Monday, August 30, 2010

Back to backgrounds

I've been experimenting with backgrounds. I long to make those beautiful soft backgrounds that grace the pages of Flickr. I'm just not that kind of person. I love colour! I love crispness. I'm just not that laid back. However, I did put together a few ATC backs and I'm going to offer them to you for FREE! FREE being the most popular word on the web. The usual applies. Don't sell them as your own. You can link back to me, which would be great. And if you want I'll post what you made. And if you want the soft, beautiful backgrounds, I have links to them.

                                                        See what I mean; not mellow.

Less mellow. Eventually we all have to let go of our illusions.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Brushes for PSE

These are photo brushes made on PSE6. This is what the actual brushes look like stamped on white paper.

MAC Instructions for loading brushes.
  1. Download files: 
On the right hand side of the window that will pop up  click on LOAD.  When you do that a window will (hopefully brushes) open. Select the brush you want to load. Then click  LOAD.

It probably won't be the brushes window. Don't panic.
On the left side of the FINDER window click APPLICATIONS->ADOBE->PRESETS->BRUSHES
Look for your new brush there. Click LOAD.

If your new brush isn't in there, then go to the FINDER and repeat the steps in the paragraph above. When you get to the brushes drag the new brush into the finder window. I drag the .zip file in there and open it.

 You should be able to find your new brush in the ELEMENTS finder window.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

New Look- Welcome to Adventures in Photoshop.

It's a lazy Sunday afternoon. I cleaned my apartment. Cleaned my desk. Then I thought I'd give a new and brighter look to my blog. Feel free to comment on the new look.
I found a big list of  photoshop tutorials on Flickr.
You can check it out. I learned how to make a shadow. A much easier way to make a shadow is to go into EFFECTS and find the drop shadows. You have more control if you have a layer for each element on your art.

There are tutorials on making picture cubes. Then there's a tutorial on making an S2 wrap.

Very creepy picture of Audrey Hepburn.
As you can see I'm still working on the technique.
I added a clock to my blog. That way you'll always know what time it is in Vancouver. There are a few new links. I deleted a couple of blogs I follow to trim down the blog a bit. As you may have noticed it is slower to load lately. I'll see what else I can do to improve that.
Artwise I've been playing with time, so to speak. The scrappin cop has come out with new png of watch parts. I'll leave you with a couple.

I discovered a new use for metallic gradients. I used it on the clock face to give it a bit more depth. It's done with a metallic bulls eye gradient. Then reduce the opacity until you're happy with it.
Inner clockworks courtesy of Fallen Angel.

For those of you who have slacked off seeing the dentist, there's the best tutorial I've seen in whitening teeth in photoshop.
It's easy peasy after a few tries.

All artwork property of NeonSun Studios unless otherwise indicated.
© NeonSun Studios 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

Taking a Break

Taking a break from making brushes. Decided to have some fun. So downloaded some brushes. Went to Brusheezy and downloaded a set of 50 marbles. Why you ask. Call it an impulse.

You never know when you'll need some marbles.

I also checked out this site:

You could make your mom a birthday card. I used them for this.

©NeonSun Studios-Monk: CheneySan, Background: Darkwoods, Background: JoesSistah
They're also good for a nice ghostly effect. I got carried away and used several layers. By the time I finished forgot who all the backgrounds belong to. If you see something familiar, claim it and I'll give you credit.
After that experience I decided to make something using material from one artist, JoesSistah.

I guess it's photoshop brush week here on my blog. As they say, new horizons.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

New FREE Brushes For PSE

All photos are of the actual brushes stamped on gradient and Creative Commons backgrounds.
 Russian Tall Ship- Here's the link for this one:

Background: Shadowhouse Creations
Measuring Tape Brush. Download it at:

Background: JoesSistah
A fish brush. Background not included. Download at:

 Chinese coin. If anyone knows where to get a bronze colour, let me know.  Download at:

 Why not? A Queen Victoria brush. Download at:

You can download this at:

Free Brush Test Run

I made a brush!  Now I'm going to try and share it with you. Here's what it looks like.
If you want the background go to Shadowhouse creations
Okay. Here's one download site-Windows live

That worked. Let me know how it works for you.

