Using Downloaded Elements
Many Internet sites offer downloadable elements for scrappers. Two worth visiting are CottageArts.net and ScrapbookGraphics (see Figure 3). You can source anything from entire page layouts to digital embellishments such as faux clips and ribbons on the web; some are free and some cost a few dollars.
Some layouts or embellishments come as flattened .JPG files, and others are available as .PSD or .PNG files. If you download JPG files, you won't be able to move (or remove) any of the elements on the page because the entire page will be a single image layer. On the other hand, .PSD and .PNG files can store layer data, so you should be able to move the elements around on the page and hide any you don't like by turning off a layer's visibility.
Figure 3 This fun page, ready for printing, was created using a digital layout from CottageArts.net. We simply added two photos and trimmed away some of the bottom one.
Downloaded scrapbook page templates let you create very sophisticated pages with little knowledge, and they're a great place to start if you want to learn more about digital scrapbooking. In many cases, you can download the layout, add and resize your photos, and print the image.
Later you might choose to create your own layouts but add digital elements you've sourced online. You will find many useful Photoshop actions for creating elements that either mimic traditional scrapbooking techniques or make for great backgrounds. I periodically trawl the Adobe Studio Exchange for actions such as those that create torn paper effects or rust.
The Web is also a scrapbooker's delight when it comes to fonts. Literally thousands of fonts can be downloaded for free, many of which are great for scrapbook titles and journaling. One particularly good collection of fonts for PC and Mac is CreativeSpirits.net). Its Most Voted, Most Viewed, and Most Commented font at the time of writing was Scriptina, probably one of the most popular fonts for scrapbooking right now.
These other sites offer plenty of great information and downloads as well:
At Scrapbook-bytes.com, you will find art to download and forums to chat on.
Scrapbook.com is an excellent information resource and publishes a great email newsletter.
Scrapbookscrapbook.com has plenty of scrapbook supplies to download and print.
Onescrappysite.com/ has lots of wonderful scrapbooking fonts to download.
Scrapbookingtop50.com/ maintains the definitive list of what's hot in online scrapbooking sites.