Thursday, 18 December 2008

More Duck Speech

Glad you all enjoyed the duck speech and just for you, Viv - quack, quack.

Hi arti - good to hear from you. I must try to translate more of the German mag. Perhaps I could illustrate it, got a great idea for duck speech.

Thanks to Christine I have a proper translation and it was a good review and turned out not to have been written by a duck. Very kind of her.

I used to love Stanley Unwin, Heather. It does sound just like him. Liked the H&S comment, too. In fact the drawings were wonderful - Jane had caught the movement and the faces had something of Bacon about them. There's a very rude joke trying to get out here so I will just say, Gilby, that I will try to get a pic for you

Yes, Aussie Jo , I can't believe we're going to do a book with Jean - her outline sounds fantastic and I can't wait either. Will she do a little extra for the site, asks Shirley - I'm sure she will, but it might not be classes. We may have something else up our sleeve.

D4daisy has had an exciting week with a big package of books going to America. They also wanted copies of a CDROM called Paper and Beyond that Jane Wild and I put together. We'd had such fun with the Paper, Metal and Stitch book that we didn't want to stop and because we decided, while driving up the motorway to the photoshoot that we had too much material in the book and it would make the pics too small. So Jane was tearing out pages from the file as I drove along and some of these went in the CD. It features surface decoration, paper techniques and lots on using embossing powders. Now that it has been re-pressed I may put it on the secure site.

At the end of this post I have included a step by step of gradients in Photoshop Elements - lots of people had emailed me about this as they are a bit hard to find. Have also included Displacement maps in Elements. I've done these before but forgot to label the post and, again have had emails on the subject.

We tried to put up the Christmas tree today - in view of Smudge and his tendencies we've dug out a fake tree. It had to be lashed to several boxes of books to make sure he couldn't pull it over. Fiona says that his sister climbs their tree and goes to sleep in it. Here's the lashing.

First he tried a good ear rub.

Then he had a good chew. Haven't put much on it yet but I think lights might not be a good idea in view of the chewing.

Enough of this wittering here's the Elements bit.

Open a new page and then click on the gradient tool on the left-hand toolbar.

Then choose a gradient from the drop down menu, as shown.

Now drag the mouse down the blank page in the direction that you want the gradient to go. Just experiment.

To make a displacement map you will need to have saved a suitable image as a photoshop (PSD) file. Remember where you saved it. Then go to Filters, distort and displace.

Make the numbers in the two boxes quite high - about 100.
I'd saved a file of this tower with a tree - worked out well.


Heather said...

I can't comment on Photoshop or Displacement Maps as it's all Greek to me, however I do have the CDROM you made with Jane Wild and must have another look at it. I am trying to enter the 21stC!! Hope your Christmas tree survives Smudge's attentions. One year we had to position our tree just behind the sofa so that whoever was sitting there could catch it as it toppled, as the cat we had then would just take a running leap and climb it - we didn't need a fairy or a star that year! We then shouted 'Timber'! and held the tree up until another pair of hands arrived to help put it upright.

Julie said...

Maggie, thank you so much for the Elements tutorial. I have had a little play with this previously but it helps to have it written down.

Our tree is relegated to the conservatory as our lounge is too small.

Viv Estill said...

Well Maggie I fell right into that one didn't I ?
All I can really say is Ace!
Have a great Christmas and keep up the excellent work.

Project Neo said...

Years ago when we had both a young, mischievous cat and an Akita, who was always a willing accomplice of the cat, we used to tie the tree to a large eye hook mounted in the ceiling. We used fishing line to keep it from being very noticable. The dynamic duo never managed to knock the tree over, but they did get it swinging a number of times. When the boys came along we continued to tie it up for safety. To my knowledge only our furry children ever were a real threat to the safety of the tree.
Have a merry Christmas,

Pat said...

Ah Maggie,after rubbing and chewing comes tapping and swiping. Just delightful, thank you for your message. I too must revisit the CD, have a wonderful Christmas.

yvette said...

smudge...keep away from the glass christmas ornaments!
I'm going to explore this blog when the holiday season is over
have a good time

Wabbit said...

Thank you for the Elements directions. I always get lost in translation when I try from the PSP directions. Not very geek-like of me, I know.

They sell something in the pet stores here called "Yuck!" that I sometimes spray on Chance to make Cody stop licking him. But I don't think I'd want it on my tree that I'm going to handle (might be just the thing for other stuff though!). What about spraying the tree with some bitter apple? Or a scent that cats don't like? We're running out of time looking for a location that is safe from big wagging tails! Wabbit aka Marilyn