The next link is:
I feel more confident about this link. Again, let me know so I can improve or work out bugs.
I hope you enjoy the brush. I will make more, so stay tuned.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Zip it Up-Making a Zip File on the Mac

Making a zip file on the Mac is just too easy.
  1. Select items
  2. Put in a folder
  3. Select folder (otherwise you may zip the wrong folder)
  4. Open file menu (the gear at the top of the window)
  5. Select COMPRESS or archive
  6. Sit back and feel smug

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Lighting gives life to artwork. So I've been playing around with it. I'm amzaed what a drastic difference light settings can do to a work.
 Check out->FILTER->RENDER->PHOTO FILTER.  Then have fun playing around with lighting effects. I first discovered this filter  while reading a tutorial by photographer,  James Neeley. Here's the link:
For a full list of his tutorials go here:
I just finished making a banner for my site. Everyone seems to have one. I'll show you some different looks you can get with the filter using my banner as an example.

Green Texture Channel
Finished Banner
   Omni light to spotlight eagle
So play around with this versatile filter. As you can see it can be used to highlight different elements or wash them out entirely. You can also use them to change colours or to even change the texture.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Toulouse Lautrec and the Rubber Stamp

I spent the afternoon at the art gallery today.
It was interesting to see sketches. Amazing what Seaurat could do with Charcol. Truly amazing actually. I was surprised to find out that one painter actually sketched on cardboard! My companion remarked that he didn't know that cardboard was even invented in the late 1800's. One imagines the painter, desparately picking the cardboard out of the bin and grabbing charcol from the stove to create a minor masterpiece. Now that's broke! Just imagine what they might of done with modern technology and some cash.
Flash forward a hundred years or so. Here's what they could have done.

© Toulouse Lautrec (not anymore)

Yes, rubber stamps of famous paintings. I bought two, the one you see and a Gauguin stamp. It was either that or the art nouveau coasters. I am somewhat ashamed of myself. At the time it seemed like a good idea. It wasn't until I actually was inking the stamps that I felt a little uneasy about it. I  blame the Musee d' Orsay. They made the stamps. I'm still not too sure what to think.
Check out the original.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Now for Something Completely New

I guess you're admiring my stunninly beautiful header right now. I didn't make it. The header is from
 Cute and Cool Blog Stuff

They have some nice backgrounds and headers. Also some info on installing them. There are also some tutorials for PSP

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Grunge and the Rain

Grunge and rainy days seem to go together. Grunge is organic in the Pacific Northwest. Maybe it's the mold or maybe it's the pattern of rain dripping down concrete. Maybe it harks back to childhood when I rubbed away the condensation on my window to see outside. Then thinking, "Hey, cool background".
Okay. I was a weird kid.
Surfing the web today I came across a site that had grunge, patterned brushes. Then a nice tutorial about using them.
These are great! I had lots of fun playing around with them.

©2010 NeonSun Studios
I used 3 different brushes, the dots, the plaid and the flowers. Because they're brushes a lot of different adjustments from the brush pallette can be used. Very adaptable.
If you're looking for some barbed wire to go with your grunge flowers then here's a link to another page on the site.
Or if you are romantically inclined, scroll down the page for a grunge hearts overlay.
So you can explore the site and links. The best way to check out what's on offer is to go to her site at DeviantArt.

