Hi, it's Autumn here, and I don't actually have a split personality--it's just going to feel like I do this week. That's because I'd planned to spend my week talking about my approach to journaling, but then I got another great idea: a few weeks ago we asked you what scares you most about digital scrapbooking, and seven hundred and seventy two of your responded. We read all your comments and compiled a list of the main concerns. Since I started digiscrapping less than a year ago, I've dealt with many of those fears and concerns in the past few months, so I figured I could address some of these issues from a fellow beginner's viewpoint. And we'll have a special guest here on Thursday who can address things from an expert's viewpoint (a very well-known digital scrapping expert's viewpoint, that is).
But when I started scrapping, this wasn’t the case. I would take pictures, print out the ones I liked, and make pages with them. Somewhere along the way I realized I was only telling the stories I happened to have captures on film, and that the rest were most likely going to be forgotten in the years to come. I decided I wasn’t going to leave the content of my pages to chance any longer.
So now I keep a little notebook on my desk in the family room, and every few weeks I take a few minutes to jot down notes. I don’t actually write out any journaling, I just make notes, like kids&the royal baby, that will remind me of the story I want to write down. Then when I scrapbook, I refer back to my notebook for ideas of what sorts of pages to work on. This helps out when I have pictures I like but not much to say about them. It also helps remind me to take certain pictures I might not have thought about taking otherwise.
Sometimes I still make pages that are driven by the pictures I happen to have:
Sometimes I make pages that are driven by the story I want to tell, which might mean I remind myself to take a picture that will go along with it:
And sometimes pages are a combination of a picture I love and thoughts or stories I want to remember.
I'm not trying to tell you that all your pages have to have huge chunks of journaling. I just think our scrapbooks will do a better job capturing the essence of our life if we consider the stories we want to preserve as well as the photos. Check back tomorrow for more on journaling, including my number one tip for actually getting more of those stories into your scrapbooks.
Part B: Digital Q&A
Remember, these questions came straight from your comments!
Where do I even start? There’s so much to learn.
I played around with Photoshop Elements for a few months (with the help of a Dummies book) and figured out some basics. I was even able to complete this layout:
But I didn’t know enough to feel very comfortable trying to design a page, and trying was really more frustrating than enjoyable. So I decided to take an online class, and after reading great reviews on 2peasinabucket.com of Jessica’s Sprague’s digital classes, I signed up for Now We’re Rockin’ with Photoshop, the second out of three digital classes Jessica offers through her website. I just loved it. The classes are easy to follow, chock full of information AND you end up with four beautiful layouts and all the digital supplies you need to complete them (plus a lot of freebies). I really couldn’t believe how much I learned. After Now We’re Rockin' I was able to design this layout:
And after Digi in Deep (the third class in the series) I was able to design this one:
So I highly recommend taking an online class if you're interested in starting digital (it's the perfect un-birthday gift to yourself). It will save you hours of frustration and you'll be amazed at what you can create when you are through. And Jessica Sprague (check her out here) isn't the only one who offers great online classes. Sande Krieger has a series of FREE photoshop elements tutorials at twopeasinabucket, with more tutorials to come every month in 2009. Patti Knox, who designs for designerdigitals.com, offers a series of classes here. And Renee Pearson, well-known digital expert, offers classes at her website. Prices, included supplies, and styles vary, so check out a few different websites to find the best fit for you. And if you've taken an online class, let us know what you thought! If you know of other websites that offer classes, tell us where to go! And let's see some digital pages in the flickr gallery this week.
I don’t feel comfortable with a computer, so I’m scared of digital.
I think this is a valid concern. I was pretty comfortable with computers and used them a lot to do titles/journaling/etc before I started digital, so the transition to digital pages was fairly easy for me. If you aren’t comfortable with computers, the learning curve will be steeper, so you'll have to decide if you're willing to put in the time. One good option might be checking out local continuing ed classes to see if a beginning computer or photoshop class is offered in your community. Taking a class like this, with a live instructor who can help you out immediately, might be a good way to brush up skills before you try digi scrapping.
Come back tomorrow for more questions and answers!