Monday, September 30, 2013


Hello Everyone.  I hope you had a great weekend.  We are enjoying a beautiful fall and had a great weekend.

The last couple of weeks have been filled with lots of change.  Last week I made a very difficult decision.  I decided to step down from the Creative Team at Designer Digitals, a place that I have called home over the last four years.  It was a very difficult decision for lots of different reasons.  So many of my dear friends are there and I feel blessed to have been a part of the community for so long.  I want to take this time to thank Katie and Randy Pertiet and all of my dear friends at Designer Digitals for everything.  You will always hold a very special place in my heart.

Throughout the last couple of years, I have discovered that I LOVE sharing my passion for digital scrapbooking with others.  I find so much joy creating, demonstrating and helping others find the artist within them.    I really want to focus on that aspect of my life right now....bringing my passion for digital memory-keeping to others.    I decided that I needed the time and creative freedom to follow my heart.  I am very excited about what is ahead.


I am working diligently on a new website that I hope will be a digital memory-keeping resource for people around the web.  It will launch on November 1st and I will have more information for you in the weeks ahead.  My team and I have been busy getting our "pixels" in a row and we are excited to share our vision with you.  

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Mask Appeal Challenge at Designer Digitals

Hello Everyone!  There is a brand new Mask Appeal Challenge up on the Designer Digitals Blog.  Katie Pertiet provided a great freebie pack.  I hope you grab it and join in on the fun!

All products are from Designer Digitals.

This is the page that I created using the freebie pack.  I will look forward to seeing your page!

Friday, September 20, 2013

September Summary

It is hard to believe that October is just around the corner.  The temperatures have been all over the board here.  Today I can feel fall coming once again.

Our September has been full as usual.  The kids are LOVING school which makes my heart sing. We have had a great few weeks.  I thought I would share some photos of what has been going on in the Morton household.

Let's start with Taylor Swift.  Way back in December of last year, our dear neighbors and I decided to have a girls night out at the Taylor Swift concert in September.  I didn't tell the girls about it until a week before and let's just say you might have heard the screams.  Our neighbors are like family to us.  We love them dearly and they have play a huge role in our children's lives.

Here we are before the concert.  Our neighbor's daughter is totally into fashion and set the girls up with new glittery cowboy hats and sparkley scarves.  They were, not so much.  

In St. Paul on our way to the concert.

My neighbors hate this picture so I am going to be in trouble for posting it but I LOVE it!  The concert was absolutely AMAZING.  She sounded awesome and her set and costume changes truly left me speechless.  It was SO FUN and I will never forget it.

Most of our time is spent playing in the cul de sac.

Friday nights are spent cheering for the Irish and they are off to a great start.  The kids have SO much fun at the games.  We are so lucky to be able to share this excitement together every Friday night.

A dear friend of ours from California just made the U of M soccer team.....GO GOPHERS!  She came out to spend the day with us last weekend and we had a blast.  The kids picked up some new soccer moves.

Homework time...

Off to school on their bikes...

I hope you have enjoyed September.  Fall will officially be here next week which doesn't seem real.  My favorite parts of fall would have to include back to school times, football, changing colors, blue jeans and candy corn.  What are your favorite parts of fall?

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Win a Free Digital Scrapbooking Class

Hello Friends, I am over on the CK Blog today and there is an opportunity to win a spot in my new class Digital Scrapbooking 101.    I am really excited about this opportunity to share my passion for digital scrapbooking with others who are just starting out as well as those who just need a "tune-up".  Class starts on Monday, September 30th.

All products are from Designer Digitals.

Hop on over to the CK Blog and leave a comment for the chance to win.

I also want to remind you about Designer Digitals Quarterly Sale which started today.  The entire store is 30% off so now is a GREAT time to add a few products or A LOT of products to your stash.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Children and Scrapbooking

This school year I wanted my children to take a more active role in their scrapbooks.  I love to capture bits of them in the photos that they draw and their handwriting.  This year they are filling out prompt sheets and I plug their work into a template.  It gets them writing and creating and allows me to capture this stage of their life.  It is a win-win in my book.   My kids LOVE to create.  What is the saying...the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Tonight I had a couple more prompt sheets for them to complete.  Ellie started doing them and when Mia and Quinn saw her, they immediately wanted to do theirs as well.  Another win-win-win.

