More Card Layout News and a Help Request

Hi, everyone!

So I got the green light from the printer’s tech support–the specs on the test card I sent them were A-OK! So tonight I went back into GIMP 2.6 and started laying out more cards. I finished the King of Wands and got partway through the Empress when I realized I’d made an important mistake. I hadn’t figured out how far from the top and bottom margins I was going to have the outer edges of the text. See, for the Major Arcana the number of the card (for example 0) is at the top of the card, while the name (in this case Fool) is at the bottom. And for the Minors the top would have the number or name (2 or King, for example) while the bottom has the suit (Pentacles, etc.)It satisfies my need for visual balance and makes it very clear which card is which.

While GIMP and the template I was using are both great on helping me get images and text centered (oriented toward the very center of the image) so far the only way I’ve found to have the text the same distance from the top and bottom edges of every card is by carefully moving the margins of each text box by hand (or by mouse) so that the lower edge of the lower text box is always equal with one particular tick on the ruler on the side–oh, just look aat the image below and where the arrows are pointing:


See what I’m trying to do? I have to align the text boxes by hand with those tick marks. And I can’t seem to find a way to add in pre-set text boxes. If anyone has any suggestions on how to make GIMP make this easier for me, please let me know! (No, I don’t want to move to Photoshop or another program. No, I don’t want someone else to do this for me. This is a good learning experience for me!)

Aaaaaanyway. The long and the short of it is that I have THREE WHOLE CARDS done: Magician, King of Wands, and Empress. A lot of the time I took tonight was in resizing background images; because every one of the original assemblages has different dimensions, and none of them are the exact same dimensions as a tarot card, I’m cutting the photo of each and putting it on a background to fill out the rest of the card. So the Magician, for example, is trimmed and then layered over a photo of particularly nice antelope leather. And, of course, figuring out the standard font size and placement took a fair bit of time.

But as I keep plugging away I figure I’ll be able to go faster. And tonight I’m working at something of a mental deficit since I’m sleep deprived and it’s hard to focus; more sleep will help the process.

I figure I’ll make an update about once a week on what cards are completed. I want to have the files off to the printer by the end of October; we’ll see how that goes.

4 thoughts on “More Card Layout News and a Help Request

  1. Joy Phillip says:

    Sorry honey, I know very little about GIMP. I can offer a suggestion. Photoshop CS2 is free on Adobe’s website if you want to get it. All of their Creative Suite is as well. I find it easier to do things in that.

    • lupa says:

      No problem, I appreciate the thought! Managed to find something of a solution, or at least a time-saver. I don’t really have the time to learn an entirely new program; I haven’t used PS since….2003? And it was an older version at that point, too, and I just used it for image resizing. But it looks like I have things taken care of at this point.

  2. Shannon says:

    It has been a long time since I used GIMP, but from what little I remember, its capabilities for the layout process are very limited. If there is a way to save a version of the template with the text boxes either already in place and waiting to be filled in (if gimp files have that sort of capability), or at least mark on the template where the text boxes should go, so that lining up new text boxes won’t take as long.

    • lupa says:

      Unfortunately it won’t allow me to add a template text box to the template, but I did manage to add a layer with guidelines to make creating a new text box in the right place and dimensions a lot easier!

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