Today I want to write a bit about the idea of translation.
In my creative work (and in lots of other parts of my life) I often think of myself as a translator. For me, translating is taking in information/content/daily life/inspiration and then expressing it in my own creative language through scrapbooking. Each of us has our own personal creative language; our own way of seeing and expressing the stories and experiences of our lives.
Translation also relates to how we view the creative work of others. When looking through magazines or online, I take in so many different ideas – a bit of this + a piece of that + how cool that they did that with those embellishments – and then translate those themes, ideas, concepts into my own creative language. Just because I have a boy doesn't mean I only look for boy pages; I look to the overall design or the clever way an embellishment was used or a cool use of type.
I love looking at all kinds of things for inspiration. I love seeing the ways in which people create with and without a lot of products. I love seeing how people tell their stories and how they express their existence through the pages they create.
The digital layout above is one of those pages that is easily translated into either a paper or digital scrapbook page. I originally created it with paper back in 2004 and then used that design as the basis for the template. Here's a look at the original that I think I created for the Two Peas in a Bucket Creating Garden:
Here's a look at other examples of this template in action from the Designer Digitals gallery. Each person took the template and translated it using their own creative language. They made the template work for them and the story they were telling. Click on the names below for links to the specific pages and larger versions of the layouts:
If you normally look at the design of a project/layout why not try focusing on the theme/subject. Or if the subject is usually what draws you in, make an effort to look closer at the design. What can you take away from what you are seeing and translate into your own creative language?
Remember, we each have our own unique creative language. Working with digital templates, using a previous foundation design we created (what I call not reinventing the wheel), or "scraplifting" (being inspired by the design of someone's layout and using that as the basis for your own) are all simply different ways to begin the process of creativity. I also think they are each a great way to gain confidence in your creative choices.
What can you translate today?
Another thing I wanted to share with you today is in response to a couple questions I recently received regarding how I deal with and store my digital layouts. This is a shot of some recent 12×12 layouts I had printed at www.scrapbookpictures.com (I don't print these at home) laid out on the dining room table:
And in the album:
My digital layouts go right into my 3-ring albums along with my paper pages. Just as I love the mixture of sizes in my albums, I love the mixture of traditional and digital pages. They all go together because they are all our stories, documentation of our existence and the lives we are living.
For more on digital & hybrid scrapbooking check out some recent tutorials here.