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Posts tagged “Free Templates

Where to Find Those Cool Free Christmas Card Templates?

It is that time of year and everybody is looking for the cool Christmas Card templates so I am posting early this week. I have found a few sites that might help get you through the “I need to create a Christmas Card quick” panic or to make that special one for family or friends. Update: It is hard to keep links active as this blog was posted a couple years ago, but I have tried to keep it fairly current with a few corrections and additions.

Becky Higgins 2012 Holiday Cards (no longer available but check out steps in next paragraph on how to create it)
Becky Higgins website had 10 basic cards in PNG format and various sizes to add your photos into – please note that these templates are for personal use only. Above is an example using one of her beautiful templates. The image is a 1898 Christmas ad of Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railways ad that appeared in Harper’s New Monthly Magazine from The Old Design Shop site, a great website to find interesting vintage photos for free download. This template could be created fairly simply in Photoshop –  just fill the background layer with red (ALT+BACKSPACE), duplicate the layer and cut out the photo area using the Rectangular Marquee Tool press BACKSPACE. and remove selection (CTRL+D). Add a text layer (here is a link to some nice Christmas Brushes by annie 252). On a New Layer above, use a grunge brush with white (check out Obsidian Dawn’s Glitter II brush set).

Steps to add photo:
1.  Open PNG file up in Photoshop – you will see the checkered opening where your photo will go.
2. From Adobe Bridge drag you image into the PNG file and then drag it underneath the card template.
3. Use Free Transform (CTRL+T) to adjust you image to the opening.
4. In this case a Color Fill Adjustment Layer was clipped above the image to give a greenish tint to the black and white image.
That’s it! Pretty easy and beautiful results! You can always add another text layer and sign your name – I used the Beyond Wonderland font from dafont.com – check it out to find hundreds of really great free fonts.

Check out this short tutorial called How to Create a Beautiful Christmas Card with lots of free holiday references. They provide links to Christmas fonts that can be used for the holiday text also.
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MCP Actions
This card was actually created from a card furnished by the wonderful people from MCP Actions. These are very basic cards where you can substitute various elements to create a very unique card. In this case the birdesign-freebie1 front was used. To see how I did the flower image, see my Tidbits Blog Beautiful Christmas Flowers . After saving and finishing the image, it was brought into the card PSD file and placed above the background. It was adjusted to fit the opening. All the pattern layers were removed, guide layer, and the top text layer. The bottom text layer was changed to a font that I had on my computer – a free download font called SF Foxboro Script. I liked the sentiment for the card so all that was done was to add my name in a little larger font size. By double-clicking on the thumbnail, the layer style dialog was brought up – the Color Overlay style was chosen with a light beige color and a default Drop Shadow added. The turquoise bottom half had to go – so the background was changed to a color that was sampled from the flowers. The bottom half looked boring, so I found The Christmas Tree sheet music from Graphicsfairy. (This is an incredible vintage website.) To get rid of the yellow background and leave the sheet music, a Select -> Color Range was performed – once selected, backspace to remove the background so just the music remains on the layer. It was turned at a an angle, a Color Fill Adjustment Layer was changed to a white color, and Drop Shadow added with no changes. The opacity was set to 26% – adjusted last so it does not compete with the card text. To grunge up the bottom half a little more, French Kiss Glorious Grunge Edging Overlay was added and also turned at an angle, and a Solid Color Adjustment Layer set to a light pink to soften the music color. The last step was to apply a Curves Adjustment Layer on top. I could send this card out and be happy!
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Chasing Dreams PhotographyChasing Dreams Photography is a website I only found recently and she has two wonderful free Christmas Card templates using the chalkboard look that seems to be all the rage in textures right now. These can be downloaded (one of her 12 days of Christmas gifts) along with lots of other goodies at her Fan Page on Facebook, similar to the MCP Actions download above. It was very easy to place my image, and the fonts that are in the card templates are free downloads from dafont.com. The image is one I scanned on my old Epson Perfection scanner and had to do quite a bit of retouching. I actually used Nik’s Silver Efex Pro 2 plug-in on this photo to help enhance it. It printed up very nicely on a matte finish paper.
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Gavin Hoey just provided a very nice Christmas card template on his Gavtrain blog. Also Leslie Nicole at French Kiss Collections has a very wonderful vintage Christmas card available until the end of January 2013. Here is a link that links to several websites offering free holiday templates – check out Free Holiday Card Templates. (Wow- just realized one of my cards from last year is linked here!) Another place that has 4 nice photo templates is from DesktopPCWallpapers.com – check them out at this link. I hope everyone appreciates as much as I do these wonderful sites that are giving away their beautiful cards for free – it providses such quick and easy access to making beautiful cards. If it were not for these kind folks, it would take a lot more time and experimenting – thank you for sharing. Check out my Related Blogs below for more free resources to help add that original look to your cards. I hope these links will help you get a beautiful quick unique card out and take some pressure off so you can Enjoy the Holiday Season!…..Digital Lady Syd

