By Christina VanGinkel
As avid a scrapbook enthusiast as I am, I feel that I am so lacking in knowledge about certain techniques and tools, that If there were a class available in the area in which I live, I would gladly sign up for it. However, no classes exist. Someone online mentioned to me that I should contact my local LSS, to see if they offered any. After I had to ask what in the heck an LSS was, I felt a bit silly, as she meant for me to ask my 'Local Scrapbook Store' if they offered any classes or sessions on techniques or particular products. It did make sense then on why I did not know what an LSS was, as we have no local scrapbook stores anywhere close to our home. The closest store that I have been able to track down is nearly fifty miles away, and it is small, and limited on what they carry in stock, though they are always willing to order. The only problem with that is that you have to make another trip back to the store to pick up your order. With gasoline prices, what they are lately, I would much rather get what I am looking for all in one trip, and she is too small to offer an classes anyways, as she said she would not have the physical room to do so when I did ask. The next closest stores that are of any size and that would offer classes are in the one hundred mile range!
Still, the idea of a class or two was intriguing, especially if it opened doors as far as what to do with so many of the supplies I have acquired. Every time I see something new online, or read about a technique or see a product used in a magazine, if I have some semblance of an idea that I might be able to use it in a layout, I often will buy it. The problem with that though is, once I get it, I often do not have a clue what to do with it, beyond the initial project in which I saw it used.
Then I heard about a product called the Scrap Tutor. Two sets of DVD's, each set include twenty-eight lessons on a variety of scrapbook techniques. Set one features video instruction along with printable step-by-step lessons, along with over one hundred layouts by artists that are tops in the scrapbook world. Volume One: Techniques, includes tips, ideas, instruction and more on fourteen techniques that are commonly applied to scrapbook layouts, including lessons on Chalking , Color Blocking, Dry Embossing, Embellishments, Eyelets, Heat Embossing, Mats and Frames, Mosaic, Paper Tearing, Quilling, Shabby Chic, Stitching, Template Lettering, and Wire. Volume Two: Elements and Design, includes seven different elements that are used repeatedly in layouts, including Borders, Journaling Design, Photo Corners, Pockets, Shakers, Tags, and Title Designs, along with seven design concepts, including Color Coordinating, Composition, Focal Point, Negative Space, Photo Cropping, Photo Editing, and Typeface.
So encompassing are all of these lessons, that even if you do have a LSS, you might be interested in picking up these lessons. They run right on your Windows based computer, and the second set, Volume Two: Elements and Design, will run on either a Windows based computer or a Mac. They will allow you to learn at your leisure, and to go back and review them whenever you feel like a refresher course is in order.
These fantastic DVD's are currently available as a two-disk set for $29.99, just a bit over one dollar a lesson when you think about it. So not only are they great for those who do not have a store or other means of taking a class, but even for those who might have a store that offers classes close by, but want a more affordable way to take a class, or who might already have such a busy schedule, that fitting one more task into an already overloaded agenda is just not going to work. These are so convenient you can take a class whenever your time allows, and not have to try to match it to someone else's schedule!
Other reasons that you might like these over a traditional class are if you are more of a visual person, and having the lessons laid out in a way that allows you a front row seat each time you view them, are much more to your liking than just being one more person in an already overcrowded class.