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Guest Post : Scrapbooking Comes Of Age by Stacy Julian



SJ_Quote

Is it time for a personal revolution?


We all know that our world’s economy and more particularly the world of work have progressed through eras that have defined the way we live.


As a global economy, we are in the midst of the change from knowledge-based work to emotional work—work that comes from our very core and leverages our passion, caring and generosity.


I’m totally intrigued by the idea that our scrapbooking industry has followed a similar pattern of progression. Please know that this comparison is given in the spirit of fun (I totally made this up.) I had a blast thinking about this and writing it. I hope it will be a FUN read for you –I’d love to hear your thoughts!


Agricultural
AGRICULTURAL AGE : MANUAL LABOR


We use film in our cameras, develop what we take and scrapbook what we develop. All pictures (because they represent a measurable investment) are valuable. Waste is abhorred. Creative decisions are based largely on the archival quality of available products. Resources are limited, so everything is new.


Industrial
INDUSTRIAL AGE : MANUFACTURING


An industry grows up around our need for better products and more choice. We are introduced to tools that generate something usable from something ready available (think die cut machines.) The goal is to get pages done so we can catch up with our backlog of prints. Magazines help us manufacture “creative” memories by propagating ideas and promoting techniques and products.


Knowledge
TECHNOLOGY AGE : KNOWLEDGE WORK


The digital camera and the Internet change everything.


We can capture an image and immediately see how to make it better. Without the limitations of film and developing, we quickly become photojournalists, drastically increasing the number of pictures we need to manage. As we gain access to unlimited information and online sharing we become more aware of skillful, complex and aesthetic scrapbooking. Products and services explode in response to a seemingly insatiable consumer.

Emotional
AGE OF CREATIVITY : EMOTIONAL WORK


Surrounded by surplus (pictures + products) and faced with advancing technologies that seem to challenge old paradigms, we discover that value is found in unique perspective and that the cure for excess is authentic expression. Scrapbookers who do the emotional work of bringing themselves fully to the creative process are able to sustain their passion, excavate the stories that matter and find gratitude and clarity for daily living.


ABOUT STACY : As founder of education at Big Picture Scrapbooking and Ali’s friend, I’m eager to promote a scrapbooking philosophy that is inclusive of everyone, supportive of those just starting out and story-based. You can read more of my views at stacyjulian.com.


One more thing … if you haven’t read Seth Godin’s book, Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?, I highly recommend it. Ideas for this post came pouring in, as I was reading!

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47 thoughts

  1. Sarah Kristiansen says…
    03/25/2010

    Stacy, this was WONDERFUL. I feel like you could have been talking about my whole evolution as a scrapper!! Well done!

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  2. Marg Van Patten says…
    03/25/2010

    What an awesome post! I love the historical comparison. I've experienced this same evolution in my scrapbooking. I'm proud of my own personal gains and astonished at the turns the industry has taken in the last 10 years. Thanks for sharing and enjoy a lovely weekend!

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  3. Molly Irwin says…
    03/25/2010

    Thoroughly satisfying and sparking to read this, Stacy. I do agree, it's the emotional "work" that sustains us creatively.

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  4. Angel says…
    03/25/2010

    You're just awesome Stacy! Love the article. Love just about anything that you write!! :-)

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  5. noell says…
    03/25/2010

    Brilliant. I love Stacy's brilliant mind. Thanks so much to Stacy for writing it and many thanks to Ali for including in this week's post!

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  6. Sara says…
    03/25/2010

    Well done! I have seen a huge shift in my scrapbooking perspective after this recession. It was an opportunity to break the product obsession and turn to the heart of the matter.

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  7. Wendy High says…
    03/25/2010

    Awesome job Stacy! That is exactly how I have felt with my scrapbooking! Great read! THanks!!!

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  8. Susan says…
    03/25/2010

    Thank you! Finally someone gave words to my work. It's emotional! Our time is coming; the shift is happening - your post made my day.

