Working with Commercial Digital Kits in Storybook Creator Plus

As much as I like Creative Memories products, their digital offerings haven’t always been as appealing to me as I would like, although I must say that they are getting much better.  Therefore, when I recently  discovered that I could purchase digital scrapbooking kits from commercial designers and then load them into my Creative Memories Storybook Creator Plus 3.0 software, I was delighted.

Most of the time, I have not encountered any problems.  I HAVE discovered one little fly in the ointment, though, that I finally figured out how to work around.  Now let me just say right up front that I’m not a Creative Memories consultant.  I’m just a long time user of Creative Memories products.  Nor am I particularly computer savvy.  I use the computer a lot but the Commander (a techno-wiz) has spoiled me rotten. If I have a computer problem, I just have to bat my baby blues at him and he comes right to my rescue.  This can be a good thing and a bad thing; good in that I never get into computer glitches (except for the occasional hardware failure) that the Commander can’t get me out of and bad in that I get lazy and don’t make myself learn how to do these things for myself.

Anyway, the occasional annoyance that I’ve found with adding commercial digital kits to Storybook Creator is that sometimes designers group elements together into one “page”, instead of making them individual elements.  For example, in the photo above, this designer put the entire alphabet set into one .png.  Now maybe there is an easy way to get each letter apart and saved individually but I haven’t figured it out.  So here is the work-around solution that I came up with.

I first create a new project in Storybook Creator and make it a blank 12 x 12 page.  Then I open up the designer package that I want to work with.  Looking at the right side of the SC screen, I click on “Embellishments” and scroll down until I find the set of embellishments that I want to separate.  In this case it was an alphabet set.  I dragged that set over to my blank page.

Now at this point, you have several options, depending on the actual graphic.   For quite a few alphabet sets, sets of brads, sets of frames, etc., I was able to follow the procedure below:

1.  “Select” the whole set of elements on your blank page.

2.  Click on “Cut and Fill” on the Home Ribbon.  Then click on “Wand.”

3.  Click with the Magic Wand on an individual element within the set of elements on your page (adjusting the color sensitivity and intensity sensitivity of the Magic Wand, as needed). 

4.  Once the moving dots have selected it to your satisfaction, then click on “Copy the selected Area.”  You should see that particular individual element now pop up in your Elements panel on the left of your screen.

5.  Now click anywhere on your working page where you haven’t already been working to “select” all of the elements again, and repeat steps #2 through 4.  Do this step each time that you’ve finished copying an element until you have made a copy of each element individually.

6.  Now you need to go to your Elements ribbon at the left of the screen.  Click on the right of one of the elements you just copied.  You’ll see a drop-down arrow.  Click on that arrow and then choose “Save as Content.”

7.   In the photo above, it shows the window that will pop up.  You want to choose what package you want to save that element in.  In my Content Manager, I’ve created a folder called Blog Packages and in that I’ve created individual User Content Packages for each commercial digital kit that I’ve purchased.  So when I want to save elements I’ve created from a set of elements from one of these kits, I “save” each one to the designer’s content package that the set originally came from.  I choose “embellishment” as the “type”.  Then I type in a name for the element I’m saving (it can be any name you want, such as “UpperA”) and click on Save.  I don’t mess around with any other settings on that window, such as size or pixels.  It automatically defaults to save it as a .png file, which is what I want.  Repeat this step for each element you’ve copied.

8.  Once you’ve finished saving all of your copied elements into your content package of choice, I go back to my Element Ribbon once more and click on the right of each element once more and this time I choose “delete.”  I do this for each one until I end up with a blank page, ready for me to work with the next set of graphics that I want to separate.  It’s tedious, but it works  and once you’ve done this, you don’t have to repeat it again because these elements are now saved permanently as individual embellishments in your designer kit within Storybook Creator.

Now suppose you have a set of graphics that you just can’t get the Magic Wand to select properly?  In the case of the alphabet set at the left, I just couldn’t get the wand to give me a good copy of the whole element.  So I ended up following the same procedures I outlined above EXCEPT that I used the Shape feature in the “Cut and Fill” section of my Home Ribbon.

I looked through the “Geometric” shapes and found “Ellipse.”  I choose this and then manipulated it until it was the same size and shape as the individual oval within the set that I wanted to save.  Then I just placed my shaded ellipse over the element and followed steps 4-8 above.  The only difference is that as I’m ready to go on to the next letter, for example, I “select” the entire page and then click on “Shapes” and the oval shape that I already worked on to get to just the right size will show up on my page and then I just have to move it over the next letter or number that I want to copy.  There is no need to resize the Ellipse each time.

You can see my newly saved individual elements are now showing up in the Embellishments Panel on the “Content” side of my screen.

There you have it… technique to make individual elements out of those pesky grouped graphics.  There might be an easier way out there but this one works for me and it certainly makes time fly.  Plus I can guarantee you that you will become much more comfortable working with Storybook Creator Plus as you do all of this.  Good luck!

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