Freebie & Links

Growing up before the technology we know today was so readily available, I was big into my penmanship.  My handwriting was very important to me and I worked at it.  In fourth grade, my best friend and I adopted such similar styles of penmanship, our teacher couldn’t tell our writing apart.  I altered my script through the years, but, always wound up with the same basic scrawl.  It’s no wonder, then, when I see something of importance to me online, I grab pen and scratch paper and jot away.  There are “note” programs, including “sticky notes”, available all over the internet and I’ve probably tried a third of them.  Still, I find myself grabbing for my trusty Number 2.  
For the past few weeks, I have been jotting down the names of the links I’ve found and want to share with you all.  So, now, I sit down to post and what do you think has happened?  LOL  I can’t find all of my scraps with notes jotted on them.  Where is that “sticky notes” program when I need it!?  I can remember most of them, though, because I was impressed with them.  So, without further adieu, here we go! 
First off, I found a cute little blog that gives away clip art.  Every post offers either a small set of images or a collection of like objects.  Les Cliparts de Clo is this blog.  What I liked about it is the terms.  She has both ‘Personal Use’ items and ‘Commercial Use’, too.  The site is in French, but, a quick translation to English shows that they are very liberal.  Actually, her terms are in both, French and English.  She states that they are okay to use in scrapbooking designs, even those to be sold, as long as the stuff you create is sold as PU.  How very reasonable.  She has some really nice clip art, too.  Here is today’s post image, just as an example:
Just click on the above image to go to that post.  If you like and want to receive updates when there is a new post, subscribe to her feed and updates will come to you.  It’s really simple.  And, as always, do remember to leave a note or comment.
If you all think I place too much emphasis on terms, you’re right.  I follow them to the letter.  Several months ago, I did a collage sheet in which I added in some arms and legs.  I didn’t know where the appendages came from, but, rather than pursuing it as I should have done, I went ahead and used them.  I was, in effect, giving away something that did not belong to me.  The artist of the limbs notified me about them.  Turns out, we knew each other already.  She was very sweet about it, but, I felt so stupid!  It was embarrassing, to say the least.  I didn’t know they were hers, but, I didn’t get them from her site.  Someone else was sharing them and I took them, then.  This doesn’t make my using them any less bad, though.  I didn’t even credit that source.  (Early on, I didn’t worry too much about making sure the file names included the artist.  I don’t remember where I found some of the image I have.)  Now, the terms are the deciding factor in whether I use anything I find online.
Next on my little list of links is a stock photo site.  Now, if you have spent any time at all on stock photos, you know they aren’t cheap, especially those with usage rights or licenses.  Though not very often, I use images, or photos, in my photo-manipulations or other personal art.  I’ve used some of the vector designs that the photo sites often carry, but, also, not very often.  Once in a while I need an image for something and finding one I could afford and that I had rights to use was always so difficult.  I usually had to rely on the website’s “free” image categories, which limits the possibilities.  Until, I found Cutcaster.  Cutcaster is a site for photographers to upload their images for sale or free use.  You can also go download photos to use.  Their set up is awesome!  Every image has it’s own page with all the info one would need – artist’s name, download button, topic, size, etc.  The resulting downloaded images are just gorgeous!  Here are just a few that I picked out to show you.
The terms are reasonable, as well.  The only worry would be if you intended to sell something made with one of their images.  You can read more on their terms for their free images here.

What next?  Oh, yeah!  I found a website, Photoshop Tutorials, that is so awesome, I consider it a cut above the rest.  Maybe, their topics are just more my style, I dunno, but, there is a lot of good things here and I found all of it to my liking.  Don’t let the title, ‘Tutorials’ mislead.  They do have those.  Theirs are for images/techniques I would actually want to do.  LOL  Some of the manipulations on this site are nice.  I would sit down and follow them and maybe even use the techniques again on some of my own stuff.  I liked this one: 

(Click on image to go to this tutorial)
Photoshop tutorials, in general, are great for learning the program.  If you have never done one, by all means, find one you like and go to it.  I’ve had plenty of “a-ha!” moments while doing a tutorial and learning something new.  Some are easy to understand, ‘holding your hand’ all the way through, while others may leave you scratching your head.  It helps, too, if there is still someone around to answer any questions.  I’ve met some darned nice people by asking questions or commenting on posts or articles I come across.

