To Paris With Love: Create a Romantic, French-Inspired Digital Tag | Traci Vanover | Skillshare

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To Paris With Love: Create a Romantic, French-Inspired Digital Tag

teacher avatar Traci Vanover, Artist / Designer / Rabble Rouser

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (34m)
    • 1. To Paris With Love - Promo Video

    • 2. To Paris with Love - Introduction from Traci

    • 3. Download Your Materials & Get them Installed

    • 4. Tag, You're It: Let's Get Started!

    • 5. It's all About Perspective!

    • 6. Making a Splash: Adding the Watercolor Effects

    • 7. The Value of Historic Details

    • 8. Adding the Final Details - And Building on What You Learned

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About This Class

Enjoy a bit of Paris without ever leaving home!

In this class we will create a French-inspired digital tag measuring 2.5” wide x 3.0” high. The tag design will incorporate multiple layers and PhotoShop techniques, and features vintage imagery, as well as watercolor and texture effects.

Once you have mastered the techniques covered, they can easily be translated into stationery, greeting cards, art prints and much more.

A Bit About Traci:
Traci has over 25 years' experience in advertising and market research. After running her own boutique creative agency for over a decade, she decided to pursue her design passions full time.

She is a true nerdy girl with a passion to create! She's a huge fan of vintage style, pop culture, funky socks, hockey, and wine — just not necessarily in that order. Traci scouts out dark and dusty corners the world over, and gives them new life in her own creations, and as stock resources for other creative folks.

You can connect with Traci on Facebook here:


Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Traci Vanover

Artist / Designer / Rabble Rouser


I'm a nerdy girl with more than a passing fondness for vintage anything and everything. I have a special affinity for superheroes, vampires, zombies, office supplies, pop culture, fonts, funky socks, and WINE -- just not necessarily in that order.

I spent over 25 years in the fields of market research and advertising. I ran my own boutique creative agency, published a small business magazine, and I co-hosted a weekly small business radio show. I loved working with small businesses, but I knew that something was missing.

From the time I was a little girl I'd always wanted to be an artist. In 2012 I decided to finally pursue my passion for art, and I've never looked back. While my Skillshare courses will primarily focus on artistic pursuits, I will also share some of my best... See full profile

