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ForeverJoy Designs
Scrap Happy | Tips & Tricks

TUTORIAL | Digiscrap without Photoshop | Scrapbook Max

 
 
G’day! Kate here. I am going to show you how I scrap without Photoshop. I use a program called Scrapbook Max. You see… Photoshop is an extravagance beyond my family’s budget as we get by on a Veterans pension. With two elite sportspersons too, I just can’t bring myself to spend the money on Photoshop. Can you imagine how many pairs of boots I could buy with that money?  I know a lot of people are in the similar circumstances so I wanted to show you that there is a cheap alternative and anyway, after all these years Scrapbook Max is kind of like that old favourite jumper that you just can’t throw away. To some people it may seem a little clunky and some ‘actions’ require a little more effort but value for money wise I don’t think it can be beaten.

Scrapbook Max comes with a bunch of preinstalled templates, papers, elements etc for the very new scrapper. I don’t use these. I prefer to start with a blank page and let my joy flow.

 
We will start with a blank page just like this.
 
The program is pretty user friendly ie. If you think that’s what the button does then you’re probably right. You can see the page settings button circled. This is where you choose your page sizes. Mine is generally always set to 12×12 as that is my preferred LO size but you can customise it to any size you like. You also can change your pixels/in here.
 

The three buttons circled at the top are used to add photos, elements, paper etc. I do not use these.

 
I prefer to drag and drop into the program. I find it is a lot quicker and you can add more things at once. In the bottom left corner you’ll see my file explorer. I have my designer folder open and can access anything I want from there.
 
It looks like this when I open the designer folder. I just drag what I want over to Scrapbook Max.
 
When you drag you are given options. I always choose photo as there are more actions available unless it is my background, for that I choose background as that locks it in. You can CTRL select more than one item this way also.
Here is my background.
 
I have now done the same with the two pics I want to use. All that needs to be done is to resize and place them where I want them to go. Resizing is simple. Just grab the corner of your pic and drag.
 
To add shadows… double click on the item you want to add a shadow to and a pop up will appear. Select shadow and the program does it for you. There is a settings button where you can change the shadow settings. This pop up is also where you can select different photo shapes and crop your pics.
 
I want my pics more square so I have don’t that also while I was there. I unchecked the ‘keep aspect’ box so that I could crop however I wanted.
 
I want to make sure my pics are lined up perfectly so I use the alignment tools to centre them horizontally.
This is done by selecting both pics then right clicking and choosing the appropriate action.
 
Now I am going to build my page by dragging and dropping my ellies. Each one will need to be shadowed individually as previously shown. As I add each one I will push it backwards or bring it forwards depending on how I want my clusters and LO to look. This is done by using the ‘bring forward/to front and send backward/to back buttons.
 
 
The rest of the LO is built using these basic techniques.
Resizing papers is done the same as photos or by cropping. I prefer cropping as it doesn’t distort the image.
If you want to repeat an ellie you can CTRL-C and CTRL-V.
If you want to change the transparency of something, blend photos, use masks or blend papers together… double click the item and the pop up will appear. On the left is a slide bar, use it to change the transparency of your items. I find for blending papers and photos it takes a bit of experimenting with which item is in front to get the desired look. I particularly use this tool with washi tapes and I never shadow a transparent tape.
To change the word strip I copied it so that I had two and used the photo cropping tool to cut off the parts I didn’t want. Make sure you uncheck the ‘keep aspect’ box. I still forget that one a lot and wonder why it’s not working lol.
You can see on the right hand side the ellies I have chosen for my LO but not yet placed.
 
Here is my LO with my ellies placed and shadowed. I now want to add some text. There are three ways to add text in Scrapbook Max. You can see the buttons circled in the picture. They are pretty self-explanatory but I will give you a small overview. The left one is one live of text only. It can be resized like a photo or ellie. I generally use this one for date stamps. The middle one is the same except you can manipulate the curve it is on. This one is handy when you want to write around circular objects. The right hand one is best for journaling. You can choose font size, justification and paragraph spacing in this one. They each open as a pop up, can all be coloured and any font installed on your computer shows up.
 
Before we finish I will show you how to publish your creation. Go to file’ Select publish to images. This will open a pop up.
In the pop up select where you want your published images to go. You can also change the image type if needed in this section. I always choose 100 in the quality drop down as I want the best image I can get.
 
 
When published you will have a beautiful 2400×2400 image that you can print or resize as you like.
I hope you enjoyed my Scrapbook Max tutorial and possibly learned something along the way! 
 
 

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14 Comments

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    April 23, 2015 at 11:59 am

    Oh my goodness – max resolution is 2400×2400? You really want 3600×3600 for quality printing. What I don't get is that they want $30 for the program plus $15-20 more for each embellishment set… that's crazy for an off-brand program. I don't understand this when you can get Photoshop Elements 13 (latest version) for $70 on Amazon or PSE 11 on ebay for $30. I use version 10 and it's great.

