Tuesday, May 5, 2009

What Programs Can Do Digi

Hi all,

So today I was cruising some forums, and a question came up. A poster went to the digi area of the site and said Hi I usually do paper scrapping, but would really like to do digi. What do I need. A couple people took a crack at it, and you basically got a adobe response and a paint shop pro response. Now for those of you that don't know those names let me take a step back. When it comes to digi their are a couple big players in the software arena that digi designer as well as scrapbookers use.


First is Adobe's Photoshop family of products. Adobe is the big name in graphics. They have been offering Adobe Photoshop since I was in college i the early 90s. There are two versions of PHotshop. First their Elements and then there is CS. Element s is the stripped down watered down version that acts as a simple place for some one interested in doing computer graphics to get started. it has all you usal tool tha tyou would need to do simple editing of photos and assembling layouts. Its also nice becuase it has a lower price than CS and really lets you get your feet wet before investing a chunk of money in to CS.

That brings us to CS. Originally Adobe only made one version of photoshop, and then around version 7 Adobe decided to streamline all their products and offer them under the CS version. CS stood for Creative Suite. The difference between element and CS, is CS gives you a much wider range of tools, image editing options, more power. Basically a tool that ywould easily allow you to make a chistmas card of you shaking hands with the president.

So when looking at the Adobe side the choices really boil down to are you just making layouts with your images, your words, and maybe some products you got online, or are you looking to design your pages from the ground up.

Corel Paint Shop Pro

On the other side of the street we have the other favorite in the digi world, Corel Paint Shop Pro, or PSP as its usually referred to. PSP was originally made by a comapny ASC. their focus make a low priced alternative to Photoshop. You would get most of the same tool, the ability to use filters/plugins, and pretty much everything else. The key defference being it was a lot cheaper. Afew years back Jasc was bought out by Corel. Today Paint Shop pro is still one of the favorites in the graphics community.

The Others

Now these two companies are not the only solutions if you want a graphics phogram. In fact their are some other programs that are cheaper and some that are even free. Here is a listing of some of them

GIMP is a free software (yes FREE.) raster graphics editor used to process digital photographs and other graphics. Primarily GIMP is used for photo enhancement. Uses include resizing and cropping photos, altering colors, combining multiple images, removing unwanted image components, and converting between different image formats. as well as creating graphics and logos. GIMP can also be used to create basic animated images in GIF format. It is often used as a replacement for Adobe Photoshop, the most widely used bitmap editor in the commercial printing and graphics industries; however, it is not designed to be a Photoshop clone.

Microsoft Photo Editor was an image-editing application found in Microsoft Office 97–XP versions for Windows. The program was a tool for doing raster graphics with editing tools to texturize, negative, for gamma control, GIF transparency and many others.

Paint.NET is a raster graphics editing program for Microsoft Windows.Paint.NET has evolved from a simple replacement for the Microsoft Paint program, which is included with Windows, into a powerful editor with support for layers, blending, transparency, and plugins. It is often used as a free alternative to Adobe Photoshop.

Now this is just a few of the many programs out there, but I am not goinfg to list them all out here. I think Wikepedia has done a good job listing them out. You can click here to review them if you like. The bottom line is there are many solutions out their. So before you put down your hard earned money on a program, take a look around.

Now no matter what option you go with their are a few things you want to make sure of.

1. Can the pgogram read images that are jpeg, gif, png formats. More importanly can it read the images you camrea creates?

2. do a google search online for INSERTPROGRAM NAME tutorials. This will let you know whats out their for resources and people to ask questions of

3. make sure it will handle images that are 300dpi. if you want to print your digi items

4. If you want to stay digi and show off your layouts as slide show can the graphics program make slide shows, or at least save the image in a format those program use.

Now for those of you who are not really software savy, or you feel you cant draw a straight line event using a paint program, well your not alone. In fact there are any ( and I do mean many) solutions out there that all you need to do is point click, drag, drop. From you favorite scrap magazines, to special programs from your favorite digi designer, to a really sweet free option that I use, there are many solutions that can use to make your pages and not worry about a paint brush.

Many of your favorite scrapbook magaziesn out their have worked software makers and created scrapbook programs that come complete with digi elements. Infact kodak, polaroid, and others have branded programs that let you quickly assemble scrapbooks in a few minutes.

Next there are many services out there that allow you to make your scrapbooks, and if it suites you need you can then print them out. One example is a site by a friend of my Photobooks etc by Kim Guymon, allows you to download a program, select a theme, insert your images and create a scrapbook that can be sent off and printed out. Another option is a great site I also use, Scrapblog.com. Scrapblog allows you to go online upload your phtos, and then using their themes, and marketplace items allotw you to quild rich quick ad easy scrapbook pages that you can show off as slide shows, or you can take it a step further and have the book printed out.

So that is my primer in to the question what software do I need to do digital scrapbooking. So to review there are a lot of solutions out their some cost money, and some are free. What you need to do is ask yourself, how much can I spend, and what format files does my camera make,

I hope this information has helped. If its not clear, please comment and I will try to get your and answer, or write some more info.

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