Saturday, 31 May 2014

MJM's FAQ - Importing PDFs into CraftArtist 2 Professional

Hi All

I'm back with part two of the importing files into your CraftArtist 2 Professional tutorial (from now on known as CAP) This time we will look at PDFs (Click here if you missed part one)

There are 3 types of files that can be converted, all easy!

1. An ordinary PDF generated say for a magazine page or a scan that’s been turned into a PDF or sometimes free instruction sheets that are found on the internet can be pulled apart very easily.

 From the start up wizard click open at the bottom of the middle column

When the pop out box appears go to the drop down menu on the bottom right and select PDF files (this box defaults to search for Craft Artist projects) Now you will be able to search your computer files and folders for all the PDF files you have. Select the file you want and click open

this will now import the file into a new work space.

You will now be able to select the different elements of the document and literally pull it apart.

And save elements to your own digi kit (subject to copyright of the material of course!)
 
To create your own digi kit use the digikit creator found in the tools drop down menu, further instructions for this can be found in part one of this post (click here)
 
2. A PDF from a craft CD. These behave slightly differently

As in the first example From the start up wizard click open at the bottom of the middle column, when the pop out box appears go to the drop down menu on the bottom right and select PDF files (this box defaults to search for Craft Artist projects)

Now search your computer for the craft CD location which will be in your DVD drive and should have its name showing. Click to open and then search for the folder(s) that hold the images. (These folders can be called different things and also can be sub folders in other folders all CDs vary so search around for them) Open these when you have found them and then click on the PDF you want to add to your workspace.
Select the file you want and click open, this will now import the file into a new project.

A lot of craft PDF pages have multiple images on them and we want to get to the individual images so we need to do a little extra work.
When the ‘page’ is added to your work space we want to be able to cut out the images so for this we use the cut out studio while the whole page is selected.

If the images are on a white background you can work with a large brush size and 100% grow tolerance and simply drag the brush into the page and you will see a dotted line appear around the images, the background is now cut away. If the images are on a patterned background you may find a smaller brush size easier and the reduction of the grow tolerance – I liken this to fingers that reach out and grab like for like colours to cut away so a smaller grow tolerance means a smaller grab and also click drag and release the brush a little at a time so it doesn’t grab too much at one time, play around with the settings for each individual project and you’ll get the hang of it in no time ;) Once you are happy with the cut out click ok and the images return to your workspace

You will find that the images are still joined. This is simply solved by making sure the images are selected with the blue box around them and then go to the scissor tool

Drag this a little way into the blue box on an empty space (avoiding cutting into images) Unlike usual when you have to cut from outside an object to outside an object to cut it you only need to make a small ‘snip’ in this instance
Click select to de activate the scissors then click on the grey area around the work space to de select the image and now when you click on one of the images you should find that they are all separated. These again can then be saved in the relevant sections of your kit and saved using the digikit creator (again see part one of this tutorial by clicking here)

3. The final PDF type is again from a craft CD and it just involves an extra step!

Import your PDF as above (start up wizard then open then select PDF files etc)


When you run your cursor over the images you will see that it is shredded into bands.


Draw an imaginary box around one of the images to select it and click group at the bottom right corner


then go to Tools on the very top tool bar and from the drop down menu select convert to picture

Accept the default settings in the pop out box and your image will be converted into a picture file on the work space and you will now see the cut out studio button on the tool bar is available which was not there before.

Now proceed as above (cut out image then click ok)

 
and now you have a complete image to use and save as you wish!
 
I hope all that makes sense and de mystifies importing PDFs into your CAP to work with! (part one involving CD images is here if you missed it)
 
At this point I have to say please use your common sense and adhere to any copyright and angel policies linked to the images you intend to use. They all still stand as stated by each company even though CAP enables you to use them in different ways, it is just a tool and content remains the property of each individual designer but I know you all know that anyway ;)
 
Well that's all from me for this tutorial, I will put some more together soon ;) Thanks for popping by I hope you are well and happy and as ever, until soon
Happy Crafting
Love
MJM x

Thursday, 29 May 2014

MJM's FAQ - Importing CD images into CraftArtist2 Professional

Hi All

From doing the shows on Create and Craft TV I get asked a lot of questions about CraftArtist2 Professional and some pop up quite frequently so I thought it was about time I did some posts with answers to those questions in the form of some picture tutorials :)

