This is a unique way to teach people Photoshop – WARNING: the language is offensive at times, but the Photoshop techniques and tips are good.


Donnie Hoyle pulls a digital end-around on a restraining order and vandalizes a Vanagon.

2008 Webby Award Winner
Best How-to Series
Best Comedy Series – People’s Voice
Best How-to Series – People’s Voice

Duration : 0:3:46

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There are hundreds, thousands, who knows how many scrapbooking blogs and websites. So, why make another one?

Because this blog will focus on the best of the best, the coolest, the better designs, really great techniques and superior products. If something seems tacky, it won’t be added here. Unique, different or creative scrapbooks are what we like! Hopefully, scrapbook ideas and secrets from all around the world will show up on our pages.

Videos, articles, and sometimes random thoughts may appear – as time permits. Scrapbooking is not a secret, but better designs in scrapbooks may be almost unheard of! The Scrapbook Underground wants to balance out the image of scrapbooking to include more cool looking stuff. Maybe if scrapbookers see better layouts and designs, it will influence how they make their own pages and memory books. It’s about time for a scrapbook revolution to start!

Scrapbook Artists Unite!

For example, in the figurine world, there are ticky-tacky, poorly made examples and really artfully done, sculptural figures. Who really wants anything that gathers dust that isn’t really nice. So, in scrapbooking, there is a huge need to see and create killer designs and layouts. We’ll be on the lookout for them. It’s like finding new species of animals and plants in the wild – you have to go out of your way to find them. If you see some good examples of really great scrapbooks (traditional or digital), please let us know!



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This is pretty cool. I really had not tried this technique – check it out. Watch these fun ideas for your scrapbook layouts using stamps. Check out for more cool demos.

Duration : 0:1:57

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Color is my favorite thing in designing. Colors can convey a message by how they are used – certain colors have positive and/or negative connotations for most people. It can be difficult to learn to use colors in a way that creates the look or feel you really want to. The old adage, “the medium is the message” comes to mind. The WHAT, you might be asking… I don’t mean a psychic when I say “medium.” I can’t really help you if you came here looking for a message from a psychic!

I’m not a psychic, and contrary to what you may think, I’m not psychotic (I admit that I could be little neurotic – but who isn’t). Ok, more about the medium…

The Medium is the Message

This is a concept proposed by Marshall McLuhan. He was considered a prophet of technology back in the 1960s. He was concerned with understanding the effects of technology as it relates to popular culture, and how this in turn affected human beings and their relations with each other.  I really would love to know what he thinks about the technological revolution we have been able to experience with the way we can share things so easily through the internet.

Anyway, put simply (which is probably not a good idea for a deep concept, but here goes) McLuhan was talking about how the impact of the content or message of something created can become secondary to the type of technology used to convey it. And that what may have an effect on viewers may not be what was intended - the greatest social effect may be made by what medium the message was conveyed in. For example, no particular show on TV has ever made the impact on society that the television’s impact on our lives as a society has made. And if this doesn’t make sense, then don’t worry, it’s been debated since it was first introduced and few people – even those with far more education than I have – really can say they totally understand it.

It’s a cool concept, and it does make one think – such as what is the best way to record memories. Scrapbooks, videos, photographs, paintings – they all contain a message, but to those viewing it, the way they are created also says something. And the enjoyment of each can affect people on different levels. What is great about scrapbooks is their feeling of making something you know about or remember more permanent and something you can share with others in a tangible, lasting way.

So, back to how color is important in a scrapbook. Well, color has it’s own message and combinations of colors can affect the reactions of viewers to any artwork. I guess the best use of color would blend with a message and enhance any content, rather than conflict withit or even detract from it – ths is kind of why baby scrapbooks don’t usually use a lot of black! That wouldn’t really convey the whole soft, approachable, lovable baby concept!

Let Colors Speak to You:

Red - fire, hot, blood. This is an emotionally tense color. It is also a color that tends to overpower other colors – it becomes more prominent or in the foreground, so it needs to be used with caution. As it is associated with passion, romance and sensuality.  it makes sense that it is used with Valentine’s Day themes. Changing the red to a darker color can convey anger or violence too – and with more brown in it, the association with fall is made. Pink is the color of love, feminity and friendship, but it can also convey passivity.

Orange – energetic because of the combination of red and yellow and sunshine, due to it’s being part yellow. This is another attention getting color that may need to be used sparingly.

Yellow - happiness, joy, warmth & energy. This evokes cheerful feelings.

Green – harmony, growth, nature, and money. But it also has been used to suggest jealousy.

Blue - calm, trust, loyalty, dependability. This color is often used in association with technology products. This also explains the blue suit in business which is worn to convey authority and trust. Lighter shades are used to give a feeling of tranquility and softness (like baby blue).

