#AliYT: Thoughts on Week 1 Tasks for Ali Edward's Yesterday & Today class

I just finished task 3 for Week 1 of Ali's Yesterday and Today class from Big Picture Scrapbooking and before I watch the video for Week 2 (which I have to postpone anyway because I have a house full with a sick child and my mother-in-law visiting) I thought I'd try to post/wrap up things from week 1.

The video for week 1 was fantastic, cathartic and thought provoking too. It was so comforting to know that many of us struggle with the same scrapbooking baggage and that we could all collectively throw that baggage out. It was really great to learn from reading the message boards and Tweets that many of us struggle with "thinking too much!" and with being too critical and judgmental of our work. Sometimes I think I am the only one who over thinks everything.

Task One: Use the space below to brainstorm stories you want to tell.

This one was pretty easy for me. I'd been thinking about this for a while and was one of the reasons I signed up for this class. I was liberated by not thinking at all about whether I had any photos to go with the story. I don't think I can write them all down on the blog, but here's a sample:

* How my husband and I met and fell in love Y
* The moment I realized that I really should become a Librarian Y
* My son Sam who was Stillborn a week before his due date. Y
* Profile of my best friends, or other important people throughout my life and why they were/are important to me. YT
* Falling "in love" for the first time (in 8th grade). Y
* All the places I have lived in my life (I've moved a lot) maybe some thought or memories of each? How moving around a lot impacted and shaped me. YT
* My dog when I was growing up, Christy, and all the secrets she knew. Y
* Top 10 (or other number) of most terrific things I have done or experienced in my life so far. YT
* Top 10 most difficult or challenging things I have done or experienced in my life so far. YT
* Why I love going to my book group once a month. T
* Things I have loved and love to do and why, ie: art museums, horseback riding, reading (getting lost in books), history, stories, flowers... YT
* My relationship with my Dad and how important it is to me/ what I've learned from him, what I get from him.... YT
* What surprised me the most when I became a Mom. YT

Task Two: Organize your stories into Yesterday & Today columns

This was pretty simple, though there were a few that spanned the two columns. I put Y or T or YT next to the stories above to show what columns they would fall in. I have more Y's than T's -- I think that's because I've been pretty good at telling the Today stories as they happen.

Task Three: Review Layouts/Mini-books/Projects I have created and list things I love and things I would change.

What was a pleasant surprise while doing this task was how happy I am with the vast majority of my pages even the ones I made when I was just starting out. I also like the same things in both paper and digital scrapbooking. Some of things that didn't work for me were things I tried to see if I would like them, or made at the CK conference to try a new technique. Also a revelation is how much I loved many of the pages I created from scratch without a template or sketch or layout to scrap lift. Maybe I just need more confidence in my design abilities!

Things I Love

* Using cut-ups, word stickers, words written on small tags/stickers placed beside or on photos or used as elements/borders
* Stamps: especially as a way to tie a mini book or layout together. I like to color them in or shade them or place them half on and half off or under photos and journaling.
*Hand drawn lines and dots and dashes: I like to use these around journaling or as a border
* Stitching (I am not a sewer so it's been fun to use these in digital scrapbooking)
* Doodles
* Velum: overlaying on photo or paper with journaling on it.
* Shading: to highlight letters or words in journaling -- use colored pencils in paper scrapping. (Want to learn how to do this in digital)
* Ribbons
* 3D epoxy stickers, flair etc.. used sparingly
* Flowers as elements
* Rounded corners
* Including memorabilia on layouts
* Clusters of elements to accent pages
* Notebook and grid papers
* Photos, Papers, Elements grouped together in a shape or within a boundary
* Circles
* Patterned papers (strips, squares, circles..)
* Clean, simple lines
* Journaling in columns
* Grungy edges
* Titles in two contrasting fonts, overlapping or in different orientations
* Elements or circles with text/word art inside.
* Tags and tabs
* Handwritten titles decorated with colored pencils, doodles etc...
* Matted photos
* Text on curved paths
* Alphas as elements
* Staples
* White, light, chalky colors on dark backgrounds.
* Close-ups, still-life photos

What I would change

* Too many embellishments
* Pages that are too busy or fussy
* "Garish" color combinations that take attention away from photos and journaling
* Not leaving enough "white" space.
* Things too spread out on page, elements not connected/disjointed, lack of cohesion
* 3D flowers that look like fabric
* Chipboard (if there's too much)
* Too many swirls and frills
* Text that is hard to read
* Typos
* Too much color contrast
* Unbalanced

That's about it, now on to week 2. The journey continues....


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