Go Green - Repurposing Paper Previews

with 35 Comments

Nannette Dalton pic

When I was growing up, I was taught, use it up, wear it out, and make it do. I guess that is one of the reasons that I love digital scrapbooking; I can reuse ALL of my supplies.

There is an element however, that I have been guilty of throwing away without using. I thought I didn't need the paper previews and so I trashed them to save room on my hard drive. I love the way they look though, and wanted to find a way to use them on a page. They remind me of bolts of fabric or rolls of pretty paper.

In this tutorial, I am going to show you how to repurpose paper previews using your Dodge and Burn tools to turn them into an element you can use on your scrapbook pages.

 

Tutorial:

For Adobe Photoshop Version click here.

Step One: Open a Preview

  • Open the paper preview (File > Open) from a scrapbooking kit. I am using a preview from the kit Taking Time to Relax, by Eva Kipler.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose File > Duplicate and click OK. Close the original file.
  • In the Layers panel, Right click (Mac: Ctrl click) on the background layer, choose Layer From Background, and click OK.

  • Holding down the Ctrl key (Mac: Cmd key), click on the Create a New Layer icon in the Layers panel to create a new layer below the current layer.
  • In the Layers panel, activate the paper layer by clicking on it.

Step Two: Crop the Preview

  • Get the Crop tool.
  • In the Options Bar, click on the Aspect Ratio drop down menu and choose No Restriction.

  • On the document, click and drag a selection outline around the part of the preview you want to keep.
  • Click on the check mark to commit to the changes.

I just love the way the colors of these papers all coordinate together. It makes me happy!

Step Three: Round the Paper

  • Get the Burn tool. It is nested with the Sponge tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker and choose the Soft Round 21 pixel brush.

Note: If you do not see a Soft Round brush, open the flyout menu and choose Large List. Then open the Brushes drop down menu and choose Default Brushes.

  • In the Options Bar, Range should be Midtones and Exposure should be 100%.
  • On the document, holding down the Shift key, click at the top and drag straight down between each piece of paper.

Note: Holding down the Shift key causes your cursor to move in a straight line.

  • Next, get the Dodge tool. It is also nested with the Sponge tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker and choose the 21 pixel Soft Round brush.

Note: If you do not see a Soft Round brush, open the flyout menu and choose Large List. Then open the Brushes drop down menu and choose Default Brushes.

  • In the Options Bar, Range should be Midtones and Exposure should be 100%.
  • See the image of the Burn tool, above, for more information.
  • On the document, holding down the Shift key, click at the top and drag straight down in the middle of each row of paper.

Note: The Dodge tool adds subtle highlights to give depth to the paper.

Step Four: Erase Some Edges

  • Get the Eraser tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker, click on the Brushes drop down menu and choose Square Brushes. Choose a medium sized Hard Square brush.
  • In the Options Bar, Mode should be Brush and Opacity should be 100%.

  • On your document, hover your cursor over one strip of paper to see what size brush you will need. Press the Left and Right Bracket keys to change the Size of your brush to match the width of one strip of paper.
  • Holding down the Shift key, click on a strip of paper and drag down. Continue with the other paper strips to make the tops uneven.

  • Leave as is or repeat the process on the bottom.

Step Five: Embellish Your Scrapbook Page

  • In the Menu Bar, choose Layer > Merge Visible.
  • Save your newly created embellishment (File > Save As) as a PNG file with a unique name.
  • Get the Move tool.
  • Click on the embellishment and drag it onto your scrapbook page.

Here is my scrapbook page using this element.

I would love to see what you create with this element or the technique for rounding in the Digi Scrap Tutorial gallery at Digital Scrapper!

Credits:
Digi Scrap Tutorial Going Green - Repurposing Paper Previews by Nannette Dalton
Paper & Embellishments: Alphabet Soup by digilicious Designs, Ever After by Krystal Hartley, Taking time to Relax by Eva Kipler
Technique: A Stitch In Time by Susie Roberts
Font: Lobster two
Layout: “Sew Much” by Nannette Dalton
Software: Photoshop Elements 10

Download a PDF version of this "Go Green - Repurposing Paper Previews" tutorial.

Windows: Right click on the link and choose "Save Target As" or a similar command.
Mac: Click on the link to download the file.

 

Step One: Open a Preview

  • Open the paper preview (File > Open) from a scrapbooking kit. I am using a preview from the kit Taking Time to Relax, by Eva Kipler.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose Image > Duplicate and click OK. Close the original file.
  • In the Layers panel, Right click (Mac: Ctrl click) on the background layer, choose Layer From Background, and click OK.