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1. To Paris With Love - Promo Video: enjoy a bit of Paris without ever leaving the comfort of your home, joined Tracy for a fun, creative project that combines vintage style with the romance of the infamous City of Lights. Class materials are provided for you. All you need is a photo shop and your favorite beverage. Best of all, once you master the techniques Tracy covers in the short course, you'll be able to apply them to other mediums. Such a stationary greeting cards, collage sheets and even Art Prince Click the button to enroll and let's get started. 2. To Paris with Love - Introduction from Traci: greeting skill share. This is Tracy Vanover. I am so excited that you're checking out my digital course to Paris with love. In this course, we will be designing a romantic, French inspired digital tag using a variety of layers, tools and techniques in photo shop. But once you've enrolled, you'll find a number of links below this video. They will provide you with all of the materials that you will need to create your own project. Take a few moments and get those materials downloaded and saved to your computer before you proceed with the other videos. Now, personally, I encourage you to save them to your desktop just to make it easy. But you're certainly welcome to save them wherever you feel most comfortable. I'd also like to get a bit of fine print out of the way, and that's this. There may in fact, be other methods to completing some of the steps that we will use in creating our tags. One of the beautiful things about photo shop is that there are often multiple ways to get at the same desired effect. So if during the course you just uncover another or even a better way to do something that we've discussed. That's fantastic. Drop me a note and share your results. I encourage you to play around with the tools that we're using and put your own unique spin on the project. Now. You also have the opportunity to share your completed design as well as your progress in the project area, and I do hope that you'll take the time to do that as well. It will enable you to connect with other students that are taking the course and also check out how they've put their own unique spin on the project. It also gives you the unprecedented opportunity to strut your stuff. Now, lastly, here in the skill share marketplace, like so many other platforms, there is a very strong value placed on feedback from the students themselves. So if you wouldn't mind, I would really welcome your feedback at the close of the course. If you enjoyed it, give it a thumbs up. If you're feeling a little more wordy, tell me what you thought. It will help me make the class better, and it will also help me come up with new topics for other classes in the future. Now with that, let's get busy. I will see you in the next video 3. Download Your Materials & Get them Installed: Welcome back, everyone. What we're gonna do in this first video just to keep it short, is to make sure that you have the brushes and the other materials downloaded and saved to a convenient location. I tend to recommend that you do so on your desktop, but you can certainly do that wherever you like. I want to make sure that you get the brushes installed, because that is a key component to making that watercolor effect. Now, just as a sidebar, you may be asking yourself, Tracy, what were you thinking? Suggesting that we download brushes when one of them says blood spatters. Okay, true. This is not a C s. I tag. No, we're going for something romantic, but you're just gonna have to trust me on this one. I have tested out so many watercolor brushes over the years and believe it or not, this particular sets of blood spatters and I know it sounds crazy. This particular set of brushes does have a really fantastic opacity to it, and it just lends itself so well the water colors. So, um, you know, you're not under any obligation to use it if it creeps you out and you want to use it. That's fine, too. But I think if you just have a little faith and trust me, you'll be really, really pleased with the results. So now, without any further ado, let's get those little buggers installed. First thing you do go up to edit and we're going to go down to presets. From there. We're gonna select preset manager. Now, you see this button here that says load? I'm not gonna do this. I'm gonna walk you through it because I already have thes installed and like, fonts. I have wary where you too many brushes installed. So we don't want to hold things up here. You're going to click load. And when you do that, it is going to bring up a browser window. You're going to navigate to the location where you saved those brush files and you're going to select them one at a time and install them. Once you have them all installed, then you will click done, and that's that. So we now have our brushes installed. I hope that you also have your tag master downloaded and your paper layers downloaded and your clip art downloaded because we're going to start putting this little baby together in the next video. See you soon. 4. Tag, You're It: Let's Get Started!: Welcome back, everyone. It's time to start putting our tag together. And what you'll see before you is a PSD file of the tag Master. Now, in your packet of materials, you should have found a PNG version of this. They're identical. I can assure you the only difference is the file format. Now, these tax are two inches wide by 3.5 inches high. So we're not talking about a lot of real estate. The paper, however, the paper pact that we downloaded those air all quite large. So once you decide what paper you want on, we will open this up here real quick and take a look at the different papers that are available. You'll see that there is a really great selection here. So if you're looking for something a little bit more on the pristine side, you might want to go with one of these first ones. If you like the distressed and aged look, which which is where I am drawn to, Perhaps because I, too, am distressed an aged. But, um, you know, select whatever one is is most suited to your needs. There's no where you're wrong. And if you have paper in your own personal arsenal stash that you like a little bit better . By all means. Feel free to use that as well. I would recommend going ahead and sizing it down just to keep things quickie and moving along for you. I took number 97 which is this one right here, and I went ahead and sized it down to a four by six to make it a little bit more manageable . So what we're going to start with is we're going to take our paper layer. We're going to drag it over to our tag, imposition it over top thusly. Now, making sure that you have that layer. With the paper highlighted, I would like you to hold on your control button. Click on the layer that has the tag master. You'll see it creates the marching ants now go up to select and then click on in verse on. What that's going to do is it's going to select everything outside of that tag shape We. Then we'll click on delete and you'll see that everything that is left is the same shape as our tag master hitting control D will stop those marching ants. And to get rid of the rest of the paper, we just click on our crop tool and you'll see that that puts her crop boundaries around it . Hit, enter and enter again. And now all we're left with is paper in the shape of our attack. At this point, you can then uncheck the layer with your tag master. Now this paper is great. But let's face it, it's a little on the boring side and we don't want boring. So I added into your packet a texture file called texture dot PNG. I know. Very clever, right? So we're going to now drag that layer over, and we're gonna do the exact same thing that we did before. Now, what we're going to do first place it over top of that first layer where we had our tag, and you remember how this works while having that layer with the texture highlighted, we're going to click control and then hold down the button on the layer with the actual tied to create the marching ants. Then we're going to select in verse, which will go all the way around the remaining portion of the texture. We clicked delete, which gets rid of the extra texture control de to stop the marching ants. Then we click on their crop. We're going to get rid of everything that's left. You see how huge that file Waas and we click that twice and it gets rid of it. Now, I don't know about you, but I'm not crazy about having the texture on top of our lovely aged and distressed layer, so I'm going to drag it down. Then I'm gonna go back to our tag layer, and we're gonna play around with the blend modes. Now, an easy way to do this, of course, is go up here and you'll see a whole drop down. If you want to work through them quickly and see which one is best, hold down normal. Hold your shift button and then using your arrow key, you can move through the options. You'll see how they're changing on the screen there in front of you. As we're moving through them, she just kind of wing it. Go through and see which one catches your eye. There may be some that you like a little better than others. You may want to play around with the color. And actually, I think that's what I'm gonna do when you go down here to our texture layer and I'm gonna put a color over it. So I'm gonna go to a layer style color overlay. Um, let's just make that texture like a golden aged brown like parchment. Now, when we go back up to the tag layer and we start working through the's blend modes, look at the difference at that makes. Now we're not working with that stark Black. We're working with something a little bit, you know, it just looks a little bit more authentic now. I kind of like this overlay, but I want to take it down a notch. So I'm going to go back to that texture layer, and I'm going to move the opacity down to about 85 on. That gives me pretty much the look that I want to go for now. By all means, you are not locked into setting yours up the way that I have done mine. If you don't want a texture layer, you don't have to do that. If you have a texture layer in your own personal arsenal that you like a little bit better . Use it and go through the same steps that we've covered here and set up your tag. Once you've got that done, we're gonna be moving on to adding in all of the good stuff, all the French layers that's coming up in the next video. I'll see you soon. 5. It's all About Perspective!: okay, It's time to start adding some of those exciting details that I've been teasing about. Now our tag certainly is fabulous all by its lonesome, but it will be so much more exciting. Once we had some details on that first detail is going to be the iconic Eiffel Tower. I've already got mine pulled up. That's not it. I already had mine pulled up. I must have closed it out. Here we go and you will see that it is black. You're not locked into that color. You can certainly do a layer and layer style color overlay to change the color to whatever you like. I do want to caution you as you're dragging this baby over. Don't do this. Don't put it dead center. That's not exciting. Your exciting people. You don't want to do something that's gonna be a snooze fest. So think about every photograph or illustration or painting of the Eiffel Tower that you've ever seen in your lifetime. They're never all the same. The Eiffel Tower might