About Kristan Franco

Kristan Jan Q. Franco is rooted from General Santos City, and is a 20-year old student of Notre Dame of Dadiangas University. With the course Information Technology, he is into web designing, graphic designs, ads, and photography. Having been introduced into digital tools such as Adobe Photoshop and CSS coding, he began designing variety of graphics in his high school days. When he stepped into college, his interests expanded. With a cheap digicam and a Single Lens Reflex camera, he was engaged into photography and sees it as a hobby. Read more about KFranco »

Tips on Creating a Horror Movie Poster

Posted by Kristan Thursday, December 31, 2009 View Comments

One of my dream job is to be a part of a movie where you are acquired on an advertising team who creates the whole concept of the movie poster. Everytime I watch a movie, I usually look for the poster first. The movie poster will eventually catch a viewer's attention. The poster's theme, on the other hand, should generally fit the movie.

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I recently took shot of a busy crowd observing a bushfire near our place, sadly, when I viewed the photo in my computer it was slightly out of focus. Since I forgot to set the photo in a higher quality, I end up hitting VGA. Fortunately, instead of trashing it out, someone inspired me to create a horror movie poster out of it. My younger brother told me that the people in this photo look liked ZOMBIES. From that moment, the idea on creating a conceptual movie poster buzzed me.

With online resources, I've come up with this:

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Here are some few tips in creating the movie poster you ever wanted to make. You're hoax HORROR MOVIE POSTER:

1.) choosing a BACKGROUND that will dominate the viewer's eye. In my version, I used the photo above.

2.) download various GRUNGE TEXTURES to make your background more appealing.

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3.) Apply blending options and the basic filters of Photoshop. Experiment to achieve your desired output. Adding noise on the background can be a good way.

4.) Enhance the levels and curves of the photo. In this way, the contrast between the photo and the title itself would be high.

5.) Font that would fit a HORROR MOVIE. In the title of the movie poster I created, I used Living Hell font to fit the grungy background.

6.) Adding subtitle. Aside from the the title add a subtitle that will drive viewers to curiosity. I used the subtitle, "Who will survive and what will be left of them?" from the old Texas Chainsaw Massacre. If your title's font is bold, the subtitle should not be as thick and as big as the title, or vice versa.

7.) The credits.It's either located at the top or at the bottom of the poster. In my homemade horror poster, I just cut out a credit portion of the another movie poster. If you want to create your own "credits" part, the common font used is UniversLT font. The color of your credits font should match the background.

In case you wanted to study how I created my own Horror Movie poster, you can download the PSD file here.

These are the basic steps to start of your own Horror Movie poster, who knows, someone out there would discover them up! Buzz me if you got one!

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Half-tone effect for Photos in just a minute

Posted by Kristan Wednesday, December 30, 2009 View Comments

Another great basic photo effect is turning it into a half-toned photo,in which the approach of the effect is somewhat retro. You can create this effect in JUST A MINUTE or two.

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To start, open your Adobe Photoshop, as well as your choice of photo that would be applied with this effect:

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Then, duplicate the photo layer and label each one of them as the original and the halftone copy.

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After duplicating, be sure to select the duplicated layer, the one you named as 'half-tone layer'. In the menu bar go to FILTER > SKETCH > HALFTONE. Set the values of the halftone accordingly. In my photo I set the size to 1 and the contrast to 10.

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After applying the halftone effect, change the blending options of the 'halftone layer' to LINEAR LIGHT.

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Here is the final output! A simple halftone effect for your photo:

I reduce the opacity of the halftone layer to lessen the contrast applied.

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A good way to end this year, while starting 2010 the next morning is to make a huge promising change of template for my blog. Since I had a hard time reading the fonts with the former dark theme of this blog, I decided to change its template into a design which is much lighter to the eyes of the readers. Black background with gray fonts couldn't attract much.

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If you blog under Blogger, and looking for templates that would suit the niche of you blog then BTemplates offers great original Blogger themes, and some Blogger-converted Wordpress themes.

Since I've been using my Blogger blog, I found quite a formal template that would somehow suit my blog in general. In addition, the overall template is not dark, and the main colors used are just ranging from two to three shades.

