I get questions frequently about my process. Where do you start? How do you proceed? And lastly, Can I come over and have you teach me in person?
My process isn’t a set in stone kind of deal, but it definitely follows a pattern that goes something like this:
1. Have story in mind.
2. Have photos in mind.
3. Have design in mind.
That said, I don’t like to make a page if I don’t have a legitimate story to back it up. Now back in the Olden Days aka B.C. (Before Clean&Simple), I scrapped just for the sake of scrapping, and made slightly empty and meaningless gems like this:
I’m sorry? What ‘gifts’? How long did it take me to come up with THAT title. Nice.
The pattern here is the same. No context. No story. No heart. No soul.
Sure, the kid was cute—despite looking a tad constipated on the Flower of Youth page—but you see my point, yes?
So I start with a story most of the time, then see if I can find photos to match. It goes like this:
Last weekend, I had Aidan take some pictures of me in my bedroom to tie in with my monthly weight loss shots. I want a head shot each month, taken in the same place, to also help me visually document this journey. She took this photo:
Then Dan popped his head into the room, and because the light was good and because I never take pics of him anymore, I said, “Sit still for a sec,” and took this:
Then Aidan says, “I want a shot with Daddy,” resulting in this shot (post a little skin clean up at the request of the teen-aged girl):
And then I told them both to look up a bit, and what followed was the basis for some really goofy pics, and the impetus for the layout that I’m finally getting around to show you, and that looks like this:
And if you’d like to see how I got from the story and the photos to the final page, as well as learn how to break apart and re-color a PNG, well then I’ve got a video tutorial for you!
If you have any questions, be sure to post in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer.
Note: Keep in mind there are always many different ways to achieve the same results in PSE and PS. For example, you can break apart a PNG by highlighting the works, cutting, and pasting on a new layer too! You just have to move the words back into position.
EDITED TO ADD: Thanks to Robert, who told me this:
Shortcuts to break apart the PNG words onto a new layer: highlight the words as shown in the video, then hit Shift + Cmd + J (cut) onto new layer. SO much simpler. Love learning something new!