Digital Lady Syd Related Blogs:
Free Christmas Card Templates-Part 2
Free Christmas Card Vectors and Brushes
Digital Lady Syd’s Free Christmas Card Template
Digital Lady Syd’s Free Christmas Card Template Using Photoshop Elements

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Where To Get Those Free Valentine Templates

It’s that time of year and everyone is trying to get creative quickly and present just the right valentine. Here are the latest and greatest I have found in my search.

The first valentine is from Graphics Fuel. I added a layer and painted using brushes . Personally I think is a very classy looking valentine and is very easy to use. The font is called Precious and has a very valentine appeal to it. I created a layer above the background and used Brushesstock Flowers Swirls Hearts Brush 1 and 8 set to a layer opacity of 54%. On the top Obsidian Dawn’s Glitter set Hearts-Glitter brush was used to scatter the little hearts around.
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Each year Florabella Collections always has a nice set of free Vintage Valentine templates to give away and this year is no exception. Here is an example of several she has to offer. The font in this card is one she used called Batik Regular. Florabella is known for her wonderful photo actions but now has textures available for sale also.
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This valentine is being promoted from their Facebook page, MCP Actions, for a site called Photographer Cafe. The image is just a stock photo and a layer was added on top where a valentine brush from DigitalTouch was used. There were several choices and are free for download here.
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This example is from Designrs Hub and uses Photoshop Layer Comps for the cover page and the second page. I had to search around to find suitable fonts and ended up using Loci Cola and adjusting the butterflies to look right. I am not sure this is a correct color representation as it is pretty pinkish but you can see what a pretty background this is.

I hope this has helped out a few of you who are the creative type and want to jazz up a nicely created template. It is never too late to download a few brushes and add a couple layers to give them your own look. Hope you have fun creating some Valentines!…..Digital Lady Syd

Digital Lady Syd Related Blogs:
Using a Template to Create Your Own Unique Valentine
Free Valentine Templates and a Valentine with Heart
Creating Your Own Art (and Cards) While You Are At It!
My Valentine Images
A Few More Valentine to Make
Create a Valentine
How to Add Images to Text


A Few More Valentines to Make

This is just a quick blog to finish up my series on Valentines.  Recently OnOne Software came out with more templates (no longer available) including some  more Valentine templates.  I used the Valentine Layout 5×7 Vertical Back and added a few embellishments of my own to give you an idea of what you can do with these wonderful templates that OnOne keeps furnishing to us for free.

This image contains similar elements I used in previous Valentines on my blog. Just to save you time, if you want to link to them: McSweetie Hearts from dafont.com, Cupid Brushes by glass-prism at Deviant Arts, and scatter heart brush from digitalTouch at Deviant Arts. The large heart was created using a Custom Shape in Photoshop and creating a large stroke with a pattern in it to give it the white edge. I did try out the Topaz Remask 3 (see sidebar for website link on my Tidbits Blog) to cut my lovely model out of the image I had taken. I was pretty pleased with the result for my first attempt.

