I have received quite a few requests to share my creative process, to explain myself in a way. Well, a big part of my process is quite simply from having spent hundreds, no, thousands of hours creating. They say practice makes perfect… and while I believe that creatively speaking I do believe practice leads to better creative process, faster results, and a streamlined way of doing things.
What used to take me an entire day I now accomplish (and have 100000000x better results) in somewhere from 30min – 2hrs generally. It’s not that I’m being “random” with my choices or sloppy – it’s that I have simply put in the hours to the point that I can make much faster decisions. There is no shortcut my friends, if you want to improve your skills, you must put in the hours.
All that said, I am breaking down my process and outlook and will be sharing here on my blog over the next 4-6 weeks. Let’s start at the beginning. My basic favorites are simple. Here are things I rarely create without:
note: I put the distress cardstock in here for an image, but really Core’dinations cardstock in general is what I mean. I use their cardstock. A LOT of cardstock. I have had people tell me that switching to cardstock base for the bulk of their layouts (as I do) has saved them so much time, energy, not to mention money – so it is worth noting!
Now my “basics” are the items that I always have here, in stock, and I use many of them on every project I do. They are frequently at the base of my creating. But what is the mental process behind starting a project for me?
That’s simple: if it’s a scrapbook page, then it’s a story.
There has to be a purpose to my scrapbook layout. I do not believe all layouts need loads of journaling or a meaningful story. I do start every layout by knowing my subject. Having a purpose. Even “Oh these are random cute photos” have some point. A mood, feeling, message I want to get across.
This is the only part that matters.
Yes, that’s right. I will say it again:
My story is the only part that actually matters.
I sit down and figure out what I want from the page, how much journaling, how many photos, what kind of words I want for a title, and the overall feel/mood I want. Usually this is done inside my own head, often it’s fast. I do find that the more meaningful the story, the more important my message, the longer/harder/more energy I put into it and the harder it can be.
This makes sense to me. Because it matters, because I care more, it makes sense that a layout about something very special would make me pause, take a longer look and think more.
and now I get out a piece of cardstock…
It might not be what ends up being my layout base, but I pull out a sheet of cardstock (or two) and arrange my photos. Continue thinking about my story and how much room I want for words, or if I’ll be using more embellishments… and I move those photos (4×6 – always printed from www.persnicketyprints.com in advance and NO I don’t plan. I print photos I love. on a regular basis.period.) all around until I’ve got a design in my head. I crop the photos if needed, and get the base of the layout planned out (meaning photos + journaling)
Then I make a base of layout decision and either keep the initial cardstock, or swap it out for something else (patterned paper, another color cardstock, etc).
Note that I decide the design BEFORE I decide the paper. Because again: it’s those photos + words that determine everything else…
to be continued…