The other day, about the same time we got our new computer, I was trying to make more Deal of the Day "signs" for my Tilt's Creations blog. I use Picnik lots, they have some fun collages now. But I wanted my own. I love my GIMP for photo editing & I knew you can do a lot with graphics also. So i started looking around for clip art. Duh! Get Print Shop. But that still is not quite what I want. It is still too formatted.
Okay, so I start thinking "Hey, I see all these cute buttons, ads, banners & blog backgrounds that look like scrapbooks. Perfect". There is freedom in designing in my own space on GIMP (or Paint Net) that Print Shop doesn't have. Plus, I already have those programs. But I set out on a digital scrapbook software hunt anyway. Thank you cNet! There is a ton out there.I got 2: Scrapbook MAX (trial version for now) and Digital Scrapbook Artist (got the free compact version...for now). I have played with both. Not sure which I prefer just yet.
Then I wanted to find out how people make blog backgrounds, Twitter backgrounds, etc. First I found Kevin and Amanda's scrapbook blog background tutorial. Opened up even more. Now I have been visiting All Things Digital Scrapbooking, The Scrap Girls University, Cutest Blog on the Block, and DigiScrapDepot which led me to tons and tons of fabulous scrapbook blogs & designers. So cool!
Gonna go play some more, but first, I have a question. I don't want to go all pirate & do things I am not supposed to with these scrapbook pieces (still learning the lingo).
Nevermind....I read more of the text TOU documents that came with the freebies & I think I have a better grasp. You can't sell/give the parts that make up the scrapbook/graphics but you can use the final, flattened image that you create from the elements. Nor can you take credit for the parts - just the final piece...but best to give credit to the creaters of the pieces within. Okay, so 1 or 2 ask you not to use their stuff, even final creation, in any "public" place (like your blog or banner) without permission. I just deleted those so I don't accidentally use them wrong.
In one creation I play with pieces from a variety of designers...guess I'll need to keep a running tab on who I use each time, just in case.
Okay, I am rambling now...bye :)
Almost forgot, one other thing I found - via my Etsyblogger forum thread - a tute for making favicons & adding your own signature to blog posts: Designed by Jen.
Next to learn...how to create the graphics :) It's inevitable.