Hi guys! Today I am sharing a little bit of my process for working with our kids’ albums and how we are organizing all their photos, memorabilia, and ultimately the albums they will each take with them when they have their own home one day! This will be an on-going project with lots of steps and hopefully lots of helpful videos for you so I hope you will stay tuned!!!
In today’s video I am working with Nick and Natalie’s albums that I created years ago. I began scrapbooking in 2003 and these are the layouts and albums I created up until about 2012 specifically for Nick and Natalie. These were created before I began Project Life and before pocket pages, back when I had a whole different way of memory keeping! The layouts were in various order, in different albums and not really organized well at all, so I pulled them all out. In this video I share some of my thoughts during that process.
As we are just beginning this gigantic project, a few things begin to jump out at me, and for today I just wanted to share one thing in particular. You heard me mention this in the video and I think it bears repeating. One of my main strategies to help us get through this project for four kids is to always remember that we each experience life differently and even when we share the same experiences, every person’s memory of that time may be different. What does that mean and how does that impact our children’s albums?
This means that every child will have their own unique collection of albums! Every album is different and every kiddo is so unique and that means trying to create the same layouts or the same albums for all four, or even for two, would be impossible. I hope this strategy will free us up to include the memories for each child that are truly relevant and meaningful to them, not just random collections of the same photos and layouts.
These albums are our love letters to each of them, and I hope they feel the love when they look through them years from now. I hope you will enjoy following along with us on this journey. I anticipate it will be a long journey, and this is only the beginning!
Hi guys, short and sweet today because I am doing my album share for 2016. You will find two videos walking through each Project Life album that I created for 2016. So grab a cuppa something and settle in!
Here is the video for the second album:
It has been a complete joy to create this album and share it with you over the past year. I am incredibly proud to have these albums completed and absolutely and so thankful for each and every memory contained in them. I am also thankful for you and for your support! It’s been quite a journey! Thanks for following along!
Hi there, today I am sharing the first video tutorial on how I use Photoshop CC in my memory keeping projects, particularly in Project Life. I use Photoshop pretty much every day to help me create my layouts – everything from storing and organizing photos, editing photos, printing photos and digital papers, cards, and elements, and creating layouts themselves. Have a look at today’s tutorial:
I hope that was helpful to you and as always, please let me know if you have any questions. I also want to summarize a little of what was covered in the video here. I began my sharing my layout in my Project Life 2017 album for this week as it is prepped for printing. Tomorrow I will share with you my process for adding my embellishments.
What I love most about working with my Project Life layouts in Photoshop is obviously the ability to see the entire layout at once and to bring in all the elements and photos into one screen. The layout above was created using a template from Paislee Press which is available at The Lilypad (link opens in new window). This means lots of layers, and this layout above might look a little overwhelming to beginners. This is our goal, this is where we are going – I hope through my tutorials to help you learn how to create layouts like this and use templates and basic tools in Photoshop to be able to do this as well. But for today, we will back up and start with some basic photo editing.
First I shared with you how I have my photos for 2017 organized. My first folder is for the entire month of January. Within that folder I have folders for each week, and also the folder where my iPhone brings in the photos automatically when I download them. I have not used my DSLR yet, but when I do, I will create another folder for the event that I am downloading from that camera. Now, the great thing about storing them like this is this: when I know that I am going to be out and about and want to edit photos on my phone, or am wanting to create a layout using the App, I can just copy and paste a week’s folder into my Dropbox and go. This is how I make these folders work for me.
Now, inside each week’s folder are all the photos I took for that particular week, so when I open that folder, I know exactly which photos I can choose from in order to tell the stories of that week. So at first glance I am already gathering thoughts about that layout, how many photos I will be including, and a general direction of the layout itself. I love this – it keeps my decision making simple. I think for the layout for this week I decided I had about 7-10 photos to use, and three good stories.
