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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tuesday Tutorial: Using Word to Create Simple Scenes with Digis

Hello, crafty friends! It's Deedee here with another digital stamping tutorial for you on this fine Tuesday morning. Today I'm going to show you how to combine digis to create a simple scene using Microsoft Word, like the one on my sample card above. Creating scenes is one of my favorite ways to use digis, and once you've learned how, I'm sure it will become one of your favorites, too! :-)

Please note that this tutorial does assume some basic understanding of digis. If you are brand new to using digis, please visit our Digi Stamps 101 page HERE for directions to get you started. Also, for this tutorial, I'll be using Microsoft Word 2010. If you'd like to follow along with my directions for creating scenes with your digis using Word 2010, but don't currently have this program installed on your computer, you can download a free 60-day-use trial of Microsoft Office 2010 HERE (Microsoft Word is included in the Office suite of programs).

Using Microsoft Word, you can create a simple scene by inserting two or more digis into a document and then moving them around to your liking. Today I will show you how to create a cute, summery scene using digis from two different CDS sets -- the happy bee from "Bumbles" by Lisa Lara and the sunflower from my "Sunshine & Smiles."

A. Place the First Digi on the Page & Make it Moveable
1. Open a new, blank document in Word.
2. With your mouse, click on Insert on the menu bar at the top of the Word window, and then select Photo from the pull-down menu.

3. A second menu will appear to the side. From this menu, select Picture from File.
4. The "Choose a Picture" window will appear on-screen. In this window, navigate to the digi you wish to open, and then click on the Insert button at the bottom right corner of the window.

5. The digi you selected will be placed on your blank Word document, and will have a blue rectangle around it. This indicates that the digi is selected and able to be edited. With the digi selected, locate the Wrap Text button on the toolbar above the document window. Click on this button.

6. A pull-down menu will appear on the screen. From this menu, select Tight. This will enable the image to be moved to where you want it later in this tutorial.

B. Place the Second Digi on the Page & Make it Moveable
Repeat the steps above to place the second digi on the page and make it moveable.

As you complete the last step, Word may move the second digi over the top of the first so that you can only see the one digi.

If this happens, simply click the top digi to select it (so that the blue rectangle appears around it) and then, holding down the left button on your mouse, drag the digi to another area of the page. You should now be able to see both digis on the page.

C. Make the Backgrounds of the Digis Transparent
You're almost ready to move the digis around on the page to create your scene. However, there's one pesky detail that needs to be taken care of first. If you are using the JPEG versions of the digis, you will find that when you place the digis near each other, one digi will cover up part of the other, as seen in the photo below.

This is because JPEG files have a solid white background. To solve this problem, you can either use the PNG versions of the digis, which have transparent backgrounds, or, if you prefer to use JPEG files, you can follow these steps to make the backgrounds on your JPEG digis transparent:

1. Click the digi to select it. When selected, the digi will have a blue rectangle around the outside of it, and the mouse cursor will be shaped like sighting cross-hairs.
2. Once the digi is selected, look at the top left of the Word window to see that the Format Picture tab is highlighted on the toolbar near the top of the screen. If it is not highlighted, click on it so that it is. Underneath the Format Picture tab in the Word window, locate and click on the Recolor button.

4. A pull-down menu of recoloring options will appear on the screen. Near the bottom of this menu, locate and click on Set Transparent Color.
5. You will now notice that the mouse cursor changes shape, from a cross-hairs shape to an arrow shape. Move the mouse cursor to some part of the space just outside of the drawn lines of the selected digi, but still inside the blue rectangle, and click there. This will turn the background of the digi transparent instead of white. NOTE: Be careful not to click inside the lines of the selected digi, or the image itself will become transparent instead of just its background.

6. Repeat the steps above with the second digi so that the backgrounds of both images are transparent.

D. Move the Digis Around to Create the Scene
Now its time to move the digis around on the page to create your scene. Simply click the digi that you want to move to select it, hold down the left button on your mouse, and then drag the digi to where you want it. Repeat this as necessary with each of the digis until you have them arranged to your liking.

Note: Be careful to place the drawn lines of the digis near each other, not on top of each other. If the lines overlap, they will appear that way when you print them, and will look messy. There are techniques for layering digis on top of each other without this happening, but it's a more complicated process, so we'll save that for another tutorial. ;-)

E. Print the Scene
With your scene arranged to your liking, it's time to print it out:

1. Load the paper on to which you wish to print your digis into your printer's paper tray.
2. In the Word window, click on File on the toolbar at the top left of the screen.

3. A pull-down menu will appear on the screen. From this menu, select Print.
4. Follow the prompts specific to your printer to complete the printing process.

And voila -- you now have a simple scene created from digis! Simply color and cut it out by whichever means you choose, and it's ready to use in one of your crafty projects.

I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial, and that before long you'll be feeling confident enough to create all kinds of scenes. Be sure to share your scene-ic creations with us -- we always love to see what you make with our digis! :-)


Unknown said...

Great information and wonderful tutorial!! Thanks so much!!

Unknown said...

Fantastic tutorial - so useful, I'm just starting out with digi's so this will help so much, I look forward to more excellent tutorial Tuesday's now I'm a follower!!! Hugs xx cara xx

Unknown said...

Wonderful tutorial Deedee! It is so nice to learn how to use all the tools available to us!

Carrie said...

Veryy helpful information and easy to understand. Thanks.

Shelly Schmidt said...

Wow- how cool is this! I have been trying to figure this out- Thank You!

Jo4Him said...

Thanks so much; this is a great tutorial. I have only used digis a little bit, but this will help me tremendously.

li-marie said...

Thanks for this - so simple when someone shows you how. Will be very useful

K Clark said...

thank you thank you thank you!!!