Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Studio J: Fourth of July

I confess. I'm snap-happy. I'm never without my camera. My nine year old granddaughter nicknamed me "The Nanarazzi" on a recent family vacation! Truly, I love photos. As a youngster I used some of my babysitting money to subscribe to LIFE magazine ... but that's a whole other post someday!

I'm not alone in my snap-happy way of life. Most of us take tons of photos these days. But what we do with our photos after we've pushed the click button is key to how successfully we use them to tell our story. No matter what form of scrapbooking we do, it's ultra important to have a sound process by which to use the photos effectively.

I had the pleasure of listening to (and meeting) Stacy Julian at the Dallas convention earlier this month. I loved how she pointed out that this new age of digital photography can have a  counterproductive effect on our scrapbooking hobby. Taking control of our photos and finding what type of scrapbooking works for us is what will sustain our interest and maximize our fun. After all, this is a hobby. A very useful one mind you, but a hobby nonetheless. Hobbies are meant to be enjoyed. Photos and scrapbooking should never be a source of frustration or guilt ... ever.

I could go on and on about the things I've learned from Stacy Julian's Photo Freedom but I better get back to the matter at hand .... lots of photos from Fourth of July 2012 and how Studio J made it easy for me to create super awesome layouts that tell my story.

This first layout contains photos I snapped with my iPhone. I used this layout to tell the story that unfolds on the following two "photo intensive" layouts:

On the left page I drew in one journal area, then copy and pasted it twice. I typed in my story throughout the three journal areas. Then, zooming in, I tucked the journal areas together and added the stitching on top and bottom. Dividing my long-winded journal entry makes it easier to read and gives it a clean look.

Studio J Tip: Journal boxes or wells that are part of the initial page pattern can be converted to photo wells. However, when you use the the text tools to insert your own journal boxes, you are creating a journal area. Journal areas cannot be converted to photo wells.

For this next layout, I chose photos that captured my best memories of this year's hometown parade. The flags, floats, planes, smiles, and silliness topped my list.

There are a number of collage-style page patterns available in Studio J. This particular one is aptly named "Fab Fifteen".

Studio J Tip: So you love this pattern but you don't have 15 photos to lay in. Good news. Any one of the 15 photo wells can be converted to a journal box. Best part ... you don't have to use it for journaling. You can fill it with paper and drag stickease into place and alter the look of the layout to suit your taste. They don't call it a "custom" layout for nothing!! 

And last but not least, I used my own collages to create this layout. I'm featuring photos that "Celebrate Family" on Fourth of July:

These high resolution collages were created using PicMonkey. I saved them in the "2012 Collage" folder on my computer. Then I uploaded them to Studio J and dropped them onto the "No Limits" page pattern. Yeah ... it really is that easy!

I love all the "happy" going on in these photos and just didn't feel the need to do alot of embellishing. I already have plans to create a mini album with these pics. I'll add more detail on that project instead.

One thing I need to work on: I would have liked the blue PicMonkey collage background to have matched the Studio J kit better. I'll eventually figure it out. In the meantime, I'm good with this. I'm learning as I go too!

Studio J Tip: The title tile was created by laying a vellum journal area over the photograph. Using the same "Independence Day" kit from the previous two layouts, I added my title work and stickease.

My main point today is this: Choose only the photos that tell your story and preserve your best memories. Save the rest for the other great projects and gift ideas I know you have on that to-do list.

I can't say enough good things about digital scrapbooking. It's enabled me to tell my story using a creative technique I knew absolutely nothing about only four years ago. Like Stacy Julian says:
"If you don't tell your story, who will?"

I encourage you to give Studio J a shot the next time you feel overwhelmed with too many photos and not enough time to tell your story.

Gosh, I hope I didn't bore you to tears today. If I did, just scroll up to those happy faces in the layouts .... they'll put the smile back on your face!

Thanks for stopping by!
Comments, questions .... always welcome!  


  1. This is one of the best and most informative posts I've read about Studio J. Filled with great ideas and tips - and not to mention all those wonderful photos!!

  2. Great post! I think I will refer to this again when I work with Studio J! I love how you welded the journaling boxes together on the first page to make a bigger box. Love the added stitching too. You really have elevated what you can do with Studio J!


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