So I am here with my response to Monday's challenge. I went looking in my Instagram feed and saw lots and lots of pictures of my puppy. ;) I know this week was about people. But when you spend most of your time home with a pet, they do become a bit human, no? So please forgive my playing wild and free with the challenge.
I hope that you will play along! I can't wait to see your layouts!
Hello to March! Did your month come in like a lion this morning? Or is spring peeking out already? Or do you live on the other side of our beautiful world where the sun is still shining as summer begins to wane. Lucky.
Our month gets started with a nod to Instagram. A scrapbooker's paradise of visual pleasure. This month we asked our team to create layouts that had something to do with Instagram. As always, they knocked it out of the park. We hope you enjoy their layouts and feel inspired to create one of your own. Please enjoy our newest gallery, InstaAwesome. As always, the layouts and the journaling are available if you click over into the photo album.
THE CHANUKAH GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING BY ALIZA
12 x 12 | materials patterned paper (Studio Calico, Clique Kits) + stickers (Studio Calico) + cards and die cuts (Clique Kits)
A Note from Aliza This layout is based on my most recent Instagram photo. I love the photo and, though it took place in February, it allows me to record this past year’s Chanukah gift. It’s a subscription, so it’s like getting a gift each month of the year. I love the way this layout turned out, but all those letter stickers gave me a run for my money.
March Fun Fact I have joined a dance performance workshop. I am so excited, and I have ordered a new pair of Jazz shoes. My current pair is from 1993.
INSTAALLISON BY KATIE
12 x 12 | materials patterned paper (Dear Lizzy, Webster's Pages, Crate Paper) + embellishments (Chic Tags, Heidi Swapp, Amy Tangerine, Webster's Pages) + letter stickers (American Crafts) + sequins
A Note from Katie Lately, I'm much more excited about my daughter's Instagram feed than I am about mine. I used 12 photos from her feed to create a collage of photos in the soon to be gone Picasa.
March Fun Fact My daughter recently told us that she is "Emo" - and my husband and I both Googled what that was and took the "What Kind Of Emo Are You" and I got "Poser Emo" which means that I'm not actually Emo - but I am enjoying watching her transformations as she grows up.
A Note from Dee This layout had been waiting for me to make it for almost a year now. I knew I had the photos and I knew I wanted to do something with them, but what??? Until this theme came along and I new I wanted to make it into a layout with fun little squares.
March Fun Fact The month march doesn’t really stand out to me.. it’s like I’m just waiting for the spring… I do like the early signs of spring arriving though… little flowers blooming… but then again some days there suddenly will be snow again
INSTAAWESOME BY MARNIE
12 x 12 | materials patterned paper (Crystal Wilkerson) + fonts (Hello Beautiful, KG Penmanship)
A Note from Marnie I "stole" a few photos from my son's instagram account for this layout. I love that I can peek in on his world. Because he is awesome.
March Fun Fact That little groundhog promised spring. I am hoping. It's been a long winter. And if it's delayed, there's a new Maisie Dobbs coming to keep me distracted!
THE KID'S ALL RIGHT BY AMY
12 x 12 | materials black & white scraps from my black & white scrap box + fonts (Angelica (serif), Impact (sans serif), Manhattan Darling (script), Veneer Extra (dingbats))
A Note from Amy I've been wanting to make a black & white layout for a little while, and this picture, which I posted on Instagram this fall, seemed like the right one. I added some yellow pops because it felt just a little too stark without it. I used some really old stuff on this layout! My favorite Instagram posts are the ones with a strong image and succinct message, so I kept my journaling short.
March Fun Fact Helen Oyeyemi has a new short story collection coming out this month, What is Not Yours is Not Yours. I'm excited!
WINTER BY LISA
8.5 x 11 | materials cardstock (Bazzill) + thickers (Studio Calico) + letter stickers (Websters pages)
A Note from Lisa This layout was so difficult to photograph, so pardon the bluish light.