So first up is how to import images from Craft CDs and image CDs into CraftArtist2 Professional. This tutorial will be in two parts, this first one addressing the importing of image files and the 2nd will address importing PDFs. I will also refer to CraftArtist2 Professional as CAP from now on it's just quicker ;)

Importing any file images (jpeg, png, bitmap etc) from a craft CD or an image CD is super easy with CAP. Some craft CD’s that hold images have a user interface that opens when the CD is loaded, we don’t need this as we just want to access the image files so close down the interface once it has loaded.


Next from CAP we go to the photo tab on the left and at the bottom of this section click add, this takes you to all the files and folders on your computer and where you would normally add your own photos and scans but this time we need to search for the CD location

It will be in your DVD drive and should have its name showing.
 
Click to open and then search for the folder(s) that hold the images. (These folders can be called different things and also can be sub folders in other folders all CDs vary so search around for them) In this instance its not in the images file but found in a file I wouldn't expect!
 
Open these when you have found them and make it easier on yourself by changing the view of the files to large icons!
 
and then click on the images you want to add to your workspace (holding the Ctrl key down while selecting allows you to add multiple images at once)

Now you can work with the images in CAP as you wish and even build your own digi kits by dragging and dropping them into the relevant tabs
 
and then saving your digi kit at the end of your work time. Go to Tools then digikit creator
 
Open the relevant section to check your images are in place then click save digikit
 
This will probably take you to your My Digikit folder in Documents. Name your kit and click Save.
 
So that’s importing just basic image files. Some CD’s, however, have multiple images on a page and we want to get to the individual images so we need to do a little extra work.

 
When the ‘page’ is added to your work space we want to be able to cut out the images so for this we use the cut out studio

If the images are on a white background you can work with a large brush size and 100% grow tolerance.

Simply drag the brush into the page

and you will see a dotted line appear around the images, the background is now cut away. If the images are on a patterned background you may find a smaller brush size easier and the reduction of the grow tolerance – I liken this to fingers that reach out and grab like for like colours to cut away so a smaller grow tolerance means a smaller grab and also click drag and release the brush a little at a time so it doesn’t grab too much at once, play around with the settings for each individual project and you’ll get the hang of it in no time ;)

Once you are happy with the cut out click ok and the images return to your workspace but you will find they are still joined.

This is simply solved by making sure the images are selected with the blue box around them and then go to the scissor tool

drag this a little way into the blue box on an empty space (avoiding cutting into images) Unlike usual when you have to cut from outside an object to outside an object to cut it you only need to make a small ‘snip’ in this instance

Click select to de activate the scissors and then click outside the blue box of the images to de select them all and now when you click back on an individual image you will find that it has been separated from all the others!

Again dragging them into the relevant tab e.g. embellishments allows you to save all your hard work in your own digi kit!

 
As before go to Tools then Digikit Creator. Open the relevant sections to check your images are there and click save digikit. (You must make sure that the digikit you want to save into is added into your workspace already so I have already got my crafty CD kit loaded in when I go to save this part of the kit)
 
This time instead of naming a new kit click on the name of the existing kit that we just made (crafty CD kit)
 
Click yes when this box pops up and it will overwrite the existing kit adding the new bits (NB: this is providing this kit is loaded into your workspace!)
 
When its all saved click done
 
And if you look in your Digikit browser you will find your newly created kit!
 
I hope all that makes sense and de mystifies importing CD images into your CAP to work with!
 
At this point I have to say please use your common sense and adhere to any copyright and angel policies linked to the images you intend to use. They all still stand as stated by each company even though CAP enables you to use them in different ways, it is just a tool and content remains the property of each individual designer but I know you all know that anyway ;)
 
Well I will toddle off now and leave you in peace, I will post part 2 of this tutorial talking about importing PDFs in a day or so. I hope you are well and happy, thanks for popping by and as ever, until soon
Happy Crafting
Love
MJM x
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

'I am Youth, I am Joy...'

Hi all

Just popped in to drop off some sneaks of my latest offering for the latest issue of Scrap365 which is on the shelves NOW!! (craft shops and WHSmith) Do you have yours?

