How do you track your credits for layouts?

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How do you track your credits for layouts?

No, not the credits here...but when you design, how do you track the credits of any resources you may use? For example, I have tried keeping a text layer within the .psd itself that I will enter resources as I use them (fonts, templates, papers, etc.). I've also tried a text document within the folder I am designing. Don't prefer either, really...but still find it kind of necessary, so I know where I got the idea or resource from (should anything come back later - CYA, ya' know?).

For things I'm designing (and plan on selling or for freebies), I list the credits in my TOU document as I use them. I'm really trying to use only resources now that don't require attribution so that I don't have to worry about forgetting to include credit for something I've used or just make it myself. smiley For layouts (I haven't made a layout in a long time - at least digitally) is using the file info to add my credits. That way it stays with the "photo" all the time.

Cat, that is such a good idea for layouts! I've been saving it in a Word document that I've set up with headings like photo, paper, fonts used, etc, but I'll have to try using the file info.

@Tina: I know someone before mentioned saving a layer in your layout, and adding all your credits to it so it's always with your original layout file. You would just hide that layer before flattening. I also thought someone mentioned that somehow they were able to have each layer that had an element or paper they brought in labeled with the file name, but I can't remember the specifics of how exactly it was done. I will see if I can find this information somewhere and share it if I do, but no promises. I know that was a conversation from MANY months ago, so no sure my brain will remember where I read it. LoL ;-0

I use the method you are referring to Shawna, and I may very well be the person that shared it last time... But my memory is about as goos as yours, so it was probably someone else entirely smiley

In PS (I don't know if it works in other programs) you can drag and drop files like elements and papers onto your layout. If you do, they are automatically turned into a smart layer with the name of the file as the layer name. Which makes it pretty easy to keep track of everything you used - if the designer has been so kind to add their name to the files that is...

ding ding ding... you WIN the prize Melo!!! Queen for the day! I bet it was you but it's been quite a few months since you told me. But I knew it sounded very easy to do when I heard it. LoL smiley

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In PS (I don't know if it works in other programs) you can drag and drop files like elements and papers onto your layout. If you do, they are automatically turned into a smart layer with the name of the file as the layer name. Which makes it pretty easy to keep track of everything you used - if the designer has been so kind to add their name to the files that is...

Yihaa! So where do I collect my prize? smiley

England??? I hear Elizabeth is going on holiday soon. ;-D ha ha ha

Oh, and Tina, to get back to your design question: I tried using the file info, but then I also have to delete all that info when I want to share the file (I'm picky that way - I will giev credit in my TOU, but to have everything in every file feels a little like giving away ALL my secrets). I have two options and am still not completely convinced which one I should stick with: 1. a text file within my folder (usually my TOU with the credits below) 2. Keep a note in Evernote. I tend to collect a couple of 'idea' notes in Evernote for everything I am working on and over time those have evolved into three sorts of notes: general ideas and stuff I think is cool, ideas and inspiration working towards a kit and the kit idea taking more and more shape and form. That last one is also the note that I use to collect resources, just copy-paste the internet link there for the night I am finally ready to work through my to do list.

At the end of the day I still have to get all the info into my TOU/credits though...

Hahaha, where is that like button! smiley

Another way I was keeping track of what resources I was using was to create a "resource" folder in the folder that I had my working files in. I would copy the files I was using into that folder and then I could list them off in my credits, and then delete the folder after I was done with the project. If you do this, just make sure you're pulling over a copy and not moving the file. You don't want to delete your resource files by accident...

I have used all of the above suggestions plus, and still haven't found my "magic bullet" solution. Cat's suggestion above is what I do most of the time, it just doesn't feel like my ultimate solution! Think I will go back to Melo's Evernote method for a while.

Gimp also does the drag in and it grabs the file's name as a layer title. That and then a text file I can drop those layer names into, at the bottom of my TOU.

I also use the drag and drop method to retain the file name as the layer name. However, when I'm designing kits, papers or elements I may use many different resources to create something new (like maybe a texture and a pattern and brushes and an action) so to keep track of all that, I keep a Notepad document open while I'm designing and keep a list of resources I've used as I go. I keep this text document in the folder with my designs. Once I'm finished I then copy the list to the TOU document that I will release with my designs.

