshop. But because I could “undo” things and there were so many choices out there for digital supplies, I found that creating digital pages was just as time-consuming as physical ones. Honestly, I like being limited in my choices of templates and kits. It makes things go faster!

ACT

A Color Story: I love this app for photo-editing. This is the app I use when a photo needs a little more editing than I can get from PicTapGo. I love the curves feature, the Color+ tool, and the selective edit option the app has. And it also has some of the best black and white filters I’ve seen!

PicTapGo
PicTapGo: This is the app you can access directly through the Project Life App. Super convenient. It’s a great app for quick, easy edits!

LetterGlow+Icon+512

LetterGlow: This app has been around before the Project Life App. And even though I think the developers are no longer updating it, it is still one of my all-time faves. I love this app. I love the interface, it’s so easy to use. I can add my own colors and fonts. It may not have all the bells and whistles like and app such as Over, but for what I do in LetterGlow, I don’t need anything fancy!

Icon-adobesparkpost-750x750 copy

Adobe Spark Post: There is a little bit of a learning curve to this app, but it is a great app to add   text with banners or a shape behind it that is a little more creative than what you can do using the Free Form Text feature in the Project Life App. I also like their layout feature. I use this to create 4x6 or 6x8 collages with photos and then drop that into a 4x6 or 6x8 placeholder in a Project Life Template. 

Affinity

Affinity Photo: Ok, there is a definite learning curve to this app and is only available for iPads. The app supports layered PSD files and is an awesome app to have in your mobile toolbox. It’s totally worth learning how to use. I use Affinity Photo for December Daily, and on occasion with Project Life if I need to flip around templates.

IcloudDrive

iCloud Drive: This is where I keep all of the digital products I have purchased from Ali Edwards, Project Mouse, and Becky Higgins. 

FilesAppIcon

Files App: iCloud Drive is located inside the Files app on your iOS device. You can also access other apps like Dropbox or File Manager Pro here as well.

WHERE I PRINT

For my Project Life albums, I get 10x10, hard bound books printed directly through the Project Life App. Yes, it is more expensive, but the quality through their printer, White House Custom Color, is top-notch. Another big reason why I get them printed through the app is for the ease! I just hear of so many issues people have with borders being uneven or photos being cut off when they print through other services. I don’t want the hassle of adjusting that stuff for my PL albums. It’s just so easy printing through the Project Life App!

Now my December Daily books are a different story. ZNO is my go to online printer for those. This company is one of the few that print hard bound 6x8 books! I cannot say enough about their print quality. The pages are super thick and remind me of a children’s board book! I’ve printed my 2016, 2017, and 2018 December Daily albums through them and they are truly some of my prized possessions! 

FAVORITE AND FUTURE PROJECTS

I have already mentioned two of my favorite memory keeping projects–Project Life and December Daily. I love them. I may not always be up to date or completed in a timely manner. But I don’t care. They will get done! Right now I am working on my 2018 and 2019 albums simultaneously and I am happy to say I am up to date to Week 43 in both books! I’m thinking for 2020, I may be switching it up and switching to a monthly format, which would be pretty cool, because I started doing my 2017 album in a monthly format. That album is not done yet, so I want to work on 2017 and 2020 at the same time. 

Another favorite project of mine that I completed last year (but I have yet to print it) is a small recipe book I did in an Art of the Apps Monthly Membership project. It’s a 6x8 and I will have that one printed through ZNO. I will have a link to recipe pages in the navigation bar above in the very soon.

For future projects, I want to create a Christmas Cookie Recipe album and I will start that this holiday season. I did one years ago using physical products, but I really want one in digital format. Of course I will be sharing that process here on the blog!

The other project I want to tackle is creating a coffee table book of our sailing trip in Greece from the spring of 2018. I think it was earlier this year Becky Higgins and Becky Proudfit, along with their husbands, went to Italy together. Becky H. made a photo book of the trip, but it was all photos, no journaling, and it was GORGEOUS! I want to do the same with our photos from Greece. I already have a plan on my head for how I want this to look. It’s just a matter of finding the time to do it!

What are some of your favorite memory keeping projects? Do you have a special project you want to tackle in the future? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a comment below!