Not a Graphic Designer But…

Anytime I need to make an ad or one of those banners for a post, I have to hire it out. I just can’t make graphic manipulations the way I want, even after taking a PhotoShop class a few years ago. I can do basic scrapbook-type layouts, but that’s it, and nothing fancy at all. It’s embarrassingly amateur.

However, I might have found something I can do even with mediocre graphics skills.

I’ve written before how colors influence a story. Beautiful Death will always be indigo, blue, and black with a bit of silver. The Blood & Shadows series is white, black, and red.

When I’m building a story, I like to get out the magic purple pen and paper, but I’d really love to have folders or papers with the right colors for the story. Obviously that’s really hard to find. I don’t want just a plain paper folder – I want something artsy and cool. But when I do finally find one that’s really pretty, it’s not the right color or theme for the book I’m working on.

Then I found Etsy.

I really had no idea there was such a thing as “printable paper.” That didn’t even make sense to me at first. Why would I want to print my paper? But when I find artists that can make stuff like Burning Love, it makes total sense. But I still wasn’t sure *how* to actually use it.

I’m currently using digital papers to build two different story bibles. I can’t do much in Gimp – so I’m making do with Word. I can do just enough to layer a few elements together and make a really cool template page. I can customize it to MY character questions and plot points. I control the colors. The text. How I lay it out. I can hole-punch the papers, clip together with a binder ring, and re-arrange or add to my heart’s desire.

I’m having a blast and the story ideas are really coming. The creative process is just enough “me” to keep the juices flowing, without requiring me to be a real artist with anything but words. And for a few bucks, I can buy new papers for any book I want to work on and print new pages!

Awesome fun!