I also shared some basic tools that I use for editing my photos in Photoshop. There are lots of days where I edit quickly on my phone using A Color Story, but sometimes I haven’t had time to do that when I am building my page. Now, one caveat: I do not believe in taking tons of time to edit photos. There are just way too many more important things to do in life, right? But the two basic edits I shared were brightening the photo and straightening the photo. Simple, quick, and pretty.
Now, if you have used Becky Higgins’ Project Life templates in the past, then you are very familiar with this template! This is Template A, and it is available on her website in the digital section. In fact, Design A which is what I am using here, is available to download for free using this link here: Becky Higgins Project Life Template Design A (opens in a new window). I highly recommend beginning with her templates because they are relatively simple and you can see that they aren’t very complicated at all. This is a good place to begin working with templates.
In the video I shared some basic ways to use the Layers tools to bring in photos and cards into the frames to help you build your layout. So this is a basic beginning tutorial sharing how I use Photoshop CC to help me create Project Life layouts. We will continue building on this in the next few weeks, and tomorrow I plan to share with you my process video for embellishing my Project Life layout for Week 1. See you soon!
**Interested in making Photoshop CC a vital part in your Project Life endeavors? Click on the link in my sidebar to get started! Any purchases/subscriptions made through that link help to support this blog and for that I thank you!
Hello! I have a Project Life layout to share with you today, continuing in Week 37 of 2016. I am using Ali Edwards’ ME Story kit, have a look at my process:
What I love most about the ME Story Kit are the colors – such really pretty pinks and yellows and greys. I added touches of blue and navy across the layout by bringing in the Simple Stories Posh and Pinkfresh Studio Indigo Hills collections to embellish.
One of the things I have completely resolved in my scrapbooking process is the idea that I am telling my story and that my albums, while they contain lots of stories about lots of different people, all those stories are told through my own lens. These albums are the story of my life, and my husband’s life as it relates to me.
Have a look at the details on the left hand side.
For me, these weekly layouts become a place for me to photograph and document my favorite memories, people, things, and events. It was fun having a kit that captured this – my stories, my memories, my life.
I particularly love that my layouts provide a space for including these random photos of the kids sprawled out on the floor behind the sofa. We keep all the electronics there (read: battery chargers!) so they spend a lot of time back there huddled up around the outlet. If it weren’t for this project, these moments would totally get missed.
The Pieces of my Life element is one of the digital PNG’s included in the digital kit. I placed a white card in that space in the Project Life App, and then brought this element directly on top. It does not allow you to adjust the size, which is why it is oversized, but I decided to leave it that way! It pops on the page!
This photo captures an event that occurs regularly in our house: bringing home the groceries and putting away the cat food. This is Zoe helping Emberlynn organize the canned food! They are so cute!
Right hand side:
We had a date night at The Loop pizza and the place was empty, so I set up this shot on the table across from us.
I felt like I had enough Journaling spaces on this layout, so I used the journaling lines on this pink card for stamps and word stickers.
Lately I have been experimenting with the list-type journal cards because I am not much of a lister on my Project Life layouts! I am trying, however, to incorporate more lists, or to use the list format somewhat in the way it was intended. I do love how this one turned out.
This week marked the week that we were able to announce who was going to be on the Sahlin Studio design team. I cannot even begin to tell how special it was to be asked to be on this team! It has been an honor to be chosen, and has been a truly wonderful experience working with Krista Sahlin and all of the incredibly talented artists here.
Notice how I took the embellishments across the boundaries of the filler card and the photo. I know it’s easy to restrain ourselves to the edges of the cards and photos, but it is ok to ignore those borders too, and allow the embellishments to spill over. Have fun with that!
This Currently card tied all the colors of the layout together for me, and look – I created another list using the Me stamp set! I also used the roller stamp from Paige Evans’ Take Me Away collection for Pink Paislee to separate the lines more emphatically.
This is my last Project Life layout that I will be sharing this year, although I do still have a tutorial that I am hoping to share with you later on this week. I am now officially transitioning into December Daily and will share that project with you throughout the month of December. In January I will pick back up in my 2016 Project Life album until it is complete! See you soon!
