Sunday, February 10, 2008

2.10.08 - Designer's Tiny Tool Kit & a Great Big Fat TUTORIAL!!!

Take that mean ladies! he he he! Ok, so my new goal is to be picked on, teased, bullied or bothered EVERY day so that I can write it all down to you INCREDIBLE ladies and you can send me some "atta boys" (the somewhat sexist quote that the army uses for a "pat on the back") You ladies ROCK! And your so darn funny too! I wish I could have emailed each and every one of you to thank you for the support individually, but time being what it is (limited and all) I'll just do it here!


So for the next few posts (time permitting) I'm going to offer some "Designer" items (fancy word for Black and White items! ha ha ha) and include some short and not so short TUTORIALS (am I yelling that word too loudly?? he he he). The tools, papers, overlays etc. will be perfect to try your hand out on some new techniques. And did I mention that I'll also be posting some Big 'ole TUTS to boot!?

Today's TUT will be another one on coloring elements. My last re-coloring TUT was for EASY to color elements (like the little heart doodle in your tool kit), solid elements that don't have any texture or design to them at all.

The NEXT easiest way to change the color of an element is to change the HUE/SATURATION of the element itself. If you are simply looking to make your element a "different" color, and not a "specific" color this is probably the best way to go. (does that make sense? - say you just want a lighter pink, or you want a red, then this way is good, but if you want a specific color to match another paper or element, you might want to try the technique below).

To use the HUE/SATURATION feature in PS you either go to IMAGE>ADJUSTMENTS>HUE/SATURATION or the shortcut is CTRL/Command+U (CTRL for PC users and Command for us Mac users). In PSE it's ENHANCE>ADJUST COLOR>ADJUST HUE/SATURATION and the same shortcut as PS (CTRL/Command+U)

This will bring up a window with 3 sliders HUE, SATURATION and LIGHTNESS (make sure that the preview box is selected to see your changes) now play with the sliders to come up with a new color...easy as pie!

NOTE! This will NOT work on black and white elements, ONLY on already colored elements.

Lastly (for today anyway) you can color your element a specific color by using two methods, the one I'll teach you today by using your COLOR REPLACEMENT TOOL tomorrow we'll talk about changing it with a Layer Style called a COLOR OVERLAY. Both of these techniques work best if the element you are re-coloring is a black and white element.

TO CHANGE YOUR ELMENT TO BLACK AND WHITE: in Photoshop Simply go to your menu at the top of the screen and click IMAGE>ADJUSTMENTS>BLACK AND WHITE. In Photoshop Elements try ENHANCE>ADJUST COLOR>REMOVE COLOR (I have only have 4.0 in Elements, so it might be a bit different in later versions) Please Note that if your element was originally...say a dark red... your new black and white image will be darker and closer to black than to white. If, however, your original element was a baby pink color, the new color will be lighter and closer to white. THIS IS IMPORTANT because if you take a very light/white element and try to re-color it say dark blue, it simply won't work, you'll just get a bright blue color (give it a shot and see what I mean! I've purposely included 3 different colored grey eyelets in the tool kit for you to try it out!)

So, does this mean that you have to have to keep light, medium and dark elements on hand to have all the colors that you might want? Nooooo silly goose! Photoshop lets you change them! In PS the trick to doing this is: IMAGE>ADJUSTMENT>BRIGHTNESS/CONTRAST (there is not automatic shortcut for this, but I use it a ton, so I've created one myself - that's a whole other tutorial! LOL) In PSE it's ENHANCE>ADJUST LIGHTING>BRIGHTNESS/CONTRAST. Once you've done this two sliders will appear and the default setting is right in the middle for both. If you want to make your element lighter you need to move the BRIGHTNESS slider to the right, the left. Now, I wasn't sure at first what the CONTRAST slider really did to help me, but if you use this technique enough you will! If you don't adjust the contrast as you make big changes in the Brightness, your element will "look funny" for lack of a better term. So if I'm making significant changes to my element's brightness, I always reduce (move the the left) my element's contrast. Play around with this feature and you'll soon get a feel for it.

Now, you can EITHER do this before OR after you have colored your element (I AM getting to that part, I promise! LOL) OR both! But to begin with just try to "guesstimate" a good match of grey for your color.

NOW this next part gave me fits FOREVER when I tried to learn it, so I'll try to break it down as best I can. If it doesn't work for you right away, just keep trying!