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  9. cynthia says…
    03/25/2010

    Stacy, this is amazing!!!!!!! So, well said to say the least:) I want to thank you for your ongoing message of keeping it simple, fun and authentic. Through taking workshops through Big Picture, my scrapbooking has become what I always dreamed it would be when I began. Documenting my story through pictures and words in a creative way. Thank you! Thank you! for continuing to keep it real without all that industry sometimes throws at us:)

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  10. kaitlin says…
    03/25/2010

    Awesome! I very much feel it is not the quantity of pages I complete but the quality of what I am documenting for my family. No more pages just because I have a picture- but because I feel an emotional attachment to the picture and want to tell a story about it.

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  11. Jana says…
    03/25/2010

    I completely agree, Stacy! I think that is why you see a lot of the scrapbooking companies closing because we are now focusing on the creativity and reuse of supplies as opposed to going out and getting whatever is new just to create in mass.
    It also falls in line with what you teach in your book and Library of Memories class - that sometimes it's the creativity found from changing your prospective of what you scrapbook that brings out this amazingly emotional pages. I know that since I read your book 2 years ago, I have really focused on using my pictures to document who we are as opposed to the traditional "holiday" or event based pages. That thought process wouldn't have come to me if I hadn't looked at what I was scrapbooking and made the commitment to document more the basic pages. Most of my favorite layouts over the last year were ones that I used pictures from another event to document a random personality trait or conversation.
    Thanks for your insight! I think it has brought my scrapbooking to a whole different level. You were definitely a pioneer of the "creative age" if you ask me!

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  12. kl says…
    03/25/2010

    "excavate the stories that matter"
    love these words.
    xo

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  13. Deb J says…
    03/25/2010

    This is good Stacy. Ali, I'm enjoying the guest posts but miss you.

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  14. kelly vandermolen says…
    03/25/2010

    In a way, I think a great dis-service was done in the boom caused by digital photography (please know that I say this while holding my dear digital slr firmly with two hands so that no one takes it away from me) simply because of the excess. Rarity increases value and the few treasured photos I have of my mom and dad as children and of my grandfathers kitted up in their army uniforms are more precious than any gems. I am not certain I would feel the same way about the photos if I had twenty different variations on the same themes. I only hope that our excesses (hopefully past!) don't devalue what we have done in the minds and hearts of those who follow us. I know I am far more selective about what I scrap now and I love the result.
    Thanks for your post, Stacey.
    Kelly

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  15. LJM says…
    03/25/2010

    Well done, Stacy. I'm downsizing my craft room space and especially my tools and supplies. I'm beginning to do more with less. I think I am finally getting over the phase where I feel compelled to purchase absolutely everything.

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  16. Laura says…
    03/25/2010

    Stacy, I really enjoy the perspective you bring to this topic. I certainly see "emotional work" as being a cornerstone of your work and Ali's and something I want to emulate. Best regards ~ Laura

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  17. Wendy says…
    03/25/2010

    Love it! So true so true!

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  18. Jaana says…
    03/25/2010

    This is an amazing post! Wow... Off to read it again!

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  19. Mollie Cox Bryan says…
    03/25/2010

    Lovely.

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  20. Kirsten H says…
    03/25/2010

    what a cool perspective on scrapping - thank you very much for sharing it all

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  21. Betheroo says…
    03/25/2010

    Loved this post, Stacy, a very clever comparison! I find all that you said to ring so true!

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  22. AnyaL says…
    03/25/2010

    Wow! Stacy you are so good at putting your thoughts to words. Loved it!

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  23. Heather Wartenburg says…
    03/25/2010

    Believe it or not this article made me cry. I guess I'm just more emotional right now with recently losing my father. However, I am LOM alumni and have been a fan for years, but this is exactly where I am right now I just didn't know how to put it into words. Thanks Stacy for writing this article and helping define this new age. Huge Hugs!

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  24. PattiP says…
    03/25/2010

    Wow, Stacy, interesting progression!

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  25. Sally Paxton says…
    03/25/2010

    I love the comparisons. As with everything else we do, the photos greatly enhanced the words. Well done. And adorable!

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