May 12, 2008

The Digital Evolution

The art of memory making is as old as time. There is evidence of scrapbooks clear back to the 1500’s. Since the early 1990’s scrapbooking has exploded in America and is now the number one hobby. As long as people have been clipping and saving mementos, the industry has been dedicated to providing the essential tools of the trade, including scissors, adhesives, markers, paper, and stickers. But the recent surge in digital scrapbooking is changing all that.

Due to the information age, there has been a natural evolution from ‘traditional’ scrapbooking to digital. It started out by scrappers using the computer to enhance their photos. They would remove red-eye, crop out the background, and adjust the color of their pictures. The computer can be used to create elements that are printed out and attached to your traditional scrapbook page. Journaling is often printed on the computer because you can create fun effects with all the fonts and colors that are available. These things eventually led to scrapbookers experimenting with creating entire page layouts.

Using digital, or scanned pictures, and photo-editing software, you can create stunning pages entirely on the computer. One of the benefits of creating your pages digitally is that you can share them with friends and family, no matter where they live. Grandma and Grandpa can see the grandkids' latest adventures with the click of the mouse.

Not only that, but digital scrapbooking can be less costly than traditional scrapbooking. Traditional embellishments, which can cost $2-$5 a piece, quickly make the price of each scrapbook page unaffordable for many consumers. The internet has made digital scrapbooking elements available for a very low cost. And once you purchase them, they can be used over and over again. There are also tons of freebies out there. Most of the digital scrapbooking websites have free paper, embellishments, and even entire layouts that can be downloaded. Just do a google search for digital scrapbooking and you’ll be amazed at what you find.

Scrapbookers find that going digital solves several problems. For one, they no longer have to devote a room—off limits to children—to store the die cutters, scissors, paper, stickers, etc. It’s nice to be able to just sit down at the computer when you have a few spare minutes and work on your scrapbooks without having to haul out all of the supplies.

Another benefit is that if you make a mistake, you can just delete it and start over. You have not wasted expensive supplies or ruined priceless photos. Also, once a layout is created you can print it as many times as you want and in any size you need.

Sometimes the creators of traditional scrapbooks are afraid for people to handle them too much because of potential damage. This kind of negates the purpose for which they were created—to be shared and enjoyed by others. Digital scrapbooking solves this problem. A digital version, whether stored online, on a CD, or printed, can be shared without worrying about damaging the original.

If you decide to go digital, please don’t forget to print your layouts. There is nothing quite as exciting as finding a dog-eared album hiding in the attic.

Return to the Neighborhood!


Candace E. Salima said...

Cool. Makes scrapbooking sound a plausible hobby for a busy woman with the digital aspect. Thanks.

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