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Easy Heart in Inkscape

This is a simple but fun tutorial on how to make an easy and quick heart embellishment for your digital scrapbooking.

This tutorial assumes that you have Inkscape installed on your computer and that you understand the basics of the software to be able to follow the steps. If you would like to learn a little bit about how to use Inkscape before you tackle this tutorial, please refer to previous tuts.

☼ Fire up Inkscape.

Choose the Polygon and Star tool and make a star, but select only 3 corners to shape it into a triangle.
Pick a color and draw your triangle. Right click on stroke(at the bottom of the page) and select Edit stroke, then click on the X to remove the stroke. Now select the triangle, and go to Path, Object to Path.
☼ Now your triangle is an Object. Choose the Nodes tool that is right below the Arrow on the sidebar. Click on the triangle and you will see that nodes appear. Push down gently on the center node at the top, to dip the center into the beginning of the shape of a heart.

☼ Now make sure the two remaining sides are even. Now click on the first node of the pointed edge on the right side to select it, go to the top of the page and counting from left to right, click on the 10th button (make selected node auto-smooth) and you will see how the pointed end of the heart turns into a smooth curve. Repeat with the opposite side. Now we have the basic shape of a heart.
☼ At this point, you can do a variety of things to embellish your heart. One of them is to add a gradient.
To add a gradient, simply choose gradient, pick Linear and stroke with the mouse to add it. You will notice that your shape disappears at the bottom, since the gradient turns the color transparent at the bottom. To correct that, click on the object and you will notice that a blue node appears at the bottom, while that node is selected and blue, click on either the darkest or the lightest color you want to add to your gradient, and the new color will substitute the portion that used to be transparent, and the heart will show as a complete shape.
☼ You can add highlights if you want to. You can also embellish your heart in many different ways. Let me show you one that is pretty easy.

☼ Go to the text tool and choose the Font Rockwell bold. Make a letter O (lower case) and fill it with a darker shade than your original heart but in the same color.
☼ Duplicate the O and drag it to the edge of the heart, continue to duplicate the O and to position it around the edge of the heart, mimicking the shape of the heart, overlap the Os every now and then in the shape of a chain. To turn the Os around so that they can fit the contour of the heart, click to the select the letter and then click again to choose the rotate handles and grabbing one of the side handles, rotate the letter to where it ought to go in the most natural direction to fit the contour of the heart. Continue doing that until you have completed the shape of the heart all around.

☼ Now you can do one of two things, you can stroke with the mouse to select the whole shape and go to Object, Group, and put join everything together so that it will not fall apart as you move it. But you can also, click on the original heart to select it, and move it aside, leaving the chained heart hollow.

You can color it anyway you want to, you can fill it with a texture or pattern, add a drop shadow, just play with it!

Pathlights. . .Worthwhile exploring!

How to make a clip for your journaling pad in Inkscape and Gimp

This clip is easier to make than you might think and it comes in handy to embellish many journaling pads, tags or notes that you might want to use in your scrapbooking. Let's make one together!

(This tutorial assumes that you have Inkscape installed in your computer and that you have at least a basic understanding of the software.)
If  you're not, please check out our past free tutorial and make some of them to get familiar with the software and then return here and do this one.
►Fire up Inkscape.
►Click on the Rectangle tool and, choosing the color of your choice, draw a rectangle, choose for the stroke, a lighter hue of the same color. Click on the rectangle you just made. You will notice it has 2 square handles an a round one.
►Pressing the Ctrl key with one hand and using the mouse with the other, push the round handle inwardly until you get rounded corners on the rectangle.
►Make a small rounded rectangle and duplicate it. Drag the small rounded rectangle and place it on top of the longer rectangle. Center it. Now drag the duplicate of the smaller rectangle and place
it on top of it. Make a circle, center it inside the uppermost small rounded rectangle and select it. Then, holding the shift key down, select the rectangle as well as the circle, now go to Path, Difference, to cut out
the shape of the circle. Now, with your mouse, select all the shapes and go to Object, Group. Now you can move them without them falling apart on you.
►Choose the gradient tool and fill the whole shape with a gradient of your choice. Click on the gradient, you will see a square button and a round button, click on the round button, it will turn blue, blue button means that the otherwise transparent part of the gradient is selected and you can change its color, click on the palette at the bottom of the page to select a color you want for the lighter part of your gradient and let the gradient chosen fill your image.
►To Save your clip, go to File, Export Bitmap and save as a PNG.

This is the basic clip you will have:

If you would like to add a texture to your clip, you can use a JPEG image in Inkscape. To do it, proceed as follows:

►Go to File, Import to insert your pattern as a JPEG, select it and then go to Edit, Objects to
►The pattern will now be available in the Fill and Stroke dialog. You will notice that it is very small. Select the pattern and then go to Edit, Objects to Pattern.
►When you see your pattern show up in the pop-up menu of the Fill/Pattern fill, your pattern is available in the Fill and Stroke dialog and you can apply it to your clip.
►If you find that too complicated, you can save your clip as a PNG Bitmap, open Gimp and apply whatever pattern you like best by simply using the Bucket tool in Gimp. Save again and bring it back into Inkscape.
►Make a narrow oval in White with the Ellipse tool to add a shiny highlight to the second circle of the clip, fill with White, right click on the Stroke and choose Edit Stroke, to remove it. On the little dialog menu, move the lever of the Opacity and of the Blur to where you like it best for a "shine" on your clip.
Repeat with a smaller oval on the top perforated circle of your clip. For the bottom of the clip, make a narrow white rectangle and also move the lever of the opacity and of the blur to where you like it best.
Save as a PNG Bitmap and your're done!

As you see, it's quite different from the plain, basic one. Try it with your own texture and enjoy using it on your next scrap!

Real Hope. . .