be off to one side. It might be often a distance. It might have been painted by someone who's a shrimp like me and who was standing way down here underneath. So everyone's perspective, that's the point that I'm trying to drive home here. Everyone's perspective, everyone's point of view is going to be different, and placing it dead center is just boring. Life isn't boring. Life is exciting. And you need to start thinking in terms of the way that you see things in the way that you capture them in your art. And they're not always dead center. Sometimes they're off to one side. Sometimes you don't see the entire building or an entire monument all at one time. It makes it more visually attractive. Trust me now, you can do it any way that you want. There's no right or wrong in this class, and I'm certainly not gonna come after you and haunt you if you don't put your Eiffel Tower off to one side or the other or do something exciting with it. But I would encourage you to play around with it. When I'm going to do is I'm going to pause the video right here. I'm going to position mine off to one side. I'm gonna change up the color just slightly and reduce the opacity down to about 50%. When I come back, you'll see that we're going to do that nice little trick that we did in removing excess around our tag shape when we were doing the paper and the texture. We're going to do that same process again in removing any extra portion off our Eiffel Tower that may be left behind. So get your Eiffel Tower dragged over position at the way you like, and I will be back in just a moment. Okay? As I promised, I have positioned my Eiffel Tower off to one side, and I ended up going with a 40% opacity with that slate gray. And then I went back and repeated that same process that we did before in selecting our, you know, hitting control, selecting her, tangling her and removing all of the excess. And if you need a refresher on that, you can go back to one of those first videos where we did it repeatedly in putting the base tag together for a refresher. Now, the next thing that we're going to be adding is our water color effects, and in order to know what color to use, we have to pull from our rose graphic. There are two that are included in your packet of materials. You'll see that I've chosen this one, and my reasoning behind that is simply because there are more colors toe work within this one. I'm really drawn to that yellow as an accent, and I think it will make for a really interesting accent color when we're building out our watercolor layers. So open up your preferred rose graphic and take your eye dropper tool from over here on the side and go into the flour and select a green. We're going to start with the green, because that just seems to make the most sense. We want those bright, thinks or rose colors on the top two pop last, So pick your preferred green and will come back in the next video and start adding water color. 6. Making a Splash: Adding the Watercolor Effects: Welcome back, everyone things. They're getting exciting around here. We're ready to start adding some water color layers. And this is where those blood spatter brushes are really going to start paying off. And again. I know you're skeptical, but you're gonna have to trust me now. I want had him pulled the green from my rose. I went with this. Nice, lighter green. You can see the X code. There is eight F A B for fabulous and 83 Okay, your mileage may vary. Pick whatever color suits your fancy, then what we're going to do is we're going to add a layer above our Eiffel Tower and just a word of caution here. This is my own personal hang up. When I'm working with multiple watercolor layers, I like to put each of them on their own layer. Even if I'm working with the same color, because sometimes you might layer them up and decide. Oh, gosh, I really don't like how that looks, or I wish I would have made this portion a little lighter and maybe that one a little darker, and you don't want to have to scrap the whole thing, so it's easier to work with them in separate layers. It does create more layers. But believe me, the payoff will be there if you have to make a change. So we're going to add it are layer. We're going to go over here and select our brush, and from our drop down, we're gonna pick one. And I went to this one. Um it is from the blood spatter section, and I like it cause it looks like the state of Kentucky and a Hey, I'm a Southern girl, so I'm gonna go with this one. And what I'm going to do is I'm gonna just kind of play around with it. If you want to adjust the size, use your left and right bracket keys on your keyboard. You can increase the size or decreases size however you like. If you want to change the rotation, right, click with your mouse and it's important that you do that wild. The brush is actually over your palate, and then you can turn this little bugger and adjust the direction of your brush. So then now minds hung up. Of course, as luck would have it me pause this I come back and show you how the first layer looks. All right, Now that we're back, you'll see that I have added in two different layers of water color. And I've place them at different intervals here, and certainly you can move them around. I've already done the little trick, or we pull off the excess. So that's why mine have these hard edges on them. Um, once you get your watercolor base the way that you like it again, we're going to go back to that same technique that we've been using all along. Make sure that you've highlighted the layer with the watercolor. Go back to your tag and hold your control button. Click on the actual tagging that's going to give us those marching ants we're going to select