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How to Make a Children’s Kindle Picture Book Using Public Domain Images.

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How to make a children’s picture book
using free programs and public domain content. Welcome my name is Fay B. Bolton
and I’m the author of nine children’s picture books. Today I’m going to
show you how you can create your own children’s book using free content and
free software so you can publish your own book on Kindle or on CreateSpace so
let’s get started. Now it’s best to use public domain
content which means you use content that doesn’t belong to anybody and you can
use it in any shape, form, or format you want without getting yourself into trouble.
Now! One of the sites that I recommend going to for public domain content is
called, open clipart. Open clipart .org.
So, once you’ve actually got your story written, now let’s start building the
pages to go along with that story. I find that open clipart is a great way of
finding some illustrations that you can use and you can change around everything
else like that. So first of all I need a background for my story for this
particular page so I came to open clipart backgrounds and what I’m going
to do, I’m going to use this one. So you can click on that and then it gives you
different options as to whether it’s going to small, medium, or big. I want it
big to begin with so I’m going to download the actual item. As you can see is free
there’s not asking for anything. They made money by advertising to you
but other than that these are all free downloads so it doesn’t cost you
anything to access these images. So I’m going to download the image and
I’m going to access it. Here it is and then I’m going to use the free program
called paint.net. Paint.net is pretty simple
program to use where you can totally customize images. So what I’m going to do
I’m going to walk you through step by step on how to use paint.net to create
your book. So the main thing to remember when creating using paint.net to say
it’s a free program that comes with Windows, sorry Mac users this is Windows
I’m using a Windows computer. Paint.net is free and downloadable and just some
basic elements here. But the thing to remember when using paint.net is the
layering system, so hopefully today I’m going to show you step-by-step so you
can clearly understand how to use paint.net. So I like this picture but I
want to make some changes to it. I don’t like these trees at all
so I want to change them. So the nice thing about paint.net if you come over here
and click on this magic wand if you click on that and then you click on an
image it highlights it and you can actually remove that so you can either
go to edit, cut or you can press the delete key on your keyboard. So, I want to get rid of
all these trees because I want to use some different trees so I’m going to
click on all these so I’m going to delete each one. So, I got rid of that part and I want to
get rid of this stem so I’m going to remove that and then remove the other
trees I don’t want any of these trees I wanted to delete each one. You can do it this
way, or you can, I’ll show you shortly you can use the eraser, but right now I’m
just going to use the delete so I’m pressing the magic wand and then I am
clicking the delete key on my computer. I want to get rid of this tree too
I’ll get rid of all this, there they go and I’m going to delete now the last one, alright
so I’ve got the trees deleted that looks funny so now we need to fill in and also
erase the rest of it so what I’m going to do I’m going to click on the eraser
right here it’s give me a two that’s too tiny I need it to be much bigger space
so I can erase where the trees were. So, I’m going to go ahead and just erase
that see it quit nicely erase what I need to get rid of and the same with
this one, and this one, and then the final one. Okay, so we got a bit of an outline now
on some of these so I need to just get rid of that little bit of an outline.
So, let’s get rid of that too, so we need this to blend in as best possible. Alright so got that, so now what we’re
going to do is we’re going to fill in this section so I like the blue sky line
I want to keep that but as you can see it’s this is a PNG and it is transparent
and I wanted to go darker so I’m going to click on the picture itself it’s
going to show me what color it is so I want this to be filled in so what I’m going
to do I’m going to add a skyline behind it, so to do that I’m going to add
another layer so we’re going to click on that,
I’ve already on this image, show you once again. I’m using the color picker to pick
out what color the sky is, and as you can see down here, it’s showing me what called
the sky is, so now I need to come to this layer and I want to fill in the background shapes, I’m going to use a
shape on the left and I want to fill it in with the bluish color. It’s just going
to be this color, so let’s go ahead and do that now she did the full color so all
we need to do is because I want it behind is drag that layer behind the
picture and see what happened. You see how it fill that in? I’ll show you that again
it goes in front see! Alright, so as you can see it’s filled everything in but up
I didn’t remove some black here so what we can do instead of totally removing it,
you can just uncheck it, and then it goes away if you recheck it again it shows up,
so right now sort a little bit of black mark so I need to just fix those so let
me go ahead and erase that. There we are with the eraser again. I can get rid of that, there’s a little bit more here but I’m done. We’ve got a little bit more here, I say
it’s nice to use the checker to check your stuff. I just check it again and I can
see which area I need to just fix. All right so I think that’s good right now.
