Saturday, September 6, 2014

Tutorial - Recoloring Template/Scrapbook Elements - 4 alternatives

written by Nancy aka physioscrapper
Member of LissyKay's Creative Team
One of the things that often puts Melissa's (LissyKay) templates apart from other template designers is that she puts physical elements into her templates that could be classified as "stand-alone".  Meaning that you might find that element in a regular full kit.
Examples of this include:
The Plastic Page Pockets in It's Your Birthday
The View Finder Reel in Keep it Reel
The Sand with its texture in Beach Trip 2

But what do you do if these elements don't match the colors / tone/ Hue of the kit you are using? You want them to standout AND blend.
I am about to give you 4 alternative ways to make them work!

This tutorial is primarily for Photoshop Elements (PSE) and Photoshop - all versions (PS).
In Photoshop Elements the icons may be in different places, but they are there!
Hopefully in other scrapbook programs, you can find alternatives to work around based on how I describe these.

I am going to be using LissyKay's Beach Trip 2 for my example as it involves a textured element - sand under the picture on layout #2.
I am going to be using Connie Prince's Let's Go Coastal kit for my layout.  I have already got some of the background papers in place and thought originally that the sand in LissyKay's template would match, but after placing the papers I found that the HUE or shade of the sand was not as complimentary to the kit as I thought.  The following are processes that I use to work around this problem.

Alternative #1:  Clipping / Grouping Papers to the Element

Perhaps the most used technique to change the color and texture of an element is to clip/ or group a paper from the kit you are using with the element in the template. There are papers with wonderful patterned textures (including glitter) and if you have one that will work this is the easiest method.

Below I have placed the 2 papers in the kit that are closest to sand colors, ABOVE the sand layer in the template.  You can clip/ group the papers to the sand layer by holding down in PSE: Control (Ctrl) / Command (Com) on a Mac + G. In PS: Ctrl/Com +Alt+G  or alternatively go to Layer --> Group layers.  You can tell when they are 'grouped' together by the little arrow that runs from the top layer to the bottom layer.

Another way I think or remember this command if you are also a paper scrapbooker, is that the G could stand for Glue.  You are gluing the paper to the element below.

I put BOTH papers above the sand and Grouped BOTH papers one on top of the other so I could see which one would work best by clicking on the little eye on the left side of the layer to turn the layer on and off.
But with this alternative even though the color matches I didn't like it, because I lost the texture of the sand.
To see the texture you can try dropping the opacity of the layer above to see the texture below 
OR use a BLEND mode.
Below I changed the BLEND mode to Overlay.
I moved the paper over so that you can see the 'original template sand' on the right, and the 'grouped and blended sand' on the left. In this case if I changed the opacity, the hue/tone of the paper changed to the original sand color before the texture showed through; so it wasn't an alternative.

Alternative #2: Changing the Hue/Saturation of the Element to match color while retaining texture

To start duplicate the element layer that you wish to change the color of. 
This can be done by pressing Control/Command + J   OR  right clicking the element layer and choose duplicate layer OR  go to LAYER --> Duplicate Layer.
You now want to get your foreground color chip to be the color you wish to change the element to.
Have the paper layer that you wish to change the 'sand color' to highlighted and visible.
Grab the eyedropper tool and click on the paper.  The color of it will automatically show in the box.  Click on OK.
This can also be done by clicking on the foreground color chip, click on the paper selecting the color you want, and click OK.
Select the Hue/Saturation adjustment layer.  Layer ---> New Adjustment layer --> Hue /Saturation
or click on the Adjustment Layer icon in the Layers Panel and select Hue / Saturation.  (This latter way is the one I recommend as it leaves the Hue / Saturation box visible and grouped even after you finish with if you need to fine tune later you may!)

In the Hue/Saturation box... click on Colorize and this will change the HUE to what you selected in the foreground color chip box.  Now move the Saturation and Lightness sliders to get your exact match.
Do not touch the HUE slider.  You should be able to duplicate the color of the foreground color chip (or your paper color) by moving the Saturation and Lightness sliders ONLY.
You can see below the paper is on the left and the sand is on the right. This was done super quick and is almost an exact match AND the texture is still retained.
Alternative #3 - Using the color replacement brush
Nested under the brush / pencil icon is a drop-down menu when you right click on it.  In this menu you will find the color replacement brush that does exactly what the name says, replaces the color with another by brushing.
As you are going to be painting directly on the sand, I always duplicate the sand layer (Ctrl/Com +J) and paint on the top layer.  If you are satisfied with your results at the end you can always delete the first layer; or alternatively if you are unsatisfied just delete the copied top layer and you haven't 'ruined' your original sand layer.
To start you want to set your foreground/ background color chips.
Click on the foreground color chip and select with the eyedropper (cursor) the color you want your sand to change to (or the paper color you want to emulate).
Click on the background color chip and select with the eyedropper (cursor) the color you want to replace. In this case, the sand that came with the template.
Select the color replacement brush. At the top of the page the MODE: Color (automatic); Contiguous should be checked, and since the sand is pretty close to the same color throughout the Tolerance can be set around 30.  (If you are making a color replacement where there are very specific edges or colors that are very close together (ie: shades of blue that you want one shade changed, but not the other) then you would choose a low tolerance level (1 - 10).
Make sure the sand layer is selected.  I often will lock the pixels in this layer so that I can't recolor outside the element. The "LOCK" can be found at the very TOP of the layers panel, and once you click on it a little lock will appear on the layer you chose.
Brush over the sand and it will change color. Your cursor will look like a circle with an X inside.  Use the X as your guide for the edge of the brush, not the circle. Sometimes you have to brush over the area several times to get full coverage.

In the image above, I have duplicated the sand layer, locked it, and will paint on the copied sand layer.
I put the paper that I wanted to color the sand to on the left.  This isn't necessary for you to do, I did it only for explanation purposes.  The sand on the right is what I haven't recolored yet...the original color.
You can see the tones are definitely different once painted and the TEXTURE has been maintained.

Alternative #4 - Use a Layer Style:
The last alternative is super easy, just a click of a button, if you own a layer style the will work with your element.
In this case, if you look around there are several designers that have put out SAND layer styles.
I have an older sand layer style that I love by Nichole Perry (no longer available in stores.)
I have a folder where I keep all my Layer Styles (they are NOT all loaded into PS or PSE as too many will slow the program down).  - the same is VERY true regarding fonts.
Load your Sand Layer style.
Highlight the sand layer you wish to apply the layer style to.
Scroll through the styles by clicking on them individually, until you find a sand that comes close to the paper color you are using as a base color.
I finally decided on the layer style below.  It is slightly darker, but will work with the HUE/ tone of the papers in the kit.  If you were working with another element you might chose a metal or plastic layer style, or even glitter.
Just be aware that Layer Styles WILL NOT work on a layer that is LOCKED.
Layer styles tend to work best (because of bevels and shadows in them) on elements or large text as compared to thin text.
Here is my finished layout!  Love that sand!  


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