The looks of this blog in the past 2 months were much more of the darker background and lighter text, which made some of the readers find it quite intimidating. I tweaked the template I chose and come up with this one. The new theme for my blog, lighter, and more functional with it's 3-column features.

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What do you think my fellow readers?

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It is December 30, and we Filipinos never forget what our national hero, Jose Rizal did to our country. He spent most of his years fighting for the Filipinos' freedom, thus, making us proud of him, and to our heritage.

Being a Filipino is worth living for. Our heritage is unique in our own way. We give importance to our culture, and most of all, our fellow countrymen.

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If you are a a PROUD FILIPINO, then you can fir one of these 10 unique traits we, Filipino have:

1. Camaraderie - Recently, we experienced consecutive typhoons, but we also witnessed how strong the foundation of our country is when it comes to helping each one of us
2. Religious - Filipinos are God-fearing
3. Hardcore Filipino Telenovelas - every tv station is up to it, and every viewer is updated to the tv series' latest hapenings.
4. Good Traveller - Filipinos are adventurous, we almost wander around the nation, also to the other part of the world.
5. Family Values - We are very much concerned to each of our family.
6. Resourceful - A Filipino is resourceful, he or she think of a way to get the job done.
7. Fiesta Gathering - It is found in every celebration, birthdays, fiestas, and some special gatherings. We don't forget LECHON!
8. Expression of Attitude Towards Art - We are creative, Pinoys are very creative, because each of us have talent.
9. Fond of Streetfoods - Everyone loves to stay and eat at a stall somewhere in the streets, It is our past-time, eating kwek-kwek, isaw (chicken intestine), and barbecues.
10. Videoke Masters - We are fond of singing-along with the beat of a videoke machine, the coin-operated videoke machine, it doesn't matter how many coins we have spent, but the thing is, we have fun having the spirit of being PINOY.

These were just 10 out of the many reasons I could formulate on why we should be proud of our heritage. I know there are tons of reasons why we should be proud of ourselves, and these are infinit. Just be yourself, show to the world, be a proud PINOY!

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Tips in Creating Your Own City

Posted by Kristan Monday, December 28, 2009 View Comments

I got some tips on creating a hoax city of yours. Not just some good experimentation is needed here, but also with some good photos to develope your own "weird city".

This photo was taken somewhere in the road of Davao City 2 years ago. This photo is so interesting to manipulate. Aside from it's good angle, I also considered how it was put up and the way it was shoot through a moving vehicle, it's natural.

This is the original photo, before it was being manipulated, it is dull and the output level is somehow untied. No clouds at all, but we will consider it's good shot on the road.

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After collecting additional photos from Google, a globe, building, and a signage, I've come up with this:

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Here are some tips in making this manipulated city, or whatever we call it:

1.) Patience - of course.

2.) Compatibility - select photos which contain good angles, and compatible angles with other photos.

3.) Be guided with Levels (ctrl + L) and Curves (ctrl + M) - you don't want to make your output look dull, are you?

4.) Filters, Filters, Filters - involve the Filter menu in whatever you manipulate. I used Radial Blur in that photo to make it look dashing or in-motion.

5.) Burn with Burn Tool (O) - levels and curves are not enough to create desired shadows or highlights, that's why we use burn tool to darken certain parts of the photo, and dodge tool to lighten it.

6.) Gradient Overlays - to create a certain tone of photo, use gradient overlay to transform highly saturated photos into low saturated photos or vice versa. With this, you could also set some standard tuning of colors

7.) Experiment, Explore - well, that explains a lot. Just buzz me if you got anything new.

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Inspired by Web 2.0, this is a good old basic tutorial on how to make an appealing font effect through nice combination of colors and font. This is the very first tutorial I've learned in Photoshop.

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Since you are already reading this, I think I could share some tips here. There are tons of tutorials regarding a glossy font effect with reflection in it, but these are the 17 basic ways of creating a glossy font and its reflection.