I don’t think you can see any more black outlines. So, now I’ve got my blue sky.
So now I need to just level off the green, so once again we need to be on the
picture and we’re going to have to find out what called the green grass is so
click on this, as you can see it displays that. I’m going to use the
paintbrush, here and I’m just going to fill in the green grass where it’s messy.
Now touch that up a little bit it’s that little bit there, and just remove this
for a second. That’s pretty good, that’s pretty okay.
Click the layers so I can click on layers again to get them back again. Now I’m going
to make this larger. So I just need to fix this section here so I’m on the
background image itself I’ll click on the color picker. I’m going to click on that, and
I’m going to put line this is this where it’s like a half sign here this
actually is a tool where you can make lines, so right now it’s
a hundred it needs to be a lot thinner than that, you can try a ten see how
that looks it’s not bad. Can we take it down to about
an eight, that’s pretty good now this you can move a little bit that looks
good there so now we need to fix it all bit more I need the black I’m going to
click on the black color go a lot thinner with my line to maybe a 1 to see
if it will fix this. Then click enter, I’ll click this one again, enter and I’m
just going to touch this a bit up here touch up a little blue there like that.
Alright, and then this is gray. Let me just touch this up a bit there so it’s a little bit better little grey put the line right over there with a one,
should put a little thicker there take it to a four, and that fills in that.
I’ve still got a few little black lines here so one’s going to just
uncheck this and erase it’s a bit more to get rid of those black
lines, let’s see how that looks we check that so it displays all right
that’s not bad there and I’m going to fix this little section. See how I do
this again. So. let’s see how that’s looking. So what I’ll do I’ll just fill these in and I’ll be right back to show
you the next stage. Okay, I filled those little sections in right there. I’m going to
get rid of this, for some reason its showing, display in there and I want to
get rid of that so let me get rid of this. Alright let’s see what we got
right now. Okay we got what we want so that’s pretty good
so now I want some trees so let me say what I’ve gone so far so into my pictures and just say background one for the country background and save that. We can go ahead and we
can actually crop this down so it’s not as big so use the top this one here
click on I’m going to get rid of the bubble I can’t wait to click on the
corner all the way down and just go to that and then come up to image and crop
to select. Alright so that’s got rid of that, so let me go ahead and save that
section alright so at least we have a base now to begin with so like I’m going
to use some trees so let me see what trees I have. Go here, trees. Okay I have
a folder I list of trees from some free public domain images you can also
go back and see what trees we have in the open clip art. Oh, we have a nice
selection of trees here too so you can select from any of these trees if you
want as well. It’s quite a nice some of that tree looks like that’s not too bad
or you have this one looks pretty good too, so you
can even use that tree. So you find some trees in here but I’m going to use this
one. So I’m going to bring that in so to bring in so remember the main thing to
remember when you’re creating images using paint is to put everything in as a
layer. I’ve got my base I’m working from now everything’s going to build up
in layers. I recommend doing the layers just in case you want to change something it is
all in the same layer you cannot change something you’re going to remove other
things as well so hopefully you understand that. I’ll just say that again,
create everything you build it in layer so you add something add another
layer, add another layer, another layer as you add things to your main picture.