Here is the scene tonight after dinner at our house...

Here are a few of the pages they have created thus far for their album....

Papers are from Designer Digitals.

I think it is so important and a WHOLE LOT OF FUN to include your children in memory-keeping.  If I say "will you create...." my kids, especially my girls are usually running for the markers before I can get the words out.  They love to create and will jump on any opportunity to do so.  There are so many great qualities that can develop through the list goes on.

What ways are using to involve your children in memory-keeping?  I would sure love to hear.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Digital Scrapbooking - Upcoming Events

I hope you had a great weekend. There are a few things going on this week that I want to bring to your attention.  

We are getting together for another session of Digital U this Tuesday night at 9:00 PM Eastern Time.  Our topic is designing outside of the box.  Amy is going to talk about designing 8.5 x 11 inch pages and I will be talking about double spreads....a favorite of mine.  If you have never attended a Digital U before, we would love for you to check it out.  We have a ton of fun getting together on these live webinars.  The webinars are completely free.  All you need to do is register at Creative Passion.  We hope to see you there!
Designer Digitals is hosting their third quarter sale this week starting on Thursday, September 19th and going through September 26th.  Everything in the store is on sale and this would be an excellent time to stock up on products.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Digital Scrapbooking - Introductory Class

Today I am excited to share with you that my new class Digital Scrapbooking 101 is now on sale at Creative Passion.  This is my first introductory class and I couldn't be more excited to share my passion for digital memory-keeping with others who might be just starting out.  I started digital scrapbooking about seven years ago and once I figured out a few basics, I was immediately hooked.  The "basics" can go a LONG way in digital memory-keeping.  I'm excited to share "the basics" and a whole lot more!

The class runs from September 30th to October 17th.  There will be two lessons a week posted on Monday and Thursday for a total of six lessons.  In each of the lessons, you will see every step of my creative process.  You will quickly learn how to transfer your photos into digital pages that you are excited to print out and share with others.  Included in the class is a sampler pack from Designer Digitals.  A huge "Thank You" to Katie Pertiet for her generosity. I will also be hosting an office hour during class which will come to you through a webinar.  This is an opportunity to ask questions and get feedback.  

In this class you will learn...
- how to set up a page
- how to create using a template
- how to make your own template
- how to create a freelance design
- basic editing techniques for your photos
- how to change the colors of your photos
- how to maximize your digital stash
- how to create artistic effects on your pages
- how to create stickers 
and more.

All products used in this class are from Designer Digitals.

All of the demonstrations have been created using Photoshop Elements 11.0 but they are also applicable to other Photoshop Elements versions as well as full Photoshop.

I hope you join me on this fun, new journey in digital scrapbooking.  You can find out additional information here.  You don't want to delay.  There is an early bird coupon available now through September 16th.  Use coupon code: FALL10OFF.  I hope to see you there.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Put a Slant On It

Have you ever completed a layout and looked at it and said "there is something missing".  When that happens to me, one of my "go-to techniques" is to change the angle of the entire image.  In most instances, I immediately like it a whole lot more.  I would describe my style as very graphic.  There is something about changing the angle that immediately draws me into the page.  The angle is unexpected and it catches my eye. As I create pages, I try to find different ways of engaging the viewer and certainly changing the angle is quick and easy way of accomplishing that.  

Here are two of the layouts that I created recently.  You can clearly see how I created angles to make this page more appealing.

On this particular page, I just angled the papers to create some unique angles.

All products are from Designer Digitals.

