Tutorial Tuesday | Converting PSD to TIFF

Welcome to another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog! Today, I’m going to share a really simple trick for saving space on your computer’s hard drive… converting PSD files to TIFF format!

If you have templates or layouts saved on your computer in PSD format, you know that those PSD files can take up a lot of space on your hard drive. Did you know that TIFF files take up less space if saved correctly — and they are just as high-quality, and work just as well? Today, I’m going to show you how you can easily and quickly convert all of your PSD files into TIFFs simultaneously! That’s right! With Photoshop, you can batch-convert all of them in one fell swoop. I kid you not! It’s easy if you follow these step-by-step instructions… so let’s begin…

1. You need to create an action that saves files in TIFF format correctly. To do that, open one of your layered PSD image files.

2. With that file open, go to your actions panel and click on the ‘Create New Action’ button, name it something like ‘Save As TIFF,’ and hit the Record button.

3. Next go to File > Save As > Select Format ‘TIFF’ …select both ‘LZW’ (for Image Compression) and ‘ZIP (slower saves, smaller files)’ for Layer Compression (the other settings can be left at their defaults — Interleaved for Pixel Order, and IBM PC or Macintosh for Byte Order)… and then click ‘OK.’ Save your new TIFF template.

4. Next, you want to finish the action you were recording… by clicking on the square ‘Stop Action’ button. You have just created your action.

5. Now, to use that action to help with the batch process… go to File > Automate > Batch.

6. Select the action you just created in the ‘Action’ drop-down list.

7. I put all of the PSD templates I wanted to convert in one folder on my hard drive; this made it much easier to do all of them at one time. Once you know where your templates are, go to ‘Source’ and select the folder that contains the layered PSD files you want to convert. If you have subfolders with files in them, you could also check ‘Include All Subfolders’ (see image example, below).

8. Select where you want the new TIFF files to go, once converted. I put them in a separate folder, but you don’t have to.

9. Please make sure you check ‘Override Action “Save As” Commands’ — to ensure that it ignores the filename and destination folder used to create the action.

10. Click OK to start the batch process. If you have a lot of files to convert (like me!), this could take quite a bit of time to complete.

 

Once the action finishes running and all of your files have been converted — that’s it! You are done! For this tutorial, I have converted templates from TDP Designer Akizo Designs… but you can obviously convert any PSD files. I even converted all my layouts from PSD to TIFF, and it worked beautifully (such a great space-saver!)!

You can see in my screenshot, below, that my PSD files were a total of 676 MB… but after converting, my TIFF files were only 272 MB. I saved a ton of space on my hard drive by doing this!  Also, I have the added benefit of being able to see my templates and layouts as thumbnails (without the generic PS icon). That in itself was a great reason for me to convert these files!

If you’re storing a bunch of templates and/or digital layouts in layered format… you will definitely want to give this a try! 🙂


Robin

About the author  Robin is a member of the creative team here at The Digital Press. A wife of 26 years and a mom of 4 crazy children (3 in college and 1 still at home), she says that her life occurs mostly in the car as she transports said crazy kids to their many, many homeschool activities. When not driving, Robin loves to make her family cringe by pulling out her camera again (and again, and again…).

 

Tutorial Tuesday | How to Make Rain Drops

Hello and welcome to another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog… this time, from the rainy Pacific Northwest! I’m here today to show you a fun trip for creating digital rain drops to add to your projects.

Rain is nothing new to me; having lived in the tropics most of my adult life, I am well accustomed to monsoons! I only recently realized, however, how fun it would be to add “rain” to some of my scrapbooking layouts! In today’s tutorial, I am going to show you an easy way to add a realistic raindrop (or 5) to your projects.

Here is an example, on a layout that I created (see the clear raindrops at the top right, middle left, and lower center-right of the main cluster?)…

[ this layout uses “November” Papers and Elements, by Dunia Designs]

To show you how to do this technique, I am using Photoshop CC (PSCC)… but it should be similar on other versions of Photoshop, as well.