Maybe I’ll just demonstrate that so you kind of get an idea of what I’m
referring to. Alright so I’m going to bring in, I’m going to use the guys from my own zombie characters I just did a couple of
children’s books using zombie characters. So here’s my characters or zombie so I’m
going to bring this guy in alright so here he is,
up’s bring them in. I just want to demonstrate here to resize a character
correctly click the shift key so if I bring this guy in if I decide I want to
put in a square here at a box or something
and I want to fill it in see like that this is an example. If I decide you know
why I I want to put some things here but I need to do it move my zombie over what
will happen is when you click on this this is this section here and I click on
my zombie to move him over you see the box or the other object moves over as
well, but I wanted that to stay there, so that’s what happens if you put things on
the same layer. Whatever is on that layer will move as well, so make sure you don’t
do that make sure you have things on separate layers so I’m going to go ahead
and delete that so to delete the layer you click on the X make sure it’s
highlighted and then click on the X to delete that leg all right and then you
can see this line is dotted line around this image you want to always make sure
you get rid of that so just press the Enter key, if it doesn’t go away click on
the outside of it, outside of the picture and click on the enter key
because what happens if there’s something there you actually chop it in
half or chop some of it off and it loses part of itself, so remember when
you’re going to add something do not have anything highlighted, otherwise it
can chop pictures in half and you can end up chopping a character’s arm or a leg
off and that’s totally spoils picture and have to start all over again.
So I’m going to bring in a tree so I’m going to bring in this a layer. I’m going
to open the layer and import from files and I’m going to go to actually my zombie so
Halloween file and I believe the trees in here, so go to find the tree. It’s actually in here somewhere. Here it is and I’m going to click
on that and open it. It’s a bit too big but as you can see it has that layer. So I need to resize this tree. Click on the shift key and click on the
corner of the picture to resize it so it stays in proportion. Alright so here we
go I’m going to re-proportion this so I want to move the tree over here.
Alright press enter so it’s grounded as such. Alright the pictures to
too big so I’m just going to make this small again to make sure it’s the size
that I want, so just highlight it and then just snip it again. So just click on image and
then click on crop. Alright its back to the size. So now you have this tree so I
can move it to whatever I want so if I decide I need to move it around, click on the top
right icon that is Move Selected Pixels and I can move it around a bit. Alright now it
looks pretty good there alright. Then press the Enter key so you’re not on that
particular image anymore so nothing’s highlighted, so let’s see what size this
image is. So when you create a children’s books of course if you’re
going to do a Kindle it’s kind of like nine by six is pretty good size 9 high
by six wide. If you’re going to create a paperback book then you can vary
that size by size. I want to make this into a Kindle book, it needs to be 9″ by 6″
but today I’m going to show you, yeah I’m going to show you how to do
illustrations for Kindle so it needs to be round about 9″ by 6″ so I’m going to change
the size of this image so I’m going to crop some things off so I know for certain
the tree has to move over. So what I’m going to do is actually
I like the tree but I’m going to un-select it that way it’s not going to
get chopped off right now why size this picture, and hopefully that makes sense. I
need to resize this picture so it will be the correct size for when I upload it
to Kindle, so we’re going to go to image and we’re going to go to resize.