The above image I created using a fairly quick tutorial from Gavin Hoey called “Valentines Card from Scratch” that he posted up on YouTube. I basically followed the tutorial except I changed the color of the roses.  Have a Happy Valentines Day!


Free Valentine Templates and a Valentine with Heart

For 2012 Free Templates, see my new blog Where To Get Those Free Valentine Templates. I just can’t seem to quit doing Valentines – I guess because they are a lot of fun to do and the colors are pretty. I am going to start off with some more great templates from Florabella. The more I follow this site, the more impressed I am by her work and all the free offers she has for us “Photoshop fanatics.” These are all Valentine templates from her Facebook page and include card fronts, backs and bookmarks. I picked one to try but there are so many variations you can do with these, it should keep anyone playing for quite a while. So this time, I am going to give a big “Thank You” to Florabella!

I tried to give this image a high contrast look in Lightroom before bringing it into the template in Photoshop. Besides cropping and cleaning up the background, I used CP Dragan 5 in Lightroom to give the final look. This preset can be downloaded at Adobe Labs for free.   I used a similar font I already had loaded since I did not have the one referenced on the layer when the template is opened up in Photoshop and it is a pretty common one.  Basically all you do is bring your picture in as a layer below the layer labeled “Place Photo Below”, then do a little Free Transforming (CTRL+T) or cropping to fit in the template. She includes instructions with her download for further information on how to make it into an actual card.

This next image came from a set of Valentine cards at MCP Actions that can be downloaded free from their Facebook page.  They are offering very simple cards for use as Valentines – especially if you need something easy for your little ones school parties.   They are very simple to use and are great for that quick turn around.  On the one I used, I did very little to except transform (CTRL+T) the picture to fit the opening.  It must then be clipped to the layer below by ALT+clicking on the line between the layers – it will attach the top layer to the layer underneath (or go to Layer – Create Clipping Mask).   I used the fonts they provided and added their names on the Child’s Name text layer.   Done.  There are also instructions downloaded with these templates.

Finally I decided to try a large tutorial on Valentines that used many different Custom Shapes. The tutorial I followed is called “Valentine’s day hearts” at Adobe Tutorials.   This was by no means the easiest tutorial I have used but I do believe I have a pretty good understanding of the Custom Shapes Tool now!  I liked the tutorial because you can change some of the steps to fit the way you want to put it together while still getting a good idea of how it will look.  I feel like it was an accomplishment to finish this one but it really was not that hard in retrospect – just a lot of layers.  It helped to name and group similar layers to keep organized.

The main hearts are provided by Photoshop.  All the listed brushes, shapes and fonts (except the Cosmi font which might be free if you can find it somewhere – it is a very old font) are free downloads from the internet that I used to create my image. The top purple joined hearts are custom shapes from Graphicxtras (no longer available). Several very nice heart custom shapes are from My Valentine Shapes at Brusheezy.  The various little white hearts in the background are from a set called McBad – Valentine.   The white floral brushes behind the large valentines are provided by a link on the second page in the tutorial.  I really like several of these brushes and plan to use them in other designs.   For the lacy Valentine, I used a Valentine brush from Anithene and added a gradient overlay layer style.   Finally I used my favorite Valentine font – McSweetie Hearts from dafont.com.  My Digital Lady Syd font is No. 31 from Cosmi.  Both of these fonts I used in the previous blog.   The last item added was the cupid, which I copied the layer twice to make it stand out more, and is from Cupid Brushes and is another beautiful set of Valentine brushes.

If you need any help with making these valentines, leave me a comment.  Hope you enjoy making your Valentines – it is a great way to learn how to use Photoshop!…..Digital Lady Syd

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