I'm going to issue a little challenge to you.  On your next page, play with the angles on your page and see how you can create interest by using that simple technique.  You can post your pages in the "Jana's Jumpstarts" gallery at Creative Passion and/or in the gallery at Designer Digitals.  I would love to see your page.  Have fun!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Blending and Beyond Self-Paced

When I first started creating digital scrapbooking pages, I immediately fell in love with the look of blended images.  In all honesty, it was that blended look that brought me to digital scrapbooking after 15 years as a traditional scrapbooker. I was determined to bring that soft, beautiful look to my everyday photos.  Let's just say that I have been blending photos for a long time now and with each blended page that I create, I am still giddy.  I LOVE the look of blended images....there is just something magical about them.  Once I started posting pages, I began receiving messages from people asking me about my blending techniques.  After many requests, I decided to try my hand at teaching.  Two years ago I started teaching a class that I developed called Blending and Beyond. Debbie Hodge at Get It Scrapped gave me the opportunity to teach the class there and I will always be grateful to Debbie.  When I wrote the class, I was nervous that nobody would sign up and asked Debbie how many people I would need to make the class run.  Debbie responded with "25 and I know you will get that".  Well, I will be the first to admit that the response to Blending and Beyond left me in shock....I still can't believe what transpired through that course. There are people all over the world looking at blending in a little bit different manner and I have met so many amazing people through teaching this course.

I am excited to tell you that Blending and Beyond is now on sale at Creative Passion as a self-paced class. You can register here.  I absolutely love sharing my passion for digital art with others.  The people that have taken my classes have been so supportive and their enthusiasm has been so inspiring to me.  Thank you my dear friends.

If you have not taken Blending and Beyond yet, I encourage you to check it out.   Last fall, I offered a Blending and Beyond Booster workshop that was available to anybody who has taken my Blending and Beyond class.  I'm excited to tell you that this November, I will be offering another new Booster workshop for my "Blending and Beyond Veterans".  Now would be a great time to take Blending and Beyond if you haven't done so already.  More information about the Booster Workshop will be available in October.  I hope to see you in class sometime soon.  Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Transforming Your Art into a Standout

A few weeks ago we said good-bye to our beloved dog.  I have taken a lot of photos of Wiley over the years and I am so grateful that I did.  I took even more during those final days.  As I was struggling through those days, my daughter said "Mom, you need to make a standout of Wiley".  I couldn't have agreed more.

A standout is similar to a canvas but it is significantly cheaper.  It doesn't have the texture of a canvas but it still hangs freely on the wall and there is no need for a frame.  We have several standouts around our home and I have made several for my family and close friends.  I love them.  I always order my standouts from Whitehouse Custom Color.

This is the original image that I created of Wiley. The photo in the background is one of my favorites of him because I can see so much of his personality in it. 

All products are from Designer Digitals.

My standout came a day after I ordered it.  They are sooooo speedy and once again, I was THRILLED with the quality of it.  What I see on my computer screen is EXACTLY what I get on my standout.  This is what it looks like on our wall.

I always order the 20 x 20 standout.  It is 3/4 inch thick with black edging.  They are so lightweight and easy to hang on the wall.

One of the great things about being a digital scrapbooker is that you can also call yourself a digital artist. When I look through online galleries, I see so many AMAZING pages that would look great hanging on the wall.  I encourage you to go through your gallery and find a page that you really like. Find some way of getting it off of your computer or out of your album and displaying it so it can be enjoyed every day.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

First Day of School

Today was the first day of school and let's just say that our house was overflowing with excitement.  This year Ellie is in 4th grade, Amelia is in 2nd grade and Quinn is in half-day kindergarten.  This is the first time that they are all at the same school and that makes me very happy!  Here are some photos before school.

We are so lucky that we live within a few blocks of school.  I love that the kids just walk to school.

Quinn is in morning kindergarten and Jeff came home from work early so he could meet him after school. Quinn came barreling out of the doors just beaming.  You gotta love it!  I'm so glad that Jeff was there to experience this as well.

The kids were still as excited after school.  We are so happy with the school that they attend.  They are eager to jump into tomorrow.  When Quinn went to bed tonight he said "Mom, when I wake up in the morning, can I just put on my clothes and head right to school....I don't want to have to wait tomorrow". Kids are priceless!