The best pixel resolution is 300 so first of all I’m going to select 300
pixels that gives you a much brighter look and then we’re going to go in here
and it needs to be 9 inches high by 6 so I’m going to uncheck the maintain aspect
ratio because it needs to be the correct size for me, so it’s important
right now that I get the height collect the height is 9 inches so let’s take a
look at what’s what it’s going to give me at 9 inches. So nine inches high but
the image is actually 12 inch almost 13 inches wide, so I need to be 6 so at
least we need to slice this at least down in the middle to get to the right size,
so here we go click on that and that should bring me to about there. Okay,
so I’m losing my clouds and I don’t want to do that, so let’s
first of all stop and I want to move the clouds over so what we’re going to do
we’re highlighted on this background picture I’m going to click on the magic
wand I’m going to click on the cloud and that’s what I want, so we’re going to go
to edit, I want to go to copy, I want to put a new layer in remember every time
we do something we need a new layer and we’re going to paste. Alright, so now
once that’s pasted see how it’s highlighted I’m gonna move it over. So, let’s move the cloud over. The clouds I’ll
do exactly the same thing. I think I’m going to keep these together as a layer so
that’s fine right now so let me click on that. Once again we
have to go back to the picture, the layer where the picture is, click on the magic
wand click on that, click copy go to the layer where the other cloud is on and click
paste. I’m going to move this over, it’s a little small so sometimes you have to
get there we go I’m gonna move out to about that’s
probably about right there, and maybe move it over a little bit the trees
gonna go there so maybe we can put this over here. I’m going to be chopping this in half
so I don’t want to lose the cloud, so I’m going to undo this at the moment I got a
move I’m going to move the cloud over and to about there, something that might
work. Alright, so I’ll just move those clouds
over it doesn’t have the black line so if you want go ahead and outline them but I
don’t feel like necessary it stands out too much so now let’s go ahead and crop this
down we need this to be a nine by six so this let’s see what that takes us to.
Alright we can crop the image, crop size, let’s see what the image is at now. Almost, so it’s little bit off is nine by six point eight we just take a
little bit more off the image I like that, we’ll take a little bit more off,
the crop image crop. So let’s see what we have there, if we have any
problem we can just so close we can just go ahead and just change that a little bit.
Might stretch the picture out a little bit but that looks good. Alright, I want to put my tree back so
let’s go back here and I’m going to check the tree so there’s the tree. Okay, that’s good position actually,
it’s cropped off just a little bit but that that’s good. I need to have my characters so
now we have clouds move over that one is hiding a little bit. I can move the
clouds a little bit if I want to go up a little bit with the clouds see so it
shows that’s pretty good so I always press the Enter key to unlock that layer
before you click on another layer And then let’s bring in a couple
characters. I’ll go ahead and use this little character. We’ll do some
Halloween after this one. I click in so once you click on something you see
it brings in another layer. So this guy is pretty tall so click the shift key click
the corner and then make him smaller. So it can bring him in and it’s more like
there like that. Now there he is but it kind of
doesn’t look like he’s really in the picture does he. He kind of needs a little
shading so it looks like he’s belongs in the picture, so in order to do that we need a layer to put in some shading, so click on here to add a layer, the shading needs to
be underneath him so I am bringing that the layer underneath the character. I’ll
show you why in a second the sun’s right there behind him so we’re going to need
some shading right here let’s go with a little lighter shading we’re going to
click on the paint 12 is too narrow, we need to up that
quite a bit to about 75 and click on a little bit of shading so it looks like
he’s in the picture, that he belongs in the picture. Alright, so he has a little bit
of shading behind him, here he is, little bit of a head, maybe head shaped so it looks like he has the sun behind him I want it to look a little bit more like a
shadow, so were going to go to effects we’re going to click on blur
you’re going to click on fragment and we move this over here so you can see so
this affects the distance so let’s just see as you see what happens it cannot
duplicate itself, we don’t want that to happen we want it more to be fragmented
so I need it to thin out a little bit so fragments a little bit just inside a
little bit so you can play around with these to get the right effect, see how
it’s thinning out a little bit I often, what I do or might get something I like
but I’ll do this actual section I’ll do this process a couple of times to get
the actual effect that I want so you see that how that happened there now it
looks more like he’s got a shadow. So there’s a shadow. If it’s like I don’t
want him because the shadow is not correct
the nice thing I can do is I can click on the character himself and I can say I
want to move him back a little bit I can click on him and you see I can move him,
so he’s more behind his shadow or as remember enter to unlock that phase,
so the shadow can move I can move the shadow around, see I can move it here,
there, anywhere, so that’s the nice thing about layering, remember about layering. If
something not quite right or if you say I need to move this guy over another
character over on the shadow over you can do it as a layer, otherwise it
doesn’t if you don’t do it in layers you can end up moving something
over and then something’s attached to something else and then it just messes
the whole picture up. I think we need to have maybe a bird in the sky. So let’s add
one more layer and see what’s actually let’s see what we got. A flying bird there we go we got some different birds here, flying. We have a black one I love this one, that’s pretty good.
