Saturday, August 13, 2005

Making your Photographs Pop in your Scrapbook

By Christina VanGinkel

I had not touched my scrapbook work in about a week, when I pulled out a few pages this past Thursday that had been bothering me. More or less done, they seemed to be missing some core element in their design. One, that had been created this past spring, was of my youngest son on the ski hill this past winter. I had used two photos, one of him getting of the chairlift, and one of him out in the terrain park practicing a jump with his snowboard. I also had his season ski pass and a sticker with a fun saying, along with various snowflakes.

What was wrong with it? It was dull, as dull as a scrapbook page could be. Each time I looked at it. It was as if it felt ok, but that was it, just ok. It was somewhat blah actually. Though I had looked at it numerous times, it was not until this time that I realized two blaring errors that I had created when I made the page, one, that it did not have a title, and two, for a page that was all about action, it was lacking color and motions.

The first was fixed relatively easily, and it partially corrected the second error at the same time. I created a simple title, by tracing the word snow on red cardstock and cutting out the letters individually. I used red, because my son's jacket he is wearing in the photographs is predominantly red. With a whole lot of white snow in the remaining parts of the photos, red seemed like the logical color choice. I applied the title in a downward slope, starting at the top left side of the page; I affixed the letter 'S', moved to the right and down a bit, and affixed the letter 'N'. I repeated this for the remaining two letters, drawing the viewer's eyes to the meaning of the word as much as the word itself.

To continue in this theme of color and movement, I again used the red cardstock and made mats for each of the pictures. I already had them applied to a piece of homemade blue paper, but they just somewhat laid there. The red matting behind each one really made them pop from the page, and they showed off the red of his jacket, really drawing your eye into the pictures themselves.

Did I learn a lesson from this? Yes, I learned to try different colors, besides what I first think go with a photograph. I had chosen blue, as I felt it was a nice compliment to the blue sky and white snow. It matched, but it did not 'work' the photograph nearly as well as the red cardstock matting did. I also learned to consider if movement is part of what your photographs are portraying, and to draw extra attention to that if possible in subtle ways. With it being about him snowboarding, the use of the lettering in the title in a 'falling' motion really worked a lot better than just a small sticker with a phrase on it! Remember that the best parts of scrap booking with photos are the experimentation of how to bring out the best parts of each one.

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