1.) Open a new document in any size and fill the background with white (#ffffff) or black (#000000)
2.) Type in your desired text. In this preview I type "reflection" and set the font style on Bahaus 93 and set the font color to lighter blue (#58b7d3)
3.) now set the foreground color to #7eb5e8 (lighter blue) and the background color to #326978 (darker blue).
4.) then go to blending options (right click the text layer and select blending options).
5.) after selecting blending options, check the gradient overlay box and set the ff:

angle - 90 degrees
opacity - 100 percent
scale - 100 percent
blend mode: normal
gradient: select the gradient blue, the colors we set above (lighter blue to darker blue)


6.) now you have a font with a gradient overlaid in it, now we will add a gloss on the font's upper part (darker part).

7.) create a circular shape on the upper part of the created font. Notice that the shape have almost covered the font.

8.) Then, rasterize (layers palette>right click layer>rasterize) the newly made circle. After rasterizing, be sure to select the newly rasterized layer of the circle and hold down CTRL while clicking the text layer (REFLECTION word). If you got it right, there would be running lines (marquee) containing the font.

9.) Press CTRL+SHIFT+I to invert the selection made instead of the text, the selection would now be outside the word. Press delete to remove the outer part of the circle. If you got it correctly, the inner part of the circle is slightly covering the font, so reduce the opacity into 17 percent.

10.) Select the eraser tool (E) to erase the upper part of your circle. You can also make the brush solid or soft-edged, it depends on how it appears to you

Now, we will try to add a reflection to have a more dramatic approach here, not really.

11.) merge all the visible, but do not include the background layer.
12.) then duplicate the merged layer font.
13.) ctrl + t to rotate the duplicated layer to 180 degrees.
14.) hold down alt + shift while dragging the left side button of the duplicated layer to its right side (if you did it correctly, the "font effect will still be read, but it is inverse.)
15.) then reduce its opacity to 50 percent
16.) pressed "e" to select the eraser tool, and set its opacity to 43 and its flow to 80
17.) erase the bottom part of the duplicated layer carefully, and erase it until you'll get your favored result.

Here is the final result:

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My Experience with Opera 10.0

Posted by Kristan Sunday, December 27, 2009 View Comments

My first experience with Opera was two years ago, that was Opera 9.0. Since IE7 became a heavy browser for my desktop, I started using Mozilla Firefox as my default browser. What I basically observed using Firefox is that it keeps on crushing everytime I open 6-10 sites simultaneously. With this, the need of a much stronger browser has been a requirement. Here comes Opera 9, another browser, which is not yet common to me that time.

I downloaded Opera 9.0 and experienced great internet surfing. The major features of Opera 9 were speed dial, also termed as visual bookmarking, pop-up ad blocker, Bittorrent client, and its famous mouse gestures for quick tab actions. After quite sometime, Opera 10.0 was out, bringing its more powerful features!

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The newly enhance feature of Opera 10 is the display thumbnail when you hover your mouse cursor in a tab, unlike in Opera 9, it was smaller. Opera Turbo feature is a great way for the browser to automatically adjust in order to keep the internet surfing at its peek. It helps optimize by using data compression to ensure superior browsing experience.

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Many of the improvements of Opera 10 mainly involves in the Opera Mail Program, eventually a better email client than MS Outlook.
Basically, the interface of Opera 10 is not new compared to the previous versions of it. Obviously, the main focus of development was not for its interface but for its functionality.

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In conclusion, I just love the development of Opera, the interface is good, and the Opera mouse gestures are very handy!

...and by the way, i'll be blogging about this browser's another great feature, Opera Unite, on my next blog post.

3D-Package is a useful online 3D-box generator. This site offers a free generating program to help you create a design that would fit for a right a package.

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HOW TO CREATE:

You'll have to upload 4 images, one for each side. The cover, backside, top, and side must be uploaded with a photo to make it realistic.

The site also offer a preview on the current face of your 3d-box. You can even rotate the box, using the mouse pointer, to select the perfect point of view for your package.

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Getting Inspired with Letters from The Letter Playground

Posted by Kristan Saturday, December 26, 2009 View Comments

Sometimes, a designer could be inspired from a single character, a letter, or even objects that would create an overwhelming flow of ideas. Designers can be inspired from everything they see!