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    April 23, 2015 at 11:59 am

    Oh my goodness – max resolution is 2400×2400? You really want 3600×3600 for quality printing. What I don't get is that they want $30 for the program plus $15-20 more for each embellishment set… that's crazy for an off-brand program. I don't understand this when you can get Photoshop Elements 13 (latest version) for $70 on Amazon or PSE 11 on ebay for $30. I use version 10 and it's great.

  • Reply
    enjoyyourpix
    April 23, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    I love that you have figured out how to scrap with what you have. 2400×2400 should result in great 8×8 layouts which is a terrific money saver all around!! I've seen people make awesome layouts with Creative Memory/Panstoria's Storybook/Artisan ($40), Gimp, PSP, and even PowerPoint!! The best software is the one you know and are comfortable with. I love that your software lets you use "regular" scrapbook supplies and doesn't require you to use their brand. WAY TO GO!! Thank you for sharing your process and experience!!! <3

  • Reply
    enjoyyourpix
    April 23, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    I love that you have figured out how to scrap with what you have. 2400×2400 should result in great 8×8 layouts which is a terrific money saver all around!! I've seen people make awesome layouts with Creative Memory/Panstoria's Storybook/Artisan ($40), Gimp, PSP, and even PowerPoint!! The best software is the one you know and are comfortable with. I love that your software lets you use "regular" scrapbook supplies and doesn't require you to use their brand. WAY TO GO!! Thank you for sharing your process and experience!!! <3

  • Reply
    Renne
    April 23, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I love that you started an conversation on this- because I have to say, when i first saw 2400×23400- I scratched my head too. But- I don't know how much of a difference that will make- especially of you don't print out at 12×12. 8×8 might not show much of a decrease in quality. I don't know if the pricing in Australia is the same as in the US- i know for awhile there was a lot of commotion about how very expensive Photoshop was in areas outside the US- (I've linked an article at the end of this post- what I have found out- am am always so very surprised about- is that more people than you would think use programs other than Photoshop! I guess that since that's all Ive ever worked with- so many of the other options are foreign to me. For example- Ive really loved playing with Canva- a program ForeverJoy CT Kinjal uses- and Ive never heard of until this year! I think what so important is always to keep focus on the storytelling and process- and use whatever materials you can fit into your lifestyle. http://petapixel.com/2013/03/25/adobe-offers-justification-for-higher-prices-to-australian-parliamentary-committee/

  • Reply
    Renne
    April 23, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I love that you started an conversation on this- because I have to say, when i first saw 2400×23400- I scratched my head too. But- I don't know how much of a difference that will make- especially of you don't print out at 12×12. 8×8 might not show much of a decrease in quality. I don't know if the pricing in Australia is the same as in the US- i know for awhile there was a lot of commotion about how very expensive Photoshop was in areas outside the US- (I've linked an article at the end of this post- what I have found out- am am always so very surprised about- is that more people than you would think use programs other than Photoshop! I guess that since that's all Ive ever worked with- so many of the other options are foreign to me. For example- Ive really loved playing with Canva- a program ForeverJoy CT Kinjal uses- and Ive never heard of until this year! I think what so important is always to keep focus on the storytelling and process- and use whatever materials you can fit into your lifestyle. http://petapixel.com/2013/03/25/adobe-offers-justification-for-higher-prices-to-australian-parliamentary-committee/

  • Reply
    Renne
    April 23, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    yes! definitely a plus that she can use other designs- those seem waaay pricey!

  • Reply
    Debbie
    April 23, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    Way to stay in your budget, Kate!! I used to do the same thing with PSP when I first started scrapping 10 years ago. I scrapped 2400×2400 pages and printed at 8×8. I think the quality of the printed layouts are equal to my 3600×3600 scrapped in Photoshop at 8×8. Vive la difference!

  • Reply
    Debbie
    April 23, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    Way to stay in your budget, Kate!! I used to do the same thing with PSP when I first started scrapping 10 years ago. I scrapped 2400×2400 pages and printed at 8×8. I think the quality of the printed layouts are equal to my 3600×3600 scrapped in Photoshop at 8×8. Vive la difference!

  • Reply
    Kate
    April 23, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    Hi. I really appreciate your questions. They help me see where some people may get confused.
    You are right, those programs can be purchased in the US for that price however, Elements 13 in Australia is $100. Although not a huge price for some it is too much for us as we have other priorities and like I said Scrapbook Max is kind of like my old jumper that I love. It works for me and I have spent years getting to know it.
    This post wasn't meant to tell people to use Scrapbook Max it was just to show that people use programs other than Photoshop and still get great pages. You also don't have to buy their kits. I categorically never do and as I CT for Renne you can see that products from other shops and designers can be used in the program.
    As for the 2400 x 2400… I have printed these as 12×12 with good results. The program does allow you to change that though. In the page size settings you can adjust as you like. At no point did I say 2400×2400 was the maximum. "Mine is generally always set to 12×12 as that is my preferred LO size but you can customise it to any size you like. You also can change your pixels/in here."
    It's a great little program and I love it, other people love their photoshop. That's the joy of our world, everyone is different.

