I know! I'm surprised too! It's been so long I thought I'd forgotten how but apparently not. And it's for me, an even rarer occasion. That box of my brother's pictures glares at me whenever I think of pulling out paper and glue, demanding that it be done first and rightfully so. I've had them for far, far too long. And while the people in those pictures and the stories they represent are dear to my heart, let's face it...they aren't very inspiring. At least, artistically.
But a confluence of things came together to provide me with some inspiration, not all of which might be thought of as traditional scrapbooking sources. One was a Lexus commercial currently airing with the tagline of Eeny Meeny Miny Go. It's true; you really can find inspiration anywhere. When I first heard the ad, I thought it was a clever turn of words and would make for a unique title for a layout about hiking. Then when we were talking one night about Wayne's various milestones in his recovery, my friend Carol said she hoped I was keeping track of them or we'd forget otherwise. She gets it and she isn't even a scrapbooker.
The final push came when I saw this beautiful layout from Nichol Magouirk:
That girl knows her way around a scrapbook page, doesn't she? This isn't the first time I've been inspired by her work and I'm sure it won't be the last but the circle background and picture arrangement of this page really spoke to me. You can see more about her creative process in putting this layout together here on her blog. And don't be shy; there's plenty more eye candy to look at while you're there.
If I were a cartoon character, the light bulb would have come on over my head at this point. I had a title, a subject and a design...all I had to do was put it together. Here's the result:
Eeny Meeny Miny Go
Cardstock and mini brad: Bazzill Basics
Paper Patterned paper: Autumn Leaves, Basic Grey, Chatterbox, EK Success, My Mind's Eye
Epoxy sticker: Beadaholique
Personal cutting system: Silhouette Cameo
Digital cutting files: Ali Edwards (frame, modified), Fancy Pants Designs (talk bubble), Silhouette America (arrows and tags), Studio Calico (heart), my own designs
Fonts: Futura, Pacifica, Arial Black
Pick a reason: The sun was shining and after weeks of cold, it would be great to get out in the mild temperatures and walk somewhere different. Besides, Wayne was eager to test his new knees on uneven terrain. Pick a place: UWF. It wasn’t far and offered plenty of options Pick a trail: That was a challenge as there were miles of them that wound through the trees. Good thing we had the GPS to get back to the main one. Pick a distance: Or maybe it picked us: 2.6 miles. Pick a word for the day: Go. We did. So good to be back hiking together.
The pictures are obviously from our hike out at UWF two weeks ago. In addition to the few shots I took with the camera, Wayne supplied me with a .jpeg image of our route from Google Earth. He had his GPS with him which tracked the path we took. Our little "which-way-do-we-go" moment shows up as a criss-cross on the trail but that's part of the story too.
Yes, I pretty much scraplifted her layout and I'm OK with that. Nichol would be too, I'm sure, as that's the idea behind putting our work out there. I didn't fill every circle, stretched my title out over more of the page, added more patterned paper and moved the tags but essentially it's the same. We don't have to reinvent the wheel every time, especially when you have a great design to work with.
I'll admit I didn't originally intend to stick with the white circles but choosing greens and browns to match my photos just made the whole layout too dark. The jury is still out on whether I like the white or not but it was a good stretch of my creative muscles.
This was a great excuse to give my Cameo quite the workout too. I figured out how to create the linked rings for the background as well as several of the design elements inside the circles. I downloaded the hiker icon, for instance, from the Internet, turned it into a .png file in Photoshop, and then traced it before cutting it on the Cameo. If this all sounds foreign and you want to know how to do this, check out this video from Cathy Zielske.
I love that I'm not dependent on pre-made embellishments which never seem to be the right size, shape or color, not to mention that I don't have them on hand when I need them. I can just make my own.
That's what I did with the "go" frame. It's a modification of one designed by Ali Edwards acquired either as a free download on her blog or as part of a class. It originally had different words on it and through the magic of cut and paste in Photoshop, I turned "you" into "go" and resized it to fit my photo. I probably wouldn't have added a frame on my own but I do like how it draws the eye to the photos, especially since there are lots of other elements on the page. You can find similar frames designed by Ali at Designer Digitals.
I had such fun cutting out little tiny things like this talk bubble. I haven't purchased a lot of designs but the Silhouette blog is a regular stop on my lap around the Internet and there's a free design every Tuesday. I had no idea this would be the perfect fit when I downloaded it weeks ago but it fills a circle nicely. And I just marvel at the machine's ability to cut such intricate designs with ease. The word "life" in the middle isn't even half an inch in length and it's perfect. Thank goodness for spray glue with all these teeny tiny elements.
I can't those ignore old pictures or they'll never get done but it was good to take a break and make a layout where I control the size and quality of the pictures. Now maybe I can jump back with my creativity restored thanks to Nichol, Carol and Lexus. Problem is, I have more hobbies than I have hours to do them in...but at least I'm never left wondering what to do with my time.