Also, there are a LOT of different ways to do this — but this is one of the easiest methods for beginners (read: it has fewer steps). There are certainly more things you can do to make it look even more realistic, but once you make one, you can easily save it as a PSD file to experiment on.

The beauty of this method is that we are going to leave our little rain drop as a smart object so we can easily move it, rotate it, adjust it, and even duplicate it to create more drops or various shapes and sizes!

So, here we go…

STEP 1:

You can either start this on your finished flattened page, or in your layered working document.

Either way, find the layer you want to add your droplet to and ‘create a new layer.’

For this example, I am adding water drops to the wood background, so I have selected that layer.

STEP 2:

Select the Elliptical SHAPE tool (not the marquee at the top) and set the settings to NO stroke – with a black to white gradient fill. You can choose the direction depending on your light source, but here are mine…

If you want your drop to have a more organic shape, select the layer your Ellipse is on, go to Edit > Transform > Warp. You can then manipulate the circle to create a more flattened or oblong shape like I did below.

STEP 3:

Once you have your shape the way you want it to be,  we are ready to give it a 3D effect.

Open the BLENDING MODES/LAYER STYLE control panel by right clicking on your droplet layer in the layers panel, and selecting Blending Options. We will do the next few steps in this panel…

First, change your layer Style to OVERLAY (you can see below I forgot to do this in some of my images – it is much easier to see the effects you are creating if you have your layer blending mode set correctly!)…

Now, add a small Drop Shadow to your shape. The direction of your shadow for your drop should match the light source and shadows from the rest of your page.

You can play with the settings to get the shadow just right for your shape, or simply use these…

Drop Shadow: blending mode = linear burn, opacity = 32, angle = 90, distance = 8, spread = 0, size = 6.

You can also always go back and change it later if you need to.

STEP 4:

Now we are going to give it an Inner Glow – to start shaping a more rounded 3D look. Keep playing with those settings.

Inner Glow: blending mode = linear burn, opacity = 33, noise = 0, choke = 0, size = 2.

STEP 5:

Still in your LAYER STYLE panel… we will add an Inner Shadow.

Again, you can play with the settings to see what makes it look the most realistic or go with these

Inner Shadow: blending mode = linear burn, opacity = 16, angle = -53, distance = 3, size = 3 and press OK

STEP 6:

Finally, to finish off our droplet we will add some highlights.

To do this add another new layer above your droplet and using a small soft edged paint brush add a few white highlights to the edge of your droplet where the light source should be coming from.  The size will vary depending on the size of your droplet, but you definitely want the hardness set to 0.

If you find that your painted highlights look too harsh, you can soften them with a blur filter in your filter gallery.

STEP 10:

Play around with it!

I will be honest with you… every time I make a new one of these droplets, something looks weird at first. For example — as I walked through this one the first time, I realized I didn’t like it (which is why you might see a few different shapes in the images, above!).

I want to encourage you to play around with the settings from above. Resize your shape — warp it into a different shape — change the size of the shadows or the blending modes to see what works best with your background image — etc.

You might notice in my finished page, above, the droplets look a little different on the lighter background paper than they do on top of the the darker one; that is one of the things that will affect your creation settings.

I gave you the basic steps, but you can definitely make little changes that really will make big differences in your droplet.

I really think that has to do with the fact that different sized and shaped droplets need different settings, so if something is looking off – play around with your different layer style settings until you get a droplet that you really like.  Change the inner glow color to white, or the blending mode to screen.  Move your droplets to different layers in your layout. Duplicate the layer and change the shape.  The options are almost endless!

Just keep duplicating that image and changing settings to see what works best for you!

Here are some changes I made pretty quickly by copying and altering my first droplet. All of these droplets came from that first shape.