It’s a flying bird. Okay, there it is we don’t need him big we can do small so
let’s download that so let’s go to layers let’s go import from a file let me go to
pictures and let’s bring in the bird from here, here he is it’s nice and small so is actually a good
size. There he is flying in the sky. So, that’s how you can actually create pictures for
your Kindle book just by bringing in layers. If you don’t like something and you
want to erase something you can quite easily erase like you if you didn’t want
that black lines around the Sun go to that particular layer you can erase it see and it erases those black lines. I like
the Sun but I want to have more of a glowing effect so it looks like a hot
Sun, then go to the shapes, go up here to click on the circle. Now we need to know
get the color close as possible so we’re actually highlight on the platform let’s
use our little pixel color picker gives us a nice yellow we have the shape the
clips so then click on the paintbrush to see how big that is so we need that to
be much bigger we will be glow to come around here so let’s take it up to say
200 nope need to go bigger try 400 one looks about right.
So, we’re going to click on that, see how we’ve got the glow there, well it actually looks
pretty good. It actually it’s pretty good the color of
that let’s see how that looks this so that looks actually pretty good. I think
that works pretty well. So if there’s an image that you can use in your book and
see you can keep adding layers if you want just remember to always add layers. If
you want to add some text because it’s a Kindle book you can add often
they’ll have text added to them so what we’re going to do if you want to add
some text right here on the page I’ll show you how to do that. Click on
the bird we need to move the bird over so let’s just move him over a little bit
the bird. Let’s have flying say over here. Make sure you click there so he’s
not on here anymore the text is often laid in a white box,
so we’ve got the shapes again let’s go ahead and use the square box
we’ll have it white colored and what we’re going to do here remember, add a layer.
Add a layer for the text so you can put some text here Alright so we can write on here then
add a layer, another layer on top of that for your text. So I did the early readers
so make sure you use a text that people and
children can read pretty easy. I find sometimes to Tahoma, maybe go like say 84 or
something that gives your decent-sized text and then you just type in here this is
Oh make sure it’s in black or any color
just click on the color let’s say, This is Sam, and then press the Enter key to go
down. This is Sam, he’s going for a walk.
Now you can move the text around make it a little bit higher so it fits within
the section which looks pretty good if you need if the text goes beyond the
white background go back to your square background click on this one here select
it and then you can stretch it out see and it doesn’t affect your writing so
that needs to be done just stretch the corners or something to give you a
little bit more white space around the image around the text so that’s the
Enter key again so you don’t move anything around. Let’s just move the bird
a little bit more so it’s flying up there, press enter and there we have an image. As I say you can keep adding things as much as much as you want you can add a
squirrels just let’s just add one more thing let’s go ahead and add one more. Let’s see if they have a squirrel in here. This one was a cute little squirrel so
let’s just need to be too big, let’s make him small. Put him in my pictures. Let’s go to the
layer because you’re adding another layer on. Image go to my pictures let’s find the
squirrel okay so here’s the squirrel, click on him and
open him up, bring him down in the picture and let’s say maybe have him down
here, and then press enter so it locks into place. Maybe move him over a little bit if you so desire, then press enter so there we actually have an image, a
picture, for our book. So go ahead and you can save that in one of your folders, or
under pictures but remember now it’s a .PDN which is a paint format. For it to
go into word.doc you need to change it to a JPEG. So I’m going to save it under pictures and I’m going to save it as a .jpg. It will flatten the picture, so make sure
you save it in both formats. Save it in the paint.net format, and save it
as a JPEG format just in case you need to make any changes so save it in both
formats. Then what I want you to do is because going to create our children’s
book, is got a word.doc and we need to make sure that there the word pages are the
same size that we need our picture book for Kindle to be at so we need to change
the word page so just go to the ruler I double click at the top, you can get
rid of your margins if you want, sometimes it says with margins but get rid of the margins
