If you want to express an extra-special personal birthday greeting and just can't find the perfect sentiment in a store, don't spend big bucks on custom design work online or through a graphic designer. Take advantage of Photoshop's layout and art possibilities to make your own birthday card at home. Photoshop is a graphics software program available as part of the Adobe Creative Suite, and through its collections of tools, filters and paint capabilities, you'll be able to wish someone a happy birthday within just a few minutes' time, right from your computer.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Adobe Photoshop
- Digital image
- Photo card paper
Create a birthday card in Photoshop by opening the program, clicking "File" and selecting "New." Name the file "BirthdayCard" and set your preferred dimensions. For example, a standard -ize photo card you'll find an envelope for would be 6 inches by 4 inches. Change the "Mode" to "CMYK" colour, click "White" under the "Contents" section and click the "OK" button.
Click the "File" menu again and select "Open." Browse to an image you have on your computer, such as a photo of the birthday card recipient, a stock picture of a birthday hat or cake, or something else that would be special for the recipient. Double-click the file and it will open in the Photoshop workspace.
Click the "Lasso" tool on the "Tools" palette on the left side of the screen. Draw an outline around the part of the photo you want to use on the card. When you see blinking, dotted lines, press your keyboard's "Ctrl" and "C" keys at the same time to copy the selection.
Click back to the "BirthdayCard" image and press the "Ctrl" and "V" keys to paste in the selection. If it pastes in too large, pull down the "Edit" menu, click "Transform," click "Scale" and shrink the image down into place on the top portion of the card. Click the "Move" tool, which looks like a black arrow and plus sign, to drag the photo into place.
Select the "Type" tool, which looks like a "T" on the "Tools" palette, and choose a font, size and colour for the card text from the toolbar at the top of the page. Position your cursor on the "BirthdayCard" box and type "Happy Birthday," the recipient's name, your name or another personal sentiment. Change font sizes and colours to your preference.
Give the card a background design by clicking the "Paint Bucket" tool on the "Tools" palette. Pull down the "Fill" menu at the top of the screen and click "Pattern." Click inside the "Pattern" box and select a background design. Slide the "Opacity" bar down to 20 per cent and click inside the white space of the "BirthdayCard" box, which fills with a reduced-colour version of the background design, behind your text and photo.
Turn on your printer and load in the photo card paper. Take care not to overload or jam the paper tray. Pull down the "File" menu and click "Print." Select your printer from the options. Print out a test card to ensure it looks like what you want. Make adjustments if necessary, then select the number of cards to print and click the "OK" button to print them.
Tips and warnings
- Photo card paper is available from craft stores, office supply shops and mass merchandise retailers. You don't have to print your birthday cards on photo paper; standard copy paper or card stock works well, too. There's no difference in printer settings for general printing on photo paper as compared to copy paper, since basic, inexpensive home printers are all configured for general printing.
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