Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Digital Scrapbooking : )

So you are ready to try Digital Scrapbooking.....

It is about time don’t you think? I scrapped more in the past 18 months since I went digital than I did in the previous 8 years. I have done several custom photobooks at Shutterfly and made more gifts than I thought was possible.

Inquiring Minds Want to Know: Since I started on posting on Facebook and sharing some of my digital scrapbooking layouts, I have had a few requests from friends who are ready to get started. The first question always is “where do I begin”?

This post is one of many in which I will try and answer that question : )

First, you need a good computer system with a high end graphics card and lots of memory and storage (you need a big place to store all those scrapping supplies and finished layouts). I always recommend that you also invest in an EHD (external hard drive), as a back-up system to your photos and supplies. Hard drives fail (more often than anyone really cares to admit) and you need to be prepared. I also subscribe to an off site recovery service. It is an affordable solution for recovery when you need it. (because at some point you will).

Next, purchase a software program. Right now I am using Adobe Photoshop Elements 8.0 . They just released 9.0, but I don’t have enough information to determine whether or not I should upgrade right now. There is always a learning curve when you do an upgrade and frankly I don’t have the time either. You can also invest in Photoshop CS (a much bigger investment). A lot of online stores offer student discounts for software purchases, anyone who is or has a child who is a student qualifies). I also have Lightroom by Adobe for all my photo processing. I love the presets with this program and can’t imagine editing photos without it.

Next, install the software and just play. I am a self taught digital designer after doing “traditional” scrapbooking for years. I learn something new just about every day.

Join some online sites/message boards/stores : )

I recommend the following:

sign up for their newsletters, poke around the message boards and view their galleries for inspiration. Most stores offer freebies (weekly or monthly) and offer a ton of advice for beginners. A really fun way to get started is to pickup some free digital templates. I love this site: Pencil Lines They have templates each week you can download.

buy this tutorial first:

actually any of Cassie’s tutorials are great. They come in PDF format and offer step by step instructions, and provide you with all the elements needed to create the lesson.  Two Peas free tutorials are also available to download and review.  Tons of help!!

You can also take classes , , or some are more advanced than others. Ask questions before you decide which one is right for you.

Purchase this kit each month:  the daily digi
it is only $5.00!!!! and it is amazing how many elements you get. They offer a new kit each month.

Read Blogs!! here are just a few I have in my favorites right now:

Page Maps
Ali Edwards
Cathy Zielske

creative inspiration blog
Vinnie Pearce

Blogs are a wonderful source of information and inspiration. I could spend an entire day just blog hopping : )

Search the internet for digital freebies - this is the best way to get some supplies to get you started until you discover your own style and figure out what you want to purchase. I also have a spending budget each month. It is pretty easy to go overboard with so many new releases each week. Unless there is a really big sale, I do my best to stay within my budget. Lord knows you can never have enough stitches or brushes.

So many fabulous opportunities have happened to me since I went over to the digi side of scrapbooking and for that I am thankful. But most of all I am glad that I am recording the everyday things about our little family. Someday I think my kids are going to appreciate that.

Okay, I think that is a ton of information for today. Get started and let me know if you have any specific questions. I will do my best to try and answer them and if I can’t, at least steer you in the right direction.

Now go scrap. I can’t wait to see what you create. : )


Jen Martakis said...

What a wonderful and informative post Mary!

Shirley said...

Great post even for us paper pushers! LOL!

kimosabescraps said...

yes I love mixing it up... I find IM doing more hybrid things to save money and digi makes it go so much faster and they still look so professional!

Lynn said...

oooooooooooo i love mixing it up too but love my tools.

Christie said...

Great post!
Yesss, bring them to the dark (digital) side... Mwahahaha! ;)

Kathy said...

HI Mary, Just stopping by to admire your layouts and sign up to follow you! Big congrats :)

Julie Ann Shahin said...

Congrats Mary! Fabulous post!


Lisa Dorsey said...

Congrats Mary!!! I adore that layout!

My name is Amee said...

HI! I'm Amee & I stumbled upon your blog on Pinterest!
Thank you so much for this post! It sounds very helpful...I can't wait to get home & read more here at your lovely space. :)