Cropped Canvas Memos
by Jen White
Use the Crop Tool to create create a quick and trendy greeting for sharing with loved ones.
I love Photoshop. But, . . .
I’m NOT a fan of the Crop tool. I find it clunky and annoying.
Okay, I’m glad I got that off my chest.
That said, there is at least one super-cool use for the Crop tool that’s often overlooked.
Check out this card that I created lickety split with one of my snapshots.
If I gave you the pretty square flower photo (below), could you figure out how to create the rest of the card I made? How long do you think it would take you to make it? How many steps do you think it would take?
Here’s good news. I created this card in three simple steps and it took me only a couple minutes to accomplish. You can do it, too! Let me show you how.
For this tutorial you will need:
- A photo, download the one I’m using HERE.
- Photoshop Elements or Adobe Photoshop
NOTE: This tutorial will work best if your image is in JPG format.
Step One: Open a Photo
- Open a photo (File > Open).
Note: Square photos(like the kind created after posting on Instagram) look best for this technique.
Step Two: Set the Background Color Chip
- Click on the Background Color Chip to open the Color Picker.
- On the document, click to sample a color from the photo. I clicked on the area indicated below by the blue circle.
Note: If you click and drag, you can see the New Color change as you move around the image.
- Click OK to close the Color Picker.
Step Three: Add Canvas with the Crop Tool
- Get the Crop tool.
- In the Tool Options, set the Preset Options to No Restrictions. (PS: Choose WxHxResolution and check Delete Cropped Pixels.)
- In the Tool Options, click on the first Crop Suggestion.
- The entire image should have a bounding box around it. If it doesn’t, click and drag the side handles of the bounding box to line up with the boundaries of the image. (see below)
- In the Tool Options, set the Grid Overlay to Rule of Thirds.
- On the Image, click and drag the right bounding box handle to the right until the right vertical line of thirds is on the edge of the image. (See the image below.)
- Click the checkmark to commit.
Note: Alternatively, you can drag up, down, or to the left on the bounding box handles.
Notice how the Background Color Chip was used to extend the canvas of the photo?
Let’s take it one step further and add a note to the extra canvas.
Step Four: Add a Note
- Get the Type tool.
- In the Tool Options, set the Size to 100 pt and click on the Center Align icon.
- On the document, click to place the cursor in the top center of the extra canvas area.
- Type something (sentiment, quote, scripture, etc) and click the checkmark to commit.
- In the Tool Options, adjust the Font, Size, Leading, Color, and Alignment as you wish.
Photo: Jen White
Fonts: Aristelle Script, DJB Doodled Bits
Step Five: Save the Image for Sharing
To print the image and send it in the mail:
- Save the image (File > Save As) as a high quality JPEG image with a unique name.
To share the image via email, text or social media:
- Save the image for web (File > Save For Web) as a high quality JPEG image with a unique name.
Note: When doing this, I usually put the word “web” in the file name so I know the image is not print quality.
- Close the original without saving.
What’s the difference between Save and Save for Web?
The images (above) are a closeup of my flower image. The two images are exactly the same except for the ppi.
Save As saves an image at 300 ppi – for printing.
—300 ppi (pixels per inch) is the minimum recommended for printed images.
—The file size (in megabytes) is controlled by the quality settings.
—The output dimensions remain the same.
Save for Web saves an image at 72 ppi – for sharing.
—It’s only meant for sharing.
—The ppi is changed to 72. This is the approximate size used in web browsers.
—The file size is much, much smaller. Think kilobytes instead of megabites.
—The output dimensions of the image are adjustable.
Here are a few more examples of images I’ve turned into greetings.
Photo: Kaila Gustafson
Fonts: Quilline Script Thin, Amber Whiskey, Hero Light
Photo: Jen White
Fonts: Catherine, Shree Devanagari 714
Author: Jen White | Contact Us
All comments are moderated.
Please allow time for your comment to appear.