There is a reason I don’t like to scrapbook — it feels too similar to work to me! I must plan: what is the purpose of this page, what will be the focal point, how does it fit with the rest of the pages… In the end, I feel like all the embellishments distract from the image rather than enhancing what I’m trying to say. It’s not fun or relaxing for me. But, when I checked out at Target one day, I got a coupon for a free 8 x 8 inch photo book. I thought, “I should try this.” So of course I needed a plan… What would my book be about: my kids, specifically showing them both at the same stages from birth through six months. It was fun because I realized I naturally took the same types of photos of them. (As a second child myself, I’ve made a strong effort to ensure my daughter has as many photos as her older brother.) I can’t tell you how many options for backgrounds and textures and embellishments I tried. In the end, I’m a simple designer. I want the photos to be the focus, and I want continuity through out the book. I did this with repeating background colors and photo layouts, a consistent font, white borders on all images, and the photos themselves were paired up. It’s clean and simple, and I love it. I doubt I’ll ever do one again, given the choice. It sucked a lot of evenings from me and was exhausting!
My designer takeaway: If you need a layout idea to get started, browse through an online photo book shop’s layout options. Might give you a new arrangement to try.