Friday, September 19, 2008

Eva 24/7: The first Criterion-style text + photo

A couple of days ago I did a post about how the design of Criterion DVDs might inspire you with ideas for this month's text + photo theme. In order to show you how easy it is to take inspiration from a design and adapt it to your own needs, I plan on doing a few and walking you through the steps.

Since I just got back from driving my wife to the airport (Her sister just had a baby so she's going to visit and help out for a week), I thought I'd do a quick rendition of the Cleo from 5 to 7 cover in a way that suits my circumstances (i.e. dealing with the ever-needy Eva by myself).

So here is the Criterion original:

And here is my message to Michelle:

It was very easy once I gave up on the idea of trying to use the brush tool (on the trackpad of my laptop!) to copy the font. Here's what I did.

1. Found a picture of Eva and converted it to black and white.
2. Tried to draw my own version of the font using the brush tool.
3. Failed again and again.
4. Checked out 30 pages worth of free handwriting fonts at until I found one (OK, actually two—I used a different font for the "E") that satisfied my now-lax standard of similarity to the Criterion original. FYI, the "E" is from a free font called Jellyka—Estrya's Handwriting, and the rest is a free font called Phontphreak's Handwriting.
5. Used the text tool to type in the text (like I showed you in the text+photo starter).
6. Flattened the image.
7. Decided I had better add a small white border, so I made the canvas larger (as I taught you to do at the end of the grid tutorial).
8. Added a thin black stroke around the outside (under blending options).
9. Ate a chocolate chip cookie.
10. Noticed that even though it's 12:30, Eva is awake and crying in her room.
11. Wondered if I will be getting any sleep this week.
12. Wondered how much a nanny would cost.

Steps 3 and 7-12 are entirely optional, although I would advise you to keep step 9.