Digi Design Monday – Getting Started

I can distinctly remember the first time I realized there was a “digital scrapbooking” industry.  It was around 2004 or so, and I had already been a web designer for several years.  At that time, I enjoyed my own form of digi-scrapping, mostly through personal websites – you know… a blog, before blogs were “cool”.

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I was often frustrated with the limitations though.  Quality graphics were hard to come by, and I could visualize what I wanted a website to look like, or a cute photo enhancement to look like, but creating that with “pixels” was time consuming and difficult (and often impossible – mostly because my imagination is better than my digital artistry skills!)

The day I found “digi kits” for sale was a happy, happy day.   Finally there were other people just like me out there, trying to design, create, and SCRAPBOOK on their computers.  I suddenly didn’t feel “weird” anymore for trying to do something others did with paper and glue.

When I look back at my first digital scrapbook attempts, I have to chuckle a little bit.  Here is one of the very first digital layouts I did when I discovered digi-scrappin’.  I made my own papers, my own frames, and my own little buttons or pins (or whatever those black things are supposed to be).

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Now, it’s not BAD, per se.. but times and tools (and skills) have changed!  (But, oh do I miss that little boy and his curls!  He’s twice as big now!)  To contrast that layout with another, here is one I did just a couple of years later..

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You’ll notice digital staples, better digital papers, even some digital stitching… a definite improvement over the first attempt.  (But still, adorable kiddo!)  Nowadays you can find almost anything you desire in graphic or digital format – flowers, buttons, stickers, chalk and grungy looks, and even fur!  We’ll talk about where (and how) to purchase these kinds of products over the next few weeks.

A GREAT place to get started?  Check out the free tutorials (and supplies) at ScrapGirls.com. Now this is just ONE place you can check out (out of hundreds and hundreds), and we’ll talk about many others too, but I wanted to leave you with at least a direction this week.

And in the meantime, if you have questions about digital scrapbooking or digital design, I’d love to hear them!

Digi Design Mondays

I’ve been designing “digitally” for over 15 years – websites, graphics, banners and headers, party favors, digital scrapbooks… it’s a passion for sure.

And I have decided to chat about digital design on Mondays, so I can tell you about fabulous digital designers, software you can use to create your OWN designs and/or use the digital products you purchase, awesome etsy artists who sell their digital designs… and oh, so much more.  Really, there is so MUCH to talk about, that I almost don’t know where to start!

But, start I shall!

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I am in serious “birthday mode” right now, because all three of my children have birthdays in the next few weeks.  A few days ago it dawned on me that a great gift for my daughter would be to finally, FINALLY, get some of her digital scrapbook layouts printed and put into book form.  Her big brothers have scrapbooks with layouts from their early years printed, but she doesn’t.  Honestly, I’m woefully behind on creating layouts for ALL of them, but even the designs I DO have done for her, she can’t see unless we sit down at my computer and look through the files.

Anyway, I started digging around on my external hard drive, looking at layouts and deciding which ones to print, and I found these adorable “quick page” layouts I made after Martha’s 1st birthday party.  If you don’t know what a “quick page” is, well.. welcome to Digi Design Monday!  Let’s chat about quick pages for a few!

If you are new to digital scrapbooking, I highly suggest working with quick pages to get a good start.  These are basically pre-done pages where you can slip in your photo, add some text if you like, and save!  Designers create pages with their kits, or around specific themes, and you can purchase them to quickly and easily finish scrapbook pages.

I didn’t even add text to these, since the designer (Kay Miller – check out her quick pages here) already had included word art.  These are 4×6 quick pages, but you can get them in all sizes – 4×6, 8×10, 8×8, 12×12.. and more!

You will need some kind of graphics software to use quick pages, and we’ll start talking about various options for this next week.  In the meantime, here are links to more digital scrapbook quick pages: