Tuesday, June 28, 2011

scrapbook hall of fame

Well hello there, blog reader. Its been a while.

Here's the deal: I've been in a funk lately. I just haven't felt like myself for quite a while now. Spiritually, physically, emotionally, and creatively. The best word I can find to sum up how I've been feeling is:
BLAH. I know, I should get a thesaurus or something.

I completely acknowledge that this is how life goes. That sometimes I feel totally inspired, on my game, and ready to take on the world. And other times I am always tired, not feeling "it" (whatever "it" may be), and I just want to curl up on the couch and watch episodes of Glee. Over and over.

Thankfully I've been able to finally admit that I've been in a funk and have started making little changes here and there. Exercising again, carving out time for some quiet time with God, MAKING myself MAKE STUFF with my hands, etc. And, surprisingly I'm slowly starting to feel like myself again.

One of my cousins asked me to email her some examples of some of my scrapbook layouts. So I decided that this would be a great opportunity to go through our scrapbook albums and pull out my all-time favorite layouts. I was going to try to only pick ten. I think I finally narrowed it down to 20-something...and THEN I realized that looking through all my scrapbook layouts really INSPIRED me to go create. It was a great little way to get back on the crafty bandwagon.

While looking through years of scrapbook pages, I made a list of things that kept coming back up over and over again:
1. I tend to use mostly neutral (beige, white, browns, and blacks) background colors.
2. I really like using circles as design elements.
3. I like my own handwriting. But even if I didn't, I would still hand write my journaling.
4. Almost all of my favorite layouts are about everyday stories and not events (birthdays, holidays, etc).
5. I like incorporating paint.
6. Grids are my scrapbooking friend.
7. I LOVE using just one photo on a layout to tell the story.
8. I also love using many photos from more than one scene/day to tell a story.
9. I made lots of mistakes on my pages and just went with it anyway.
10. My family is pretty rockin'. We've done a lot of living over these past few years. It is an honor to create art from the memories we have made. I'm SO glad I get to scrapbook!

With that being said, here are my all time favorite scrapbook layouts. I took a photo of each layout, so some images may seem slightly blurry. You can click on each image to see the layout larger.

Why I love it: Mostly because of the awesome photography by my cousin Jamie (Photography by Jamie). And all the black negative space. And the painted white edges. Ohhhhh I love me some paint on a layout. I love that this layout doesn't necessarily tell a specific story, its all just cool photos.

"capture life, create art"
Why I love it: Because THIS is my creative mantra. Capture Life, Create Art. I have this layout hanging in my scrapbook room STILL, even though it was created in 2007.

"the technique"
Why I love it: This layout was super quick and simple and tells the story about how my daughter Macy would scoot all her food to the edge of her high chair tray and suck it up in her mouth. Macy is now almost 4 years old and I'm certain this is a story I would have forgotten by now if I had not scrapbooked it. I love the simple design of this layout.

"almost 3"
Why I love it: This 2-page layout has nine photos on it that are all from different days during this season of my daughter Macy's life. This layout captures a short time span in Macy's life. I love that there is a photo of her crying and a photo of her crossing her arms when she didn't get her way. Lots of paint. I did the journaling in list form on the side and it includes snippets of Macy's personality at this stage in her life.

"love you"
Why I love it: This is one of my favorite photos of me and Macy. Although I tend to reach for neutral background colors for most of my layouts, teal is one of my favorite colors right now. I LOVE the color combo on this page.

"4 month old"
Why I love it: Oh my, what a cute smile. This is Macy at 4 months old. (The reason this image looks like there is a reflection over her face is because there is a photo overlay on top of the photo.) I love the design and colors and the tight journaling around the photo block.

"messy eater"
Why I love it: This is my daughter Zoe a few months ago. Man alive, she is the messiest eater of all three of our kids. I just wanted to remember that about her as a baby. Love the colors and messy design.

"sweet Zoe girl"
Why I love it: This is Zoe at 10 months. I just jotted down a few things I wanted to remember about her at this age. I LOVE the white background with red and pink accents. And I super love the white letters on top of white paper.