in verse and then delete the additional. And that gets rid of everything outside of the tag and leaves us only with what we want. Which of those nice watercolor layers. Now these I have blended out both at 60%. Um, and these were both from from the blood spatter category, and I told you they would look fabulous. You didn't believe me, but now you have to admit it I can hear you talking and you're going. And those actually really do look good. See, trust. Now, next thing we want to dio is bring in some more water color. But first we want to bring in our rows. So I'm gonna stop the video here. And in our next video, we're gonna do the roses, and we're gonna add in some text and wrap this baby up. 7. The Value of Historic Details: All right, guys were in the home stretch now. Things were really starting to take shape around here. Let's talk about our next edition, which is the tour fl taxed now. Interesting story about this particular layer. This came from the front inside cover of a guide that was given out at an expo in Paris in 18 89. As you see down here at the bottom now, while you might be thinking now, Tracy, you said that you don't like stuff to be centered. You are correct. In this particular instance, I don't really have it centered. If you had seen the whole cover and you will, whenever you see your packet, I chose to cut off Ah, lot of the text, but without sacrificing what it is that makes it so exciting. I mean, it's a great piece of history. It's got an address on it. It's got a year on it. Those were all important things for me to preserve. So again I use the same technique, brought it in, did Mike clicking on my tag layer to creator marching ants, same as we have before. If you need a refresher, make sure you go back to one of the first videos where we did this several times and make sure that you edit out anything that you don't need. Now it's time to bring in the real star of our show. On that is your rose. There are two different roses in your packet for you to choose from. I explained why I ended up going with this particular one, and I did flip it on the horizontal so that I have the one with the yellow there in the forefront. If you haven't done that before, what you would do is, once you have a graphic selected, you can go to edit, transform and flip horizontal, and that will let you flip it horizontally. Now, this is an interesting situation because I really love how vivid the color of the roses are . However, I don't like how hard those edges are against the rest of the tag. So before we do our little trick where we remove the excess from the photo, I want Teoh blend these edges out just a little bit. And here's how we're gonna do that. We are going to hold on our control button. We're going to click on the photo of the roses there and make the marching ants. OK, then we're gonna go to select modify feather, and we're going to select a radius. And what that's going to do is it's gonna feather out the edges off that particular illustration to make them just a little bit smoother. And it's gonna give us more continuity in the overall design. And it's not going to make those edges quite so harsh. So what I'm gonna dio Since we have so few pixels to work with here on these stems, I'm going to go with just eight pixels. And if you had something with a little bit more thickness to it, then you could probably go with something more and certainly the larger. Your photo is the larger of a radius you'd want to go with. And if you're not happy with the way it looks, simply undo it and try again. But here's what we're going to do. We're gonna hit, okay? And then we're going to hit control DE to stop the marching ants while we still have that layer selected. We're going to hit control J. And when that's going to do is it's gonna jump up another copy of that layer, and that's the edited copy. So I'm gonna take this one, and I'm going to uncheck it and you can see that the edges there are a little bit smoother now. We probably could go even more so let's try it again and make it a little bit more significant than we did the first time. Let's go with Let's Go with 15 pixels this time. Okay, Now will hit control de to stop the marching ants control J to create the copied layer. And when we unclipped that one we see it's even blended a little bit more. And one good way to see what I'm talking about is if you zoom in, you can see that those edges air not nearly as harsh is they were before. Okay, Now, another way to make this blend a little bit more seamlessly is we're going, Teoh, reduce the opacity on this layer. I'm gonna take it down to 90% and at 90% the the problem areas that I would tend to worry about here would be we have taxed behind this particular rose and I don't necessarily want that text to be coming through. So since I have just a touch of texts showing the way to get around that is to go back down to the layer where we have the tour fl text and we're going to take our racer and just lightly removed just a little bit of the u, the r and the E. It's not going to make any difference to our overall design because the roses air blocking it anyway. But it's gonna make the overall design a little bit more cohesive. Okay, so what I've done now I've selected my eraser have gone with a soft brush at a 15% opacity . I'm on the roads layer, and I'm just going to very lightly. We'll just wait a minute. I don't want to be on the roads layer. Step back. This is where it might be handy to point out the history tool so that I can show you going back. There we go. Which takes us back no harm, no foul tutta. Okay, now I want to go to my tour fl layer. After I take this down to about 90% Justus we had before, I'm gonna go down to