We show you how to create your own gift cards in this Adobe Photoshop tutorial
A greeting card is the perfect way to show someone you care. Photographic cards are simple to make and can be achieved in a number of editing software programmes. For this tutorial we’re using Adobe Photoshop Elements 9 and will create a generic template, which can be adapted at a later stage depending on how or if you want to take it forward.
Step 1: Source the image. For this tutorial we’re using the images we shot in the studio for the Digital Photographer workshop that can be found on the CD in issue 116. If you too want to create cards from our images download the files from the free CD in the mag. Import the files into Photoshop or select your own files if you have something else in mind.
Step 2: Create a new page. Go to File> New> Blank File> and select A4 paper size or whatever size you’re going print your cards onto. Make sure the image settings are at 300dpi and RGB. You can experiment with larger and smaller size cards depending on your subject matter and printer size.
Step 3: Ruler and grid lines. To make the task in hand easier select the ruler and grid lines settings. Go to the View menu on the top bar and select both options. An A4 size of paper measures 29.7 x 21cm. The half waypoint therefore is 14.85cm and is where you need to make a small mark.
Step 4: Mark half way. To mark the point select the line bar tool from the palette and create two small faint lines halfway. Make sure you’ve selected the colour palette to a light grey shade. It helps if you zoom into the area and drag and drop the bar on both sides of the paper at 14.85cm.
Step 5: Import the image. You are now
ready to import your image and this can be done in a number of ways. One of the easiest is to use the move arrow tool and drag and drop the image into the template. You can then resize and position it using the grid lines so it fits into the space.
Step 6: Copyright the back. Position the image in the space. Remember your half way markers and think about how the image is going to appear with a border – you may not want to include one at all. Once you’ve positioned the image rotate the card around and select the text tool. We’ve put © Digital Photographer 2011 however you should mark your own name here. Make the text small, as it looks more professional.
Step 7. Inside text. F or the inside of the card you need to include text. Create a new page and again select the ruler and grid lines. Depending on how your printer feeds the paper will determine where you place the text. Work out where your image is going to be and do a test run.
Step 8: Print it out. When you’re ready and happy with your card go to File>Print and preview the template. Make sure you run a test strip before you print your final image to check the colours are accurate. This saves a lot of time and money in the long run. Fold your card in two at the half way lines you marked on earlier.
Step 9: Get experimental. Once you’ve mastered these simple techniques and have produced a format you are happy with get experimenting. A repetitive pattern will work well on cards when you repeat the image or you may want to experiment with different photographic effects. Try creating a series and make the cards unique to your style so they stand out.
To read the full tutorial pick up the current issue of Digital Photographer 116, on sale now.