To make a PNG File from a photograph:
(Most likely you are creating your own embellishment of some item that you know you will use on a regular basis, OR an embellishment that you’ve envisioned to create that perfect page! I’ve made them from sports balls, mitts, helmets, flowers, fall leaves, an electric guitar, etc).
Take a photo of the item you want to make into a PNG file. Your job will go fastest if you put the item in a PLAIN, contrasting background before you photograph it. (For instance, I set a football on a piece of white butcher paper, and a baseball on a black background.)
Once you get your photo into your StoryBook, create a blank page to work on. Think of it like a digital cutting board. Drag your photo over to the blank page and enlarge it enough that you can see it clearly. Now…to erase the background around the item, there are different ways to do different items…
For a perfectly round, oval, rectangular or square item, you can go to the Tools tab at the top of the screen and choose the Rectangle or Ellipse. Make a circle around the ball, or a square around the square object in your photo. (You will say, “yes”, when it asks you if you want to flatten it). You may need to “invert the shaded area” to get the shaded area OUTSIDE of the object that you are working on. Once you have as much of the outside of the object shaded, click on “erase the shaded area”.
For an item that is irregular in shape, use the Rectangle tool just like above to get rid of as much of the background as possible. THEN, go to your Wand tool in the Tools Tab and click repeatedly around the outside of your object, trying to get the small black, circulating dots to go around as much of the background as possible. You can repeat this step over and over, using the wand to get rid of the unwanted background. (TIP: I make the background of the page black so that I can see the white little remnants still floating around my object.) Also, you can play with changing the Color sensitivity and the Intensity sensitivity on the Wand tool. Sometimes this will make your job go faster!
One more way to get rid of those little flecks still remaining is to create a small oval, circle or rectangle (from the Rectangle or Ellipse tool on the Tools tab). Use those to carefully get close to the edge of your object and erase any little bits of background that still remain. I think of this process as making a “sponge” and going around and blotting up the excess. ;-) Keep at it until it is all clean around the object!
Phew! The good news is that once you are done…you have a beautiful, personalized object to use anytime you want to! To get the object into your Embellishment drop down screen, See my next post, "Creating your own Embellishment Files".