Minimalism and milking a great photo
My birthday blog post made me happy.
And when a post makes me happy, I pull it out of cyberspace and find a home for it in Ye Olde Scrapbook Collection. Sometimes.
When I first began blogging back in 2007, I believed it would become an endless trove I could continually mine for top notch page content. It didn't quite turn out that way, interestingly enough. In fact, some of my most favorite things I've written about here have yet to see the light of a scrapbook page.
And for right now, that's perfectly okay.
Still, I wanted to pull out the 44 Things list and save it. Why? Two things: sincere and authentic journaling, and if I'm being completely honest, a great flippin' photo of me. And you didn't know this at the time, but I had lots of shots to choose from, thanks to my daughter's digital prowess.
Keep mind: the happier the shot, the faker the laugh.
Most photos of me look like this:
You know the type: me in an old puffy sweatshirt, scrunched up nose, enveloped by oven mitts and with a man attached to my head.
There's nothing wrong with the above shot, but it doesn't really project that whole I'm in the love with the world and I don't care who knows it! vibe that I'm going for.
But I'm digressing…back to the point of saving the blog post.
I first created a fully digital version of the photo and the list in 12 x 12 glory, and it looks like this: (click on layout to see if larger in a new window)
Now try as I might to add other things, other digital elements into this design, I just couldn't do it. Every time I placed something down, it just felt instantly overdone. The point of this page was simply to pair that uber-adorable photo with the list of 44. End of process.
Then I thought: do I really need a 12 x 12 to fit all of this text? My personal albums are all 8.5 x 11. Yes, I do have three larger 12 x 12 albums that hold all of the 12 x 12 pages created for Simple Scrapbooks magazine, as well as for my two books, but I knew I wanted to make a different layout that could easily fit into my system.
Here is that page, a hybrid design: (click on page to see larger in new window)
I tried to find some other way to put this story down. I pulled out papers. I pulled out embellishments. But in the end, a simple crocheted flower was the one piece needed to complete the text heavy design.
I realized in this process how much I love the minimalism of a photo and a story together. That try as I might to dress it up a bit more, lately it's just not happening.
In fact, minimalism is ruling my scrapbook choices more than ever. And it's not that I'm surprised by this, but rather, I'm just wondering why I fill up an entire dining room of stuff I may never use.
We all come to this story-saving process with different needs. Needs to document, to express, to feel creative, to play, to experiment, and to be heard. Where you may love the random, I may love the precise, but in the end, we are both saving something of value that finds a way to lift us up.
And that's always going to be a good thing.