Digital Scrapbook: The 5 W’s

digiscrap pages

Some examples of digital scrapbook layouts

When I tell people that I digital scrapbook, I often get a lot of questions.  “Why do you do it?”, “What do you use?”, and of course, “How does it work?”.  I am here today to answer a few of those questions.

What IS digital scrapbooking and what do you need?  Well, simply, it’s scrapbooking using your computer.  There are many, many, stores you can shop at online (and freebies you can download) for papers and embellishments….just like the real thing!  All you need is a computer, and a photo editing program – I recommend Photoshop Elements. You can download a 30-day free trial at adobe.com. There are other programs out there too, but this is by far the most popular and has the most tutorials and specialized tools out there. For a less expensive (ie free!) option, check out Gimp. It’s a little more complicated to use, but it will certainly do the trick!

Who can digital scrapbook?  ANYONE!  If you have a computer, you can do it.

Where do you digital scrapbook?   Anywhere you can plug-in your computer (unless you have an amazing battery pack LOL).  In your office, in front of the tv, at the LSS with your other scrapbook buddies, at your cabin by the lake… ANYWHERE!

When do you digital scrapbook?  This is one of my favorite parts of digiscrapping…you can start a page, save it, come back later, work on it for a few more minutes, make supper, put the kids to bed, and then go finish you page!  And you don’t have to worry about cleaning things up and getting them back out.  You don’t have to worry about the cat jumping up on the table and scattering your neatly arranged embellishments.  You don’t have to worry about your toddler eating the sparkly purple brad. You get the idea.  Actually, after a little practice, you can finish a digi layout in under 15 minutes. Yeah, baby!

Why would you digi scrap instead of paper and glue?  Well, first of all, no one says you have to throw away your paper and glue (I certainly haven’t!), but my main reasons are these:

  • it’s clean.  I can do it when my kids are around!  May I repeat? NO MESS!
  • it’s easy to duplicate. I can design once, and print many times. One for me, one for my kids albums, one for the wall, one for grandparents…you get the idea! And even in different sizes… 12×12 for me, 6×6 for the grandparents, etc.
  • it’s fast! Especially when using quickpages or templates, you can finish an amazing looking page in under 20 minutes.  Even when starting from scratch, I’ve never worked on a page for more than an hour.  I cannot say that about paper scrapbooking!
  • it’s inexpensive.  You can buy a full kit full of things to scrapbook with for around $6, and use it as many times as you want! Can you scrapbook a full paper album for $6?  Ok…I am not counting printing…but still…CHEAP!
  • I dont have to print photos in advance.  Heck…I dont have to print photos. Period!  No worrying about what size I want to scrapbook them, if I want b/w, how to crop, etc.  I do it all as I design my page.

I hope that gives you a little bit of insight into digital scrapbooking.  Dont worry, we will tackle the HOW in another (or most likely many more) articles!!  If you have questions, or requests for tutorials, please comment here! I would love your feedback.

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