Monday, December 17, 2007

Call for submissions for June/July issue

Brrr! If it's anywhere near as cold and dreary where you live as it is in my Portland office, you'll love the chance to "think sunny" for our new call for submissions.

Here are the details. As always, we appreciate seeing seasonally appropriate photos, lively designs and thoughtful journaling.

Also, please feel free to repost this information on your own blog and to share it with others. The more submissions we get, the happier we are--and the more awesome work we can share with you in the magazine.

T3: Tips, Techniques and Tutorials
Our info-packed new column, "T3," features cutting-edge techniques, tips and tutorials from our talented readers and regular contributors.

Here's what we're looking for:
Tips. Have you found a great way to use layer blending modes? A quick fix for less-than-perfect photos? Send us your tips of 50 words or fewer on any digital scrapbooking subject, along with a layout or project that illustrates the tip in action.

Techniques. Busy scrapbookers are always looking for ways to make scrapbooking quicker and easier. Send us your time- and stress-saving techniques, along with a layout or project that shows how you've used them to create.

Tutorials. Send us your projects featuring intermediate- to advanced-level techniques, along with complete instructions for achieving the look. (Check out the step-by-step tutorials in our December/January "Kick It Up" column for an idea of what we're looking for.)

Send us your submission with complete contact information and materials list via e-mail.
Your submission should be a JPEG file, 100K or less. Deadline is January 7.

Reality Scrapbooking: Scrapbook Your Real Life
Life isn't all rosebuds and sugar plums--though you'd never know it by looking through the average scrapbook. Rough spots and tough times shape our families' lives as much as (or more than) holidays and celebrations. Tell your true story by sharing the details of the less-than-perfect moments you've experienced. Whether they led you to make a positive change, taught you a valuable lesson or simply helped you develop a sense of humor about yourself, difficult times deserve to be scrapbooked too.

Send us your layouts sharing the details of your real life. We're looking for strong and meaningful journaling and photos that capture emotion. We'd also like to hear your stories about how scrapbooking challenging times has helped you to cope with them in a positive way.

Send us your submission with complete contact information and materials list via e-mail. Your submission should be a JPEG file, 100K or less. Deadline is January 7.

Bonus: Want to improve your submission's chance of success? Check out our preparation guidelines.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Meet the Creative Team: Becky Pogatchnik

Today, we'd like you to meet the fifth member of our Creative Team: Becky Pogatchnik. Becky's strongly graphic layouts, infused by a sense of whimsy, are regularly featured in Digital Scrapbooking. She's known for her blending of journaling, design and photographs with a strong focus on the meaning behind each picture. She lives in Minnesota with Jamie, her husband of eleven years, and Sam, her six-year-old daughter.

How did you get into digital scrapbooking?

I have been scrapping digitally for a year and a half. It was supposed to have been “just one layout.” And that one turned into another. And another. And I never looked back. My once prized and hoarded paper supplies are now play things for my six-year-old.

Can you share a little about your scrapbooking philosophy with Digital Scrapbooking's readers?

Digital is such an ideal medium for my ultra-simple style. Some days, I barely consider myself a scrapper—I see myself as more of a biographer of sorts. My goal is to document my daughter’s life through words and photos (in that order). I want her to know who she was. Who I was. Who we were together. I create lots of “sans photo” layouts. No photos. Just words. I think it’s perfectly acceptable to just write. Don’t over-think it. Just say it. Don’t worry about complete sentences. Write like you talk. And write it while you still remember. My daughter says classic things on a daily basis, and it's usually while I'm driving. Whenever she does, I discreetly pick up my cell phone and call my voice mail, repeating what she just said.

Thanks + Giving

What's something most people don't know about you?

A surprising fact about me? There aren’t many. I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve. I’m passionate about life. I’m passionate about living it. Okay, here’s one. I’m addicted to America’s Next Top Model. But only so I can learn from the photo shoots.

Dear Santa

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Meet the Creative Team: Cassie Jones

Today, we'd like to introduce a fourth member of our Creative Team: Cassie Jones. Her bright, cheerful pages and attention-grabbing techniques have been featured regularly in the pages of Digital Scrapbooking since the magazine's launch. She lives in Texas with her husband Jeffry and their five-year-old son Jack, the star of many of Cassie's layouts.

How did you get started in digital scrapbooking?
I have been scrapbooking digitally since the fall of 2006. I tried really hard to be a paper scrapper, but I just wasn't producing much. I've always been comfortable at a computer, and when I became a stay-at-home mom, I decided to pick up a book and learn the Adobe Creative Suite. I was hooked by the second chapter, but never finished the book. I just learned enough to get myself addicted, and took it from there.

Do you have a tip you'd like to share with Digital Scrapbooking's readers?
The main photography tip I would give scrapbookers is to keep an eye out for unusual perspectives. Take your shots from unexpected angles, and the results will make fabulous pages!

What's something most people don't know about you?
I think the thing that most surprises people (who don't know me well) is that I have some sort of subconscious fear of completing things (other than scrapbooking). I do pretty much everything to about 96% completion, then I walk away and start something else. If the kitchen is clean and I come across a spoon that got missed, I just put it in the sink and walk away. It's a strange sort of comfort. Crazy? I think so.

Filled with the Spirit

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Meet the Creative Team: Deena Wuest

Today, we'll meet a third member of our new Creative Team: Kansas resident and regular Digital Scrapbooking contributor Deena Wuest.

Clean, crisp and uncluttered, Deena's scrapbooking style is one that could only be achieved with digital tools and techniques. Married for thirteen years to her husband Joe, she's also a mom of three: seven-year-old daughter Savanna, six-year-old son Skyler and baby girl Brooklyn (the star of the layout below). "I've always had a passion for graphic design," Deena says. "Digital scrapbooking has given me the perfect outlet to combine this passion with my first love: my family."

