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Illuminate Me Challenge

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  • Illuminate Me Challenge

    Illuminate Me
    Have you ever seen those delightfully ornate letters on pages of old books or manuscripts? These Illuminated letters originally came about because the artist used a fine gold or silver powder to embellish the first letter on the page. Sometimes, the entire page was decorated with delicate designs in gold causing the page to glow.
    The art of embellishing written texts became popular during the Middle Ages when only royalty or religious leaders could read. In the 7th century, Ireland and England produced incredibly delicate and ornate designs that became quite famous and the art of illumination was highly regarded. Artists were usually monks who tirelessly laboured over their work.
    The process of illumination has three steps and three important workmen. The Parchmenter would prepare the surface that was usually a type of leather specifically treated for the illumination, the Scribe copied the text to the page and then the Illuminator created a design and outlined in pen. Once that was completed, the gold leaf was added. Ground up plants and stones produced specific colours for the page.
    Reference Amy E. Bruce:
    [IMG]file:///C:\Users\User\AppData\Local\Temp\msohtmlclip1\01\c lip_image001.jpg[/IMG]
    This is the page I made using:
    Palvinka Designs: So Romantic

    My challenge for you is to produce a digitally rendered illuminated letter.
    The following are the steps I took to create my page. Please note that I use PSE 13 and the directions are for PSE users. However there are no hard and fast ways to accomplish the same outcome and you may find that you have an easier or faster way complete your page. Mostly I worked by trial and error. Do what works for you and the program you have.
    What you will need:
    1. - a large fat font and a letter.
    2. - a number of masks optional
    3. - the kit/embellishments you think you might like. Remember that illuminators often took their designs from nature


    Open 2 work spaces. Use one for the actual layout page and the other as a workspace to create masked elements
    1. On the layout page, place a large letter on a separate layer.
    2. Fill in the letter with white to make it easy to see.
    3. Simplify the letter layer. Use an outside stroke (8-12px) or a bevel to outline the letter. (I used both).
    4. At this point, you may want to make a duplicate of the letter linking the two letters together. Place this letter above the letter you will be working with Shut off the vision of the second letter for now. It is there just in case you need it. It can always be deleted if you do not use it. Keep the two letters linked.

    5. Now, you are all set to use the embellishments and add them to the letter by creating layer masks. You may drop an element straight into the letter then clip to the letter. DO NOT FORGET TO SHADOW THE ELEMENTS.
    6. In the extra workspace, drop in the first element you want to use and use a mask on the element to create an uneven blended edge or only use part of the element, attach a mask to the element and merge. You may even want to experiment by creating a cluster then mask and merge that.
    7. Drag the new merged element onto the letter page and clip it to the letter. Adjust the size and opacity as desired.
    8. Continue to fill the letter with flowers, foliage, stars, jewels, etc. Some may be masked some not. Repeat the process until the letter is fully covered.
    9. You will have several layers clipped to the original letter. Link them all to the letter.
    1. Add the background paper now.
    2. Double check that the layers in the letter and the letter are linked together to avoid slipping. Position the letter on the page. Adjust the size and position of the letter as needed.
    3. Place elements behind the letter entwining them in and around the letter. Remove extra bits of elements you do not want visible, by using the ‘create mask icon’ and a black brush to delete unwanted bits.
    4. Add any graffiti, swirls, flourishes, vines or extras you want in the background. Mask and blend to your hearts content.
    5. Remove the extra letter if you did not need it.
    6. Finish off the page, as you desire possibly adding some journal text, a photo, a frame or whatever you desire.

    Really just muck around to get this effect any way you can.

  • #2
    Hi folks. I won't be around Friday-Monday due to a death in the family but if you have questions I will get back to you asap. Enjoy the challenge.


    • #3
      Sorry to hear about your loss. Your layout already caught my eye in the gallery and I can't wait to try this out.


      • #4
        I am sorry for your loss Kythe. I am looking forward to this challenge. Your letter L is gorgeous!!


        • #5
          Sorry about the loss in your family. The letter L is gorgeous with the So Romantic collection by Palvinka.

          My Just Art Gallery


          • #6
            Kythe, I am sorry for your loss. Your challenge is not easy to me but I want to do my best.


            • #7
              Am I the only one brave enough to try this one? LOL I had a lot of fun with this challenge. Thanks for hosting it.



              • NancyP
                NancyP commented
                Editing a comment
                Absolutely STUNNING!!!!!

              • Glyn
                Glyn commented
                Editing a comment
                Great layout. So pretty.

              • Evelyn
                Evelyn commented
                Editing a comment
                I didn't even get through reading the post and you had yours up there already, Sherry! gorgeous

            • #8
              I'm sorry for your loss Kythe. My sympathies to you and your family.

              What a wonderful idea for a challenge!! Thank you so much for hosting.


              • #9
                sorry to hear of the death of a family member ... thank you for taking the time to present us with this wonderful challenge


                • #10
                  Thanks for the kind words. I am really looking forward to seeing all your wonderful letters. It will be a joy to return from a sad occasion to view some lovely pages.


                  • #11
                    My condolences to you and your family, hugs from me, take care. I love this challenge, will definitely have a go!!


                    • #12
                      Sorry for your loss, Kythe. Sending you lots of Lovin'.
                      Can someone explain how to link two things together (like where Kythe said to link the two letters together)
                      Also, in instruction 7, she talks about clipping the element to the letter. Don't know what this means. You would think after all these years of digi scrapping, I would know this stuff!!
                      And I DEFINITELY have to learn about this mask stuff; you know, the black conceals and white reveals stuff????? HUH?????

                      OH, and-----Pinterest is a GOLDMINE!!! Check this out:

                      And if that's not enough, just type in Illuminated Letters in the search bar and watch what comes up!!!
                      Last edited by NancyP; 02-02-2017, 02:59 AM.


                      • Kythe
                        Kythe commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Hi Nancy. linking is when you attach 2 items together using the little gold chain link. Highlight the layers you want attached then right click and you will see the words link layers. Anything that is highlighted will be joined. They will move at the same time to the same place. It is very handy when you want to keep things together.
                        Clipping means that the top layer will take on the shape of the layer directly below. (Control G is the shortcut) Put a flower in the top layer, and the letter in the layer directly below. Go to the top layer highlight it, it then hit control G. The flower will slip inside the letter. Any extra bits of the flower that is outside the letter will not be seen. You can also right click and look at the drop down to find the words create clipping mask click it and a little arrow will appear on the layers to show that they are joined within the lower layer. You can have a number of layers all clipped together inside the letter.
                        Hope that helps.

                      • NancyP
                        NancyP commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Thanks so much! I do the clipping, I just call it by a different name; but I have never linked anything. That's something new to me.

                      • Evelyn
                        Evelyn commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Kythe - such good explanation to Nancy! I can't believe you've never used link before this, Nancy! It's so handy.

                    • #13
                      This looks like a great challenge.. Definitely in for this one.


                      • #14
                        Oh so sorry for you loss and please accept my condolences...super challenge though


                        • #15
                          What stunning examples! I sure hope I can 'think' of one...
                          I'm sorry to read of the loss to your family.