8 Reasons Why You Should Buy Digital Collage / Scrapbooking Sheets


I am passionate about creating unique, eye-catching digital imagery using original photography and vintage designs. It’s a part of what I do every day at Oliopix.

As an artist/designer yourself, you may be asking why you should purchase digital collage/scrapbooking sheets from any of the myriad of talented online sellers, when it’s so easy to find free images on the Internet, buy ready-printed designs, or you don’t think your home computer/printing equipment is up to the task.

Let me attempt to convince you…

1Unique, crafted digital artwork

Digital artisans (for that is who we are) create highly unique artwork in their own right. The fact that it is marketed as a ‘supply’ does not diminish its artistic worth.

Of course you can find attractive imagery by perusing your favourite image search engine, but the majority of that work is not free for the taking.

Visiting the Internet stores of artists (whether completely independent or via marketplaces such as Etsy) lets you see their body of work in one place. Buying supports the time and talent they have invested.

2Economical purchasing

As with many other digital versus physical products, the digital product is generally cheaper than any physical equivalent. As a bonus, it’s usually available immediately rather than you having to visit a store or have it posted to you.

Of course, there are many wonderful ready-to-use collage sheets available in a huge range of styles and formats. That’s the best option when you want materials which are hard to use at home, or techniques you haven’t mastered.

But remember: digital supplies don’t run out. You have the freedom to print out your digital files (or just parts of them) again and again, rather than having to buy more paper/card packs when they’re used up.

3Control over printing

Even fairly basic computer and printer setups now have an amazing ability to manipulate digital files and to print out on a wide range of papers, cards and other material.

You can use free image software (you don’t need Photoshop) to do a number of common tasks such as resizing, recolouring and simple editing of your purchased digital sheets.

Even basic inkjet printers will produce excellent results on many types of glossy and matt papers and cards. It’s also not nearly as expensive to buy a colour laser printer any more, offering smoother printing.

Of course, once you’ve printed the images, there’s nothing to stop you applying other creative processes to them – embossing, stamping, distressing, collage, resins… the limit really is only your imagination.

4Develop custom designs with personality

Many digital collage sheets come ‘as is’, so what you purchase is not completely unique. However, a number of designers are happy to work with customers to create bespoke pieces either from scratch or based on existing designs.

5Generous licensing

We’re a pretty generous lot when it comes to letting you use our work. Personal and small business use is fine, and if you’re a larger business (selling many hundreds of items) there are often very reasonable additional licenses available.

6Find and collect work by artists you admire

Once you find artwork you like, you’ll often want to see more creations by that artist. It is possible to do that using the likes of Google, but it’s much more satisfying to visit the artist’s own web site and online store and begin building a more personal relationship with the person whose work you love.

7Support small, independent business

The majority of artists who sell digital download sheets are indy businesses. Most work for the love of what they do, and many are also fortunate enough to make money from it.

When you buy these images, you really are supporting a small business.

8Peace of mind with legal images

Finding and using images online can be a minefield. While it’s rarely a problem if you’re using them in personal projects, if you intend to sell items you may want to be assured that no copyrights or licenses have been infringed.

I can’t guarantee every seller is diligent in this respect, at Oliopix we do our utmost to ensure that any images we use or manipulate are either wholly owned by us (such as our own photography), is truly in the public domain, or we have licensed to be used.

So, have I convinced you?

If you’ve never considered buying digital supplies before, or you’re a Google Image search aficionado looking to get a bit more personal with the art you use, do take a look.

Naturally I’m biased towards Oliopix, where you’ll find a growing range of vintage and contemporary digital sheets infused with our own style, but you might also try a search like this.

Artwork used in this article:

 

Life Is Better At The Beach: butterfLypie

life-better-beachToday’s Creative Link is to a work in progress by butterfLypie (Facebook link) which caught my eye as it scrolled through my timeline today.

It’s a beautiful blue piece of art containing the words “Life is better at the beach”. I love the effect and colouring of this mixed media piece. I don’t have the words or knowledge to describe the piece, so I’ll quote butterfLypie:

“The salt layer has dried, I’ve dripped on some more paint and watercolour, and I’ve added some Gesso bubbles to my Mixed Media canvas. Now, time for buttons, beads, sparkles and teeny SHELLS!”