A Note from Jenny Every time we go to the Mall of America, I post our trip on Instagram. I did that for my son's birthday this past month. Interesting to note: If you mention the mall in your post, they read them and comment on your photos!
March Fun Fact I am impatient to garden!
We hope you have enjoyed our layouts! Until tomorrow...
Hello! I'm back today for a little bit of fun. Thank you for feeling my heart yesterday. After a bit of rain, I always enjoy the rainbow. So today I sat to make a layout that was an hundred times more lighthearted. I found one of those bucket list lists and filled it out. Rather than try to fit a picture in a corner, I copied the answers over and over and then put the picture on top. I did chunks of journaling in my favorite colors and then added a selfie and a date and I was good to go. You should try it! Quick and easy!!
Hi! It's Marnie. And Amy has inspired me to make a long overdue appearance in my scrapbook. Thank you, Amy. ♥
It has been a hard month here. My dad is very ill. My friend just lost her mother. And one of the first friends I made in college is dying. I have spent many tearful days scared and worried. Our family's prayers have become ever more fervent, imploring, and beseeching. Emotions here are raw and fragile.
When I read Amy's post, I knew I wanted to write about this time. I wanted to write a bit about how overwhelming it is to face losing a friend that is a peer. I want my kids to know that I feel pain, sorrow and fear. For the most part our scrapbooks are filled with happy times and silly moments. But I am a believer in being authentic. And vulnerable. I want my people to know that. So I must be that. And because my scrapbooks are my journal an honest page about this difficult time seemed like a good thing to do.
Welcome back! Yesterday I shared a layout I made about myself (oh hi! I'm Amy!) and encouraged you to make one about YOU.
Then I realized: you can’t make layouts about yourself unless you have pictures of yourself.
(Well, I mean: yes, you can. You can always make layouts without photos. But, let’s go with needing photos just for the sake of argument.)
Which brings me to something I feel pretty passionate about, and that is photographers getting in front of the camera. You know: letting someone take a picture of you.
And I know: this is really, really hard. Especially for those of us who are used to taking the pictures.
It’s hard to ask someone to take your picture, because it makes you feel vulnerable.
It’s hard to be the subject of a photo because you can’t control it.
And it’s hard to feel like you are enough to be in the picture.
But it matters. It matters so much that we get ourselves into our family’s pictures.
I learned this—not just in theory, but deep down, bone-deep, soul-deep—when my dad died. I was given the task of putting together a slide show of photographs of him. I had a ton of pictures of my dad—with my kids, with my mom, my sisters, my nephews and nieces. Even my husband. Even the cat. But I had exactly one (one!) picture of me with my dad.
And now he’s gone and there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it.
Except for making changes moving forward, which is what I’ve done. I thought about the reasons I feel uncomfortable with getting my picture taken and came up with some solutions. So I thought I’d share what I’ve learned with you.
You’re going to have to ask someone. I hate asking my husband to take my picture. Not because he’s a jerk about it (he’s not!) but because I feel like I’m being vain. But, since he’s the adult I’m around the most (and thus trust not to drop my camera!), he’s the default. So I talked to him about the possibility of him every once in a while just offering, out of the blue, to take a photo of me. As he is also not a fan of having his picture taken (99% of my photos of him have his hand in front of his face), I thought this would be a big deal. He just said OK and now he’ll sometimes just offer to take my picture. (He's also my Official Press Photographer—lol—when I run races. He's always at the finish line, elbowing people aside so he can get a picture or two of me. Which, you'd think who wants a photo of themselves hot & sweaty after running for two hours? but really: you want a picture of yourself even then. Especially then!)
Moral of the story: communication helps! Talk to the people who might be willing to take a picture or two of you. Tell them if you feel uncomfortable about it, but also tell them why it’s important to you. Give them some suggestions about good angles. Think about how the light might look and then move yourself if you need to. Most importantly, relax! Remember that person loves you!