I have mine and I was really tickled to see that this issue I am the centrefold LOL and before that conjures up images best not thought about the picture is of my birds nest project!

 
This is one of those projects that I was REALLY, REALLY pleased with. It lived in my head for months before finally tumbling out and was all inspired by a 50p bridesmaid posy holder!

 
This issue of Scrap365 is all about upcycling, re purposing and using up what we have squirreled away in our craft rooms proving that we don't need to spend a fortune to indulge our addiction .... oops I mean hobby :D

I have to give a big shout out to the photography department for the magazine, I love the way they have set up the photos (with the help of our fab editor!) and executed them superbly not just for my project of course but for the whole magazine, it's a visual delight!

To accompany my project I have posted a Step by step on the Scrap365 blog so please do hop on over to see how I did it and see how to transform some tin foil, tissue paper, polystyrene shapes, music paper and of course that posy holder into (what I think) is a beautiful piece of home d├ęcor.

 
I hope you enjoy and I hope you get to grab a copy of the magazine to be inspired by all the other glorious projects held within ..... A sunny afternoon, a quiet hour by yourself, maybe a cheeky glass of cold white wine and a superb magazine packed with crafty delights .... what could be better? In fact that's me doing that right now once I have signed off ;)

CHEERS :D

Thanks for popping by I am lining up some posts for you, a few tutorials, frequently asked questions answered, a project revisited and a bit of general life so until I *see you* soon, as ever,
Happy Crafting
Love
MJM x

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Scrap Around the World EPIC event!

Hi all

So do you remember me posting at the beginning of the month about the Scrap Around the World EPIC event? Well today is the turn of the uber talented Scrap365 DT to play along and I am lucky enough to be in there too!

http://scraparoundtheworld.blogspot.co.uk/
 
Scrap Around the World is an amazing challenge blog they release a mood board to work with every month, you get to play along and you get to be chosen for the wall of fame and let me tell you there is inspiration by the bucket load over there from the lovely Helen Tilbury's design team and from the international blog visitors that share their work ... if you haven't checked it out please do and you're not too late to play along with the EPIC event, lots of amazing goodies up for grabs from some amazing sponsors!!

This is the mood board for the EPIC event

http://scraparoundtheworld.blogspot.co.uk/
 
Please pop over to Scrap Around the World to see all the layouts from the sponsors so far and please pop on over to the Scrap365 blog to see what our DT has done .... gorgeous work that's what!!! BUT before you go here's my offering with some close ups

 
My lovely niece on her 17th birthday. I guess the reference to 'celebrate' on the mood board inspired me to choose this photo as I received the board just after her birthday. I love the fresh colours of the mood board with the turquoise and pink and decided to leave a lot of white space to keep the airy light feel I got from seeing it.

 
The balloons made me think of flying away so I decided to splat the colour onto the page instead of making it too heavy. I used a slightly watered acrylic paint to do this and kept the splats quite thick to add texture. If you have a go at this clear your work space and even take your page outside to splat it if you can, no matter how careful you are the paint gets everywhere LOL Once the paint was completely dry I applied gilding flake glue along the edges of the runs, using my finger to spread it and then used gilding flakes to add the gold like there is at the bottom of the balloons on the mood board

 
I picked out the pinks and turquoises from the mood board with flowers, dew drops and liquid pearls...

 
... as well as with ribbons, lace and twine for added texture

 
To me the doyley added that last bit of birthday tea party feel inspired by the photo of the macaroons.


 
and lastly the typeset on the mood board inspired me to add some of my own handwriting in different colours and styles
 
I hope you like my take on the mood board, I really had fun creating it! Please go and check out all the many, many different interpretations of it on Scrap365 and ultimately on the Scrap Around the World blog, you will be inspired just by the sheer amount of different takes on it let alone by the beautiful work produced! I look forward to seeing your interpretation!!!
 
Thanks for popping by, I hope you're well and happy. I'll be back soon with some stuff ... not sure what yet but lots in the pipeline :) and will definitely be back next Tuesday with my step by step tutorial for my little birdie project in this months Scrap 365 magazine ... have you got yours yet?
 
Until soon, as ever,
Happy Crafting!
Love
MJM x