Tip: Saving Kaleidoscopes

Original photo

Original photo

OK, I know what you’re thinking… How difficult can it be to save a kaleidoscope? Really, it’s not difficult at all! But based on the number of questions we get about this, I thought maybe I should address it here on the blog. For this discussion, we’ll start with this picture of a building on the San Diego Wharf.

There are three different “saves” in Kaleidoscope Kreator 3 (aka KK3): Save Kaleidoscope, Save Workspace and Save As Pattern.

Save Kaleidoscope saves the kaleidoscope design to an image file (such as JPEG). Figure 1 shows one such saved kaleidoscope.

Figure 1

Figure 1

When you Save Kaleidoscope, you are prompted to enter a size and resolution. Once saved to an image file, you can open the file in another program such as Word or Photoshop (just like any other photo) to edit and/or print the kaleidoscope design.

However, if you open the saved kaleidoscope in KK3 (File>Open Image), you may be surprised to find that KK3 now makes a kaleidoscope of the kaleidoscope as shown in Figure 2. This can be a very interesting effect, but it can also be confusing (and frustrating) if you were expecting to print your kaleidoscope from KK3.

This is what happens when you save a kaleidoscope and then open that kaleidoscope (using File>Open Image) in Kaleidoscope Kreator.

Figure 2

If you want to be able to open your kaleidoscope in KK3 and then print it or save it in a different size, you want to use Save Workspace. This saves the original photo, the current template shape and the position of the photo in the work area. You are not prompted to specify a size because it is not actually saving the kaleidoscope design. Instead it is saving all of the information necessary to recreate the kaleidoscope design in KK3. Workspace files are saved with a KK3 file extension. They can only be opened with KK3. No other programs recognize that file format. Use File>Open Workspace to open the workspace in KK3. (If you use File>Open Image to try to open a saved workspace, you will get an error that the file format is not supported.)

So which Save is best to use? It depends on what you want to do with the kaleidoscopes that you save. If you want to save the kaleidoscope design to use in another program such as Photoshop, then use Save Kaleidoscope. If you want to open the saved kaleidoscope in KK3 to print the kaleidoscope at a later date or to save the design at different sizes, then use Save Workspace.

That said, I always save every kaleidoscope I make using both Save Kaleidoscope and Save Workspace. Why? Because I want to be able to recreate the kaleidoscope exactly as I designed it, so Save Workspace is best for that. But since the KK3 file types are not image files, Windows Explorer is not able to show a thumbnail of the kaleidoscope design. Thus I use Save Kaleidoscope to save a 400 to 600 pixel size kaleidoscope, so that I can see a thumbnail of what the kaleidoscope looks like. I use the same base name for the two filenames, for example using Save Workspace I might save the file as “building-kal1.kk3” and using Save Kaleidoscope I would name the corresponding image file “building-kal1.jpg”.

The kaleidoscope from Figure 1 saved as a pattern.

Figure 3

KK3 has one other type of save: Save As Pattern. This repeats the kaleidoscope over and over until it fills an area that you specify, essentially creating a tiled pattern of kaleidoscopes saved to an image file (e.g. JPEG) as shown in Figure 3. With File>Save As Pattern you will be prompted to enter not only the size of the kaleidoscope “tile”, but also the total size of the image file that you want the kaleidoscope pattern to fill. While it is very cool to see the secondary patterns that emerge when the kaleidoscopes are lined up next to one another, it’s important to remember to Save Workspace as well (in case you want to save the kaleidoscope design at a different size at some point in the future).

I hope this helps clear up some of the confusion over the different Save functions in Kaleidoscope Kreator 3. If you have any questions about this topic or suggestions for a different topic, please leave them in the comments.

  • Audre Gaer

    This article on saving Kaleidoscope is really helpful. Thanks for the tips.

  • Margaret Bernard

    Jeanie thank you for these instructions they are really helpful. I am trying to figure out the KK tuitorial but wish it were on a video with you explaining it. I can understand when you show it but the tuitorial doesn’t always make sence to me.