  • Reply
    Kate
    April 23, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    Hi. I really appreciate your questions. They help me see where some people may get confused.
    You are right, those programs can be purchased in the US for that price however, Elements 13 in Australia is $100. Although not a huge price for some it is too much for us as we have other priorities and like I said Scrapbook Max is kind of like my old jumper that I love. It works for me and I have spent years getting to know it.
    This post wasn't meant to tell people to use Scrapbook Max it was just to show that people use programs other than Photoshop and still get great pages. You also don't have to buy their kits. I categorically never do and as I CT for Renne you can see that products from other shops and designers can be used in the program.
    As for the 2400 x 2400… I have printed these as 12×12 with good results. The program does allow you to change that though. In the page size settings you can adjust as you like. At no point did I say 2400×2400 was the maximum. "Mine is generally always set to 12×12 as that is my preferred LO size but you can customise it to any size you like. You also can change your pixels/in here."
    It's a great little program and I love it, other people love their photoshop. That's the joy of our world, everyone is different.

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    April 23, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    Sorry if this ends up being a bit long…

    First about resolution:

    2400x2400px printed at 12"x12" would have a resolution of 200ppi. Normally the minimum for printing is around 150ppi though the preferred (and standard) is 300ppi. If you're printing a photo 12"12" you would probably notice the lower quality but I doubt it would be very noticeable on a scrapbook page because the items aren't huge and detailed. 2400x2400px printed at 8"x8" would have a resolution of 300ppi so that's absolutely the best option (and truly, I've heard of many people going to this size recently because the photo books are easier to store).

    If you ever want to know what resolution your page will print at simply take the pixel dimension (here 2400) and divide by the print size (12") so 2400/12= 200. Conversely, you can take your desired resolution and multiply it by desired print size and find out what your pixel dimension needs to be (300×12=3600).

    Second about Photoshop cost:

    I use Photoshop CS6, before that I had PSE11 and even before that, PSE 6. If you happen to luck into a PSE sale, you can snag the program for around $50-$70 USD. Full Photoshop though is a killer on the wallet unless you're lucky to qualify for the Teacher/Student discount (I'm sure more people could qualify for this than actually use this option. Even homeschoolers can get a discount!). Truly though, some people don't have/don't want to spend the extra $50-$70 for PSE, some DON'T want to learn new software. It's up to them and I say bravo for making the program you have work!

    And, before someone mentions Adobe Creative Cloud as a great "low cost option"… First, some people don't want to subscribe to use the software and second, if all you will be using CC for is Photoshop, do the math on how long it will take those monthly fees to add up to the full PS CS6 price… Granted CC is "continually updated" where as CS6 isn't but that's another can of worms 😉

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    April 23, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    Sorry if this ends up being a bit long…

    First about resolution:

    2400x2400px printed at 12"x12" would have a resolution of 200ppi. Normally the minimum for printing is around 150ppi though the preferred (and standard) is 300ppi. If you're printing a photo 12"12" you would probably notice the lower quality but I doubt it would be very noticeable on a scrapbook page because the items aren't huge and detailed. 2400x2400px printed at 8"x8" would have a resolution of 300ppi so that's absolutely the best option (and truly, I've heard of many people going to this size recently because the photo books are easier to store).

    If you ever want to know what resolution your page will print at simply take the pixel dimension (here 2400) and divide by the print size (12") so 2400/12= 200. Conversely, you can take your desired resolution and multiply it by desired print size and find out what your pixel dimension needs to be (300×12=3600).

    Second about Photoshop cost:

    I use Photoshop CS6, before that I had PSE11 and even before that, PSE 6. If you happen to luck into a PSE sale, you can snag the program for around $50-$70 USD. Full Photoshop though is a killer on the wallet unless you're lucky to qualify for the Teacher/Student discount (I'm sure more people could qualify for this than actually use this option. Even homeschoolers can get a discount!). Truly though, some people don't have/don't want to spend the extra $50-$70 for PSE, some DON'T want to learn new software. It's up to them and I say bravo for making the program you have work!

    And, before someone mentions Adobe Creative Cloud as a great "low cost option"… First, some people don't want to subscribe to use the software and second, if all you will be using CC for is Photoshop, do the math on how long it will take those monthly fees to add up to the full PS CS6 price… Granted CC is "continually updated" where as CS6 isn't but that's another can of worms 😉

  • Reply
    Lilly Baker
    February 23, 2016 at 4:31 am

    Great tips for beginners like me. Thank you! Photoshop will always be the best one soft for such natural processes. Its a great tool in all senses. http://hdreditingsoftware.com/effects/ another interesting article for those who use photoshop on mac

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