I’m enjoying the Yesterday and Today class taught by Ali Edwards at Big Picture Scrapbooking. It’s nice to see a class devoted to preserving, scanning and using old photos in creative ways since that’s not a prevalent theme in most sources of scrapbooking inspiration these days. Ali’s message is that we all have important stories to tell that can only be illustrated by old photos, making them just as valuable as the ones we take today.
Those old photos have always had a special place in my heart. They are often a peek into a life we didn’t know, showing us what did our parents or grandparents looked like in their youth or what was life like in a time before we were born. Sometimes they are reminders…not of things forgotten but just tucked away in the dusty corners of our memory. Like bubble lights on a Christmas tree, the hat Daddy always wore or the photo that hung in Grandmother’s living room. And on some occasions, they spark our curiosity to wonder who the unknown people in a photograph are and if they are important to our family history. Questions asked and questions answered, all on a printed image…pretty amazing.
So I’ve chosen my old photos as the blessing for this week, as much for the feelings I get examining them as for the frozen moment of time they’ve captured. The photo on this week’s layout was a random selection, chosen mostly because it was already scanned and edited. It’s one of my mother taken in 1957, and like all old photos, it evokes a lot of emotion. I love studying the background to see if I recognize the location, examining the details like the shoes she’s wearing and the television at the edge of the frame, and enjoying seeing my mother so young and vibrant. Photos can do that…freeze loved ones at the best times of their lives.
Do I wish I had more photos? At times…there are events, places and people I wish had been captured on film to share with future generations but I can’t change that. I’m just grateful for the ones I do have and for the memories and emotions that flood my heart when I view them. A blessing indeed.
Here’s the layout I created this week:
Cardstock: Bazzill Basics Paper
Patterned Paper: Amanda Blu & Co.
Chipboard button: KI Memories
Trim: May Arts
Punch: EK Success
Font: Glamour Girl, Internet
Other: Sheet music
There’s nothing magic in the design…the new planner I’m working on seems to be consuming most of my creative energy lately. So I went with my personal scheme. You know, it’s like a favorite recipe you can turn to when you have unexpected company or need to get dinner on the table in a hurry. Here are the components of my scheme:
1. Elements arranged in a grid. Equal spacing between the photo and two patterned pieces make up the foundation of the page and some elements that extend off the edge of that base are layered on top. It’s my “go-to” arrangement to start the process.
2. Design choices tied to the photo. Working with a photo of my mother, I knew I wanted to use blue (her favorite color) and incorporate music (a big part of her life). I literally picked up a scrap that was already on my table because it was blue, and when I laid it next to the photo, I saw the pattern matched the pattern in the background of the photo. It was a happy accident that helped unify the page.
3. Something textural. All those rectangles need something round for balance, and the white circular trim fills that need and adds a little unexpected sheen to boot. I repeated the round shape with the scalloped border on the title and the circle holding the week number.
4. Dimension for depth. Overlapping elements gives the page a connected, cohesive feel and also creates some depth. But the trim and heart-shaped button are more effective elements to create dimension. It doesn’t have to be all lumpy-bumpy, but I’ve got to have some varied height.
So what’s your personal scheme? If you don’t know, sit down with your albums and thumb through the pages. Mark the ones that you really like…not because of the photos on them but because of the design, and then analyze what they all have in common. Look at the supplies, number/sizes of photos and design techniques to see if they are repeated from page to page. When you learn your personal design scheme, you’ll have that fallback “recipe” you can pull out to jumpstart your creative process.
***Each Friday's post is part of my 52 Blessing project...an effort in 2009 to be more aware of and grateful for the blessings in my life.