  • This is very helpful information. I had no idea there were all of these save options. Thank you.

  • Margaret, thank you for the suggestion for videos. Those take a bit longer to produce than a regular text post, but I do appreciate how videos can make things easier to understand! I will see what I can do.

  • Marilyn Altenbach

    I have to admit that I’m with Margaret on this. Being so Right Brained (and dyslexic) It takes me so much longer to get the written content established into a workable idea in my brain. However, show me (as in TQS) and I’m “there”, I remember.

  • Thanks for the feedback Marilyn. I really appreciate it since it’s hard to know sometimes if the extra effort is worth it. I’m hearing that it is!

  • you mentioned that kaleidoscope images can be saved just like regular jpegs…does this mean i can then use those pix as I do other pix? For instance, I make inspirational videos for family and friends using pictures and images…would I be able to use my kaleidoscoped pix the same way? I have not bought you interesting product yet but hope that i will be able to do so should it be usable in this way! Thanks in advance for your kind response

  • Hi Karen, Yes, you can absolutely use the kaleidoscopes saved as jpegs just like any other pic! Ohhhh – I can just imagine an video with inspirational music and a series of kaleidoscope images. That would be amazing!

  • Thank you, Jeanie! I will be sure and send you copy and/or link when i have one done!!! if you’d like, you may see others now @ http://www.sonflowerandgrace.org just follow videos link! Have a blessed day!

  • thanks again! I purchased and downloaded KK3 and absolutely love it!!! I haven’t put together video yet, but have enjoyed playing with some pix…even kaleidoscoped some pix of trash and slums…i call it
    “kaleidotrash” just as simple as viewing life through a kaleidoscope is viewing each situation through joy!

  • Sorry your post took so long to show up Karen. It got routed to spam. :(

    Don’t you just love how KK3 turns the most ordinary things into works of art? Your kaleidotrash is beautiful!

  • oh, thank you! I enjoyed pittering with those pix so much that i did get a video made…link is to follow or just go to my webpage and follow Daddy’s Hand Productions…I have a whole new series of “creations” under Kaleido that I am working on…Somewhere over the Rainbow just seemed to fit the first one! Hope you enjoy, Karen

  • Viv

    Hi Jeannie, I bought KK3 at Cha in Anaheim this year, but haven’t tried it yet. I bought it ‘cos I fell in love with the wedding picture that you made. I need to make a project quickly for my daughter’s Girl Scout Silver Award ceremony in 1.5 weeks. I want to make the cover page of her scrapbook (12×12) using KK3. Any creative ideas? I haven’t learned the software yet, that might take a little time. Then I have to take a current picture of her.

  • Hi Viv, I’m very sorry that I didn’t respond in time for your daughter’s ceremony. (Congrats to her BTW! :) The easiest style of scrapbook page to make is with a central kaleidoscope and then embellish around it. One layout I’ve always loved was designed by my sister, Nancy Kurokawa. I demonstrated it on TVWeekly.com a while back and you can still view that video at http://bit.ly/dhwAyj . The demo uses the previous version of the software, but it can easily be done in KK3.

    KK3 does not take that long to learn. Just be sure to watch the “Quick Start” video on the product CD. Or watch it online at http://kalcollections.com/store/kk3_demo.htm .

  • Thanks!The information went by so quickly on the Quilting Arts TV 6 DVD I did not figure out how you made the pattern. This really explained it. I’ve bookmarked your blog and plan to read more about tips and techniques in the future. I love KK3 but I have not fully utilized it yet. I made some amazing kaleidoscope images but I need to make them into art pieces and sell them. I have a small craft business and I love to create wonderful things and market them.
    Blessings, Becky

  • Marilyn

    Hi. I think of fabrics and the way your program would work with the prints for some amazing kaliodoscopes. Is there a way that my fabrics and your program can work together or is it just for pictures?

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