Question on how to scrap another person's photo's?

This is a question that was emailed to me at: by one of my readers: "How do you scrap another person’s photo’s? This is something that some of us occasionally choose to do and it seems to be a bit challenging for me at the moment. I want to do it but am not as inspired as when it is my own kids."

It's a great question because we often as scrappers do presents for other people and we want the finished product to be the best we can possibly do. So to achieve this I suggest if you can talk to the people about their photos this will help alot! Also during this process take some notes. Try to get a feel for not only the journalling element such as: "This was John's 1st Birthday" but how they felt. You may not use the emotions in the journalling but they can really help you to evoke that mood using colours and embellishments. For instance an event that was filled with excitement and wonder would benefit from splashes of vibrant colour such as orange and red. Whereas photos of a new baby girl may look great to the recipient on a bright yellow layout if they felt that this baby girl had bought alot of happiness into their life. Colour and pattern are very useful in helping you to tell the story of that photograph.

When I'm working on a layout for someone else it certainly helps if I know the recipient well. When I know the recipient of my work I can often judge the patterns and colours I will use based on what I know they like. Knowing what styles they like is also helpful. For instance it would be pointless doing a really shabby chic style of layout for someone who is into geometric shapes and clean lines. They wouldn't realy like the finished product as much as if I took their taste and personal sense of style into account.

If you don't personally know the person who will receive the layout then try to find out where the layout is going. Is it going into an album? OR will it hang on the wall in their loungeroom? What styles do they tend to favour when decorating or dressing?

If the layout will be on display then you need to take into account the decor of that room.

Last Christmas I did three framed photos for my Best Friend of herself and her mother, daughter, sister and her sisters' son. For my friend I used the colours in the photo which were browns and golds. I also thought alot about the curtains in her dinning room as I did the photo because I knew it would sit on the sideboard in this room.

I did the same photo in a very different style concentrating more on red and green for her Mother as I could easily pick out these colours from the photo but more importantly knowing she has a feature wall with a mostly green accent I knew this would work.

However when it came time to do the picture for her sister I had to alter the photo to black and white because her sister's decor was blue. So by altering the photo to black and white I was able to do the same photo in a blue and silver theme to harmonise with her decor.

But what do you do if you can't get any information on the recipient? I suggest treating the project as an artistic expression. Concentrate on the colours that jump from the photos and work with those. What mood does the photo envoke? Maybe use that instead. Experiment with ideas and sketch out some ideas until you find something you're inspired by.

When scrapbooking I usually explore my supplies and will pull out embellishments and paper that go with the layout. This could be based on the colours or the theme of the layout or the subject of the picture. Once I have all the possibilities laid out before me I usually pick up the items that I really want to use (whether its a paper, a ribbon or an embellishment) and work around that. Mixing and matching the other elements until I have one set of supplies I'm happy with.

Next I will move the paper and other supplies around on the page, move my photos around until a layout "sketch" idea forms in my head. Then I start work.

I find that doing a layout for someone else is a fun exploration of my artistic abilities. So try to see it as a great opportunity to do something different and get you out of your usual rut. You'll probably find when you go back to scrapbooking your little cherubs that you can approach those layouts with a fresh new look and feel.

I hope that has answered your question. I'd love to hear how other readers would answer this question and any tips and hints you guys have.


Anonymous said…
Thanks for the suggestions, I think I'll have some of the pictures printed in black and white so I have some more artistic range to work with. Love the suggestions.