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Photoshop Guides and Smart Guides are tools which allow us to easily align shapes and/or selections.  I use them quite a bit, but last week I discovered something new about them!

I did a search on our Studio blog to see if previous authors have written about Smart Guides.  I found a tutorial written by Steph (October, 2012), ” Do you Smart Guide?”, which beautifully explains why we would want to use Smart Guides and how to do so.

I found another tutorial by written by Toiny (March 2012) on “Using Guides to Align an Alpha.” Her tutorial shows one of the ways that Guides can assist us in digital scrapbooking.  Imagine my surprise when I saw that this tutorial also included the “new-to-me” thing that I learned this week!

I actually remember reading Toiny’s tutorial in 2012. I didn’t remember the little nugget of information about how to place a New Guide.

I  invite you to read the tutorials by Steph and Toiny to learn something new, or refresh your memory of things perhaps forgotten (like me!).

For today, here are 7 additional tips to help you when working with Guides or Smart Guides.

1.  Guides and Smart Guide colors are preset by Adobe.  If you prefer them to be a different color, you can easily change them by going to: Edit > Preferences > Guides


Then use the drop-down Box to choose the color of your choice.  Click OK on the far right. (Not visible in the image below).  Now your Guides and/or Smart Guides will be tailored exactly to your taste and visual preference.


2.  Steph shared with us how to turn Smart Guides on. Toiny shared with us how to turn Guides on and off, and how to insert a guide precisely where you want it by using the New Guide Tool.  Here’s another way to access Guides.

Follow the path: View > Rulers to turn the Rulers on.  This will place Rulers along the top and left hand edges of your document.

Click on the Move tool in the Toolbox on the left.  Next place your cursor right along the edge of either ruler; left click and holding your mouse button down, drag into the document.  A guide will follow your mouse. Drag the Guide into position, then let go of your mouse.  If you decide you would like to reposition it, click on the Guide and drag it where you would like it to be.


3.  If you would like to view your page without the Guide, you can hide it by using the keyboard shortcut:  Control + H.  If you want to see the Guide again, click Control + H a second time to make the Guide visible once more.

4.  Once you get all of the Guides in place that you would like to use, you may lock their placement by following this path:  View > Lock Guides.  This will prevent you from accidentally selecting a Guide, instead of an element, that you wish to move.

5.  Once you are finished working, you can go to View > Clear Guides to remove all the Guides at once.

6.  If you would like to remove just one Guide (as long as they are not yet locked into position), click on the Move Tool in the toolbox and drag the Guide back to the Ruler.

7.  And finally, if you are dragging a vertical or horizontal Guide and decide you would like it in the opposite position (a vertical Guide to be a horizontal Guide, or vice-versa), press Alt while still dragging the Guide.  Vertical Guides will become horizontal and horizontal Guides will become vertical.  Now THAT is pretty cool!

Photoshop Elements Users:  All of these options are also available to you with the exception of:  (1) You cannot change the color of your Smart Guides, only your Guides, (2) the keyboard shortcut Control + H is not available to you.  (EDIT: Oct 27, 2014:  Thanks to Renee for sharing the keyboard shortcut:  Control + ; (Control + semi-colon), which will hide Smart Guides in PSE.)

That’s it for today!  I hope you enjoy working with Guides and Smart Guides and find multiple ways to use them as you scrapbook!

The beautiful cluster pictured in this tutorial was created by Pierrette (Fancy Bird Design).  It coordinates with the newly released “Misty Autumn,” a collaboration between Fancy Bird Design and myself, SnickerdoodleDesignsEnjoy introductory pricing through October 26th. 

Start scrapping your Fall photos with our gift to you!  Download HERE or by clicking on the image below.


I’ll see you next week!

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Today, we’re going to learn how to use a Quick Page. Not only how to add your photos, but also how to add a little extra to make it your own! And, I even have a FREEBIE for you too!

Let’s get started! First, you will want to open up your quick page and the photos you are using. The quick page I’m using today has spots for 2 photos.



Next, choose the first photo and drag it onto your quick page. Then move it so it is under the quick page layer.



See those lines around the border of the photo? Use the corners to resize the photo to fit the opening. Hold shift while sizing down, and move it around until it’s where you want it.


Repeat this same process with your additional images.



At this point, you could be done. It’s a pre-decorated page, your photos are in it and it looks good!


But, I want to add a title and the date to my page. I am going to use an Alpha to add a title, mix it with some fonts and add the date in too!

I found an alpha I liked (this came free in last week’s Digital Scrapbooking Studio newsletter and coordinates with Nibbles Skribbles Winter Woodland collection, the same kit the page was made from).  But, you can use any alpha from your stash!



I dragged the letters I needed onto my page, arranged them and added a drop shadow to them. Next, I’m going to add a bit to the title with a font. I chose the font I wanted, used my color picker to choose a color from the page, a nice red, and typed my words. I then lowered the opacity of the font layer a little (to 75%) so that you could see some of the texture through the words.



I added 2 words to the title, as well as the date the photos were taken, and my page is finished. In just a few steps, and a total of maybe 10 minutes I have a stunning page that is customized and ready for my album!




Give it a try, just for you, here is the Quick Page I used in this tutorial, it’s created with Winter Woodland by Nibbles Skribbles – which is part of theStudio Coordianted collection and is just $1 per pack until the 15th! Just click the image to download your gift!