Also, keep in mind that what is behind the droplet will also change the look. If your droplet is over text, or an image, you might want to create a birds-eye effect to create that magnified look water gives… etc. (but that is another tutorial for another day!). 🙂

I hope you’ll give this fun technique a try! Have fun experimenting… and see just how fun it can be to “play in the water”!


ErinErin is an artsy crafty kind of girl who is currently dabbling in far too many things, but is working hard to enjoy every moment of it, while avoiding the rain, which is difficult due to living in the land of many rains. She is slowly learning to use her smart phone to capture all the fun little bits of life that would otherwise go unremembered in the busy craziness that is raising a family!

Hybrid How-To | DIY Hybrid Kids’ Games

Hello, and welcome to another edition of our always-popular Hybrid How-To series here on The Digital Press blog!

I’m here today to show you how to use your favorite digital supplies to create kids’ games…such as the fun BINGO game you see pictured below.

This project is soooo simple, and really just requires a BINGO template and your favorite digital kits to create.

Let’s get started!

The first thing you’ll want to do is decide on a theme for your game cards, if desired, and choose a digital kit (or a selection of kits) that contain images that you’d like to use. For my Halloween-themed BINGO cards, I chose an awesome new collection called Spellbound that was designed by Little Lamm Paper Co., shown here…

I used the images contained within this collection to get started on filling up my BINGO card. I chose to make 6 different cards, and in doing so I placed the different images/stickers (like the tickets, candy, bat, ghost, potion and jack-o-lantern) into different spots on each card, filling all of the squares of a simple BINGO template I’d created (one of which I’ve shown here)…

When I found that I needed more images than the stickers I found in the kit, I decided to look at using the word strips and stamps, as well. I liked the tickets, the two flairs, and a circle with “Happy Halloween” printed on it… so I used those, as well. I also decided to use two ‘swatches’ of paper to represent a spider web and the color orange.

I also used a dingbat font (you can find some really great dingbat fonts for FREE on the internet) for shapes such as the cute black cat you see in the 3rd row of the card shown above. It started out as a plain black font, however… and I wanted to jazz it up a bit. In this next screenshot, you can see I found dingbat font shape I wanted — a cat — and then I simplified the layer and clipped a paper to it (the black/grey chevron pattern) from the Spellbound kit I was using…

I also added in an orange paper behind the cat shape for the eyes and just erased the parts I didn’t need… so the orange would show through the “holes” where the eyes were in the dingbat font. Cute, right? Such a simple way to add a cat into my BINGO card even though the actual digital collection I was using didn’t have one. 🙂 (I repeated this same process to create a witch’s hat and a flying witch).

As I worked, I found that this project was a wonderful way to re-think my digital products, and was a great way to re-purpose a bunch of things! For instance, I used two chipboard numbers (“31”) from a girl-themed kit to stand for the day of the month/Halloween. I also was able to use shapes like the circle moon and star from other kits, re-purposing them for this project.

Here’s a look at a bunch of my cards after I was finished creating them in Photoshop, and printing them out…

Aren’t these cards fun?

I hope today’s tutorial inspires you to re-think your own digital supply stash, and have fun playing with your digital products to make something completely new, fun, and festive — something as simple as an everyday BINGO-themed game!

Don’t forget to visit the CROSSWORD SECTION in The Digital Press forum, and jump into this month’s Hybrid Challenge if you are thinking of trying out this project. You can earn points toward discounts & FREEBIES! I hope that you will join in!


00 Headshot

About the Author  Sabrina is an avid documenter of life — herself, her children, her hubby, and her everyday life. There is beauty in the ordinary moments, and they are what she loves to scrap. She is also always on the hunt for a quiet, peaceful moment… and she usually spends it reading or playing at her crafty desk.

