Notebooks and Calendars made from students’ artwork are some great results from Spring session of Digital Media Class at TLA!

Photoshop techniques

For students completing this session, this list will serve as a check list / self-evaluation. Ask yourself: “Can you… ?”

  • open / create new document, use Navigator, go back in history
  • create new layer, copy existing layer, delete layer, hide / deactivate layer
  • move objects, transform and warp objects, change color(s)
  • operate selection tools – magic wand & lasso, add to selection, subtract from selection, refine edges
  • use paint brush and eraser – size and sensitivity


  • change layer opacity
  • change layer blending mode
  • apply blur filter
  • solid colour overlay

Sending off to Print

During the last class we discussed how to produce printed materials from the  artwork. Many options are now available – post cards, posters, calendars, thank you cards, mugs, t-shirts, mouse pads, notebooks, and more!

Initially, we wanted to do a calendar but with 5 finalized projects we may have to change our selection. So here we are – 3 notebooks with July-December calendar inside front cover and 2 poster calendars for 2019. Excited for a delivery next week!

Objects & Shadows

June is here, and that means the school is nearly over! After the photoshoot students spent most of the time cutting figures from photos and bringing onto their backgrounds. One important step in making objects look realistic in the collages is creating shadows. It turned out there is a lot to observe in the way the object produces shadows: size, shape, colour, position, etc.

Here are some questions to consider when creating the shadow:

  • Which way is the shadow pointing?
  • Is the shadow long or short?
  • What defines the length of shadow?
  • Is it attached to the subject?
  • Is the shadow the same texture across?

PhotoShoot Day

With 90% completion on backgrounds we are ready to shoot the real people to be included into the artwork. Students got really creative with outfits, props, and staging the wind effects. TLA Principal, who is an avid photo enthusiast, came to take extra shots for the school events portfolio. And was captured on our photo!

Mid-term progress

After a few weeks of production, interrupted by the Spring Break, real life drawings are complete and digitized. Those who chose to draw background digitally are still exploring Photoshop brushes, layers, effects…

All students have practiced Lasso Tools, adding to and subtracting from a selection, using a Test image. Students did not share their work, so here’s Instructor’s copy:

Class #4

We are now in the full swing of action. Each student has a personal laptop with Photoshop and a set of paints and pencils to challenge the creative. Let the art begin!

Third class

Good news:  School’s computers have Photoshop installed on them!

We immediately made use of it and devoted all lesson to becoming familiar with working environment and basic tools. Layers, Selection Tool, Brush Tool and Paint Bucket Tool were most frequently used during Class 3.

The Art Teacher joined us with her laptop and very soon we got very creative!


Second class

The artwork decision-making is not easy! You want to choose something that is interesting and challenging, something that you would be motivated to work on.

This Tuesday students were finalizing their decisions on a theme they wanted to recreate. With some help of Image Search on the Internet, everyone had a defined idea.

We also had a visit from the Arts Teacher for a consultation on the available art media. The school can supply watercolours. Everything else needs to be purchased.  Good news – the cost of the program covers that!

Here’s my selection from Amazon:

First class

Our first class at TLA has happened! 4 students are ready and excited about the first project – recreating some Bible art.

We talked about a possibility of creating a calendar from all artwork at the end which could be offered as a fundraiser to TLA families. Calendar pages somewhat imply the themes to be organized according to major events that took place in each month of the year. I can almost predict what would be a December art.

Having checked a few books available at the library, students left home with an assignment to search for inspiring images. Please: stay away from exposed bodies. And remember: calendars favour a horizontal format.