OK - in both PS and PSE you'll choose your COLOR REPLACEMENT TOOL you can find this tool in your BRUSHES Tool Flyout (the little tiny arrow next to your brush tool in the tools bar).

Once you have this tool ready you'll want to select the color that you want to change your element to. I usually use the EYEDROPPER TOOL (this is a hard one to it's the tool that looks like any eyedropper in your tool bar) and then "sample" the color that I want to use - by sample I mean click on!. This will place your WANTED color in to the FOREGROUND color box at the bottom of your tool bar.

Now press X on your keyboard to move your Foreground/Wanted color to the bottom position.

Now you want to make sure that you have your Color Replacement Tool selected and move it over the grey element you want to change and ALT/Option+Click on your element (Alt being for PC users Option being for us Mac users!) This will "sample" the color of the grey element and place that color in what is NOW your Foreground color box. OK, so now in your foreground/background color box you have grey on top and your chosen color on the bottom.

NOW - IMPORTANT - (I always forgot this part and it ALWAYS messed me up! LOL) PRESS X on your keyboard (or click on the little tiny arrow thingy next to the two boxes of color) TO SWITCH THE GREY TO THE BACKGROUND (or bottom) COLOR. AND make sure that the layer that your element is on is ACTIVE (click on the layer to activate it) if it isn't active, or if another layer is active it won't work!

OK- it's easy from here... just take your Color Replacement Tool and "paint" on your new color over the grey element. If I've written this tutorial correctly and you've done the steps you should "magically" see the color appear in your element!

If it's not the exact color you want, no problem, simply finish coloring your element and then go back to the BRIGHTNESS/CONTRAST feature and lighten or darken your color as needed!

Can I just tell you that learning this technique gave me SUCH joy! LOL I hope it is a "lightbulb moment" for you as well! If you have questions, leave them in the Cbox on the left hand side of the blog, or email me at and I'll help out as best I can!

By the way...this technique not only helped me design some of my own stuff, but it helped my hard drive too! When I download another designer's kit now, or freebies, I generally only keep ONE of the elements that they offer in numerous colors and not the sometimes 5 or 6 that they put in the kits for easy use. It saves a TON of room on my computer and external hard drive!

This isn't really a "visual" technique so I haven't included screenshots, but if some of you need them, leave a comment and let me know, I can always update the post!!

Tomorrow's post - Adding a Color Overlay to your elements and the much requested How to use paper OVERLAYS! I'm cookin' up a few grungy overlays for y'all so come on back now ya hear! (he he he)

I know the freebie is not a lot, but download it ok? It makes me feel better when I have a lot of downoads!! (you can always delete it later right?) LOLOLOLOL!

Aloha my dear supportive friends!!


Click HERE to download today's little tiny freebie!


kelli said...

I would like to add my thanks for your tutorials! I can't believe that other designers were laying such a guilt trip on you! When I started out digi-scrapping almost 3 years ago, things were much different than they are now. Freebies were widely available as was help when I needed it. It seems the secrets weren't so closely guarded then. You could download newsletters that were full of how-to's and find many other resources within the community. Things were much friendlier then. It was truly a community where as now I think it is an industry - all about sales and profits.

I thank you for putting back some of that community feeling into the hobby!

mhsalgado said...

Thank you for this awesome tut and freebie. I love the tutorials and all the freebies you've come out with. Don't tell anyone, but your tuts are the only one's I've been able to pay attention to and actually follow. lmao. Love 'em! Thank you so much!

Jody said...

I only joined the scrapbooking community just over a year ago and I can echo kelli's comments (above note). When I joined everyone was so helpful and willing to help. I was so green and did not have any confidence in posting a layout or anything. It took me close to a year before I would post a layout. While people do post nice comments about the layouts, I have found so many of the sites have become quite impersonal and not so helpful. It does seem to be more about sales and more sales.

It has become so competitive in the sales market that it seems the joy of scrapbooking has been forgotten.

Thankfully there are sites such as yours and many others I might add that still enjoy sharing whether it be with tutorials or kits or QPs. I no longer visit the sites that have become "too big for their britches" so to speak.

I am still in awe of myself after learning so much from your last tutorial. I loved it and am having so much fun with the technique. Now I can't wait to get started on your color tutorial and look forward to all the BIG and small tutorials you will be sharing. I know that if I have trouble with any of the tutorials you will be there to help me out. All I can say is THANK YOU, you are a blessing to the scrappers that love what they are doing.

Three cheers for you Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray!

Jody said...

