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I have a promise to you. Whenever I link to somebody else's blog, I always link to the direct post unless it's something that doesn't have a post. I make sure that all links open in a new tab/window. I strive to write my tuts easy to read and follow. I always include a screenshot when I feel the tut calls for it. However, I admit that I am not perfect, if I miss something, please let me know so I can fix it. Thank you.

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Sunday, December 21, 2014
This tutorial was written by me on 12/21/2014 and assumes you have working knowledge of PSP. Any similarities to other tuts is purely coincidental and not done on purpose.
 For this tut you will need:
PSP - I use version X3 but most versions will do
Tube of choice - I'm using the artwork of Elizabeth Austin.
You can purchase this tube at CDO. Do not use this tube without purchasing a license first.
ScrapWDD Cluster Pack 8, also available at CDO
WSL_Mask84  by WeeScotsLass
Font of choice, I used KG A Thousand Years
Filters used:
Eye Candy 4000 Gradient Glow
Let's begin, remember to save often.

Open cluster pack 8b in psp, duplicate and close original. Bring up the resize box, change the resolution to 72, the percentage to 100, make sure all layers are checked and click ok.

Activate layer 1, which is the frame. Hide this layer then go to Layers, View and click on Invert. Click on your freehand selection tool. Set to Point to point, add, feather and smoothing at 0, anti-alias checked.

Now we're going to remove the right frame but make it as smooth as we can. So line your curser up with the right side of the left frame, move the cursor down in a straight line past the bottom of the frame, keeping the line even with the line of the frame, click and then select back around up to your starting point:


Press delete and deselect. Now do the same for the bottom section:


Delete and deselect. Now you can remove the excess of the right frame. Don't worry about the clipped off section of the corner of the left frame, it'll be covered up so it won't show.

Now increase canvas size to 900 x 870 with placement at bottom right.


Now you're going to resize your canvas 80%. With your frame layer still being the only one showing, copy your tube and paste as a new layer. Arrange it on the frame but don't worry about final placement yet. Go back up to Layers, View and click on All.

Activate layer 6, move this layer below your tube. Then move it up higher on the frame so you can see more of it. See my tag for reference.

Activate layer 9. Using your selection tool, remove the right flower.

Activate layer 5, resize 60%, be sure all layers is unchecked. Move behind the left flower.

Activate layer 8, flip and arrange under the left flower.

Activate layer 3, resize 85% and move back up slightly.

Activate layer 2, mirror, rearrange and move under the tube layer.

Activate layer 4, resize 80% and use your raster deform tool to move it over so it's centered over your tube.

Activate layer 10, resize 90% and mirror. Rearrange back where it was before on the ivy stem.

Now let's drop shadow all of your elements except layer 4 with a shadow at 0, 0, 70, 10.

Ok now hide the frame layer, invert the view so you only see this one layer again. Make sure your frame layer is active. Copy the paper included in the cluster pack. Paste as a new layer and move it under the frame layer. Resize 50% and center it under your frame. Now use Manual Color Correction to change the paper color to match your tube. I used a light blue.
Activate the frame layer again and click inside with your magic wand. Expand by 5, invert selection. Activate the paper layer and press delete. Deselect. Give your frame a drop shadow of 0, 0, 80, 10.
Unhide and activate the tube layer. Now we're going to do our final adjustments. First give your tube a drop shadow of -3, 3, 60, 10. Repeat the drop shadow at -1, 1, 50. 5. Now we're going to select around any part of the tube that goes over the bottom of our frame using the freehand selection tool with the same settings as before. Don't worry if there's an empty space on the bottom corners like mine, it'll be hidden by the elements.


Promote selection to layer. Activate the tube layer again and press delete 1 time. Deselect. Move the promoted layer under the frame layer. If there's any parts of the tube that sticks out from under the frame at the bottom, just remove them with the freehand selection tool.

Change the view back to all again. Now crop the excess off your tag. I've written a tutorial on how to crop properly, you can find it here.

Now we're going to add a mask to our tag so increase the canvas size again to 600 x 700, center placement this time.

