Digital Scrapbooking layout question

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Digital Scrapbooking layout question

I was wondering about everyone's techniques for combining papers, embellishments and photos?!

I usually stay within the same kit. I don't know why I seem to be able to mix and match real papers, but digital presents a problem. I find that templates actually help me too when doing a layout. I can quickly see if that colour works for where I want to put it.

Ooh, yikes. If by "combining" you mean mixing & matching, I am not good about combining things. I think because I'm very visual, and I need to see everything out & side-by-side. I want to see all my options. It's the one aspect of paper scrapping I miss. As a result, I tend to stick within a kit since I know the colors will work. Yes, I could recolor, etc. But the infinite possibilities overwhelm me pretty quickly. If I bring in an outside element, it's usually something generic & easily customized like a staple, brad, or paperclip.

Thanks Cat and Lady Phillippa. Ive become somewhat overwhelmed by the options.
But im slowly learning that experimenting is key! smiley

I'm one of those oddballs - I rarely keep within a kit, but instead use papers & elements from various kits/designers when making a LO. I started doing that after I started participating in slow scraps (in an attempt to get me digiscrapping and challenge myself) & found I didn't have all the things I needed in one kit to follow the slow scrap directions. Since I hadn't started organizing my stuff yet, it was at that point that I decided to organize not based on designer but by theme (seasonal, holiday, kid, etc.). Made it helpful for when I participated in those things & for digiscrapping.

Anyhow, what I usually do is look at my photo - look at the colors in it & what the overall theme is before I select anything. For example, I have a lot of pictures with the ocean or waterfront in the background because we used to live in Maine & we often made trips to the beach or a park on the waterfront. When I scrap those pictures I usually use colors/elements that compliment those pictures (blues, nautical, beachy stuff). And when we've been camping or hiking, I tend to do a lot of stuff in various shades of brown or green & bring in other colors in the photo via elements or paper (like maybe I'll bring in a bit of bright pink because of a rosehip bush in the picture or a bit of red because the lighthouse house had a red roof). smiley

I'm getting ready to start tagging all of my digiscrap stuff through picasa. I'll let y'all know how that works out with making it easier for me to pick outside of one kit.

@J. Ajabad, yes, it's all about letting yourself have fun! I would also say organization, too. I thought about starting a project like Amber talked about with organizing elements/papers into color themes, but I just felt like I was doing more organizing than scrapping, so I said I'll just be happy with how I work now. ha! But if you can start early on with organization that helps you utilize the variety in your stash, you'll have a head start!

Amber, my kits on Picasa aren´t even tagged and it already helps a lot. Because it at least narrow options. If you type color: color name in Picasa, it usually shows you the things of the color you need. and, sometimes, seaching for, let´s say, "frame", or "butterfly" helps to see the options together. Then, I open it through "show in folder" option, so I know what is the designer and the kit, to put on the credits.

When I first started out I did more mix-n-match, but most of the time now I stick within a kit or two.

@ Lady Phillippa - If you find that the infinite number of possible colours is overwhelming, you could limit yourself to the Pantone colour set. I can't speak for other programs, but I know that you can access them in Photoshop. From your Color Picker dialog box, you can select the button that says Color Libraries and then choose a Pantone set from the dropdown menu (I tend to stick with matte). Or, you can just Google search for a Pantone colour set and colour pick from it.

I am very new at the recolouring concept, but I have found that limiting myself to Pantone has helped a lot with feeling overwhelmed with the colours. And I could just be kidding myself, but the fact that they're print standards helps assure me that I'm not picking colours that will print poorly.

@Mollie, Thanks I'll look into that! What gets really overwhelming about the process is that if I step outside a kit, the possibilities of choice become infinite. It isn't the recoloring so much as the choosing which to recolor. For instance, If I want to choose a paper, I have just plain overlays that I could use to make my own paper... or I could recolor something from the free-floating paper packs I have oodles of...or I could choose something from another kit. Once I start to say "well, I can recolor it myself" then how do I choose among them? Or I could try to find "a flower"...or "a ribbon"...or "a button"... or "a brad"...etc. from another kit. I could spend hours just finding and recoloring two or three items and not actually putting the page together (which is the more important part for me). Recoloring can be a fun challenge, but when I sit down to scrap & don't actually get a page done, I'm disappointed with myself. ha!

My most recent page is one of the few times I actually went into my stash to pull additional ellies for it. However, I didn't dig into other kits, I stuck to my folders of basics that didn't belong to kits, of which I have just a few. A lot of times they are actually things from Pixelscrapper, as Marisa has all kinds of simple, foundational elements to build on.

OK...this is a technical suggestion. You can use Windows Live Photo Gallery and "tag" your items. You can tag them by designer name or kit name or by color or by element (paper/brad/button/ribbon/etc.) - however will make it easiest for you to find them. That way, if you want to mix and match/combine, it might be easier to find things! Just a suggestion (and I know there are other programs that will tag, too, but I found WLPG to be best for me).

I also like Windows live gallery for tagging. I use it a lot and have a bunch of stuff to tag to get caught up. It is a life saver when I'm searching for things and don't want to spend forever going through the thousands of files I have...

I enjoy the mix and match's all part of the creative process. Artists mix up their paint pallettes; scrappers mix up their papers through different kits!

Some great tips everyone. Mix & match. Tagging files with Windows Live Photo Gallery sounds like a great way to stay organized.

I can understand the frustration. When I began digital scrapbooking I collected a lot of free papers. I have finally organized them into patterns and solids. I have found that when I start a layout I look first to the picture for inspiration. How does the memory make me feel. I then choose a bold pattern first, then something more subtle, then usually a solid. I try to look at the tones- pastels and bolds don't work well together for instance. I peruse galleries to see what others are doing, what works and what doesn't. Someone mentioned Pantone for color selection. Adobe kuler is another one that is great. I've also begun recoloring elements when necessary as well.