Even though I have been creating my own layouts for some time, I still am not against using a Quick Page.. or ten or twelve..when it comes to making and creating a quick gift for birthdays or Christmas. I have a very large family, and they all love to get a picture book made by me filled with pictures of there grandchildren and special events. Of course, I don’t have time to create that many original books, so quick pages are a great way for me to make them that special book and save on time as well.
If you are a beginner, you may be asking “What in the world is a quick page?” Well, a quick page, or QP for short, is a layout already done for you.. All you have to do is add your photos and some journaling and you are done! If you have ever tried to use a QP though, you might have realized that your pictures don’t always fit in the spaces they give you. Today, I am here to show you a simple way to get your QP’s done quickly and perfectly!
First, begin by opening your QP in your program. I am using Photoshop CS, but Photoshop Elements works as well. Go to File>Open and then locate your QP on your computer. Click Open. Once your layout is open, you will see lots of blank spaces where your photos will go. I created this QP using Mye’s new Halloween kit, Treats not Trick.
Before I begin adding pictures I want to add a few clipping masks behind each of the photo slots so that all I have to do is clip my photo to them and they will appear perfect in my layout.
With your page open in front of you, go to your tools palette on the left of the page, and choose the Polygonal Lasso Tool (want a short cut to get to the tool fast? hit the letter L on your keyboard–Shift+ L allows you to scroll through each Lasso choice)
Once you have chosen the polygonal lasso tool, we will then go to the QP and draw our first clipping mask. To draw the mask, click on the top photo frame on the right hand side of the QP. I usually click right in the middle of the frame. Once you click, go to the next corner and click again. If you want an exact square, you can hold the shift button before you click and it will make a straight line. However, since these frames will all not be square, I am just free handing it today. Once you click on the second corner, make your way to the third corner and click, and then to the fourth corner. Once you get back around, you want to make the ends of your square meet when you make that final click of the mouse. Once you do that, the shape that you just drew will appear with marching ants around it.
You want to make sure that the square you just drew is slightly larger than the space that you want to fill with the picture. If you do not like the square, you can hit CTRL+D and it will deselect the square and you can begin again.
Once you have it drawn to your liking, we need to add a new layer in your layers palette so that we can finish creating the clipping mask. In your layers palette, locate the icon at the very bottom of the palette that looks like a page with the end turned up. This is the create New Layer icon. If you are unsure if you have the right icon, you can hover over the icon in question and Photoshop will reveal its name. Click on the Create New Layer Icon.
Once you create the new layer, it will appear above your QP in your Layers Palette, on the right side of your workstation. I rename my layers as I go so that it is easier to locate them when I am ready to add pictures. Double click on the Layer 1 name and a text box will appear allowing you to rename the layer. I named mine Picture 1.
Once you have your new layer, we need to fill the space with a color. Make sure that you have your Picture 1 layer selected in your layers palette and then select the Paint Bucket tool in your tool palette on the left hand side of your workstation. (shortcut=G)
Now, go to the square that we drew on the QP and click inside of it. Your square will fill with the foreground color that you have selected. Hit CTRL+D to deselect the newly filled square. Drag your picture layer 1 down below your QP.
Next, we will continue to create the next photo mask by following the same procedure as we did for Photo 1.
Follow the shape of the frame as you create your new clipping mask for Photo 2. Create a new layer. Fill the layer with your paint bucket. Ctrl+D to deselect and then move your photo layer 2 UNDERNEATH photo layer 1.
Once you have created all of your small photo clipping masks, You can follow the same procedure to create the LARGE photo mask. I filled mine with white by selecting my paint bucket and hitting X on the keyboard. Hitting X will flip flop your foreground and background colors. You can then fill your final clipping mask and move it below all of the other photos.
Now that we have made all the clipping masks, we can begin to add our photos. Go To File>Open and locate your pictures on your computer. Select them and Click open. Each photo will come into Photoshop on it’s own layer, so we will need to add each one of them to the page. Go to Window>Arrange>Cascade and that will cascade all your photos and layout in your workstation. Select your first photo, Click on the picture IN YOUR LAYERS PALETTE and DRAG it onto your QP. Hold the shift key while you drag and it will center on your page.
Make sure that you have your MOVE tool selected in your Tools Palette (V) and select your photo in the layers palette. On your QP, move the picture to above the photo 1 space. At this point, you might need to resize your photo. Select one of the corners of your photo, hold the shift key down, and drag in to make your photo smaller, or out to make your photo larger. It does not have to be perfect, but it does have to at least cover the mask.
Once you have your photo sized correctly, it now needs to be clipped to the clipping mask to hide the parts that we don’t want to see. In Photoshop, click on the photo you want to clip in your layers palette. The mask should be on the layer underneath it.
Hold the ALT+ left click on the line BETWEEN the photo and the mask. An arrow will now appear to the left of your photo that tells you it is being clipped to the mask underneath.
In Photoshop Elements, it is even easier, make sure that your photo is above the mask and then hit CTRL+G!
Once you have clipped the first photo, continue to add your photos, resize and clip them as you go.
This is where YOUR creativity comes in because you can fill each space with a photo, OR you can add a matching paper into any of the spaces and change it up a little. Add journaling on top of the paper for a different look , change up the opacity of the larger photo or you can even change the photo processing! The choices are numerous and only limited by your imagination! Here are just a few of the ways I changed this layout!
Black and White photo
Adding paper as the fourth picture
Adding paper in a photo slot for journaling
Adding paper and another mask
QP’s are a fun and easy way to create some great pages and you can make them your own by adding a few touches here and there! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial today, and as a little giftie from me to you, I am getting you started with the QP I used today! I hope you enjoy!
Click here to get your QP freebie