go to the paper and it needs to be We need this page to be 6 and 9. 6
inches wide and 9 inches high, then click OK it says fix issues I remove the margin
but that’s fine so don’t worry about that and then we’ll bring our picture in
for our book, here it is bring it in it always comes in smaller for some
reason then just go over here but because it shows us format just click on
say 6.02 usually is a good size to stretch it out so you don’t have
any white lines around click on position, click on top, click on tight and
then usually you can click on position it in right to the center of the page
and it doesn’t have any issues. Alright and then you can insert another blank
page for your second image just move that one over. So, we can start adding your pages for your
Kindle book, and let me demonstrate one I’ve just done. This is what I’ve just
published on Kindle called count to ten it’s all laid out I started as I’m
publishing Kindle I included my book cover as well. It’s optional, you can
upload it without your book cover or upload it with
your book cover, than the first page and then my copyright information. I laid out
each image on here. The thing to remember too is if you have other books that
you’ve written, add a social media pages. Add a page showing you’ve
other books that you have written. That way people, if they like what you written, can
see what other books you’ve written and order those books as well, or buy those as
well. So I always end up with a page that has your other books. So once the books
already laid out I’ve all my pages in here
you’ll save it as a word.doc first just to keep a copy of it then what you
need to do is save it as a PDF so save as a PDF
make sure you know where it’s saved so put it in the folder where you can find it, and
then, I recommend downloading Kindle kids book creator just go to
Google typing Kindles Kindle kids book creator here’s the page Kindle Kids Book Creator,
it explains what you need to do and then it also has the
download for you so you can download you know was created
a Windows 7 or on a Mac alright just click the download it will download and
then you install it on your computer open it we get a create a new Kindle
book, click continue give you book the title the author’s name publish it for
optional language your book saying and where you’ want that folder
to be once it’s gone through the process. I’ll open existing one that I’ve already
got, so I’ll open the one I’ve just done. So I’m going to open the one I’ve just
done. Count to 10 with zombies. Here it is. So once you’ve opened it in
the Kindle book children’s book creator in the PDF format it opens like this you can
see all your pictures and I say it comes to 32 pages which is what it’s kind of
standard for children’s book once it looks right and everything you’ve gone
through the format then just click on save and publish and you’ll save and
publish it. And once you go to the the Kindle publishing platform upload the
content mobi file. I’ll show you that, go to Kindle publishing so go to KDP the
amazon, login to your account. This is the one I’ve just done. So, fill in the information that’s necessary
Kindle book publishing your title a description of your book, just make this
picture a bit bigger. The author’s information what language is going to be in, what
genre or category it’s going to be under what age group is recommended for and
then you can upload your book cover separately, and then you can under browse
upload your book file, click on browse and bring in that mobi, bring in
that mobi file, so click on browse and then go to where it’s at so that and
then this is the one that you’ll click on click on the content mobi that will
be created in the kids Kindle program so click on that click on open and that
will open up it’ll go through a process it will look at it everything once it’s
uploaded you can preview a book so how it would look actually on Kindle so
there’s a book cover there’s the first page of right information and then
here’s the book if everything looks ok everything’s done so if you notice that
something’s not right with page missing everything then just go back to your
book details and then upload the changes and then you can upload it
again. Alright, so that’s how to create a children’s picture book and upload it to
Kindle. I do hope you found that very interesting and if you have any
questions contact me the information provided below once
again my name is Fay B. Bolton, I’m the author of nine soon to be nine
children’s picture books that are available on Amazon. Just type in Fay B.
Bolton, and you’ll see all the books I have available, so any questions, love
your feedback, love to know what you think of the presentation. I say and
if you have it and if you have any questions, please go ahead and contact me.
Alright, okay, have a good day and enjoy fine Bye.

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