A Geek and her Babies

How one geeky Mom combines technology and old fashioned values to raise her babies.

Getting Started April 21, 2009

As I mentioned before, I use a free (or rather, open source) image manipulation program called GIMP to create my digital scrapbook pages instead of using a program like Adobe Photoshop. It has often boggled my mind why more people aren’t like me, and choose the free software over the very expensive version, until I realized that it is probably because there are not very many tutorials for GIMP directed to the digiscrapping world and there are a ton of them for Photoshop and its ilk.

I learned to use GIMP by just messing around, and by translating Photoshop tutorials into something I could do with GIMP, but I realize most people aren’t like me. Instead of messing around, they just want to get to scrapping.

So, in the spirit of making the world a better scrappy place and promoting my absolute love of open source software, I am going to do the translating for you.

What you need

The first thing you need is a copy of GIMP for Windows or Mac (if you are running Linux you probably already have it on your OS). The installer packages already have everything you need, so go ahead and install it.

You will also need some scrapbook supplies. The great thing about digiscrapping is there are tons of free scrapbook supplies out there and they are reusable. Some of my favorite places to find them are:

Scrapbook Flair
Scrapbook-Bytes.com (sign up for the free registration
Shabby Princess
and Digital Scrapbook Place (free registration)

If that’s not enough just do a google search for free digital scrapbooking.

Note: if you use Firefox as a web browser, it is very helpful to grab the downthemall tools.

Go crazy and download as many kits, papers, embellishments and alphabets as you want. What’s great is you can use them again and again and the paper bits don’t go all over your floor!

It is also very helpful to have some sort of photo organizing software. I prefer Google’s Picasa which is free, but however you like to organize yourself, have at it. Organization becomes key later in the program.

Finally, you will need your pictures but you probably have those already, or why else would you be reading a tutorial about scrapbooking?

Ok, I’m going to stop here for today so that you can go get your stuff together. I’ll leave you with some great GIMP links..

The GIMP User Manual is a good place to start your GIMP education. There are also some great general tutorials on GIMP.org. And, finally, there is a lot more indepth information in Grokking the GIMP. Don’t worry though, I’m going to walk you through it. It’s just a good idea to bookmark those sites for future reference.

Go have fun grabbing some pretty pages and looking at the galleries. Because soon you will be doing this:

From Finished_Scrapbook
From Finished_Scrapbook

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