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Creative Scrapbook in the 21st Century - The Digital Scrapbooking Option
Historically, scrapbooking has been a tradition similar to storytelling, but with a visual and tactile, rather than oral, focus. Scrapbooking is also a method for preserving a legacy or history in the form of photographs, printed media, and memorabillia contained in decorated albums, or scrapbooks. The tremendous growth of the Internet has resulted in more creative scrapbook approaches as well as online scrapbooks. The digital photography revolutions has been accompanied by an explosion in creative scrapbook ideas.
Scrapbooking takes three things-time, space, and dedication. Anyone interested in this craft has the dedication needed to complete an album masterpiece, but what about time and space? With the countless papers, stickers, and other supplies (not to mention photographs), scrapbooking requires room, both for creating pages and for storage. The sheer volume of supplies is part of what makes scrapbooking so time consuming; by the time you get everything out and organized, you've already wasted 15 minutes or so, and the time spent looking for that perfect stamp leaves you little time to create a page before you have to clean up. It can be frustrating, and if you're nodding your head in agreement, the perfect solution for you might be digital scrapbooking.
Don't be intimidated by this concept if you have no computer skills. Digital scrapbooking is easy to learn and can make designing pages and creating albums go more smoothly, leaving much more time for the other things in your life. By following a few simple steps, you can begin digital scrapbooking in less time than you think.
There is no wrong way to scrapbook. Typically, the more creative and resourceful the person, the better the page. The main focus of each page should be the picture(s) or the letter or whatever is the most important to the creator. If you are interested in starting to digital scrapbook, or incorporate digital techniques with traditional scrapbooking, there are a myriad of Web resources available.
First, you need to find a way to put your pictures online. This is easily achieved with a digital camera, but hard copies of photographs can also be put onto your computer. Even if you do not know how to transfer pictures from your digital camera to your computer, you can put your pictures onto a CD at any photography center. At one of these centers, you can also scan your printed pictures and put them onto a CD as well. If you want to take it a step beyond the basics, you can register for a website on the Internet that hosts photograph sharing. You can also use photo-editing programs to change the look of your picture, but this is not necessary for beginners. In any case, once your pictures are on your computer, you can use them to create scrapbook pages.
There are many programs available that help you design and print pages. You can buy a program at the store, or you can purchase a downloadable program on the Internet. This is an especially good option if you want to share your album online. Compare prices and services on the programs before making a purchase-not all programs are made the same way, and you'll want to find one that's appropriate for your skill level. When you've chosen and purchased a scrapbooking program, take some time to go through the tutorial. Learn to use all the functions of the program from the start, and you'll save yourself a lot of time when you're trying to create pages.
Every program works differently, but after you've created pages you can print them out or post them on a website. This is not only easy, but also convenient for family members and friends who many want to print their own copy of your work or view your entire album. Having your pages online is also security-if anything ever happens to the hard copy of your album, it is simple to print the pages again. Digital scrapbooking is worth the initial cost and time to learn for beginners who have little space or time to create hand-made albums.
About the Author: Michael Saunders edits a site on Creative Scrapbook Ideas and is president of Information Organizers, LLC.