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One of the things that intrigued me most, when I was first learning to use Photoshop, was the Liquify Filter.  If  I didn’t like the way something looked  in a photograph, I could fix it.  A quick tuck here and there, and that not-so-perfect photo could be looking pretty good!

Today I want to share with you how you can make the Liquify Filter work for you when you are creating a layout.

As a designer, it’s sometimes difficult (for me) to make certain choices when designing a kit.  For example, will a straight ribbon be more useful? A curly one?  Perhaps one with a wave?

Let’s look at a straight ribbon today and see what we can do with it, using the Liquify Filter.  By familiarizing ourselves with this Filter, we can make slight changes to elements when we need to.

The Liquify Filter can be located under Filter > Liquify. I have found this to be the case with most versions of Photoshop, as well as Photoshop Elements.  Here is a screen shot from CS6:


I love the straight ribbon pictured below but if I wanted to add a charm to it, it wouldn’t look very realistic, because of the thickness of the ribbon.  So let’s see what the Liquify Filter can do to help.


I clicked on the Ribbon layer to make it active; then went to Filter > Liquify.  A new screen opened.  The Liquify tools are on the left, and with other options on the right.


On the left side, we have the: Forward Warp Tool, Reconstruct, Pucker, Bloat, Push Left, Hand, and Zoom Tools.

Without going into the Advanced Mode, we have 2 choices to make on the right side: Brush Size and Brush Pressure (if using a tablet).

The Forward Warp and Pucker Tools are what I want to look at today.  The Forward Warp Tool pushes pixels in front of your brush, as you nudge them along. Let’s start with that one.

I chose a large brush (1350 pixels), because I would like to create the impression that my ribbon is compressed where I would like to attach the charm. I placed the cursor under the ribbon and gently nudged the ribbon up; then placed the cursor above the ribbon and gently nudged the ribbon down.  I like to take multiple small “passes” at this, so might do this 5 or 6 times, in slow nudges.


This is looking pretty good, but we can make it look better by switching to the Pucker Tool (3rd tool down from the top).

After selecting the Pucker Tool, I placed the cross-hairs right in the middle of the area I wanted more tightly compressed. I left-clicked my mouse button and didn’t let go. The Pucker Tool slowly compressed, or moved the pixels toward the center of the brush tip, until I let go.

If I didn’t like the results, I could click on the Reconstruct Options or Restore All button, to begin again.

Before leaving the Liquify Filter Window, I clicked back on the Forward Warp tool and put a few slight bends in the ribbon in other areas, just for a little more interest.

And here is the realistic-looking  result:


For more fun with the Liquify Filter, experiment with the other Tool options. They can be quite fun!

The paper, ribbon and charm used in this tutorial are included in my newly released Cool Beans personal use kit.

Robyn made a beautiful cluster for you to download today.  You can click HERE or on the image below to download.  If you are wondering how all of these elements go together, be sure to take just a minute to read my Cool Beans product description and take a look at the Tip Cards.


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Create your own Inspirational Stones

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 23 August 2014
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Good morning!  Today I would like to share with you how easy it is to create your own inspirational stones! Last week, I released Rocky Mountain Dreams, a personal-use scrapbook kit. One of the kit extras was Inspirational Stones. As I was choosing which words I wanted to use for this project, I kept thinking […]

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Adjusting the Pattern Size in Photoshop Layer Styles

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 21 June 2014
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Over the past 2 weeks, we have been discussing Photoshop Styles.  In case you missed those posts, you can catch up with us here: Using Styles to Stretch your Digi-Stash Exploring Patterns in Photoshop Styles Today, we are going to explore adjusting pattern sizes in Photoshop Styles.  For the purposes of this tutorial, I am […]

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Using Styles to Stretch your Digi-Stash

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 7 June 2014
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I’m a big fan of Photoshop Styles.  I love to create them, use them, and try to convince everyone I know that they’re one of the best Photoshop tools there is!  Today I will show you how you can get some extra mileage out of any Styles you already own, and how to look at […]

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Using Blend Modes in Photoshop

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 31 May 2014

Using Blend Modes in Photoshop gives us many options for creativity.  Blend modes change how two layers interact with one another.  Results depend upon many factors….. which can make using blend modes (somewhat) unpredictable but fun! For the purposes of this tutorial, I am using Photoshop CS6.  The Blend Mode option is located at the […]

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How to easily recolor an object in Photoshop and Photoshop Elements

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 19 April 2014
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Last week we explored Creating a Custom Color Palette.  I hope you have had fun this week exploring that technique.  Today we are going to explore how to easily recolor an object. As with most things in Photoshop, there are multiple ways to accomplish one goal.  Today I am going to explore just one of […]

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Adding Shadows to Lace in Photoshop

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 15 March 2014
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St. Patricks Day is right around the corner!  In 2011 I visited Ireland and fell in love – with the people, with the beautiful country, and with Irish Lace. Last week I released some Irish Lace products, and I have received multiple emails this week asking me the best way to shadow the lace.  Today […]

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March 10 – What’s New in CU {Freebie}

by Nibbles Skribbles 10 March 2014
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New CU Goodies in our store – and the best news, is they are all on sale (for a limited time)!   From ADBDesigns   From BooLand Designs From Janet B Designs   From Zesty Digi Designs   From Manu Scraps     And, Diane (ADB Designs) has this freebie for us today, just click the image to download and […]

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