Hi guys!!!! I am working my way through the summer in my 2016 Project Life album, and today is Week 29. Have a look at my process:
Here is the layout as I created it in the Project Life App, using the Girl Themed cards.
Here is the layout completed:
For the left hand side I began with the date card and added my dates using these super awesome puffy alphas from Dear Lizzy.
I decided to use some of my Simple Stories Sunshine & Happiness products, as you can see here. I adore this iconic girl!
This was the week that Pokémon Go! was released, so I made sure to include some of our screen shots the we grabbed.
When my Ali Edwards kit arrived this week, Natalie spied it and went through all the contents with me, then she decided she just had to have the envelope it came in. I can’t blame her one bit, they are really cool. I think she keeps her iPod in it sometimes now!
I just really like this floral journaling card from Simple Stories. The chipboard embellishments layer perfectly on top.
There is no embellishment on this photo, but it is too cute to leave out. There were several nights in a row that Zoe did this – she climbed up in Alan’s lap and took over his tablet. Silly kitty.
The right hand side of the layout is about my BFF’s visit while on their way to vacation! We met up for dinner since they were only here overnight.
Pictured from left to right are: Diedre (Dalia’s daughter), Shelby (Diedre’s best friend), Jonas (Dalia’s son), Natalie and Nick (my two), Alan and me, and Dalia and Kevin!
I love how Project Life gives me a place to document these moments in our lives that otherwise might go in a “scrap someday” pile. I also am particularly fond of our yearly visit and am so happy the tradition is holding!!!
One more look at the layout as a whole:
That is it for today, come back tomorrow for Disney! This week is sort of strange and I don’t know how things are going to go down just yet because I have jury duty on Wednesday! I do hope to have a project up on Friday (the one I promised last Friday!) and then next week will hopefully be back to normal (unless I get chosen for a really long trial or something like that). I will keep you guys posted.
Hi guys! I sort of had a speed scrap session and got two layouts done in this week’s video! So have a look!
I have promised myself that I want to finish this album before the end of November, so I am hoping to double up for the next few weeks just to get it done. Today’s layouts document the landscaping we did as part of the Sweat Equity program, and then the final walk-thru of the house. Whew!
This is the first layout, first with just photos and journaling cards (above), and then completed below.
I think I will include the close-up photos here as a Gallery. Feel free to click on any image and it will enlarge, and it will also allow you to scroll through each one!
Here is the second layout, and it includes an insert which is a darling photo of our daughters hanging out happily together on the carpet. I love this photo – it actually sums up how we felt about having the house completed and feeling a sense of calm before the storm.
This layout across the whole page was incredibly neutral because of all the empty rooms, so I selected products from the Maggie Holmes Open Book collection that are also very neutral. Her black and white patters, with just tiny touch of colors here and there, are perfect.
Here again is a Gallery for layout 2:
When you flip the insert you find a little love note that Natalie drew for me, and then the rest of the completed house.
The completed layout, and our finished home.
One more Gallery for you to see. So many wonderful photos!
I truly hope you have enjoyed following along in this project! It has been so much fun documenting this big thing for our family, and I am so happy this is written down and photographed and able to be looked at any time we wish. It’s a great feeling. Stay tuned for next week, I will show you my plans for the rest of the album!
Hi guys! Today I am documenting our visit to Disney Hollywood Studios in my Disney Project Life album. Have a look at my process here:
Here is the layout with photos and journaling cards. The cards are from Sahlin Studios Project Mouse and the Midnight Edition Core kit from Project Life.
Here is the layout completed, with journaling and embellishments:
The very first thing I did in my process was to add my splashes of watercolor on the journal cards. I love how subtle these little additions of color are, and how fun it is to add watercolors to your cards!
Now if you watched the process video then you are probably laughing when you look at this card! I am laughing too, so it is totally ok. This was an example of what not to do in stamping, and yet even though I experienced a funny adventure creating this card, I still really love how it turned out in the pocket!
