Fun with Templates

with 7 Comments

Lydia-200 When I’m in a creative slump, I love using templates to get me going. The fact that someone else has done the work to figure out photo, paper, and element placement gives me the ability to just get scrapping and document the moments I want to remember. But, there are times when I feel too constrained by a template. Or, I don’t want to use a particular template (even though I love it) simply because I’ve already used it and don’t want to be repetitive in my composition.

So, I’ve learned a few tricks to change up the way I use my templates. Not only does this allow me to infuse a template with my own creativity, but it stretches my template stash, allowing me to get more than one use out of each template.

I’m going to show you three different methods for having fun with your templates: flipping, rotating, and shrinking. In the end, I’ll have four completely different layouts all from the same template. Once you see how easy it is to modify a template, you’ll be diving into your stash to see what you can create! Let’s get started!

Here’s the original template I used and the resulting layout:

dst-template-fun-img01dst-template-fun-img01b
Tutorial:

Method One: Flip the Template

  • Open (File > Open) the layered template file with which you would like to work.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose File > Duplicate and click OK. (Photoshop: Choose Image > Duplicate.)
  • Close the original file.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose Image > Rotate > Flip Horizontal. (Photoshop: Choose Image > Image Rotation > Flip Canvas Horizontal.)
  • Choose File > Save.
  • In the dialog box, choose a name and location for the new template and click Save.

Note: When naming the new template, I simply added the word “flipped” to the end of the original template name. This helps me keep track of who designed the original template so that I can give proper credit when I post my layout in online galleries.

Here is my flipped template and the resulting layout:

dst-template-fun-img02dst-template-fun-img02b

Method Two: Rotate the Template

  • Open the layered template file with which you would like to work.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose File > Duplicate and click OK. (Photoshop: Choose Image > Duplicate.)
  • Close the original file.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose Image > Rotate > 90º Right. (Photoshop: Choose Image > Image Rotation > 90º CW.)
  • Choose File > Save.
  • In the dialog box, choose a name and location for the new template and click Save.

Here is my rotated template and the resulting layout:

dst-template-fun-img03dst-template-fun-img03b

Method Three: Shrink the Template

  • Open the layered template file with which you would like to work.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose File > Duplicate and click OK. (Photoshop: Choose Image > Duplicate.)
  • Close the original file.
  • Get the Move tool.
  • In the Tool Options, uncheck Auto Select Layer. (Photoshop: Uncheck Auto-Select.)
  • In the Layers panel, while holding down the Ctrl key (Mac: Cmd key), click on each of the layers that you would like to shrink to activate them. I mainly like to shrink photos and element clusters, but you can shrink any parts of the template that you choose.
  • Press Ctrl T (Mac: Cmd T) to get the Transform options.
  • On the document, click on a corner handle of the Bounding Box and drag inward to shrink the activated layers. (Photoshop: Hold down the Shift key while resizing to maintain proportion.)
  • Click and drag inside the Bounding Box to reposition the resized layers as desired. Double click inside the Bounding Box to accept the transformation.
  • In the Menu Bar, choose File > Save.
  • In the dialog box, choose a name and location for the new template and click Save.

Here is my new template and the resulting layout. After I resized my chosen template layers, I also duplicated them and created a new cluster on the other side of my layout.

dst-template-fun-img04dst-template-fun-img04b

Of course, you could always flip your template vertically, or you could rotate to the left (counterclockwise), or to 180º. The possibilities are endless! So, don’t ever feel restricted by a template or that once you’ve used it, you can’t use it again. Play around and have fun with your templates. I promise you’ll love the results!

Credits:
Digi Scrap Tutorial: Fun with Templates by Lydia Tarbox
Template: Count the Ways by Carol Gilmour
Kits: Sweet Comforts by Shabby Miss Jenn (January 2014 Premier kit); Once Upon a Christmas: Crafting by Kristin Cronin-Barrow; Legacy of Love by Kristin Cronin-Barrow; Autumn Days by Kristin Cronin-Barrow
Other Elements: Just Distressed Out Transparencies 15 by Just Jaimee; Layer Edge Borders Script by Just Jaimee
Fonts: DJB I Love Me Some Lydia Script; DJB I Love Me Some Lydia Print; Great Vibes; The Dorothy

Download this Digi Scrap Tutorial

7 Responses

  1. Geri
    | Reply

    I never thought of shrinking templates to use more than once on a page, thanks!

  2. Shirl
    | Reply

    I definitely needed this reminder to utilize the templates that I already have to its fullest. I will print out the multiple ways and place it right next to my monitor. Lydia, I know the diversity of templates, but too often fail to use it. I had basically given up on templates; so, you have positively breathe new life into my template stash. Happy 2014 with multiple Blessings. 😉

  3. Rose Leontini
    | Reply

    Thanks Lydia, you have given me a wealth of ideas to try out on unused templates that are just sitting in folders unused.

  4. Diane
    | Reply

    This has been a wonderful tutorial…I so often forget the templates and struggle, at times, to come up with a LO for my photos. I am very impressed as to how different these three LO’s are…lovely!

  5. […] Fun with Templates – 1 freebie(s)? […]

  6. arkiegma
    | Reply

    I am so glad to learn some newer ways to use templates… especially shrinking and duplicating them. Thanks so much!!!

  7. Tammy Graf
    | Reply

    Thanks for great examples of how to extend our templates!

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