Another thing I do sometimes is use the Note Tool in Photoshop, but I use this mostly to make notes on filters and settings I've used on specific items so I can replicate the process if it turns out to be something I really like.

Great idea, will have to remember to try that.

@Rose I never thought of keeping a Notepad document open to log everything...thank you! Great idea!

I just answered this question in a recent forum thread and realized there's a sticky for it, so I am going to repost my answer here.

I want to put in a plug for the free scripts from SpeedScraps (usable in Photoshop CS2 and up, and Elements 6 and up).

When making a layout or using other people's resources to design, I use the SpeedScraps Rename Layer script (which I have mapped as a keyboard shortcut to F1, very handy!) to rename the file, then add it to whatever I'm working on. This way each layer is named with the file name of the file it came from (which hopefully has enough info to indicate the kit and designer). Then at the end I use the Supply Tracker script to generate a list of all the supplies I used. I don't consider them to be in usable format at that point because they're usually abbreviated, but at least from there I can quickly check in my "Previews & TOUs" folder and see designer and kit that abbreviated string of letters refers to (if I don't already remember - usually just seeing the abbreviated listing is enough to jog my memory).

The Copy Close script is also amazing for making layouts using a single kit. You can open every paper and element from the kit at once, make a new PSD file, and the Copy Close script will rename each layer with the file name, place it centered on the new PSD page, and then close the original file. So in moments you can have a whole kit's worth of stuff to play with all ready for you, you only need to start moving things around on your page. (It does make for huuuuge files though, of course!)

Very similarly to Rose, I also always keep a TextEdit/Notepad file open where I make all kinds of notes about what I'm doing - like sometimes if I merge layers I'll want to make a note about the settings on one of them before they disappear, or if I use a brush or style preset I record that because there's no automatic way to indicate that info in the layers panel. I also like to use this as a place to keep track of DeviantArt links since designers there usually want a link back, not just a designer name in the credits.

Cat, I also rename the file I have just copied by adding COPY to the end of the filename. And, yes, that's after I've double-checked that it is, in fact, a copy of the file! smiley

I am terrible at this, since I've only recently started sharing layouts online and therefore haven't really needed to keep track before now. I'm going to start writing down sources on scrap paper as I'm working, and then include all of that info in a blog post as soon as I'm done. Here's hoping it works!

When I make a kit I leave the designers name for each element, paper so that I know whose product I used. If they don't have their name in the item description, I add it. Then when I am ready to make my credit page I just go through my kit to find out which designer I used. Once I have added them all to the credit page, I re-name my items to suit the kit.

For kits that I put together, if I am using another designers item I list them on my 'credits' page. I have a template 'credits page' where I list all my information; store, web, FB, email, etc, then I have a general Thank You for designers who share their talent and time by providing their products to other designers (this is just polite plus it covers those who don't request any credit), after that I have a statement thanking the following designers for use of their items, I leave a blank space after that so I can input the name and link for the designers I use for a specific kit, after that I have a permanent list of the designers I hold a license with.

This way I am only filling in a few designers each time I make a kit. I have a word doc alphabetically listing the designers I use and their links. I just copy and paste their info onto my credits page.

I did not know about the note card option in PS. I will have to check that out. Thanks for all the different ideas.

Thank you everyone for so many good ideas! I am new to digital scrapping and this is still overwhelming. THANKS!

I am new to digital scrapping too and never thought about this. I need to recheck all my element/papers to make sure I have them labeled as well. Thank you for opening my eyes...

Since I create lots of freebies using Designer resources that I've either collected or purchased, I am constantly working at keeping the credits straight. I keep a spiral notebook journal on my desk (new one every month or two) where I write in the digital credits for items I've used. (I purchase enough for a year's worth of journaling at "back to school" time ... usually very cheaply!) I have developed a system of spreadsheets which I print and adhere to the pages in the spiral for helping me stay organized with my daily publication/promotion schedule! This may not be a job-for-pay, but it is none the less a JOB to me!

When I'm ready to package a freebie, those Digital Credits go into my TOU document which is in every zip folder that I share!

When I use additional resources with a Designer kit, I try to always credit those as well when I post in galleries!