Saturday, November 29, 2008

Adding Styles in Photoshop Elements 6 (Mac)

There are a wealth of styles and actions available to add to Photoshop Elements, both free and for purchase. However, many users have difficulty installing them. When I was first trying to figure out how to add some new ones, I could not find a good comprehensive walk-through of the process for a mac computer, so I’ve put one together here to maybe be of help to someone else!

Get your style file ready (.asl). I drop it on my desktop for easy access. Open the following folder: Microsoft HD/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Photoshop Elements/6.0/Locale/en_US/Photo Creations/layer styles.

Drop the .asl file in that folder.

Then, if you want it to show up by itself on the drop-down menu (instead of having to view ALL your styles to see it), follow these next instructions:

Go back up to Microsoft HD/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Photoshop Elements/6.0/Locale/en_US and open the Photo Creations Metadata folder, and then the folder called "Layer Styles."

Right click on one of the .xml files and choose "Open with... Textedit." Here is what you will see:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<psecontent xmlns="">
<type value="style">

<typecategory id="CatBevels" value="Bevels" localize="true">

Let's say that your style is called "BlueStripes."

Use FILE SAVE AS to save it in that same folder with the name of the style, "BlueStripes.xml." This file name needs to be the same as the .asl file you started with. It will ask you if you want to use .xml or .txt as your file extension, and you need to choose .xml.

Then, In the text above (in the texteditor), change both instances of "Bevels" to "BlueStripes," and ONLY change that. So then, it would look like:

<psecontent xmlns="">
<type value="style">

<typecategory id="CatBlueStripes" value="BlueStripes" localize="true">

Then, save your changes using File>SAVE this time.

Okay, you're ALMOST done.

At this point, go back to Microsoft HD/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Photoshop Elements/6.0/Locale/en_US, and rename the file called "MediaDatabase.db3" to "MediaDatabase.old." This will cause Elements to rebuild the styles so yours shows up.

Now open Elements. It will take a little longer to start because it is building the new media database, but when it does finish loading, your styles should be in the drop-down styles menu under their own name!

I should add that I NEVER could have figured this out without Wendy at Elements Village (who also hangs out here). That site is a GREAT resource with some really ncie people who have full knowledge of elements.

Monday, November 24, 2008

On being like Jesus in Therapy

(from a book report on "On Being a Therapist" by Jeffrey Kottler)

Kottler writes that
“the ideal therapist is comfortable with herself and appears warm, tolerant, sincere, serene, tranquil, and self-assured. This quiet confidence is counterbalanced by a contagious zest for life. Passion. Excitement. Electricity. Enthusiasm. She radiates from body and soul” (p. 36).
If I could write a description of the person I want to be, this would be very close to what I would write. Maybe this is one reason I’m drawn to a therapeutic career—the goals of who I am supposed to be professionally match very well to the personality characteristics that I want to have in my every day life and interactions.

However, this seems to be somewhat of an impossible goal. When we’re in a therapy session, with intense concentration, maybe it is possible to be all of these things. But all the time? In every situation? In every relationship? This seems unconquerable. However, with this in mind, I can consider what I tell myself when I think about trying to be all of these things as an integral part of who I am—it’s a journey. I can seek to make progress in the moment, and eventually, I will become closer to the person that I want to be, if not fully, then the best that I can.

This is where a religious element comes into play for me. The reason why I want to be these things in every day life is because they are the characteristics that I see in Jesus, who I want to emulate. Further, I know that I can never be like Him on my own—on the contrary, I can only achieve these personality characteristics through God’s grace and transformation of my life. In a way, this makes also makes it easier for me to not be hard on myself. I know that if I am working on improvement, I don’t have to be perfect (which is good, because I never will be the ideal version of myself that I seek). Instead, I can try to be more, relying not solely on myself, but on transformative grace for the change in my personality (no pun intended). In the process, I try to extend the same grace to myself that I see from God—not beating myself up or despairing over my imperfections, but continuing to move forward on the journey.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Go Pokes!

Jonathan, Me, Mom, Dad, & Taylor at the Baylor game a few weeks ago.  Fun times!  I ended up with a horrible sunburn though!

(Incidentally, which one of these is not like the others?  Jonathan always looks like a giant in pics with my family. hehe)