Lesson 5 - Planning
5. Planning: Topic Theme, Color Theme, and Final Product
“He who fails to plan, plans to fail." This quote is one that has always made an impact on me. It is also true for digital scrapbooking designs. No one likes to preplan because it is time consuming. Everyone wants to jump right in and be productive with those things that have a visible outcome. Planning often feels like wasted time when, in fact, it is important to success.
There are three key factors in preplanning to consider.
1. Topic Theme
A. What subject will your creations center around? Will this be for a birthday, wedding, seasonal or other topic? It is common for those creating layouts to look for kits to fit the subject matter of the event they are scrapbooking.
B. What will the title of your kit be? Although you can name your kit after creating it, I would suggest considering the name of the kit in advance to inspire the path the kit will take on.
A great site for inspiration is to draw from your color scheme by finding the color names in your color palette.
Visit the Title section of My Corner Online. Draw from suggestions for titles for layouts to utilize as kit names.
There are random title generators available online to spark your creativity and inspire you. Just search for "random title generator" to find the many sites available. Sometimes the suggestions can be really crazy, but I have been known to take one word from one suggestion and another word from another suggestion to create an interesting title. Here are a few:
2. Color Theme
The most important factor is a color scheme. Those who utilize designs by others rely on the designers to make their pages look good without realizing they are doing so. With disconnected colors, the things you provide for use will be like a bad marriage -- they just do not have a successful relationship. Everything that you provide in a kit must work with all other items in the kit so that those using the kit may have immediate "ah" satisfaction when beginning to place things on a page.
There are several tutorials in other courses here at My Corner Online which teach color schemes. Please review and study these tutorials in detail.
A. Hue, Saturation, and Value in the color picker is a vital lesson in understanding the properties of color and how they are associated with the software.
B. The Color Wheel and Color Schemes will teach you how to choose a color scheme for your designs.
C. Color Picker vs. Color Swatches vs. Color Table will teach you how to make color swatches to use in your program and also how to create a swatch from a photo. Often, great color combinations are find right in natural settings. After obtaining the swatch from the photo, tweak the color combinations utilizing the knowledge from a color scheme.
In addition, there are, as can be found in some of the above tutorials, many resources online for finding color schemes and swatches. Be sure to visit the Color Resources at My Corner Online. When in need of inspiration, my collection of links on color is sure to lead you somewhere to jump start your creativity.
If you are really serious about designing, consider purchasing a software program for generating color scheme palettes. The one I use is Color Cache.
In addition, it is important to have your monitor calibrated correctly. You can read more about calibration here. The concept of calibration is vital because the colors that you are seeing on your computer screen may not be the true colors and will not appear the same universally across everyone else's monitor. Of course, you cannot guarantee that everyone else has a calibrated monitor, but you can insure that you are seeing the correct colors. I utilize the Spyder on my computer.
3. Final Product
What goal do you have for a final product? Do you want to make a whole kit? Mini-kit? Quick page(s)? Card(s)? Specific set of element(s)?
The most common type of product is a whole kit. However, often people only want specialized elements. What you provide will attract different audiences. A variety of packaged final products will attract more people to your store.
A consideration when planning is the size of the download for the price. How many file items should be included in each type of kit?
Each download link should be kept to or less than approximately 30MB each. Files larger than this will often time out when being downloaded.
LESSON: Create a color palette that you will be utilizing to create your lessons in. Make it into a .jpg file and share it. Sometimes designers even include these in their downloads.
Choose a theme and kit title and share it. The kit name is important as you will need to have that in your file names, as discussed in a previous lesson, before you begin to share. As your kit will be coming out in pieces as we do the lessons, you will want people to be able to marry up the downloads.
(You do not have to stick with the color scheme and theme through the entire class time, but this will give you something to begin with.)
Here are your palettes! I failed to preserve the themes when I moved these from the forum.