Copy your paper again, paste as a new layer. Send to the bottom of your layer palette. Change the color again if desired. Add mask from image and merge group. Activate the raster deform tool and drag out the nodes if needed so it extends at least a bit beyond the previous borders of your tag when you cropped it the first time. You can activate the other layers to make sure. When done, make sure your mask layer is active and crop the excess off of your tag again.

Activate the top layer in your layer palette. If you're going to resize your tag, now is the time to do it. I resized mine 80%. Make sure you check all layers again.

Add your copyright, license info and tagger's mark.

Add your name using colors from your tube. Give your name an inner bevel, I used this one:


Then apply a Gradient Glow. I used these settings with the glow width at 3:


Finally a drop shadow, I used -2, 2, 50, 5.

Merge visible and save as a png or merge all and save as a jpg. Congrats, you're done!


This tutorial was written by me on 12/21/2014 and assumes you have working knowledge of PSP. Any similarities to other tuts is purely coincidental and not done on purpose.

Cropping properly is a good thing. It means you don't accidently crop off any drop shadows, tubes, scrap elements or your mask.

Some people wait till they merge visible on their tag and then crop, but if you do that to your blank (you want a blank tag if you're going to make tags for more then one person) then if you make a goof in your tag like an error in the copyright for example, then you have to remake the tag all over again. Always leave your blanks with full layers intact so if you goof all you have to fix is that 1 layer.

So my cropping method is a 2 step process. Finding a layer that sits closest to the edge of the canvas on one side. Then cropping around that layer by leaving the node for that side where it sits and then dragging the other 3 nodes to the edge of the canvas.

First click on your raster deform tool. Now you're going to find which layer sits at the highest point on your canvas. For my example tag here, it's the tube.So activate that layer, you'll get the deform box around it. If by chance there's a drop shadow or element that extends beyond the top of the tube, well then you're going to want to activate that layer instead. Once you have the layer closest to the top of the canvas active then click on your crop too.

Now with your crop tool active, click on Snap Crop Rectangle to: layer opaque. The box will be only around the tube like this:


Now we're going to leave the top node where it sits. Click on the left node and drag it all the way to the edge of the canvas. The right node all the way to the right and the bottom node all the way to the bottom. Click apply to crop.

Now we're going to do the same with the left side. Use your raster deform tool if you need it to find the layer that sits closest to the left edge. For my tag here, it's the sparkle layer. Once you have the correct layer active, click on the crop tool again. Don't forget to snap the crop to layer opaque.


This time the left node will stay where it's at and you're going to drag the top, right and bottom nodes to the edge of the canvas. Click apply to crop.

Repeat these last 2 steps on the right and bottom most layers. When you're done your tag will be perfectly cropped.

And that's it, congrats, you're done!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Hello everyone, I have a new Exclusive tutorial over on Creative Addictions. This is an old school/no scraps forum tag tut. I hope you enjoy it. Remember, I love to see what others make from my tuts so please feel free to share. You can post a link in the comments, on my cbox or even email it to me. Thanks a bunch and happy tagging!


Tuesday, December 16, 2014
This tutorial was written by me on 12/16/2014 and assumes you have working knowledge of PSP. Any similarities to other tuts is purely coincidental and not done on purpose.
 
 For this tut you will need:
PSP - I use version X3 but most versions will do
Tube of choice - I'm using the artwork of Melissa Dawn.
You can purchase this tube at CDO. Do not use this tube without purchasing a license first.
CDO Grab Bag Freebies: Grab718 (frame), 1128 (bow) and g125 (paper, elements)
Font of choice, I used Nadine Script Extra
Filters used:
Mura Meister Copies
Mehdi Sorting Tiles
Xero Mistifier and Porcelain
Eye Candy 4000 Gradient Glow

Let's begin, remember to save as you go.

Open frame and tube in psp. Duplicate all and close the originals.

Starting with the frame, bring up the resize box. Change the resolution to 72 Pixels/Inch. Then change the pixel dimensions to 100%, be sure all layers is checked and click ok.


Change the canvas size to 600 wide, 700 high with center placement. Add a new raster layer, flood fill with white and move to the bottom of your layer palette.

