Skip to main content

Using Brushes in a Layout

Lesson 17 from: Layering in Adobe Photoshop for Digital Scrapbookers

Traci Reed

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

17. Using Brushes in a Layout

Lesson Info

Using Brushes in a Layout

Let's talk about how you would use them on a layout this's a very painting layout I really like art journaling it is a really great way to get my emotional if I'm having a rough day from having a good day and a lot of the layouts and I'm going to be demonstrating today are more of an art generally sally out and what that means is there's a lot of pain there's a lot of texture, there's a lot of emotion and lay out and that's I'm just a different way to scrap book, and I really enjoy it. So this one's kind of an email layout today was rough with a picture of me and, um, I am going to let this actually this paper is on already brushed paper in a kit that I had with jennifer at we created a whole line of art journaling, digital scrapbooking kids. So this actually is a paper that came already in the kit, but what if I want to add to it? What if I want tio kind of make my photo really fit into the layout? There's a couple of ways to do that? Um first, we're going to open up our brushes and I...

want to make sure that I am let's pick a let's pick this fresh, ok, I want to make sure that I do my paint on its own layer because if you paint directly on your photo layer and then down the line you change your mind is you're you're not going to fix it so always make sure that when you're using paint brushes or anything that's going to be destructive to your layout, you open it on your on its own layer so I'm gonna open up I'm gonna make any layer just above my background underneath my photo and I'm just going to want to stamp and add a little bit more pain to this problem is the black doesn't really match and I can go in here and I can play with the colors and I can try and figure out what would match or I can open up the color picker and I can actually sample colors from my layout now there's already some blue over here and some yellow but um there's not a lot of red up here and again that's going to create a visual triangle with color so money is this kind of coralie red color and if you hold down command or you don't have to actually not when you have the color picker open, you don't have to hold down command, but you also don't have to open the color pink color picker to sample color so you can with the color picker open, just click on whatever color you want make sure you get a variation that you enjoy, but you don't have to open the color picture you can also, while you're on your paintbrush tool, hold down all or option and at any time pick your own color, so that will save you a step or two. We're making us faster, so I'm going to stamp right behind this play out in this, all right behind the photo, and this is too much it's too big, so because it's on its own layer, I can now resize it down and just make it a little off center so that the triangle goes the site and just speaking out a little bit behind the photo, just to give it that little extra framing around around it. Now, what happens if instead of under the photo you want above the photo now, maybe this picture was really private, maybe I was crying, and while I want to get the emotion out, I don't really want to have a big, old, ugly picture of me crying in my scrapbook, so let's, move this around, and that happens a lot and aren't journaling. A lot of people will obscure things like journaling with paint, and so I can just add the paint right on top, but it's not very realistic, it's kind of floating around the edges, so what we want to do is we want to create two layers and drag one layer underneath the photo and one layer on top of the photo and then just um command option g to clip the photo now you can see that that didn't do very much because the shadow that I have is actually down here so because this whole entire layout is basically just paint and nothing else I'm going to actually change the light source so that I can um see the shadow up in this top corner so I'm gonna have to drag the light source down to here and now the whole shadow is up in that top corner it doesn't really mess with anything there's no flair highlights to worry about not a big deal and now you can see that it looks like it was brushed off of the edge it's actually a bit of a high shadow so let's drop it down a little bit and we talked about realistic shadows in the shadowing course so if you're interested in learning about shadows I really suggest taking that one up as well or catching the replay so whenever you are painting over something so in this case I obscured the photo but you can also do the same thing with the alphabet cover up the g a little bit so if I wanted it to look like I was painting over the g you're gonna want to duplicate the layer and drag one under the g and clipped the top one. Two the g, because it's going to give it that extra realism, where as if you did not do that, you wouldn't see the shadow, and it would be very unrealistic. Now, of course, since I put this on the bottom, we're gonna have to change the shadows again and move them up. So now the shadow makes sense, so you can do this with brushes. You can do this with ready made paint. Um, anything to give it just that extra depth in the background.

Class Materials

bonus material

Shadow Styles
Stitching Brushes
Stitching Styles

Ratings and Reviews


I have recently discovered digital scrapbooking and have been using a great scrapbooking software that I downloaded on-line. There are limitations with the software that prompted me to look deeper for ideas. Traci's course was fantastic! I learned so much from her not only in scrapbooking layouts and using different elements in a page but my level of understanding of photoshop has improved dramatically. The presentation was easy to follow and broken into perfect chunks to go back and review the techniques. Thank you so much Traci for presenting this awesome course. I will look for more of your courses. Your scrapbooking is beautiful and inspiring!


I'm a photographer. I do a lot of graphic design for my business. I feel like I'm fairly knowledgeable. I saw this class being shown for free on Creative Live one day and it wasn't my first choice to watch, but was the best out of the list... I was wrong. This is a great class. I didn't expect to learn that much and I've been learning a lot! Great info!


This course was amazing. I learn some things I didn't know how to do. Traci is simple and straight forward in her teaching. Very easy to understand.

Student Work