Oops, I forgot to add - thank you for the amazing "little" tool kit freebie. It is absolutely super!

Susan said...

Thanks for the freebies and the great tutorial.

Bec said...

The simply language details in your tutorial are great and easy to follow. Thank you for the time you put into it to share with us all.

dmarie1975 said...

Thank you so much, I've been wanting to learn this for so long and have been so frustrated. I definately had the Ah-Ha moment today and I'm so excited to play. Alas, today is my last day of "vacation" And I've been playing for 2 weeks, so I'd better get some house work done!

Tink said...

Thank you for the tutorial and elements to practice with. Hang in there.

Scrapping Mom of 5 said...

Thanks for all you do.

Jen said...

Thank you so much I have always wondered how to use the color replacement tool, but could never quite figure it out. Looking forward to more tutorials!!

Fani said...

How did you get so awesome?! This is a blast! Even my husband is eager to hear what you are up to next. Thanks for the tut! I can't wait to try it! FYI, I got an email today from a digiscrap site selling textures and elements to recolor, etc... Wonder if they are gettin' any flack?! Ohhhhh, they are livin' on the edge! Thanks a bunch for the entertainment, the freebies, and the tutorials!!!!

Natasha said...

Wonderful Tutorial... I had to figure that tool out for myself and the was a trying time for me... getting the light verse dark color difference down and trying to keep the detail in the item too. Keep these excellent tutorials coming... love them!


Lori Crouch said...

Thank you for your generosity in sharing the tips, tricks and tutorials. The "little" gift was super, too!

Jessica said...

Ok, I've probably had too much pres. campaign input lately which would lead me to compare those *itchy designers and their 'small community' to old-school politicians and the party 'machine' (either side!) but their attempt to silence you is like suppression of free speech or something! As if they are saying 'oh, these poor little scrapbookers are too stupid and talent-less to design things on their own but just in case they start to think/create for themselves, you better keep your mouth shut or you'll never work in this town again'. Puh-LEE-zeh, people!
It's not just digital scrapbooking. There are girls in the traditional SB world that will blacklist you in a heartbeat if you threaten their system. Good heavens, do they think they're the Craft Mafia or something? TOO MUCH TIME on their hands and/or NOT ENOUGH REALITY.

You are way more gracious than I would be. I would have posted all three emails and let those bullies fall on their own sword. It's time for people to be accountable for the words they speak. Good for you to give us these great tools and lessons! It won't keep me from doling out the $; in fact it makes me more like to buy from YOU because of YOUR KINDNESS.

No Reimer Reason said...

Can I just say your site is quickly becoming one of my favorite sites?! Cause it is! I am so excited to learn these techniques and I really appreciate these great designer elements you are giving. Thank you SO SO much.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing!

ginnie said...

Talk about Rocking... Girl you are the one that ROCKS. I agree with Jessica, Jodi (above) and the other girls, every word. You would think we would have to have some 'Secret Security Clearance' to be able to have these things shared with us. I hardly go to any other blogs lately, I have no interest as Jodi says when the fun has been taken out of the 'joy of learning and sharing'. And for all 'your' hard work and sharing 'the secrets' with us I am sure that many many others will join me in supporting your 'tiny store'. of course we need new elements to practice on. You are wonderful Shauna so stay happy and we will be back tomorrow.

Trisha said...

Thank you for the great tutorial and freebie!

Nikki in spain said...

many thanks I am off to try this now

CellyOneill said...

Thanks so much for the great freebie and tutorial !

grambie said...

I am so thankful that I met you and still have the opportunity to view your previous articles and tutorials. I so admire your willingness to share your designer secrets with your visitors. So many are so secretive about their works and will not discuss it in any way. I definitely plan to be a part of the next class you have on designing. Again Thanks!! Leavin LUV! XOXOXO

Laura said...

Thank you! sent me

Anonymous said...

Thank you! sent me

Sheila said...

Thank you! sent me.
I've been a regular visitor for a while, but apparently I did not go back far enough :-). So glad I found this and the tut!

Krisi said...

Thanks for the great designer kit and for the tut. sent me

Squeaky Scraps said...

thank you so much for sharing this tiny's name does not do it justise!! and thanks for the great tutorial!!

Squeaky Scraps said...

thank you again for such a great freebie and tutorial as I am still trying to learn how to use my ps7 and how to get talented!! heehee

One quick question: Are these black and white freebies with your tutorials commercial use because I found you on CU Freebies ONly but your tou says pu only??