So, some of you guys have your smarty-pants on today, and you've figured out my announcement. I am very excited to tell you guys that I have an instant download class available right now at Big Picture Scrapbooking! Hop on over there to see it, or check back here tomorrow for more info and GIVEAWAY DAY!
Alright, we have journaling and photos ready, and we're on to design. Design is usually the most time-consuming part of putting together a layout for me. But I’ve found that if I start with an idea of where the photos should go I can get things put together much more quickly. Your instructions for today are to figure out where the basic elements on your page are going to go (don't try to finish the layout today, just figure out where photos, title, and journaling go). Use these three guidelines:
1) Line all your photos up side-by-side in a long line across your layout.
2) Use a large photo mat behind all your photos to unify them into a block.
3) Find a spot for your title and a spot for your journaling near your photo block.
Using these three guidelines should help you start getting the bones of your layout figured out quickly because they limit your options a little bit, which brings me to the super-duper tip for the day: The best way to scrapbook faster is to eliminate some of the decision-making involved. This might mean you start with a sketch or guidelines like the ones above so you don't have to make so many decisions about where to place items. Or it might mean you pull out a few different sheets of paper and embellishments to begin with and limit yourself to using only those. And it definitely means you can let go of the tiny decisions that you might agonize over for half an hour, like whether the title would look better in blue than brown. Just pick one and keep going (you can always change it later if you end up really needing to).
So, back to our guidelines. They'll help you design faster because your options are limited a bit, but that certainly doesn't mean your creativity will be limited. The same guidelines can yield vastly different results. For example, here's my layout that I've been working on this week with you. Seven photos printed out as wallets lined up across the two pages. A photo mat behind all the pictures that unifies them into a block. Title right above on one side, journaling right above on the other side. Basic, quick, and looking pretty good (if I do say so myself). Now, this layout isn't quite done - I need to decide on a title and add some finishing touches, which we'll get to those on Friday. But the bones are there and it didn't take me all that long.
Here's another example layout that follows our guidelines. Again I used wallet-size photos, but this time I only used two. The photos are together on a mat, making a block, and the title and journaling are close by. But by setting all of these components on top of a piece of scallop edge paper, this layout becomes much more organic looking and different from the more linear version above. It's still a simple design that came together fairly easily.
Here's a third example. This time I used two 4x6 photos on a landscape page. You'll notice I didn't use a mat behind the photos, but I did use patterned paper strips to separate the photos from the rest of the page, so they still act as a block, or a single design unit. When your pictures are all one design unit, you don't have to decide what to do with each one individually (we're back to limiting our options to save ourselves some time). I also moved the title a little further away from the photo block, which you can do if you like. Of course, once you move it away from the pictures, you end up with more options of where it can go, which might take more time (but if you're not in a rush, go for it).
Ready to design? Get working! Don't forget to check back tomorrow for giveaway day!
PS - feel free to leave me a comment telling me either: a) that I really didn't look like a boy when I was a baby (although I'll know you're lying just to be nice), or b) that my boys are about the cutest kids you've ever seen, or c) how I can possibly get through to the weekend without eating treats. Thanks!