Find more than one photographer. My daughter, who loves having her picture taken, also loves to get her hands on my camera. She’s taken some awesome pictures of me when I wasn’t even paying attention. My son, who hates having his picture taken more than just about anything (I think he’d rather have his eyelashes yanked out than pose for a picture), will always offer, every time I am taking family pictures, to take a picture of me instead. It’s his way of getting out of having his picture taken…but it’s OK because we both get a little relief from our discomforts!
Moral of the story: If someone asks to take your picture, say yes. If your best friend wants to take a selfie with you, take a selfie. If your mother gets out her camera, smile back! Also, if someone else takes a picture with your camera, it will be ok. Put the neck strap right over their head before handing it over, tell them to be careful, and then smile.
Make it a tradition. When I was trying to figure out how to get myself in more pictures, I realized that every once in a while, I’ve had someone take a picture of me with my child on his or her birthday. (I was there for the birth! So their birthdays are important to me not just because of their existence and their celebration, but because I loved the day they were born, and on their birthdays I remember it fondly.) This realization helped me create two traditions: Now, I have someone take a picture of me with the birthday kid on every single birthday. It’s become another part of our birthday celebrations, as inherent to the party as cake and candles. The second tradition is that either on my birthday or on Mother’s Day (my birthday is in April, so they’re close), whichever works out best, I have someone take a picture of me with all of my kids. These have become some of my most cherished images.
Moral of the story: when you create some photo traditions, it feels less & less awkward to ask for the picture, because it’s just what always happens. Do it long enough and you won’t even have to ask anymore; they’ll just know to do it.
Take advantage of group shots. It’s infinitely easier to be in a picture if there’s someone else in the frame with you. So when you do something—anything, really, where someone takes a picture, which these days is nearly every situation we can imagine—get in the group shot. Let someone else, a total stranger, take the picture so you don’t have to. (I’ve asked people on the top of mountains, in the Coliseum at Rome, at races, on the beach, and of course at restaurants to take a group picture for me.) When you go on vacations, get in the shot in front of the museum or historical monument or beautiful mountain or stunning lake. Family party? Get in the picture. A hike, a family trip to the bowling alley, a day at Disneyland? Get in the group shot.
Moral of the story: If you take all of the pictures of an event or experience, there isn’t any visual proof that you were actually there, too. Your memories and stories matter just as much as everyone else’s.
Realize that you are worth it. Even though I had my big ah-ha moment after my dad died, and I promised myself to get into more pictures, it didn’t really hit home until a year later, when my mother-in-law also died. (Sheesh! Could I be any more depressing? I learned a lot from those deaths, though, so forgive me!) I had realized that I didn’t have any pictures of her and my husband, and I’d gone so far as to make her promise that sometime in the fall, once she was feeling better from the surgery she needed, she’d let me take some pictures of the two of them. She wanted to wait until she’d had her hair done and she felt pretty again. But then, unexpectedly, she passed away. And I was devastated, of course, but it hit me even harder when I remembered that I’d never done that photo shoot. (And even later, when I realized that I have exactly ZERO photos of her and me together, I felt even worse.)
I understand her wanting to look her best. But now that she’s gone, it wouldn’t matter. If I had a photo of her with my husband, and she still looked a little bit pale from her surgery, and her hair wasn’t perfect? I would still cherish it.
So here’s where I’m going to get a little bit harsh with you.
Right now: look at yourself in a mirror. See that face? That body? That is you. That is what people love and are grateful to have in their lives. So even if you look in the mirror and think “holy ^>=~ *&$*@!~`+=, I’m wrinkled! I’m fat! I need to get my hair colored, when did I get that mole, is that an age spot on my cheekbone? Why do my eyebrows grow back in faster than a 5 o’clock shadow?” (or however your particular complaint(s) about yourself manifest, that’s just my own personal inner dialogue), guess what? The people in your life love you anyway. Strike that—they don’t love you despite your faults. They love you for you, warts and all. (Or age spots. Or moles.) They likely don’t even see the faults that you see, because they love you, the whole package.
They love you for you.
