Friday, April 25, 2014

Silhouette V3 tutorial!

Hello crafters!

Abby here (for those of you new to our blog, Mom calls me Abby, because she says I remind her of Abby from NCIS, therefore "Abby's Crafty" :D), so last Christmas, my dad bought my mom and I a Silhouette Cameo.  I have to say, we LOVE this machine, mainly for the print and cut feature (there are many tutorials out there about this feature, and I even did one here).  We love this feature for digital stamps, but out only complaint was what to do when we want to stamp with traditional stamps? The only suggestion we have found is to cut the paper, THEN try to line it up and stamp...yeah right.  There was NO way for me to get that perfectly lined up on the paper that had already been cut.

Thankfully, Silhouette America has just released their new version of the design software (download it HERE), V3 (it's actually version 3.something.something, but I'm going with V3 for ease of typing.

I have been doing some research on this version, and included is TWAIN support for scanners.  What does that mean? It means that you can scan DIRECTLY into Silhouette Studio (SS, for short) and trace your image.

I have actually been looking for tutorials about how to use this feature, and just waiting, WAITING I tell you, for someone to get excited about it.  I guess it's just me.  So I started mucking with the software to try to figure out a way to cut out images that we have stamped.  What I found was that we probably could have done the same thing without the TWAIN support before, but this way just cuts out one step.  At any rate, I never found a tutorial to do this, so here we go...

First step:
Print out a page with registration marks:
Fifth icon from the right in the "registration marks" menu, 

Select registration marks for "Cameo/SD"

Then print as normal.

This is the fun part:
Of course, ink up your stamp.  We're using X-Press It blending card, memento tuxedo black ink and the "Fairy Heartfelt" clear stamp set from Tiddly Inks (clear set HERE, digi HERE)

Ok, now we get to scan!
The scanner I use is a Canoscan Lide600F.  You can find them HERE on Amazon.  It is small, makes decent scans, and is powered by USB, so it doesn't have a separate cable to schlep around with.  It has a little issue with OSX Mavericks that I won't go into, so if you're curious, just shoot me a message.

 So this is the process to scan using SS:
Then it LITERALLY drops the image you scanned right on to your mat.
And remember, we printed registration marks on our paper, which we then scanned in, so thats why you're seeing two sets of registration marks.  Then, all you do is line up the registration marks and...

 ...trace the image using the trace tool (6th icon from the right)... can now delete your scanned image.  From this point on, be careful to not move the traced image (red lines).
 I prefer to offset my image in order to have a little white border around the image, so I went to the offset menu (4th icon from the right at the very bottom), selected my trace (red lines) and set the distance to 0.125.  Likewise, when you select the area to trace, you could have just clicked the "trace outer edge" box instead of having it trace EVERY line, but sometimes if there isn't a solid line all the way around the image, this can be problematic (also what my earlier tutorial is about), so this is how I get around it and it works every time.
 At this point you can delete your original trace.

 To get rid of the fiddly little things in the middle (because every line that is red will be a cut line), you right click-release compound path...
...then right click-weld. DONE!
Believe me, it seems like a lot of work for something so seemingly insignificant, but once you get the process down, it will take no time at all, and the results are totally worth it.

Here's my lovely mom doing her best Vanna White impression and demonstrating the use of the silhouette...

I hope this post makes sense! Please send me a message if you need clarification on something!

On a side note: If you're curious to see what BEGINNER copic artists look like, go back in our blog archives and take a look at some of our cards and our coloring.  Although we are still not professionals, you can see a definite change that might give some hope to beginning crafters.  Surely, if we can get the hang of it, you can.

Well, this was a crazy long post, so I'll sign off now.  Thanks for stopping by!


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