Mostly today, graphic designs are inspired from letters, we call them statements when combined to create a phrase. Nowadays, most of the shirt designs are made up of letters and words. Every designer is inspired in every aspect of a single letter.

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letterPLAYGROUND showcases skills from different graphic designers, or simply users. In this community, you can eventually see the user's view on a single letter, and on how he or she wanted to deliver it through his or her imagination.

Letter "b" can even be a monster with a big belly, thus forming a capital B. Letter "L" can even be a boot! Letter "O" can even be a fat TWITTER BIRD!

The site offers everyone free signup to share their unique works. Anyone can be a user, and anyone, signed-up, can rate, comment, and favorite another's work.

Visit the site to see for yourself. Be inspired!

Turn Your Photos into a Collage with Shape Collage

Posted by Kristan Friday, December 25, 2009 View Comments

If you got a massive collection of photos then you don't know what to do about them, then Shape Collage would definitely help you creating a collage that comes in certain shapes!


The images could be either from the web or the local photos from your folder.

Here are some of the features of Shape Collage:
  • Spacing between photos can be modified
  • You can draw your own shape using a brush
  • You can put a background in the collage

Shape Collage user interface:


The program is compatible into Linux, Windows, and Mac.
The output can be saved as GIF, JPEG, and PSD that can be open in Photoshop.

The very basic image-editing program I knew when I found out that I love sketching and designing was MS-Paint! Of course, it would help a lot if you learn a higher program aside from the very basic brush and drag feature of MS-Paint to fully expand your skills in image-editing.

Until...

Certain softwares were created to suffice the needs of the on-growing skills of a designer. Photoshop and Corel Draw arrive in the scene. Since some of us could not afford purchasing software like these, unless you maximize the use of torrent sites, software publishers created an online extension of image-editing software. Bookmark these sites now:

Photoshop Online - Adobe's online photoshop. Focuses on image optimizing tools such as cropping, red-eye reduction and resizing.

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Aviary Phoenix - Aviary's image-editing program. The program features various filters and can be exported to popular file formats for future online purposes.

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Sumo Paint - Very user-friendly program. Beginners could start making beautiful output with Sumo paint. Its functions are very similar with Photoshop, it offers filters, shapes, and support layers.

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Pixlr - One of the very basic editors among these 5 online image-editors.

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Splashup - resembles Photoshop and can integrate with your Flickr and Picasa album.

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Most of these online image-editors resemble Photoshop, the tools were very common.

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Friendster's Facelift - Too late

Posted by Kristan Thursday, December 24, 2009 View Comments

Two years ago, i've been an active user of Friendster. I was a top user of the social network. I can even recall how I gain a thousand of friends with the social network, joined interest-related groups. I even became a poser of a celebrity. Shh.

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The downfall of Friendster began when the site has been acting weirdly, users loss their collection of friends, and even the thousand of comments, those valuable and mostly graphics! Users reacted negatively about the site. The admin expected a mass of complaints regarding the happening.

The problem lasted for about a month. As expected, thousand of users left and tried other social networking sites. Then here comes Facebook.

Since all my comments and friends were unexpectedly deleted in my Friendster profile, I decided to tryout Facebook and validate if it is just like Friendster itself. So I tried registering an acocunt.

After a few months, I've been indulge into Facebook's realm, a plan on deleting my Friendster account has been pondering me. I end up leaving my Friendster account untouched for some certain reasons. From that moment, I began to see Friendster's downfall.

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December - I decided to check Friendster to view some of my old photos, at first, I thought I arrived at the wrong url, but soon I saw the scribbled logo of Friendster. The whole site had been reconstructed, the layout, the color, and Friendster itself. Friendter undergone facelift, but it's too late. They would definitely can't make-up with their loss. It's very late.

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The interface is quite good, bright colors would attract, but unfortunately, the site loss its formality. A child can even scribble a Friendster logo just like that. On the other hand, the site receive most of the positive feedback from their former and new users. Friendster eventually undergo facelift to compete with the current outstanding Facebook, or probably just to make their site on the headline again.