And here’s something else. I’m in my forties now, so I can tell you this is true: It’s all downhill from here. You will never be less wrinkled than you are right now. You might be skinnier—but you might not! You’re going to age; it happens to the best of us. Think about it: I bet when you were ten (or twenty! Or thirty!) years younger, you still had those same negative thoughts about yourself. But when you look back on that twenty-something version of yourself, wouldn’t you like to have it back? That taut skin, that flat belly, those eyebrows that weren’t kamikaze regrowth demons? In another decade, when you look back on the self you are right now, there will be things you’d like to have back.
So celebrate who you are right this very minute. Even with the ______________ (insert whatever you don’t love, double chin, appeared-overnight zit, shadows under your eyes). You are beautiful, someone loves you, you are worth being in the picture.
Moral of the story: just do it. Put some make up on, and your favorite necklace. Definitely your favorite lipstick. And then get in a picture or two.
And you know what that is, don't you? It's a challenge! No, not even a challenge. It's an assignment. Sometime this week, get yourself into a picture. Before March comes. You could even come back here and let us know how it goes. And just so you know I'm not joking, here's a collage of some photos of myself.
(Including the one picture I have with my dad.) (These are all pictures that I both am grateful to have and cringe over. I could point out the flaws...but I'm still glad to have them.) Come on: if I can put a photo of myself in a swimsuit out on the Internets, you can take a picture of yourself. Not even in a swimsuit—wear a sweater if you want! or a parka! Just get in a picture.
And after that? Make a layout! About yourself, because it’s important and fun and a great way to use some supplies. Your stories matter. Your images matter. Even if you detest having your photo taken.
But that's just me. How do you feel about getting your picture taken? Let me know!
Hey there! Amy here, and I want to share a conversation I had that I'm still thinking about.
A few weeks ago, I was talking to my daughter Haley (who’s away at college) about printing pictures. Every once in a while, she’ll share a batch with me on Dropbox, and I’ll get them printed for her, and then she’ll hang them on the wall in her apartment.
“That must freak you out,” she joked with me. “Just pictures on a wall, not scrapbooked.”
Then she stopped teasing for a second and said “but it would be weird for me to scrapbook pictures about myself anyway” and I said “no it wouldn’t! I scrapbook about myself all the time.”
But really…I don’t!
After our conversation I thumbed through the enormous pile of layouts I have that need to be added to albums and I realized that maybe 2% of them are layouts about me. Which translates into one or two a year.
The funny thing is, I do believe that we scrapbookers should make layouts about ourselves. I just feel a little bit…weird about it, sometimes (to borrow my daughter’s word). Which is silly, because these things are true:
my stories are just as important as my kids’
no one else can tell my stories
someone in the future will want to know my stories
scrapbooking stories about yourself is just as fun as stories about your kids
So this week we’re going to be sharing some layouts we’ve made about ourselves!
In keeping with that “weird” idea, I went with a slightly…non-traditional photo of myself. My 18-year-old son took it of me while he was goofing around with my camera. But I really kind of love it. It captures something I feel about myself but can’t put into words yet.
I paired it with some of my current favorite song lyrics, the ones that help me feel just a little bit more courageous and understood by the universe. (Plus, you know: every so often I like to have a bit of fun with a font or two.) The design concept is one I use a lot, which is just surrounding a photo with a whole bunch of words. Actually, I’m not sure it even qualifies as a “design concept” at all. (I’m so much better at words than design!) But it’s an approach to a layout that I’ve used almost my whole time I’ve been a scrapbooker. It makes me happy and it makes me feel like I’ve put a little bit of myself down on the layout. Which is a good match for a page that’s about myself!
Also: "gluing" vellum down with paint. That's totally a technique, right? It's one of my favorites! It's a little messy...but I like the splotchy sort of mess it makes. Plus, there's just something about gold and vellum that makes my scrapper's heart happy.
When was the last time you made a layout about yourself? You should share! Post a link in the comments and I will come and admire.