How did you get started in digital scrapbooking?
I started paper scrapbooking seven years ago when my daughter was born and made the leap to digital about two years ago. I actually agonized over the decision to switch from paper, and I'll never fully understand why. My favorite part of paper scrapping was designing my text and layouts in Microsoft Word, so going digital should have been a no-brainer. When I finally got a copy of Photoshop Elements, I was in absolute heaven--I kicked myself for not trying it sooner. These fingers haven't touched paper since!

Do you have a tip you'd like to share with Digital Scrapbooking's readers?
When I download a kit, I make a copy of the preview file included in the ZIP file and save it in a separate folder titled "Previews - Kits." That way, when I want to look through my supplies, I can open this folder in Windows Explorer, change the View option to "Filmstrip," and see at a glance a large photo of everything in the kit. Since I don't have to open each kit folder separately, it saves a lot of time. It's also very inspiring to look through all the gorgeous kits. (I also make separate preview directories for my accents, alphas, and templates.)

Sneak peek layout:

Monday, December 10, 2007

Meet the Creative Team: Melinda Alexander

Today, we'd like to introduce you to another new member of our Creative Team: Melinda Alexander. You may recognize Melinda's name--and you'll definitely recognize her photos of her son--from previous issues of Digital Scrapbooking. Melinda lives along the Murray River in Australia with her husband Joel and four-year-old son Jordan.

Her location makes her a perfect photographer for our magazine. Since Australia's seasons are reversed from the Northern Hemisphere, Melinda can look forward to getting frantic calls in February asking for summery-looking shots... and vice versa!

How long have you been scrapbooking digitally?
I've been working digitally for three years. I was never a paper scrapper.

How did you get into digital?
I stumbled into digital while trying to find a way to make a personalized baby album for my son and knew right away it was for me. I had long loved playing around with photos and editing software!

What's something most people don't know about you?
I stay up late at night--I mean ridiculously late--to get scrapping done. It's the only chance I have for some time to myself.

Do you have a tip you'd like to share with Digital Scrapbooking's readers?
To get great photos of kids, let your shooting be spontaneous. Interact with them while they are doing their own thing... sing silly songs or play fun games to get their attention.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Get crafty for the holidays with Renee Pearson

It's time to deck the halls... digitally! Our own Renee Pearson is teaming up with Adobe for a fun, free class on creating holiday-themed projects using Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 and Photoshop CS3 (though of course, it's OK if you have an older version).

Here are the details:
Fun Holiday Projects with Photoshop Elements 6 and Photoshop CS3
Tuesday, December 11, 2007 11:00 A.M. PST
See how easy it is to make exciting holiday-themed projects with Renee Pearson, Associate Editor of Digital Scrapbooking magazine. She'll demonstrate time-saving step-by-step editing and design techniques for each project. Have fun and be creative!
You'll need an Adobe ID to register--it takes just a couple of minutes to get one, and then just a second to sign up for the class.

Hope to see you there... I'll be the one in the back humming "Santa Baby."

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Meet the Creative Team: Kayla Lamoreaux

Today, we're introducing the first of our five Creative Team members for 2008: Kayla Lamoreaux. Kayla's work, both in paper and digital formats, has been featured in magazines for years. She's a mom of five kids: a daughter, two sons and twin little girls. Luckily, she's married to "a wonderful and patient man who helps out with dinner," giving her time to work on her creative projects.

How long have you been scrapbooking digitally?
That depends on your definition of "digitally!" I'd been using my computer as a scrapbooking tool for a long time. Then, in 2002, I took a Photoshop class and was soon creating 100%-digital layouts.

How did you get into digital?
In late 2001 I was working on a scrapbook about my husband’s late father. I put it together in traditional format – all 63 pages! For Christmas we created 13 copies of the book – one for each of my husband’s immediate family and his aunts, uncles and grandparents. I scanned each individual page into my computer and printed them with my inkjet printer. 819 pages later (I think it took me a week to get done), I was convinced there must be a better way…which led me to taking my first Photoshop class.

What's something most people don't know about you?
I am a nationally certified Parent to Parent trainer for CHADD. I teach other parents about ADHD and really enjoy making a difference in my community.

Do you have a tip you'd like to share with Digital Scrapbooking's readers?

For this layout, I wanted to show different steps of the action on a single page. I lined up the four successive photos and then merged the layers together over a transparent background. I then duplicated the new merged image by selecting Image > Duplicate and then converted the duplicated image to black and white.

While holding the Shift key, I dragged the black and white image back to the original photo (so the pixels lined up perfectly). I then added a layer mask to the black and white photo layer, and with my brush tool and foreground color set to black, I painted everything back in color except the bright blue slide top that would have distracted from my layout.

Look for Kayla's work in upcoming issues of Digital Scrapbooking!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Congratulations to our new Creative Team!

With Digital Scrapbooking's April/May 2008 issue, we'll be celebrating our first anniversary--and we'll also welcome aboard five new members of our Creative Team.

You'll recognize these women's names from their work featured in previous issues of Digital Scrapbooking. Their skills in design, photography and digital techniques are sure to inspire you.

Congratulations to these new members of the Creative Team!
  • Melinda Alexander
  • Kayla Lamoreaux
  • Becky Pogatchnik
  • Deena Wuest
  • Cassie Jones
Over the next couple of weeks, we'll introduce you to each team member individually and give you a special sneak peek at their recent work. Please join us in welcoming them to the Digital Scrapbooking family.