For some grunge fonts to go with your art you can head over here.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Idiotic Gadgets

As you may or may not of noticed I made a promise to showcase idiotic gadgets on my blog. Last month it was smiling dogs. Yes, that's why that idiotic thing is on my blog. It is a new month so I will remove the aforementioned gadget and replace it with something equally idiotic. If you have any suggestions for a gadget leave a comment.
Wow. Than was more difficult than I thought. I tried to load, 'A widget  to help you decide things'. Sadly it was broken. So you'll have to decide all by yourself. Then I tried to load a compatibility widget. It can tell if you're compatible with someone by simply entering two names. A word of advice, "Don't try this woth your s/o. Luckily there is no chance of that because that widget is also broken. So what's a person to do? I did wrestle between Darth Vader or Mr. T quotes. Mr. T got knocked off the short list when the word, "sucka" didn't appear in the quotes. In the end I settled for mascots as sort of a bridge between smiling animals and Darth Vader quotes.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

Disembodied Souls or Protecting your Work

Love is not always forever.
Friendship is not always forever.
In this age of social decay and destablized families, nothing is forever.
Except what you post on the internet. That's forever.
Bad photos of being insanely drunk, if posted on the internet are forever. So are the photos of your favourite sunset or your baby kittens. Same goes for artwork. Another truth in life is that thousands of people as I write this are right-clicking a photo or work of art. Most of them are blissfully ignorant of the fact that someone took that picture, maybe even owns (copyright) it.

So I've been checking out ways to keep that from happening. To prevent duplicating info I'm posting links. And yes, I'm tired and want to go to bed.

This link provides general information that I see often from gif layers to code to stop the dreaded right-click:

Elements7 has a function for attaching and/or reading digital watermarks. Though it will cost you $$$$ Pull down your filter menu and at the bottom is digimark. The company will even search the web for your watermark.

If you have a Mac you can make a © by hitting Option g
On windows I believe it is ALT 169

I also came upon a site that will check your site for stolen info or images. Also will check images you may want to buy to make sure they are not stolen. You can try before you buy:

I would be remiss in my duties if I didn't mention Creative Commons:

A short note about copyrighting images. Photoshop's Bridge Program has space in the EXIF data to name copyright holders. Also use low res (72 DPI) for images on the net so they will look like crap when printed or enlarged.

If anyone knows of more tips or tricks to protect artwork please feel free to leave a comment. Or if you are shy, leave a link.

Here's a fun with photoshop ATC. Good night.

© 2010 NeonSun Studio
Oh and the diembodied souls. I imagine stolen images floating through time and space like disembodied souls. Go claim them.

Sunday, August 1, 2010


No, I didn't get bored with blogging and move on to something more interesting. I've been doing housekeeping on my computer. My work is essentially collage.  So I'm always looking for new snips or images. All of them copyright free or free to use under a Creative Commons licence. The free to use images require me to link back to the original owner. Sometimes late at night I go looking for images and download quite a few  in an evening. And sometimes I forget to type in who owns it. My advise to you, "Don't make that mistake". You will be re-searching the internet for the owners when you decide to use that image.

My housekeeping is done. Now everything is sorted nicely into colour coded folders in alphabetical order. There are a few strays. I feel like posting a note under my picture asking if anyone owns that graphic. Something like, "If this is your snip, feel free to send me a terse, yet polite email and I'll give you credit".

Sometimes I wonder about copyright. If you find an old photo at a garage sale, do you have the right to copyright it? Some of those people could be alive. I often wonder about those faces. Would that charming little child who may be in their 80's now,  really be happy about a cherished memory being Zettied? Don't they own their own image?

Another thing I saw tonight was a site that sold rubberstamps claimed that the images on the stamps are copyrighted. It stated that anything made with the stamp could not be sold as it was copyrighted. Is this going too far? If I put a sticker on my work I don't have to thank the sticker company.

 It is something to think about. Copyrighting old images that belong to other people or, are already published just seems wrong. When people do that we lose track of who actually created the image or its origins. What if someone copyrighted the Rosetta Stone? After all the author is long since gone. Would we then be charged to have a peek? Would scientist have had to pay by the hour to study it? I think that the whole situation should be looked at more carefully. At least take a moment.

These are the things I think about late at night. It's 4 am.

Background photo: I had it laying around
© 2010 NeonSun Studios

Next time: How to protect your artwork


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