The photos across the bottom are of the stage, taken from the audience. Narrowing down which photos to include here: of course I took probably 100 just at this show, and then I printed probably 10. In the end these were included because they show some of the most exciting portions of the show and they fit in with the story I am telling.
Now the story I am telling in this layout is really about how mesmerized all the kids were during this show. We loved this show A LOT (!!!) and so the photos and the journaling all work together to tell that story overall.
I really think, of course, that this photo landed in this layout precisely because Addison is totally fixed on this show. I love the moment this photo captures, where he is in the foreground, and then Nick’s ear and shoulder are behind him, and Emberlynn’s pony tail behind that!
Here is one more look at this side:
On the right hand side I wanted to include some of the miscellaneous shopping photos I took that day. I did this in Epcot, too, if you remember the layout about the nutcracker in the window. I loved shopping at Disney and loved all the shop displays! I wish I had taken more photos of us picking out things we wanted and things we got, but it is ok to let that go.
I absolutely love how these watercolors and Heidi Swapp Shine add pops of color to these journaling cards! I know some people are bothered because the gold one leaves a ring around the splash, but I have to say I think they kind of look like suns here! What helps, too, is putting the color down and then move the card around a bit so the lighter color can spread a bit more.
I didn’t actually buy this little stuffed puppy, but we all really did fall in love with him. Also, notice how I did not add watercolors to every journal or filler card.
And then one last card on this layout, which is fairly simple and lovely. These Project Life Core kit cards provide such great canvases for additional embellishments.
One last look at this side of the layout:
So that’s it for today’s layout! You will have to let me know what you think about adding mixed media to Project Life and Project Mouse cards. See you tomorrow!
Hi guys! I am working on Week 26 in my 2016 Project Life album, so have a look at my process today:
Here is the layout as I created it in the Project Life App, and then printed through Persnickety Prints. The cards I used in the App are from the Good Vibes kit with the exception of the date card, which is from the Project 52 kit.
Here is the completed layout, with journaling added by hand and embellishments are all from Dear Lizzy Saturday collection!
You have probably figured out by now that I really love Dear Lizzy’s products and I use them often. The Saturday collection does not disappoint! I ended up using the Saturday embellishments on the entire card here, and a small bit of journaling.
This week two of our kids were in Florida, and the other two are here fifty percent of the time, so that left us with a few days just the two of us. I made that the focus of my journaling and photos on this page.
I will let you guys in on a really awesome secret about my husband: he is a very successful computer expert and well-respected in his field, but he is also an amazing cook! One of my favorite things is when he makes chocolate chip cookies. This is one of those things Project Life is perfect for – to document our favorite things.
One of the reasons I chose the Saturday collection to embellish this layout with is because the collection has lots of black and white touches. When I created the layout in the App, I chose the Good Vibes collection and included the date card from the Project 52 kit, which is black and white. So I needed the black and white to tie this all together.
My thought process as I worked around the page was really quite simple: add just one or two small things to each card or photo. I took the time to trim the cut-apart sheets and some of those I used as embellishments as well.
I did not add anything to this photo collage. I created the photo collage right in the Project Life App and brought it into the layout just like any other photo. I love capturing our laughter and silliness, even right in the driveway.
One more look at this side of the layout:
On the opposite side I began with a photo of Nick and Natalie playing video games in the living room. This doesn’t happen often! But when the other two kiddos are gone, they find each other and play video games together and that makes me so happy to see. They do actually love each other!
Some of the decorative elements on the cards I ended up covering up. I love this flexibility and this chance to make these layouts my own. And of course, the chance to get to use up my stash in fun ways!
I wasn’t sure about placing this plain wood grain filler card, but I also knew by the time I embellished the layout I would know exactly what to do. Sure enough, I was happy to layer paper strips with floral stickers, washi tape, and rubber shapes. Sweet!
This little friend visited our yard during the week. I was happy to photograph him quietly and then leave him to find his own path, but it sure was fun seeing him! I think it is good luck when box turtles visit!
