Wednesday, March 16, 2011

More Japan and Changing the blog

First of all, thank you. Thank you for your words of support in my last post. I keep thinking of how I can help people in Japan. I don't want just to talk about it, I want to do something about it. Until I can think of something better, I'll keep linking to places and organizations that are helping out. 

So, if you are looking for handmade goods, supplies, or art related products, here are a few places you might want to check out who are donating part or all of their proceeds to helping Japan:

This and That From Japan (etsy shop with lots of cute things)
Pikaland (art/illustration blog and shop)
A Bit o This and That (blog from a British mom living in Japan - she's having an auction)

As for this blog, well... I've been trying different things when it comes to its look and the content. 

  • Tutorials page added - it's still a work-in-progress. It'll look better soon, I hope.
  • New background and header - designed by yours truly, as I am trying to get better at creating all my own elements.
  • Upcoming bookshelf page - I'll be adding a page where I list books related to art, crafting, crafting with kids, and others that I find helpful
Speaking of tutorials, I'll share what I did for my background. You are welcome to download and use/modify this pattern if you want. If you're not a big fan of the colors, flowers, or anything really, you can use the tutorial as a basis to make your own.

Here's what I did:

  1. Using red ink and watercolor paper, I inked the tip of my little finger as a "petal" stamp and made several flowers around the paper.
  2. Using a sharpie, I made small centers for each flower. 
  3. Scanned the picture and opened it in Photoshop Elements
  4. Adjusted the levels and color curves until the flowers had the shading I wanted
  5. Added a layer with some scratchy texture that I got TTV. If you're not familiar with TTV textures, or don't like them, you can always do a search for a free texture online or not use a texture at all.
  6. Adjusted the opacity of the texture layer to about 20% for a subtle effect.
  7. Saved as a jpg paying attention to the size of the file, since Blogger only accepts up to 300K.
  8. Uploaded it as my background.
There are many, many ways to do something like this. You can make just a few flowers and clone them through the picture, or create a brush with the pattern. Also, depending on the pattern, you need to pay attention to the size of your canvas, otherwise it might come out weird looking when Blogger repeats the background. 

I also made the header using the magic wand tool and I'll have a tutorial on that later.

Is anyone interested in PS Element tutorials using pictures and step-by-step instructions? Would you like me to continue or stop with PS Element tutorials?

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing these links.

    I really like your background--very soft and it reminds me of Japan.

    I think you have a lot of great "craft" in you! :)