Sunday, June 1, 2008

My First Blog Header Artwork and credits

Google is wondrous thing! Recently, several online friends have joined the Blogger family - one of whom also selected this layout. As we both enjoy digital scrapping, I decided to look for a way to personalize my header, as my blog is a combination of my gypsy-lifestyle and digital crafts (which are better suited to living in confined quarters with weight and storage limitations).

Finding a link to premade blog header art, I opted to find what was necessary to create my own - prior links state the obvious . . . I'm a camera-addict and rather hooked on digital scrapbooking!

Two links gave me most of the information I was seeking - template size and how to upload my designs.

The first-

clued me into template sizes. It's a great site, but there was ONE omission - the pixel size for this header is actually 1140 X 180 (I can extend it to 1320 x 180 to fill the box).

I spent a delightful evening creating my first heading. Knowing I wanted to include the title as part of my artwork I logged onto and found a round font that I could fill with my own art. Because it was an outline font I first set it to my header template (saved as png), then saved a jpeg copy to give me a solid background fill. Closing the saved type and reopening it, I inserted it on the top of the paper I wanted to fill the letters with. Using my magic wand, I first eliminated the white background.

Now I had the font 'Caligraph', with the colors I wanted INSIDE my letters. I used my magic wand, one letter at a time and cut and pasted the background inside my letters. Once that was done, I pulled out the background to be sure the letters were what I envisioned.

Afterwards I added the wondrful plaid background paper from the Digital Scrapbooks Seasons and Holidays collection, and the stitching, created by talented Gunhild Storeid
Finally, I outlined the letter edges to give them a bit more definition and added a feint shadow. The image of my 'House on wheels' was trimmed to fit and blend in with the other elements, with a very minor, soft shadow there too.

So, now I had my first blog header - and size - but the uploading instructions were beyond this Granny's brain (seriously!).

Back to Google search under 'creating free blog headers' . . .

and there, deceptively simple, was a great video tutorial that was almost embarrassing in its simplicity. Again, the author failed to give the header sizes- but the directions tell you that if you request, it will resize your art to the appropriate size for your blog (1140 pixels here - 1140 x 180 overall).

The second link:

My thanks to both these great wonderful bloggers.

One more item of note - when uploading your image for your header, note that one option is to automatically reduce the image to the suggested width. If you have a set image that you do NOT want rduced, DO NOT CHECK THIS BOX.

I changed my layout since I first wrote this and discovered that the suggested pixel width will not fill the full box, so you may have to experiment - The 180 depth is fine - but the widths change according to your layout choice. I did update the measurements to the size shown, adding more original art that I created - but I can still add another 180 pixels in width - and will most likely do so - eventually!

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