Naturally, I had to have a nosey around more work, by following the links to Big Cartel and Etsy. There are some wonderfully made jewellery pieces there – including other seafaring items – and I’d definitely recommend you take a look.

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Plan 2015

2015

I’m not making traditional New Year Resolutions for 2015, but I am noting down a number of areas in my life which I want to nurture, improve, and see flourish.

I’m making at least the outline of these public to provide a sense of accountability – even an informal one – in the genuine hope it gives them higher importance in my mind.

They’re not exhaustive and they still include a lot of generalised statements. They do provide a foundation for me to work on – hopefully over the next couple of weeks – where I can create and set about implementing strategies to get me closer to achieving them.

So here goes…

Family

  • To be more ‘available’ for our family. This means avoiding working at all hours, making genuine family time with undivided attention (particularly at weekends), and being actively involved in the lives and projects of each family member.
  • To take greater responsibility for the direction, health and wellbeing of our family. This includes practical provision as well as seeking wisdom and guidance for both daily and longer-term situations and decisions.

Business

  • To achieve a regular monthly income of at least the amount I forecast a few years ago. (I won’t share the figure here, but suffice to say at present this isn’t being met regularly)
  • To produce worthwhile products that make a difference to customers’ lives. Firstly I need to see the worth in my products and believe in the value of what I have produced, and then be able to impart that to customers. While not every product may be deep and meaningful, I would like to think a significant number would mean more than ‘just another item’ to those that buy them.
  • To build up and encourage other similar businesses and enterprises. This may simply be by writing about and linking to great and inspiring works by others, or finding ways to collaborate.
  • To find new and related business ideas and to improve existing ones. That includes improving the visibility and customer base of existing projects as well as having wisdom and insight into what new projects to start.

Personal

  • Nurture spirituality. The past year has felt somewhat ‘dry’ – as much due to lethargy as anything else. My aim is to take hold of spiritual disciplines. While I don’t like religion, or structure for its own sake, I am the kind of person who needs to put some kind of system in place to at least boot me up the backside enough to take this seriously. Yes, despite some of my comfort coming from structure and routine, when it comes to spirituality I can still be found lacking. I will put some basics in place to kickstart the year and hopefully keep on track throughout the year.
  • To develop greater tolerance towards people and situations. I have noticed how intolerant I have become of a number of things which, on the grand scheme of things, really don’t matter. I need to develop ways of redirecting my frustrations and anger into positive action or thoughts. This is easier said than done, but it’s something I am actively seeking to change.
  • To practice gratitude. I started this in 2014 and then tailed off – not that I wasn’t grateful for many things that happened last year, but I spent too long looking for the ‘big things’ to be grateful for and missed the many small things that might be considered insignificant without giving them thought. For me (as many others), gratitude needs to be actively encouraged, so I hope to make at least one daily note of something I am grateful for, and store it as a visual reminder.
  • To nurture creativity. When a significant part of working/earning is considered ‘creative’, it can be hard to take time to do things ‘just because’. Creative pursuits can be squeezed because there doesn’t seem to be time or they are labelled ‘unimportant’. My aim is to try to be creative (outside of work projects) every day, and to make time for the things I really enjoy but have let slide.
  • Read more books, especially fiction. I think I say this every year. I used to be an avid reader but have let this slide. Oh, I read lots on the Internet on all manner of subjects, but I didn’t even finish a work of fiction in 2014. Although I love real books, and will continue to read them, I have just ordered a Kindle (late to the party) because of its greater versatility. I expect it to become one of my best (gadget) friends. Here’s my reading list.
  • Write at least one book. It’s said that everyone has at least one book inside them. I know I have several – the trouble is I haven’t finished even one of them yet. I want 2015 to be the year where at least one is completed to a high standard.
  • Find a significant project which makes a difference to the local community. I’m not entirely sure what this is yet – whether it exists already or needs to be created – but I feel the need to be involved in something that changes lives and neighbourhoods for the better.

There may well be other things I’ve missed, but these are the items which stand out the most to me, here and now. In any case (and looking up at what is already quite a long list) it’s futile to try to change everything as the clock passes midnight from one year into the next. Let’s see how things go.