FINDING CLIP ART

The other day Joy was showing her friend Frieda how to add a picture to a Word document. Frieda has a really old version of Microsoft Word, and Joy was astonished to discover that a search on the word “flowers” turned up nothing, a big contrast with the rich choices available in later versions of Word, which automatically search Office Online.

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GREETING CARDS THE EASY WAY

Here are some easy ways to send out holiday greetings: — DearInbox.com turns email into greeting cards for users of the Chrome web browser. Whatever you type can be printed inside a ready-made card you choose. Starts with one free card. – CardStore.com lets you choose from hundreds and have your message inside. They print it, stamp it and mail it, and can use your address book so you don’t have to retype anything. –Ojolie.com has lovely digital greeting cards for $12 a year. We like it even better than AmericanGreetings.com, though we’ve noticed that only a few of our friends like digital cards. Most prefer the paper kind; that includes us.

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WHY DO THEY DO IT?

“Corel Painter Essentials 4″ can turn photos and drawings into pieces that look very much like paintings. It’s not the only program that can do this, but it’s based on one of the earliest. It has been seven years since the last version and with this version the company has managed to take a giant step backward, It’s not that the program’s new tools aren’t fun. Most of them are. It’s that the previous version from seven years ago had outstanding videos that practically held your hand every step of the way as you learned. You worked along with the guidance of a professional artist and the results were great. The company dumped all of that. Now if you click […]

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FINDING FONTS

A reader pointed out that installing free fonts from just any ol’ site can sometimes stick viruses on your computer. Ain’t it the truth? It’s a caution that goes with many sites, particularly ones for free games.

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BUILD YOUR OWN WEBSITE

You don’t need to learn HTML coding to build a website if you use templates provided by Yola.com, Weebly and others. But to create an original, it helps to be a coder.

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PAINTING LIKE A PRO

Though we’re not professional artists or even students, we decided to try Corel’s new “Painter 2015.” This is a program that has been around for decades and is used by professionals to turn photos into artworks as well as design original art for ads and games. Reviewers are nuts about the new brushes, which can create special effects, like smoke, pixels, color shifts, etc., as you paint.

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GET UP AND OUT THERE

If you want to get a website online fast, there are over a dozen services, that can do that, and many of them are free. We’ve used the free versions of “WordPress” and “Yola” to create web sites. Friends have raved about Weebly for producing new sites, so we tried it and must agree, it’s very nice; it’s also free.

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HEY GOOD-LOOKIN

When you see an older celebrity pictured in a magazine and looking 20 years younger, you can’t help wondering if some trick is involved. Well it is, and we’ve discovered a way for anybody to do it. (No, it’s not botox.) It’s a $50 program called “Portrait Pro,” from PortraitPro.com. Take any photo in the computer and let the program work its magic for a few seconds. The results in Joy’s case were so stunning, she is reluctant to accept her old look. She will only walk outside now with the new “Portrait Pro” photo pasted on her face. (This has caused some comment.) You can see examples of before and after photos on their website. When you see it […]

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TEN MILLION PHOTOS IN THE COLORS YOU CHOOSE

“Multicolr Search Lab” fills your screen with similarly colored thumbnail pictures taken from ten million free-to-use photos on Flickr. All pinks and reds, for example. If you click on any of the tiny pictures (very tiny) it opens up. (By the way, Flickr gives you a terabyte of storage for your own photos.)

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ELEVEN STEPS TO A PERFECT LOGO

“Eleven Steps to a Perfect Logo” has good tips.

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