Wednesday, January 29, 2014

family flashcards.

want a great gift idea for kids in your family?
 The photo flashcards that Aunt Abby made for Charlotte & Eleanor this Christmas were all the rage on Christmas morning... And still are!

Family Flashcards are one of many creative photo projects available for the making at Pinhole Press Please use my link to check out the fun for yourself! You can find these Flashcards under Games & Education.

 Right here:  Pinhole Press. 

This is an easy drop-and-drag project.  Even the backs of the cards are colorful & fun.  The flashcards are made of a sturdy cardboard and super-reasonably priced at $24.99.  Another cool feature is that you can change up the alphabet letters to fit your family.  You might notice that we have lots of M's... and no Q or X.  It is 26 letters of your choice.

the insta-album.

If you are landing on this blog, you know that one of my passions is helping people get their photos off their devices and into their lives.   I became more serious about posting photos to Facebook and Instagram sometime in early 2012 when I learned that this is the hipster-way to stay connected to our kids. I can follow their lives in photo and word-snips, and they can follow me. They are the ones who told me that "Facebook is for old people" and I quickly learned that most of their social media comings-and-goings happened on Instagram.   It was easy to became a fan of Instagram because it is about sharing PHOTOS.   You can send your photo out into cyberspace with a caption, or just plain. But a photo is what is doing the bulk of the communicating.  Instagram comes with a set of editing filters and is a pretty fun way to communicate with family and friends.

One of my goals in January is to get my Instagram photos off my iPhone and into an album for safe keeping into the future.  For my Insta-Album, I chose a little hardcover 5.25 x 5.25 60-page book from Pinhole Press.   Since 2012, I have sent about 250 photos into cyberspace as "instagrams". These are the ones going in the books.  Not all 4000 photos I took on my iPhone are going into keepsake books... just the ones that were favorite enough to post to my Instagram world.   It looks like 4 little sixty-page books will get me current. This one is my first! Volume 2 and Volume 3 are on their way. 

When deciding what size / shape / style of album I wanted for preserving my Instagrams, I opted for something tiny and something hardcover.  Tiny because Instagrams are created & viewed in a pretty tiny format (phone screen size) and it suits them.  Hardcover because all of our family albums see a lot of wear & tear.  This does not mean we are careless with our albums.  It means that almost every time that the kids are home, I can find them pulling albums from the shelves and traveling down Memory Lane in the pages.  It is what happens when you have photo albums... and it is a truly marvelous thing.

Because I wanted a square photo frame on each page AND because I wanted to include the text that accompanied my Instagrams, I set up the page layout using Artisan (formerly StoryBook Creator) software.  I used the CUSTOM setting with Height 5.25 and Width 10.5.  I inserted a square photo frame on each side of the layout (mine are just over 3.5" square) and inserted text boxes under each photo frame. My guess is that Instagram uses Helvetica font, but since I don't own this expensive but classic font, I used the free cousin-font Arial. Once I create my blank custom layout, I duplicated it 28 times.  (Each 60 page Panoramic Mini Photo Book holds 28 - 2 photo - layouts.)

Then it is just drop & drag the Instagram images from your phone - and add the text!  Next step is -  SAVE AS jpegs, and upload using this link to Pinhole Press.  Nice and easy.  To create the album exactly like mine, just select the 'full bleed' page layout option for every page - and drag your created page into place.  There are prompts to help you personalize the cover and inside page.

I would like to create a mini how-to video to demonstrate how truly easy it is.  Maybe watch for it to show up in a couple weeks.  But don't hold your breath.  And don't wait to try it on your own!

 Please check out  Pinhole Press  for yourself!  I am totally in love with the clever and creative products that they offer.  My personal favorites are the Family Flashcards, the Memory Game personalized with your photos, address labels and wine bottle labels for a wedding or party. Please use my link to check it out for yourself.

Pinhole Press

Monday, January 13, 2014

it's time to upgrade.

If you own Memory Manager and StoryBook Creator, it is time to upgrade your software to the new Panstoria format.  It is quick & easy to do!

Just click on this link:  Panstoria

Or click on the banner on the right side of my blog.  Either one will take you to the Panstoria web site through my affiliate account.  Just purchase Artisan 4 Software (which is the new name for StoryBook Creator) for just $39.95.  Follow the prompts for downloading.  When asked if you want to migrate all your current projects and digital artwork into the new format, click YES.  In less than 5 minutes you will be done.  This newer version has a few more bells & whistles, but it looks basically the same on your computer screen.  The change to Panstoria insures that your software will continue to be supported, and any necessary updates will be made.  Another perk of Artisan is that it can be installed on two computers, while SBC could only be used on one.

Then purchase the Historian Software using the same link for $39.95.  This will upgrade your Memory Manager software to the new Panstoria format.  Follow the prompts to install.  When you open the new Historian software on your computer, under the FILE tab go to OPEN VAULT.  Browse to the location of where you store your vaults on your hard drive.  (If you do not remember, open Memory Manager and find the pathway.)   Again, the whole process will take less than 5 minutes.

Over the weekend I opened all of my vaults (I have 16!) and I did a new SHADOW COPY of each vault in the new Historian / Panstoria format to get everything converted over.

From time to time I still grieve that Creative Memories is not around anymore to support these programs.  More than that, I find myself rejoicing that the very people who created these amazing programs, are now supporting them.  Our precious pictures are in good hands.

If you find you have add'l questions, I would like to recommend as an excellent resource. Click here to find out more.  It is where I go to get my questions answered.