  • Holding down the Ctrl key (Mac: Cmd key), click on the Create a New Layer icon in the Layers panel to create a new layer below the current layer.
  • In the Layers panel, activate the paper layer by clicking on it.

Step Two: Crop the Preview

  • Get the Crop tool.
  • On the document, click and drag a selection outline around the part of the preview you want to keep.
  • Click on the check mark to commit to the changes.

I just love the way the colors of these papers all coordinate together. It makes me happy!

Step Three: Round the Paper

  • Get the Burn tool. It is nested with the Dodge tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker and choose a 21px Soft Round brush.
  • In the Options Bar, the Range should say Midtones and the Exposure should be 100%.

Note: If you do not see a Soft Round brush, open the flyout menu and choose Large List. Then open the flyout menu again and choose Reset Brushes. Click OK.

  • On the document, holding down the Shift key, click at the top and drag straight down between each piece of paper.

Note: Holding down the Shift key causes your cursor to move in a straight line.

  • Next, get the Dodge tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker and choose a 21px Soft Round brush.
  • In the Options Bar, Range should say Midtones and Exposure should be 100%.

  • On the document, holding down the Shift key, click at the top and drag straight down in the middle of each row of paper.

Note: The Dodge tool adds subtle highlights to give a feeling of depth to the paper.

Step Four: Erase Some Edges

  • Get the Eraser tool.
  • In the Options Bar, open the Brush Picker, open the flyout menu, and choose Square Brushes. Click OK.
  • In the Options Bar, Mode should be Brush and Opacity should be 100%.

  • On your document, hover your cursor over one strip of paper to see what size brush you will need. Press the Left and Right Bracket keys to change the Size of your brush to match the width of one strip of paper.
  • Holding down the Shift key, click on a strip of paper and drag down. Continue with the other paper strips to make the tops uneven.

  • Leave as is or repeat the process on the bottom.

Step Five: Embellish Your Scrapbook Page

  • In the Menu Bar, choose Layer > Merge Visible.
  • Save your newly created embellishment (File > Save As) as a PNG file with a unique name.
  • Get the Move tool.
  • Click on the embellishment and drag it onto your scrapbook page.

Here is my scrapbook page using this element.

I would love to see what you create with this element or the technique for rounding in the Digi Scrap Tutorial gallery at Digital Scrapper!

Credits:
Digi Scrap Tutorial: Go Green – Repurposing Paper Previews by Nannette Dalton
Paper & Embellishments: Alphabet Soup by digilicious Designs, Ever After by Krystal Hartley, Taking time to Relax by Eva Kipler
Technique: A Stitch In Time by Susie Roberts
Font: Lobster two
Layout: “Sew Much” by Nannette Dalton
Software: Photoshop CS5

Download a PDF version of this "Go Green - Repurposing Paper Previews" tutorial.

Windows: Right click on the link and choose "Save Target As" or a similar command.
Mac: Click on the link to download the file.

35 Responses

  1. Elise Harper
    | Reply

    Just when I thought I’d seen it all someone comes up with another creative idea and makes it work. Well done. Thanks

  2. Riet
    | Reply

    Nann, what a wonderful start of your tutorials! I love this one.

  3. Jo Morgan
    | Reply

    What a beautiful idea! Love the look of it. Thank you

  4. Mungo
    | Reply

    That’s a really neat idea, thank you

  5. Tora
    | Reply

    Wow love this tutorial and welcome to this great team that makes us such cool tutorials 🙂

  6. lozzie
    | Reply

    congratulations on your tutorial..love how it looks…thank you

  7. RetiredPJ
    | Reply

    WOW, who would have thought you could do this??!! THANK YOU! I love it!

  8. Nannette Dalton
    | Reply

    Thanks for all the love…. you really know how to make a person feel welcome!

  9. ouisiekelly
    | Reply

    I would have never thought of something like this. Awesome! I love it and, like you, I always thought how pretty the paper samples look. Thanks so much, I plan to use this in my layouts.

  10. Cindy Borklund
    | Reply

    Thank you so much for this. I have always saved them because I liked the way they look and also I use them for my catalog pages I make and put in a binder so I know what I have. So glad to have a new use for them.

  11. Margaret Hubbard
    | Reply

    The whole rhyme that we used at our house was:
    Use it up,
    Wear it out,
    Make it do,
    Or do without.

