Here’s where I’m going to take over with some basic text, because wordy as this is, it’s simply easier to type it all out here than to put this into a graphic. First and foremost, in order to learn a program like Elements or Photoshop or Illustrator, you need two things: practice and patience. I am not formally trained in graphic design or Photoshop; everything on my blog is self taught. I’ve experimented a lot, made notes of what I like on other blogs, and yep, made plenty of (very ugly) mistakes. It’s okay! It’s how you learn. One quote I didn’t incorporate here but which is so true is this one, from Julie:
When are you first learning the Adobe Creative Suite, you can’t expect to create graphics like someone who does that for a living. When you first start, really, just focus on making simple graphics the best you can with clean lines, great color palettes, and basic design elements. You can always learn shortcuts and “flare” as you go along. Sometimes, figuring out one shortcut the first time can take 20 minutes, but then the next time, it will speed up your work ten-fold.
It’s so true. Practice, practice, practice. If you don’t know how to do something, but have seen it done on a layout on another blog, email that blogger and ask them how they did it. Or, you can always Google it! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve googled, “How to do ____ in Photoshop Elements.” There are so many great videos and tutorials out there these days that you can easily find the answer with 5 minutes of research.
With all that being said, here are some screengrabs I put together that show a few of my favorite menus and tips. Ironically, because this is screengrabbed based, it’s not especially pretty:
Get more downloadable blog resources at The B Bar >>
Big Huge Labs
Don’t Fear the Internet videos (recommended by Grace, Stripes and Sequins)
Washi Tape clip art
Vintage Postcard Ephemera Brushes for Photoshop
Vintage Frame Brushes for Photoshop
Tons more downloadable brushes and images for Photoshop (all free!)
The Pioneer Woman Photoshop Action Sets (I LOVE these!)
The typo in Gabrielle’s quote in this post is totally my fault, not hers. A very ironic typo, isn’t it?