Tutorial Tuesday | The Lasso Tool

Happy Tutorial Tuesday!  Heidi Nicole here for a quick tip on a simple way we can make the most of our digital products.  If you’re anything like me, you’re always looking for ways to use your products in multiple projects.  I’m going to introduce you to my little friend, the lasso tool.  How will that help me ‘stretch my digital stash’, you ask?  Well, have you ever wanted to use an awesome set of sequins, but they don’t quite fit where you want them to?  Or, have you ever found amazing word art, yet you want to separate the words to fit the space where your title should be?  Well, using the lasso tool can help you use those elements, yet change them to meet your needs.

I use this tool regularly on scatters, sequins, word art, and alphas (see tutorial on Alpha Sheets here).  Basically, you can use it on anything that is packaged together, that you want to separate.  I’m going to show you a quick way to do this.

First of all, there’s a couple different options when it comes to this particular tool.

  • Lasso Tool:  This is useful for drawing free form around the object that you would like selected and/or moved.
  • Polygonal Lasso:  This one is useful for drawing straight lines around the object or selection.
  • Magnetic Lasso:  This tool is useful for objects with a defined border.  The border ‘snaps to’ the edges of the defined object.

(My personal favorite is the polygonal lasso, but I urge you to experiment with all of them.  They are each very useful in their own right.)

I’m going to use the lasso tool to separate this scatter from Audacity by Anita Designs and Karla Noel.

Step 1:  Choose which lasso tool you would like to work with.  To see what is available, click the little arrow in the lower right corner with the right mouse, which will open up the lasso options.

Step 2:  Draw around the section you would like to move.  You will see the marching ants as you draw.

Step 3:  Choose the move tool, grab the selection, and simply move it to where you want it.  Deselect (Ctrl-D), add shadows, and move on!  Simple, right?

 

This is a useful tool to make the most of your digital stash.  There are limitless possibilities, and once you start using it, I know you will find it to be useful in many ways… from stretching your digital stash to saving you time.  Just another tool in your digital toolkit!  Happy scrapping!

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Heidi Nicole

About the Author  Heidi Nicole is happily married to an amazing man, a step mama to 2 wonderful kiddos, and mama to 3 sweet and sassy furbabies.  She’s a radiation therapist by day and creator of pretty things by night (she’s pretty confident that she’s hit super hero status, but refuses to wear a cape.)  She loves cats and huskies, coffee, audio books, FRIENDS reruns, St. Louis Blues hockey, cooking, baking, and traveling.  Oh, and wine… she really likes wine.  She lives a normal and happy life, and enjoys all the absolutely extraordinary people she gets to share it with on a daily basis!

Tutorial Tuesday | Using the Trim Command in Photoshop

Welcome to another edition of our Tutorial Tuesday series here on The Digital Press blog! Today, I’m going to share some information about using the “Trim” command to easily remove transparent pixels in Photoshop. It’s one of those handy tools that I was thrilled to find, a while back… as it’s a super easy Photoshop command that packs a big punch!

Before we get started, I wanted to share a couple of examples of occasions when I like to use the “Trim” command:

  1. I’ve created an element cluster or title on a large 12×12 canvas. I’ve used it on my page and I want to save it for possible use on a future page.
  2. I’ve got a single element that resides on a much larger canvas than the element requires. When I look through my digi stash I’ve got some folders of elements that came saved on 12×12 canvases. I like to quickly Trim those elements so that I have a better view of it in my Mac’s “Finder” window.

Here’s how to use the Trim command…

1. As shown here, use the “Image” drop down menu, and choose > Trim…

2. In the Trim dialog box, select the option “Transparent Pixels” as shown here…

This will help you achieve your goal of “shrinking” the image canvas by leaving behind an image containing all of the nontransparent pixels.

3. Select one or more areas of the image to trim away. Because I wanted to end up with the smallest canvas possible, you’ll see (in the screenshot ahove) that I selected them all  — Top, Bottom, Left, and Right.