    • Linda
      | Reply

      Thanks for sharing the entire rhyme!

    • Jenifer Juris
      | Reply

      Love this saying! May have to scrap it and make a sign to hang!! Thanks for sharing!!

  12. Anita
    | Reply

    Thank you for sharing something so new – this is truly cool!!

  13. Sandra Smith
    | Reply

    This is wonderful and calls for a new page to my March “My Abilities & Hobbies” section of My Story project! Really looking forward to more of your tutorials and ideas. Thanks!

    • Nannette Dalton
      | Reply

      Awesome, I can’t wait to see it!

  14. Linda
    | Reply

    Congrats, Nann on an exquisite tutorial—so creative!

  15. Jenifer Juris
    | Reply

    Can I do this to ALL of my paper preview?! 🙂 Love this!

    • Nannette Dalton
      | Reply

      Jenifer, some previews work better than others. So glad you like it!

  16. Laura
    | Reply

    Wow, great tutorial.
    So glad to meet you and thrilled you’ll be a part of Digital Scapper!

  17. Gloria
    | Reply

    I have been saving those paper previews but just didn’t know how to go about using them. Thanks for a great idea! and welcome!!

  18. roseb
    | Reply

    I have used this saying just once before with Jen, but I feel that I need to use it here again! You’re a freakin’ genius! Love it!

    • Nannette Dalton
      | Reply

      Oh Rose, everyone should have a cheerleader like you in their court!

  19. Bridget
    | Reply

    What a great idea…you are so clever. Can’t wait to try this. Thanks for enlightening us with this new idea.

  20. Cory
    | Reply

    So creative. Great job!

  21. Bonnie
    | Reply

    Am I the only one that can’t get this to work? My dodge and burn tool don’t do anything when I bring them down on the paper. I have gone over it three times, I am missing something, but can’t figure out what. I get the preview paper,
    layer from background the crop, opacity, no restrictions, 21 pixel brush, when
    I drag them down there is nothing changing.

    • Nannette Dalton
      | Reply

      Bonnie, make sure that your paper layer (which should be your top layer) is selected when you do the dodging and burning. The other thing to check is that the opacity of your brush is set to 100%. I hope that helps.

      • Bonnie
        | Reply

        Thanks got it, now I have to find something amazing to use it on:) Love the tips.

  22. April Smith
    | Reply

    You did a wonderful job on this tutorial! It’s great! Can’t wait to see more of your fun creative work around here! Congrats on your new addition to the Digital Scrapers team!

  23. Peggy
    | Reply

    What a great idea!
    So many of the previews are beautiful and I usually paste them onto the folder for the kit so I can preview them quickly. But I’m with you: Recycle, Reuse and never waste. Good tut! Thanks!

  24. Judy
    | Reply

    I love this! I am going to flip it (vertically) and use it as a journaling block!

    One strange thing that happened as I was creating my “.png”, each time I used the shift key and scrolled down (either with the burn or dodge tool), the burn or dodge would correctly go straight vertically, but the next time it would go diagonally up to where I positioned my cursor for the next burn/dodge! I worked around this by clicking on the move tool and then clicking on the burn or dodge tool. Is there an adjustment I need to make to be able to do continuous burning/dodging as you have indicated above?

  25. Nannette Dalton
    | Reply

    Judy you have a great question. I should have made it clearer. The shift key allows you to draw a straight line between two points. If you continue to hold the shift key while you click it will draw straight lines between each click.

    Try this: Click at the top of your row of paper, then hold down Shift key, then Click on the bottom of the row of paper, release the shift key, repeat for each row of paper. I hope that helps. Thanks for the question it helps me learn how to be more clear.

  26. Janine
    | Reply

    Hi Nann, What a super creative idea. I love it and I can’t wait to do this. Congratulations on being a part of the digi scrap tutorial team – that is awesome. Looking forward to your tutorials.

  27. shirl
    | Reply

    What a wonderful coincident, I observed these in a newsletter about a week or two ago, but I am not sure if it was an action or a style.

    After reading your wonderful and clearly defined tutorial, that would have been a huge waste of funds. I am truly amazed at the innate ability of the staff here at Digital Scrapper. Congratulations on this fun and colorful loving tutorial along with your raised status. I have always admired your digitalscrapping abilities and wish you nothing but continued success.

  28. Elaine North
    | Reply

    I have just seen this great technique and must try it soon. Thank you for making it so clear.

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