Friday, February 3, 2017

Super Cool Sticker Pack Animations from Vital Imagery Ltd.

Clipart Image of a Little Boy and Girl Looking at Tablets
I'm not a youngster.  I was actually born when people still listened to 45s, when a bottle of pop could be had for a dime.

I was even born before most homes had rotary phones.  The operator hooked us up with the person we wanted to reach. If you lived in the country, as my cousins did, you were probably on a 'party' line, which meant you not only waited for someone in your own house to get off the phone, you could potentially find yourself waiting for a neighbour to end a call before you could make your own.

We got three channels on our television and Dad's fiddling with the rabbit ears hopefully got rid of most of the snow on the screen.  If I wanted to play games I went outside or sat at a table with some die, a board and tokens.

With the advancements in technology, life has certainly changed from those times for all of us, particularly in the last few decades. The internet has opened doors of communication that many people, especially those of my generation and older, couldn't have imagined.

Despite certain issues social media, we all know it has its benefits, most notably in how it has connected us to others. Think of the 75-year-old gentlemen who lost his fishing partner and posted a request for a companion to accompany him on his angling adventures. The response was huge and what could have turned into a lonely existence suddenly meant a continued fulfilling life.

Think too, of the posts of lost pets, and more importantly missing children. Whether you like it or not, there's no denying that used as intended,  social media is an indispensable tool.

New technologies too have brought us all kinds of 'toys'. GPSs instantly come to mind. When I think of the days when my husband and I would travel to unknown places, a map spread out on my lap in the passenger's seat, and a wrong turn or squabble imminent.   Now some friendly voice patiently guides us, remaining calm when we opt to not listen.

Cellphones have made landlines almost extinct, though a few dinosaurs likes my husband still hang on. The positive attributes of this technology are as known as the less so. Sadly, we've all had that dinner with a friend who seems far more interested in that phone than in conversation with you.

Putting the negatives aside, however, I'm a big fan of most of this. Social media has linked me to family and old friends in a way that wasn't possible before. And the convenience of texting,  while at times annoying,  is undeniable. Message sent, get to it when you can.  The ball, as we say, is in your court.

One of my favourite texters is my four-year-old granddaughter. Since she can't spell enough yet to carry on much of a conversation, she chats in her own style — with oodles and oodles of stickers.  From her favourite 'neigh'neighs' to hearts and smiley faces she inundates me with adorableness.

Since Mom and Dad just happen to have iPhones, I can hardly wait to tell them about the new stickers available on iTunes created from Vital Imagery Ltd's From Animal Chores to special holidays, there are a number of categories from which to choose delightful stickers to enhance  iMessages.  It's as easy as a touch or a drag. 

Clipart Image of a Fantastic Football Sticker Pack

What better way to get in the spirit of Super Bowl weekend then with these terrific game time stickers. Such a fun way to talk about the game.

Clipart Image of a Hockey Animation Sticker Pack

Celebrating  winter's game with a cool collection for hockey fans.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

5 Photoshop Tutorials for Personal Valentine's Day Projects

Clipart Image of an Elizabethan Minstrel on Bended Knee Playing a Guitar
"Doubt thou the stars are fire,
Doubt that the sun doth move.
Doubt truth to be a liar,
But never doubt I love."

Oh, that Mr. Shakespeare did have a way with words.  His romantic thoughts transferred to elegant verse can be positively swoon worthy. My heart melts when I hear those words from Hamlet.  My soul sighs when Romeo speaks upon seeing  his beloved Juliet: "Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night."

Of course,  nobody talks like this any more. In today's harried and hurried society we have come to rely on texting and social media for conversation, and yes, even to convey our heartfelt thoughts. Albeit in acronyms and within 140 characters.

There are still some old-school folks who remember what it was like though, to keep things personal, when love notes were hand-written and shared discreetly, rather than shouting their feelings from the proverbial social media rooftops.

I would be among them.  My hubby and I have been together a long time. The life we had before each other has become a blip in our personal history compared to the one we've built in the decades since.  While neither of us is overly romantic we're no slouches either when it comes to wooing each other. Practise makes perfect so they say. Our gestures are more thoughtful than cheesy,  more about building meaningful traditions than grand overtures.

We use opportunities like birthdays, anniversaries and Valentine's Day to say through a card what we haven't been able to put into words ourselves, believing that a reminder of one's devotion to another can't happen too often. Every one of them has been saved.

There have even been some of those little handwritten notes over the years. And it is these that are most cherished. They might not have been as eloquent as Shakespeare but they are personal which means more.

As Valentine's Day approaches it's a good time to think what you can do to make this one special. There will be romantic dinners. Many marriage proposals will happen.  Florists, card shops and chocolate stores will be kept busy. And those gifted with the romantic gene will come up with unique and individual ways to express their love and passion. 

You could also, while combining the technology of today with old-school, make this Valentine's Day special by creating something unique  Whether it's a card or some inspired artwork, Photoshop can help you put your own spin on a personal project. Here are some great ideas and tutorials to inspire you:

A general video tutorial, not geared specifically to matters of the heart, but a perfect way to showcase some of your most personal  pictures in a very special gift.

An excellent tutorial that combines two images into a romantic piece of art.

With this relatively easy tutorial you can create a romantic card that includes a photo of you and your sweetheart.

This step-by-step video guides you through the process of creating your very own cards, a perfect, yet simple way to make your message personal.

Another simple video tutorial combines vintage images with a photo and text for a fun Valentine greeting.