Hey all! Jewelle here to bring you a spotlight of one of May's guest CTMs. I've really enjoyed working with this person so far this month. She has such a upbeat cheerful personality that warms everyone else. So let me spread some of the sunshine by introducing you to....
- How long have you been scrapping? Have you ever paper scrapped? When did you make the switch to digi and why? I've been digitally scrapping since February 2003 when I saw some digital pages Ali Edwards had posted at Twopeasinabucket.com and thought, 'Hey, that is MY kind of scrapbooking!' Scrapbook-Bytes.com had just opened up a couple weeks before and when I stumbled upon it, I was hooked. I attempted to paper scrap in the summer and fall of 2002 with little success; I think I completed a whopping 8 pages. I was so frustrated that my pages didn't look like the ones I saw online because I didn't have the eye-hand coordination or time it took to create all the different layers and techniques I wanted. Digital scrapbooking combines my love of storytelling and photography in a format that is both familiar as I've had a personal computer for the last 15 years and satisfying to me as someone who loves results but hates process. I love that I can always count on the lines to be straight unless I purposely make them crooked! *lol*
- What do you feel is your strongest scrapping skill? Your weakest? I think my strongest scrapping skill is my journaling. I've always loved to write and have a B.A. in English and Creative Writing, so I at least hope that I am a pretty good writer. I am also usually a one kit scrapper which really helps when I am CTing for someone. I like knowing that everything will match if it's one kit so I don't have to 'waste' time recoloring, perusing my gigantic stash, etc. My weakest scrapping skill is likely titlework. I'm pretty witty in real life, but for some reason, I draw a big blank when it comes to titlework and often end up with a very generic lame-ish title. Ironically, one of the deciding factors for me when I am purchasing or choosing to use a kit is the alpha!
- What advice would you give someone just starting out digi-scrapping? I would advise her to get a mentor who has been in the game for a couple years and has a style she would like to emulate in her own work. I would give her a quick rundown of general digi etiquette: piracy, CTs, scraplifting, credits, etc. as well as a list of stores and designers I have personally found to be high quality. I would strongly encourage her to decide on a system of organization for both her files and photos that really works with the way she thinks and scraps.
- Describe your scrapping "system"... What program do you use? Where do you start first - photos, papers, elements, journaling? Do you always have something in mind when you start, or do you let your creativity guide you? How long does it take you to complete a layout? I use ancient Photoshop 7. I do mostly CT work, so my process usually starts with a kit I need to use. In the last year, I have found that I am much happier with and prouder of my work when I start creating the page before settling on pictures, so I start pulling the elements I like from the assigned kit and placing them on my page. I shadow as I go and usually have a cluster somewhere on the page. When the page is at least halfway complete, I will go through my photos to find one/some that will work. I get everything else done on the page before I choose a background paper. I never know what to do with all the pretty papers in a kit, so I usually end up using just one for the background. After I've chosen the background paper and maybe a mat, I will add the journaling. I try my best to scrap more story photos than pretty photos, so there is usually at least a few lines of journaling.
- On average, how much time do you spend scrapping each week? I try to scrap at least every other night for a couple hours before bed. Sometimes I can sneak in a little scrapping when my daughter is napping, but I don't count on it. I have a hard time starting a page and setting it aside to work on later, so that's why I'd rather wait until everyone is asleep before I attempt to scrap. I often will get several pages done in a couple days and then not scrap at all for a day or two.
- Describe your perfect scrapping environment - coffee? soda? music? snacks? The perfect scrapping environment for me would be set up on the love seat with a blanket and/or slippers, Crystal Light Fruit Punch and chocolate on the end table beside me, TV on with a show I've DVRed, and everyone else in the house, including the dog, in bed! *lol*
- What's your favorite thing to do BESIDES scrapping? I wish I read and wrote as often as I did when I was younger. As an adult, I spend a lot of time cooking. We have gone gluten-free in the last few months for my husband's health, and while it can be a pain to have to read every label to make sure it is GF, I am also having fun finding GF recipes or translating non-GF recipes into ones we can enjoy. I only wish my husband loved to do dishes as much as I love to cook! *lol*
- What is one thing you would love to do, just so you could scrap it? I would love to travel to Ireland and make a coffeetable book of all the beautiful pictures I would take.
- Who inspires you in the scrapping community? Any person or site in particular that you look to for inspiration? I think Denise Beatty is a scrapping goddess. *lol* And she has six kids!! Incredible.
- If you could have Amber create a kit just for you, what colors, theme, etc would it be and why? I have no idea what kit I would request. Honestly, I've been scrapping so long that I have just about every theme I could imagine, so just more beautiful kits would be what I'd like. :)
This was the first layout posted in the oldest online gallery I have. It was created in February 2003, and as you can see, digital scrapbooking was much different back then! There were no professional designers; people would create stuff for their own pages and share it with everyone else. Try not to be too jealous of my shadowing! *lol*
This is one of my favorite layouts because it's rare to get a photo of my daughter and me. Even though she didn't cooperate with our photo shoot, looking at these pictures makes me smile and reminds me of the special bond we have. I really love the composition here, too, and any layout where I get to use CD's alpha ranks right up at the top of my book.
I love this layout because it is very different from my usual style. It's also my favorite photo of my husband and me from our wedding day.
Most Recent Layout
This is the latest layout in my gallery. I took this picture a couple weeks ago of my daughter and just had to scrap it.
Wow, thanks for sharing those LeeAndra. If you would like to see more amazing layouts by LeeAndra check out her GALLERY. Stay tuned next week for another guest CTM spotlight!