Well, in conclusion, I would never be an active Friendster user again. I'll just log in for some important purposes such as getting old photos, but i'll never be a top Friendster user again. It's just a matter of decision.

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An Open Letter to Santa

Posted by Kristan Wednesday, December 23, 2009 View Comments



Dear Santa,

I've been dying to see your real face. Its 24th of December and I haven't received any gift from you yet. You even left our dashboard messy and didn't even bother to leave a real Christmas present. If you're reading this right now, hope your conscience will help you decide. Since you're already a fat fella, I won't even bother to share mom's good old baked macaroons . I know you're restless but what about making my day happy?

Dear fat man, hours from now you'll be busy dropping gifts on houses, but you're forgetting to drop a single present here. If you think I'll be off wandering in my sleep, hell no, I'll be waiting for a drop from you. I'm also planning to get a glimpse on your toyshop there, North Pole must be way freezing now. One thing, are your elves sexy? World wide web must be joking, I see booty elves. Who knows? You yourself know.

Well, if you can't accept my smallest request, will you just make these Chicken instantly covered with breadcrumbs. I know, I don't believe in magic, but I believe in your fat tummy. Since we've got no chimney, i'll wait for you in our small gate. If you also got time, could you fetch my clothes in the laundry shop nearby? I'm sure you'll agree. Lastly, can you provide me a laptop? Camera? You know these are my past time!

Come on, i'm sure you still got some of your tricks there. I know you can grant the wishes of a shallow person like me. I know you will. Anyway, same as you, i'll be taking a break, school was hell. Let's all hope, along with your sneezing reindeer, that this Christmas will be another interesting and great affair to experience. Goodluck to your gift-dropping tonight fat! Just be sure to greet all the fellas you see tonight!

Truly Yours,
Kristan Franco


P.S.
WHITE BEARD rocks!

I've been there: Jojie Alcantara Photography Workshop

Posted by Kristan Tuesday, December 22, 2009 View Comments

As a photography hobbyist, joining photography-related workshops and photo-walks is a great way to develop one's skills. Composition and proper lightings, these are one of the very basic learnings a hobbyist must understand in order to come up with variety of good shots.

Photography has been my hobby since my junior years in high school. Since this hobby is quite expensive to pursue, owning DSLR cameras and use of certain gadgets should be the very foundation.

I borrowed an Olympus E-500 from Orman Manansala, author of Ganda Ever So Much, to suffice my needs in shooting. I only got a handy-dandy digicam so far. My first official photography workshop happened last December 21,2009 at The Farm, Koronadal. That was my first time in The Farm.

Jojie Alcantara's workshop lasted for 8 hours. The event was jampacked by SOCCSKSARGEN Bloggers. Bloggers from Koronadal city and General Santos were there, most of us bagged cameras. The SOCCSKSARGEN Blogger's Christmas party was also held that afternoon.

Photography workshop at The Farm, Koronadal City: kristanfranco.blogspot.comPhotography workshop at The Farm, Koronadal City: kristanfranco.blogspot.com

The event started 15 minutes later after we settled inside the place's function hall. Everything was in order, each blogger then introduced their blog. Later on, the workshop proper started with a dose of the colorful photos taken by Ma'am Jojie. The Opera Campus Crew of MSU also introduced the features of the Opera browser, led by Alexis Chua, author of DeBlogged.

Photography workshop at The Farm, Koronadal City: kristanfranco.blogspot.comPhotography workshop at The Farm, Koronadal City: kristanfranco.blogspot.com

In summary, what we all learned in composing photographs:

1.) Consider Rule of Thirds
2.) See for patterns
3.) Leading lines
4.) Perspectives
5.) The Worm's eye-view (shooting from the bottom)
6.) The Bird's eye-view (shooting from the top)
7.) Reflections
8.) Details
9.) Horizons
10.) The foreground, subject, and background.

The Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal City
The Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal City
The Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal City
The Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal CityThe Farm, Koronadal City

Try visiting The Farm now at Carpenter Hill, Koronadal City. In case of events like these, better call them at 083-228-1888.

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