the correct text layer now, and I'm just going toe lightly. Remove where that text is showing. Just a little bit of the you. A little bit of the are just a touch of the e here on that one light pink pedal. And that's really all we need to do. There may be a little bit of that lying that's coming through from the original design. And, you know, keeping the opacity of 15% prevents us from taking away too much because we don't want to take away the details that make this design unique. Now that we have the roses sorted, we can get rid of that extra rose layer. And we want to make sure that we remove all of that access Rose that was on there. So we want to highlight that layer girl down to our tag. Once again, we're going to hit holder control button down, select the tag, go up to select inverse, and we will remove the access. I'm not gonna make you watch this again for the umpteenth time, but when we come back, I'm going to show you the final layer that we're going Teoh or final layers that we're going to add just a little bit more water color and then you'll be ready. Teoh, print these babies out all right. Our tag is almost finished. We're going to add in just a few more layers and then I will show you how you can create a collage sheet so that you can print off multiple copies of these and use them for a whole host of different things. Now we're going to be adding in another layer of water color again, you'll want to select a color by using your eyedropper tool. Pick your favorite color out of the particular photo that you're using and then you'll go to your brush tool and select the brush of your choice. Umm, I would select a spatter tool. That's what I'm going to be using in this one, and also in the subsequent layer, you can use whatever you like. Uhm, I'm going to show you that in just one second I'm going to stop the video here for a second and show you what we've done. Okay, What I've done is just a basic spatter, and I have reduced the size down so that it fits nicely within our shape Then they went back in and removed the excess from outside of our tag. And I did that also with that nice yellow that I mentioned before. I chose a difference batter brush and added that in at the top. Now you could stop there and it would be perfectly fine, but I thought it still needed something. So what I did was I added a really nice texture layer that I colored a nice light mocha, almost a cafe ole color, and I've placed that all the way up on the top. Now, to me, this looks finished and I've blended out these different layers a different capacities that that top layer is at a 60%. Um, the two different water colors. The pink is at 75. That yellow was quite bright. Um was very school bus yellow. So we went down on that, Aziz. Well, and now that we've got everything in there, I would recommend that you save This is a master file. You can certainly flatten layers if you choose to, but, um, make sure that you save your master file so that if you ever want to go back, make changes to this master design. Swap out the flowers, re color your water color. You'll have something that you can come back to without having to reinvent the wheel. I'm gonna stop the video here for just one second, and then I'm gonna show you what I did with creating a collage sheet. 8. Adding the Final Details - And Building on What You Learned: Well, now our tag is finished and I wanted Teoh. Just quickly touch on how you can take the skills that you have learned in this brief course and adapt them Teoh larger projects. You can use this basic kalash technique, the layering that we've done here, and you can make things like greeting cards you could make stationary. There are so many print on demand companies out there that will do small print runs. You would be so surprised. Um, if you wanted to upload your your completed two designed to one of the print on demand companies, you could do that. You could expand on this design and make a larger size and do something like an art print. So you have tons and tons of options available, and I think you're going to discover that collage are can be extremely addictive. And the results are just so amazing in their different every time. So I would encourage you to play around with it and and by all means, please do share your designs, whether it's your in process work or you're finished tags. I'd love to see what you've done and and I will look and comment on every single one that gets submitted as we wrap up here with the last video. I just wanted to show you something that I've done. Um, and it might give you some ideas on how you can take these tags. And perhaps you might want to use them as a gift tax for the holidays. You? No, no, no more boring gift tags. You can. You can dress these up. You could laminate them and make them into bookmarks. You've got so many options. So here's what I did. I took the two and I'm gonna zoom in on this just a bit. I took the two different roses on. I made a couple of different variations on I created this collage sheet, and this is a standard 8.5 by 11 sheet. And that way I can print it out and get the most bang for my buck on. Here is a close up design. Um, this is one that I have over in my Etsy shop, so I I hope that you will take these skills and run with them. I can't wait to see what you do with them. If you have any questions or you want to hit me up after the class is over, Please don't hesitate to do so. It has been my pleasure sharing these techniques with you. I certainly hope that you have learned something new and that enjoyed the process. If you have, please give me a thumbs up and leave some feedback. And, um, I will look forward to seeing you in other classes here on skill share.