Friday, January 8, 2016

Why I don't do Art Journaling and how I scrapbook

I did something unusual the other day trying to scrap - I listened to a scrapbook podcast  for the second time ever and the episode was with scrapbook and art journaling and it got me thinking about my approach to scrapbooking and my use of color products.

I am no traditional scrapbooker, I do not stress about finish albums about themes like Christmas, birthdays, first this, first that, school - I only scrapbook those themes if I have paper I like about the theme - or because it's part of an assignment.  I am not just so interested in documenting everything, that is also why I don't do project life. I tried a few weeks and it felt so forced to use the pockets - I was never happy with the PL cards I had available - they were either the wrong color or the wrong size and I didn't like how difficult it was to get the pictures printed in the right size and I wanted a lot of white space - and I didn't get enough with the PL cards available.

I scrapbook for me - not for my kids - and my two kids are not willing to let me photograph them equally - so of course I scrapbook the kid who is in the pics more - which is my 6 year old.  Another reason is also that there are just less boyproducts - it's harder to scrap his pictures.

I scrapbook to be a little creative and I have found that playing with color is fun, BUT, I don't like to get too messy, so that is why I use watercolors, drops of mist, stenciling and stamping.   I don't care about art. I don't care to call myself artistic, however I don't need to watch lots of Youtube movies to understand how to use the different products and I have never taken a class, in  a way I don't have the patience to go through the videos/classes - I do however look through a lot of blogposts, Pinterest, Instagram for inspiration -because I do want to develop my style. I get tired of it from time to time so I change it every now and then and I always look for those small things to take my scrapbooking a step further.

Since I don't scrapbook to document everything, I have actually no interest in art journaling. - or journaling. ( haven't done a journaling page either since I was fresh out of High School)  I have made a few pages for assignment but it didn't speak to me. I have nothing I want to write about and share, I am happy enough with the creative part in my scrapbooking.
I actually don't scrapbook FOR ME in a way either. I just like to be driven by assignment and products. The times I have been without assigment I did a lot of challenges, but then I couldn't find any challenges so I did nothing.... I couldn't find anything to scrapbook about. I don't have the drive IN ME to do things for me - partly because I don't scrapbook for my kids. (I also have so many boxes of layouts that haven't made it into albums..... )  I don't own a planner either - I am completely digital, I actually hate having lots of papers around - I prefer to get everything digital so I can easily look it up from everywhere. But old stuff I have had problems with getting digital so I have tons of old stuff I can't get rid off.  I have worked with administration and other people found it strange how important it was for me to get rid of the papers and make everything digital.  I haven't really mentioned that I am an educated historian.  It just doesn't show in my scrapbooking. For me scrapbooking isn't different than knitting - here you wouldn't care about memory keeping.

Back to how I do scrapbook.  Just like my house - I have white walls, and I want a lot of white space in my pages.  I don't like linear things either, and filling a whole pages with paper is actually the most "stressful" thing for me about scrapbooking.  I also don't like to fill a whole journaling page so the idea of filling out the corners is also why I don't like art journaling.

I started scrapbooking in 2003 and for a VERY long time I only collected ideas on how to scrapbook -I was too afraid to actually scrap pages because I didn't feel like the pages were pretty enough, and it took a while for me to realize that scrapbooking is about practice. If you are happy about doing the same thing - just do that - I won't judge your, but if you are not happy with what you are doing - you have to practice  doing different styles and find what you can pick out to develop. I don't encourage you to completely jump onto a different style - try and copy the "masters" in the different styles and see what works. Don't worry that you can't get it right from the start - everyone needs practice - some styles requires a lot of practice, other not so much, but be open to what everyone else is doing.   I have tried a lot of styles and I have also did the opposite - I have tried to apply "my style" to another style/paper style to show that things can be done differently.   To be honest that was kind of my approach to Bella Blvd for example.  For years I didn't scrapbook with that paper - mostly because it was so colorful, but when I was asked to be a guest designer it really changed my mind I felt that my style would add something different to the paper style that usually is seen with Bella Blvd, luckily Bella Blvd felt so too and added me to the team. In the same way I did the same thing with Zva Creative a few years ago - I was on the team for 2 years.  I had tons of flowers/bling, but actually had problems using them, but then I decided in the same way as with Bella Blvd - how could I do it differently.

In my previous blog post I wrote about teaching more,  if someone actually read my blog post - I would love to get some topics, I would also love to "talks" with someone about scrapbooking. I just don't want to hear just my own voice.  As with my scrapbook - I need a purpose to do stuff.... (also a reason I hate to watch tv - I get bored, there is no purpose). And if someone wants to teach something WITH me - I would be thrilled - I just have doing things by myself.

Lastly I share a few new backgrounds... Watercolor style.

This is to show that I often just make backgrounds - like a lot of other do art journaling in stages and without a purpose -that I how I make by backgrounds. I usually do a lot and let them dry  and have them in different stages so when I want to scrapbook I often have multiple backgrounds to choose from so it doesn't take as long to start.  I do have have in the back of my head with collections that might go with the different backgrounds - but I often switch it out and make new ones. Sometimes I can hold on to backgrounds for over a year before I find something to do with it, I might hate it before I find a new purpose.

So my advice for those of you that want develop your scrapbooking in 2016 - try out new styles, don't be intimidated - practice and don't care if you hate things at first  - don't throw it away - you might like it later when you have a new approach to things.


  1. I absolutely love your backgrounds and would love to see and hear how you do them. So how they are different to other people's even those who use watercolour and splatters. I enjoy seeing your layouts and would enjoy seeking more tutorials in order to learn exactly how you do them. Thank you.

  2. Christin, I love your post. I also read your other one and loved that too. I love how honest you are and I loved learning more about you! Keep writing :) As I'm sure you know, you are the one who first inspired me to switch to white cardstock and make my own backgrounds with mists. Thank you for inspiring me to get out of my comfort zone and try that, because I discovered that I love that way of making layouts and it's pretty much the only style I want to do :) Thank you!!!

    1. Glad to be able to inspire you to do something new and that you enjoy making those lovely pages of yours.

  3. Christin, should we organize a little scrap event for Finnish, Swedish and Norway people? I can teach the basics, you can teach something specific? :)

  4. Jap!! Finally somebody who does scrapbooking because of scrapbooking!! :-) I really do like your style. Please keep on with that.

  5. I´m so with you on the not documenting thing Christin. I scrap because I like the process. To create something is important to me. It could easily have been cake making if I had a tiny bit of talent there... I to are driven by missions. I have problems to create just for the creating sake - it sounds strange - I need the creating - but I also need the deadlines to keep me going. I have severe problems just creating for the sake of creating. OH and I DID know you where a Historican - but on the other hand - I used to be your "almost" neighbor! AND YES Terhi - lets organize something - I would love to participate - I´m in the middle you know!

  6. Great post. I think doing your own thing is important. Your backgrounds are great and the layering you do is brilliant. More tutorials would be great I enjoyed your previous one. Sonja.

  7. At least you know WHO you are with regard to scrapping and WHY and HOW you scrap best!! I must say, I need a goal or project. I hate not having any challenges to do or DT work to create! Loooove your watercolour bgs. They always look awesome:):)