"travel bug"
Why I love it: This is a great example of using a grid as a design element. I do this often. I love that there are 10 photos on this layout, and they all capture Zoe's essence at this stage in her life, which included a trip to visit my dad in Arizona. Cropping photos to a fit on a grid layout is super fast and simple and looks great! I like the papers and the list-style journaling on the left side of the 2-page layout.

"5 months"
Why I love it: I love the title and butterfly on the negative space of the enlarged photo. I LOVE that big photo of Zoe.

"first bites"
Why I love it: I love that this layout shows the story of Zoe's first few bites of real food. Such a fun, although messy, experience. Love the super simple and easy layout design.

Why I love it: This is one of my favorite photos of Zoe as a baby. Matt was holding her on the couch and they both fell asleep (oh the joys of a newborn!). And good ol' Conan (our old dog!) was right there in the baby action. I absolutely love this color combo and the placement of the long journaling.

Why I love it: I love the white background and the mixture of black/white photos + color photos. I LOVE these photos of Zoe as a soft squishy newborn. Love the soft pink accents.

"barely 5, almost 2"
Why I love it: This might be my all-time favorite layout. I love that it includes TONS of information about Jack and Macy (this was right before Zoe was born) and a bunch of messy design elements. Stamps and paint. Yum!

"first smile"
Why I love it: Because this was literally Macy's first REAL smile as a baby and we just happened to have a camera ready at that moment! Special. Love the patterned papers and love the dotted border around the photo.

"hey, I'm 5"
Why I love it: Special photos taken throughout the entire day of Jackson's 5th birthday. Love the design of this page and all the journaling along the side of the page.

"merry and bright"
Why I love it: Again, loving the white background! Another example of using a grid as a design element. Lots of photos (12!) on this 2-page layout from an entire Christmas season. Lots of fun journaling about Christmas. I like the white letters on a white background.

"super Dad"
Why I love it: That top right photo is one of my favorite photos of Matt with our kids. Right after Zoe was born, they were all chillin' on the couch watching football. So sweet to me. The journaling on this layout is special to me as well.

"fall '09"
Why I love it: Another example of using a grid as a design element! I love all the white paint on this black background. And I LOOOOVE Fall photos.

"these hands"
Why I love it: Love the story this layout tells. I remember looking through a bunch of photos and noticing how many photos there were of Jackson using his hands. I'm so glad I made a layout about this! I love the photo placement of this 2-page layout.

Why I love it: This is a very special photo + story for me. Jackson is our first born. The day before our second child was born, I took Jack on a little photo shoot in our neighborhood (lots of construction and tractors) and this was my favorite photo. The journaling is written to him and it is all about how special he is to me and how our lives were about to drastically change the next day when he would have a new baby sibling. I just wanted him to know how special he was to me even though these next few months would be hard on Mama with a newborn! And I love the color combo.

"sit still and smile"
Why I love it: Again, I love the STORY this layout tells....about how hard it is to get a good photo out of your kids when they are squirrely and won't sit still! I love that I incorporated blurry and not perfect photos to tell this story.

Why I love it: Love the design of this layout and photo placement. LOVE that photo of Jack holding a red #4. Love the circles and squiggly journaling lines.

Why I love it: I LOVE this layout concept...."the story of today". The journaling is detailed snippets of what we did throughout that specific day. I do this a lot and love documenting the tiny little insignificant details of our regular day. Love that photo of Macy coloring.

So, there you have it! I'm definitely more inspired now that I've taken the time to go through all our scrapbooks and catch a glimpse of our lives. Love the hobby of scrapbooking.


Andrea said...

WOW!!! I'm so glad that you've de-slumped yourself. And in the process you've inspired me and probably many others. Your layouts are gorgeous - your pictures are gorgeous and your love for your family is especially gorgeous. Thanks for sharing!

Kelly H. said...

this is a cool post, betsy! I hope your mojo is back for a good long time!!

Stacie said...

Your photos and scrapbook layouts are seriously awesome. LOVE. Glad to hear you're getting your mojo back...

luckymom2boys said...

Wow, Betsy! I love your scrapbook pages! They are beautiful and you make me really wish I had even an ounce of artistic ability... what an amazing way to document life's sweetest moments!

Leah said...

Great LO's. I really like how you use paint on your LO's. You have inspired me. Hope you feel better soon.