Copy your tube and paste as a new layer. Move it below your frame layer if it isn't already. Apply Mura Meister Copies with Wallpaper Rotate at default settings.

Give this layer a gaussian blur at 10. Duplicate your blur layer. On the duplicate, apply Mehdi Sorting Tiles with these settings:


Change the blend mode of the tiled layer to Screen. Change the opacity of the original layer to 90%.

Activate the tiled layer again. Apply Xero Mistifier with the haziness at 246, the strength at 195 and everything else at 255.

Now activate your frame layer. Click inside with your magic wand, expand by 5. Invert selection, click on your tiled layer, press delete. Activate the original blurred layer, press delete and deselect.

Activate your frame layer again. Select all, float, defloat. Open paper of choice, copy and paste as a new layer on top of your frame. Invert the selection and press delete. Deselect.

Merge the paper layer down onto the frame layer. Give it a slight inner bevel, I used this one:


Then give the frame a drop shadow, I used 0, 0, 80, 15.

Now we're going to copy our tube, paste as a new layer. Move it under the frame layer for now. My tube is cut off on the left side, so I'm going to move it over slightly to the left so you don't see the cut off part. Don't worry if you can see part of the tube through the holes of the frame, we'll fix that later.

On your tube apply Xero, Porcelain at default settings but be sure to move the blue slider to 0. Now give it a drop shadow. I use -3, 3, 60, 10. Then repeat the drop shadow but change the settings to 1, -1, 50. 5.

Let's take the time right now to resize our tag, cause it's just huge. I resized mine 80% all layers checked.

Now move your tube layer back on top of the frame layer again. Activate your selection tool. Now you're going to draw around the part of the tube that extends over the left side of the frame. (or right if yours is on that side). Be sure you go a little past the boundary, like below:


Now promote the selection to layer. Do NOT deselect yet. Activate the original tube layer, press delete 1 time and now you may deselect. Move the promoted layer under the frame.

If you can see parts of the promoted layer through the little frame holes then just select around those parts and press delete one time. Deselect.


Activate your main tube layer again. Should be on the top of your layer palette. You can now add any elements you like.

From Grab Bag g125, I used ele2, resized 40%. (be sure to uncheck the all layers box) Ele5, 30% and mirrored. Ele4, 50%. Ele3, 40% arrange at bottom, duplicate and flip, arrange at the top.

From Grab Bag 1128, I used ele1, 15%

Give all of your elements a drop shadow of -2, 2, 50, 5.

Now activate the bottom blurred layer under your frame. Select all, float, defloat. Activate the white background layer, invert selection and press delete, deselect. You need that white layer because you lowered opacity on the blurred layer and otherwise it'll look weird if it's on a colored background.

Now it's time to crop off the excess empty space around our tag. You're going to want to make sure you don't crop off any parts of tubes and drop shadows. Best way I've found to do this is to start on one side and activate the layer that sticks out the farthest. So I start with the left side and for me the red bow on top of the silver ornament sticks out farthest. So I click on my crop tool. It automatically snaps around the bow. If it doesn't you'll need to click on the "Snap crop rectangle to: Layer Opaque". I then use the nodes on the crop box to drag the top line all the way to the top of the canvas. The bottom line all the way to the bottom and the right line all the way to the right and click apply.

Now pick the layer that extends farthest on the right. For me that's the double ribbon under my main tube. So I leave the right border of the crop box where it is and drag the top, bottom and left sides all the way to the edge of the canvas and click apply.

Now we're going to do the same thing with the top and the bottom in the same fashion as before. For me those layers are the strings of Christmas lights. Though I gave it slightly more room on the bottom so there's enough room for when I add names.

By cropping in this fashion, doing each of the 4 sides individually, you insure that nothing ever gets accidentally cropped off. Especially drop shadows.

Add your copyright, license info and tagger's mark.

Add your name, I used the same color from my tube for both foreground and background. Give it a bevel of choice, I used:

Then give your name a gradient glow. I used these settings with the glow width at 3:


And then finally apply the same drop shadow you used for your elements.

Merge visible and save as a png or merge all and save as a jpg. Congrats, you're done!