4.  Click OK and you’re done! Yup. That’s it! This is what you’ll be left with…

Once you’ve finished trimming your image, don’t forget to save it. If you want to maintain the layers, save it as a PSD file — or if you want a flattened (one layer) copy, you can save it as a PNG file.

*NOTE* I created the element cluster I used for this tutorial’s example, shown above, using the September 2018 Make It Count element set by Anita Designs.

Another thing… as I mentioned above, I’ve found over the years that I’ve acquired a good number of different elements that are saved on large 12 x 12 canvases, but I prefer to store them on my hard drive without all of the unnecessary empty pixels (in large part because the thumbnail image my computer displays for me is much easier to see if the image is cropped nice and tight!). Therefore… I wrote myself a Photoshop action using the “Trim” command, with the addition of “save” and “close” commands. It saves me tons of time when cleaning up those folders & cropping down my image files.

If you are interested in learning how to write a Photoshop action for yourself… click HERE to read a tutorial I wrote here on The Digital Press blog about a year ago that explains the process of writing an action.

So that’s it! Such a simple, and yet useful, command to use when you’re working in Photoshop! If you have any questions, please feel free to post them here in the comments.

Until next time… happy scrapping!


BarbaraAbout the Author  Barbara is a member of the creative team here at The Digital Press. She’s married, has two awesome kids (a 21 year old son and an 19 year old daughter) as well as an 11 year old adorable Soft Coated Wheaton Terrier pup. You’d think with all these ages posted here about her family she’d tell you her age but NOPE … not gonna happen! 😆 

Feature Friday | creashens

Happy Friday, everyone, and welcome to another edition of our Feature Friday series here on The Digital Press blog! This week, I’m thrilled to put the spotlight on the amazingly talented Shen Guthrie of creashens. Shen has been featured here on the blog a few times already in the past (you can learn more about her by reading her first feature article from 2016 HERE, and her 2017 feature HERE ).

In order to learn more about Shen, personally, this time around… I asked her to share 5 Things We Might Not Already Know About Her

  1. She has a secret crush on Paul Rudd.
  2. She has misophonia (people who are sensitive to selective sounds; a.k.a. “sound rage”).
  3. She would choose rain over sunshine any day.
  4. She loves plants but always kills them.
  5. She always think of things that she needs to remember, and then forgets to write them down… and doesn’t remember, in the end.

Fun trivia! Ha ha …who would’ve thought?! 🙂

For those who have not yet had a chance to take a look at the creashen’s shop here at The Digital Press… it’s full of beautiful color palettes and a fantastic mix of whimsical and realistic elements (not to mention the incredible patterned papers). In addition to her stunning kits, she also offers a lot of other stand-alone embellishment packs, unique alphas, and other essential bits and bobs.

I had a really hard time picking out my favorite products, but here’s a peek at just a few of them…

To give you a look at some of her products in action, I’ve also compiled this fun sampling of digital layouts that were created with her designs…

It was so fun to get a little peek into Shen’s world today! And now that you’re excited about her gorgeous designs… I’ve got some great news! Her entire shop HERE at The Digital Press will be marked down 30% OFF during her feature week (the sale will end at 11:59pm ET on Thursday 10/25).

Additionally, Shen has a special Free-with-Purchase offer for everyone this week! Don’t miss out on this opportunity to stock up on your favorite products from creashens … and you can also snag this brand-new (just released today!) digital kit from her shop — Smile — for FREE with any $10+ purchase in her shop! (again, the offer is valid through 11:59pm ET on Thursday 10/25).


Christelle

ABOUT THE AUTHOR  Christelle is a creative team member at The Digital Press, happily creating for all the talented designers. She’s a pharmacist from South Africa, who recently relocated to the UK with her husband.  Christelle loves scrapping her 3 lovely step-children and 4 beautiful nieces and all of their (mis)adventures. If she could, she’d travel all the time, but for now she makes do with traveling as often as possible. Her other hobbies include machine embroidery and sewing, as well as reading soppy romance!