Friday, April 15, 2011

The new frame brushes over at ScrapNfonts this week have some fun potential! If you've never used brushes before, don't be scared! Each set comes with a brush file for Photoshop and Photoshop Element users, but it also comes with .png images that can be used in virtually any photo editing program (including free programs, like Picasa and Photoscape) and other design programs.

Here's a quick walk-through on using the new frame brushes on photos.

First, let's start with a photo. Which one should I pick... Ah, here's one with the most beautiful baby girl ever (according to a biased new mom, which I whole-heartedly admit I am). This picture is just begging me for a frame.

Next comes the brushes. If you're working in Photoshop, all you need to do is double click on the .abr file, and the brushes will automatically be added to your current list of brushes.
Photoshop tip: If you want access to the brushes through your Photoshop
Library, you can also go to "My Computer", then go to C:\Program
Files\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop [your version]\Presets\Brushes and drop the .abr
file there.
If you're working in a different photo editing or design software, open your photo and the .png you want to use in the program.

Now is the fun, artsy part. Every photo program is a bit different, so take time to play with your program to familiarize yourself with it. If you have Photoshop, select the brush tool, then pick your frame brush, pick the color, scale the brush to the size you want in the Brushes window, hover it over your photo where you want it, then stamp. With other programs, you might have to open a collage option, or copy and paste the .png into the photo.

Here is the photo as if I just layed the .png on top of it.

If your program allows layers, I recommend putting the frame on a different layer than the photo. You can play with frame options better that way. With the frame selected you can adjust the hue (the color) the saturation (the brightness/dullness of the color) or the lightness, OR do a color fill if your program allows.

For this next picture, I set the lightness as high as it would go so the frame is white.
I want a softer look, so I'm going to adjust the opacity on the frame layer to 65%, and this is what I end up with.

Once you have the basics down, you can really set a mood with the right frames and effects. This picture is ready for my blog or facebook, or a scrapbook layout. Hmm... I think a scrapbook layout. I'll keep you updated.