The turquoise circle on this filler card became the jumping off point for how to embellish this card. I decided to cut out the Dream circle and I added the round rubber embellishment, along with another flower sticker. The second filler card I realized I was completely not thrilled with, so I covered it up with the pattern and the words.
The final card on the layout just makes me so happy. The cascading hearts are adorable, but they did give me a tiny challenge how to layer on top without completely obscuring them? So I kept it simple with the camera, the word strip, and the rubber heart. Just a few stamps around the page as well, and this layout is complete!
One last look at the right hand side of the layout:
Oh, this layout was so much fun to create! There weren’t many photos from this week, so that meant a lot of filler cards and lots of opportunities to embellish. That makes me incredibly happy! See you tomorrow for Disney!!!
Hi guys!! It’s Throw-back Thursday today and I am so excited to share a layout that highlights some of the finishing products the installers placed in our home as it was being finished up. Have a look at my process:
So today you probably noticed I did three pages in the album. Here are those three pages with just photos and journaling cards:
So I began with the right hand side of this layout, which shows photos of the appliances and sink fixtures that had been delivered but not installed quite yet. For me, this is the most exciting part!
The weekly date card shares the dates and week number, and also repeats the Phase number in this project. Everything is so very close to being done.
I itemized some of the products that were delivered, using one of the list cards from the Charming Core Kit. A lot of things are happening, so I love being able to just list it out right here.
More photos of the boxes lined up in the garage. Carefully we counted and verified everything was there (although of course we knew the contractor had done that already!) Who knew that boxes could be so exciting? I am so glad I took some time to photograph these.
I am still using the circle dates from Paislee Press, with numbers added on top. If you saw the process video you saw me paint those numbers with nail polish! How fun!
I know it is really hard to tell in these photos, but my shoes are the shoes I wore while we painted and they are actually coated in paint. I still laugh when I think about those poor shoes! They are worth including in this story.
The embellishments from the Dear Lizzy Documentary collection added just the right sentiments to these photos. I know that vinyl tile isn’t that exciting in the grand scheme of things, and we committed to finishing this home with hard-working finishes that weren’t overly lavish. But for me, this was a really big deal. I am so thankful for this simple flooring.
Turn the page and the second and third pages cover Week 27 in this album. Photos are pretty much more finishes and some overall documentation of the progress on the interiors.
On the left hand side I began with the date card, mixing stamps and alphas plus washi and stickers.
They installed the shelving for the closets and pantry, and this had to be included. We were so excited to get this pantry – with four growing kids we stock a lot of food in our house. For school alone we pack 16 lunches per week. So this pantry is a necessity for us.
I have photographed our living room at different stages through this process, and so here is another photo, now with fireplace and tile surround, all the paint and trim, flooring, and lighting.
And our kitchen here, also complete, although the flooring is under wraps. Contractors are still in and out finishing up things and we still have to complete our touch-ups, so the hardwoods are being protected still. I cannot express how much I love this kitchen. We chose this floor plan specifically for this kitchen and its open view to dining room and living room, but also because it is spacious! Even though our builder is still building lots of houses with dark cabinetry, we chose all white. White cabinets, white appliances, and a utilitarian Formica counter. Where we invested our money on this floor was the 9-foot ceilings and taller baseboards, did you notice the ceiling height? That is my designer trick to make the rooms look large and roomy.
This photo below is looking into the master bath. You can tell in this photo that the quarter round has still not been completed here! So very close to being done.
This photo kind of cracks me up – who takes a picture of their door knob? This girl here, that’s who! Just more small, but important details.
The right hand side shows the air condition unit, gas meter, and thermostat. After working in the house in 95 degree days, we were ecstatic to get that installed!
I absolutely adore how this filler card turned out. I am still in Week 27, so no need for a date card here.
Underneath is my journaling for this page. I am sure I have never been so excited to see air vents in my life!
This is our gas meter. Interestingly enough, it wasn’t until I had this photo printed out and my husband saw it the other day, he pointed out to me that the meter sits on ZERO here! Neither one of us have ever had one that was on zero, brand new, never used before.