Purple – blue’s stablilty and red’s energy combines in this color to produce a powerful color which symbolized royalty, luxury, nobility, wisom and dignity. It also is associated with magic and mystery – perhaps because of it’s rarity in nature. Ligher shades, such as lavender evoke feeling of nostalgia. Darker purples can seem moody or gloomy.

White – purity, light, goodness.  It is also used to convey coolness. It can become to sterile when used without other colors.

Black – mystery, death, power, formality. As a color, this one recedes away from the eye, which makes colors used on the top seem to pop out or come forward more.

Combining colors is a whole science of it’s own – color theory. Designers often create color palettes to use in their designs.  And interior designers do that too. Having a guideline before you start a project can help to make a pleasing combination for the finished product. That will have to be discussed more in another post though! For now, through out all your associations with favorite colors and just look at them and see what feelings you get. You may end up thinking differently about how you use colors.



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Wow, I just read that last post and wondered if it was too harsh? It is unrealistic of me to hold amateur artists to a standard that they haven’t been trained to achieve, and I’m sorry if I came off as a spoil sport.

What I really am wanting though is a forum for people to learn how to design better scrapbooks by learning some of the tricks, tips, and principles used by graphic designers. Those things such as, composition, line, color, texture, use of space on a page – they are applicable to all the visual arts and could be of great use for anyone who likes scrapbooking.

In art schools, there are reviews or critiques of the student’s work (which can be devastating to a person who isn’t at all sure of themself). I wouldn’t want to inflict that kind of pain on anyone. But maybe some review tips would be good. You know, like if I show an example of a layout and give some pointers as to how it could be improved? Would anyone care? Our society sometimes capitulates to the “line of least resistance.” This would be when people tell someone they loved their singing when it was really awful. I’m not planning to be the Simon Cowwell (for those of you in a cave, he’s the mean judge on American Idol) of the scrapbooking world and strip people of their illusions of their design abilities. I just want to help people improve their pages and layouts!

So, to me the Scrapbook Underground is where secrets to better scrapbooking are discussed, reviewed and shown. So, if you want some tips to make better looking scrapbooks, come back and visit. Hopefully, I haven’t scared you away for good!

There is a place for those who don’t know squat about design – if you are willing to learn, maybe some stuff on this site will give you new ways to scrapbook and ideas for your layouts. Forgive me if I sounded like a meany – I really didn’t plan on coming off that way.


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As I write this, I hear (in my head) the music to the song “There’s a Place for Us”  from West Side Story. That is a really corny thought for a blog called The Scrapbook Underground. But I have reason for thinking of that song, and that is because I just don’t fit in with most of the scrapbooking world! I was hoping to write about it to 1) vent about it and 2) see if other people feel the same.

This is what bothers me (enough to make a blog like this one) – most of the scrapbook stuff I see that is posted on the web is tacky or boring. Many if not most of the layouts I’ve seen are just a jumbled mess. I really was hoping to see some cooler designs in the scrapbook world and I’m so dissapointed. And don’t even get me started on the colors! Perhaps having a background in graphic design is the source of much of my dislike of what I’ve been seeing. So, there must be some other graphic artists or people with better taste who like scrapbooking around – where are they?

Maybe because I am not a mom, I am feeling left out of the whole “mom’s who crop” thing. But really, there has to be a large number of people who like scrapbooking who are not mothers… I guess it’s just not trendy or cool to say, I don’t do scrapbooks in between getting the kids off to school or making dinner, I just do it whenever.

So, not being a mom eliminates all those cute names to use like “mom’s who scrap”. Non-mom’s who scrap just doesn’t seem to work, and the “barren scrapper” is just an awful thought! You don’t have to have kids to like scrapbooks! You don’t have to be married, speak English, live in the United States – there should be no borders or stereotypes for scrapbooking. So, why do I feel like I don’t fit in?

Well, i’ll get back to you if I ever figure that out. For now, I’ve created this super secret site for people like me who are running away from the average and boring and seeking to find more inspiration and quality in scrapbooks. I sincerely don’t mean that moms or married scrapbookers aren’t welcome here – I just wanted to let some stuff off my chest about how it feels to be in the (possible) minority.

And I hope this won’t sound like a bitchy, bitter person wrote it, because it’s really meant to just push some buttons and question the “accepted norms” in an industry that is growing rapidly. I think as more people require a higher level of creativity and become interested in seeing better designs in scrapbooks, the industry will benefit – and so will I!

So, welcome to my secret scrappin’ rappin’ happenin’ blog. And yes, there’s a place for people like me who don’t settle for “average” and that place is RIGHT HERE!


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