Getting back to this website, though, there is not a whole lot of content, but, all that is there is usable stuff.  There are some textures, but, not one-of-every-color-under-the-sun, so much.  There are several packs and assorted others.  The brush list is only three pages, but, I can use 99% of them and they are good quality.  There is just a lot more at this site that I, personally, can use and like.  For that reason, I like it a lot.  Give a visit.  You’ll enjoy it.

Next, I want to tell you about Creativity103 website.  This one is definitely worth signing up to get.  If I recall, it took about a day to get the link to activate, but, it was worth the wait.  There are the best collections of images I’ve seen in one place.  They present some very nice collections as a ‘pack’ which can be downloaded as a zip.  Or, you can download just the images you like from their gallery.  There’s more in the gallery than in the packs, so, there are quite a few images.  The layout of the site makes it easy to navigate around.  The quality of the images is just great!  Here is an example of one of the ‘packs’ they offer:

They also have the ‘organic’ textures and patterns and all that.  But, the packs offer something a bit different.  Sign up is easy and it’s free.  Once you get the password, go have fun.  Their archives have some great images!  They send you an e-mail when they post new images, too, so, you never miss out.  It is about twice a month.

I’m going to wrap it all up with this Flick’r group, “Textures 4 Layers”.  I wouldn’t normally share a group with you all.  They require a membership that involves contributing and participation.  I try to stick with the sites that you can stop in, bookmark, if desired, and peruse, hopefully, coming away with some awesome goodies that are free and legal to use with little or no attribution.  LOL  Those are my guidelines for staying on with a website.  But, this group does do some really nice textures.  I joined the group to enjoy the challenges.  There are some really good artists there!  The collection of textures, though, is extremely nice and can be used commercially or personally, with varying terms of attribution, depending on the artist.  Most just want you to credit their name.  Rather than try to show you a sampling of their textures, I want to share with you the image I did for one of the recent challenges there.

The clock image was the ‘starting’ image, then, we were to add any of the textures from the group pool to come up with our interpretation of the clocks.  There is a format to use to give credit to the artist(s) whose textures you’ve used, but, I found that part good.  It helped show me an easy way to keep up with the images I use.  I actually learned quite a bit on copyright and attribution from this group.  You really ought to go check out what they offer.  They have some really good textures for you.

Whew!  LOL  That’s going to be it for a little while.  I have more and I am always on the lookout for more and interesting links to share.  I want to remind everyone that the ‘second part’ of my collaborative kit with Miss Edna, “Miss Edie”, was posted Monday.  That leaves one part left to go, next Monday.  When you are done, you’ll have a beautiful kit.  The inspiration for the kit was Miss Edna’s friend and SIL, Edie.  Such an sweet thing to celebrate a friendship with a kit!  So, it was made with friendship in mind.  There is all kinds of pretty things in it.  Here are our previews.  (Images are linked to the posts that have the downloads):


Miss Edna’s Place

The link for this second part is at the very end of Edna’s post.  She has just recently lost her brother.  In fact, today is his funeral.  She just wasn’t with it that day.  Excuse her if you will, but, she got the link posted.  Bless her heart.

I’m leaving you with a little set of textures that I did for the Flickr group.  I added an overlay of grungey edges, too.  You get them first here!  LOL

(Click on the image to go to MediaFire for download)

Well, are you still with me?  LOL  That was rather lengthy, but, I’ve been wanting to get to this list for a long time.  Things don’t always go as planned, though, do they?  I’m going to close with a couple of photos of the contributing “plan-breakers”, the g-kids.  LOL 

 Always up-side down!

Notice nothing else is blurry except Kaleb.  LOL  He is a perpetual motion machine these days!

Kaleb was cuddling with the big stuffed doggy.

I will see you next time – Monday, for sure.  Edna and I have already completed another present for you all.  You’ll know about it soon.  I almost forgot, too, on November 1, the new Gothic Inspirations Blog Train leaves the station.  November’s theme is “Horror Whorez”.  LOL  I have a contribution for it.  Actually, so does Edna!  So, be sure to come by to collect my part and then, go visit all the other designers, too.

Smile, ya’ll!



SU CheshireCat

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