The air vents that I never imagined being so excited about! I know these things probably are so boring and mundane, and maybe you are asking yourself why document these every day things? And I say, why not document these every day things? Several years ago I lost my home (and all my life savings) in my divorce settlement. For me these things are all really big. This is worth celebrating.
In the larger scheme, I am so happy to record these every day things because they are part of the story of our family. One day, hopefully many years from now, our children will sell this house. When they do, they will pull out this album and remember.
But for today, they will know how much this house means to us. They will know the stories and the struggles and the connection. They will know why this house is more than just a house.
This has been a photo-filled post today, thanks for reading along. I plan to double up some in the next few weeks so I can get this album finished up. I was working on my production schedule and realized that it is time to plan and begin December Daily, which means production schedule changes entirely in November and December! That means I need to finish this album in October. I am ready to finish it up and am looking forward to that. Thanks so much for encouraging me along!
Hi guys!!!! I am so excited about today’s layout and cannot wait to show you!!!! Have a look at my process video:
Alright, so I began my layout in the Project Life App, printed through Persnickety Prints, using the Project 52 cards available in the App itself.
I was so excited to start getting some of Amy Tangerine’s newest collection in my mail! This one is called Oh Happy Life! and I felt like it matched perfectly with the Project 52 colors!
In my process video I began with these watercolor resist cards. I simply added Tim Holtz Distress paints in random ways to the cards and let the resist do its magic! The colors I used are Wild Honey, Abandoned Coral, Twisted Citron, and Mermaid Lagoon.
I added the floral clear sticker from the Oh Happy Life! collection, cut in half, around the card for layering. Oh my goodness, I just love it.
We had the cutest visitor in our back yard, so I very gingerly snapped a few unobtrusive photos and we watched him wander away into the ravine behind our house. I combined journaling here with the turtle story on the top half and the photos below are journaled on the lower half. The sunglasses are adorable here to signify the separation!
Two of ours were away in Florida with their grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins this week, and these photos were sent back to us. They look like they are doing excellent! (Photo courtesy of Uncle Jeff Brown!)
My flower pots are growing and filling beautifully this week. Next to that photo I used another of the watercolor resist cards layered on top of the Project 52 filler card. And then I also layered a clear sticker and the -week portion of the foam sticker that also comes from Oh Happy Life!
I absolutely love these completely ordinary moments, and I promise you our life is exactly this uneventful. My sweet husband is here changing the sheets on the bed, and you can see that Zoe is clearly helping him by making sure the heated blanket is nearby and occupied. I also absolutely love that Project Life gives me this awesome place to not only take this photo, but to give it a little context. I didn’t need to write any journaling about this photo, but I still included it because this album is just the right place to include ordinary, every day moments just like this.
On the left hand side of this layout the date card takes the first spot. Clear stickers and washi tape from Oh Happy Life! make fun embellishments to this card.
Underneath is another of the watercolor resist cards, again layered on top of a Project 52 filler card. I love this simple layering of watercolor on top of graphic.
We took Natalie in this week for a check-up on her arm and she was at this point healing up great. I added the foam stickers and added just a tiny stamp to each one.
I even used the marketing strip from one of the patterned paper, along with some of the clear heart stickers. This photo is Zoe yet again, this time she caught me napping and climbed up into my neck to get comfy.
I am absolutely digging the clear stickers in this collection. Here I cut the word strips just to add a little something to this card. I also used another of the foam stickers to accent here. Note the repetition around the page: foam stickers, watercolor cards, and clear stickers appear in several places to create a unified look.
Our house in the dark. We water our yard almost every night unless it rains, and sometimes that happens after everyone has gone to bed. It’s comforting to me, to see the house lit up and inviting us inside.
Another look at this side here:
Well, I hope you have been inspired to use this new collection! I have been able to find pieces of it at A Cherry on Top, Scrapbook.com, and Paper Issues recently. I will see you back here tomorrow with my Disney series!