A couple of weeks ago I wrote an article called Scrapbooking Today versus Yesterday in which we explored whether the comercialism in scrapbooking today has de-personalised’ our scrapbook albums compared to the ones our Mothers and Grandmothers used to make.
I say ‘we’ explored this proposition because I received some awesome comments on this post, some of which were articles in themselves. I recommend you read the original article and then scroll down and read the comments.
One of the themes that came out of many of the comments was single photo scrapbook layouts versus multiple photo scrapbook layouts.
Here are some of the comment snippets (note they are taken out of context so you should read the full comment):
Even looking at the requirements for submissions, they ask for a close photo, of just one person .. and I think each time, how does this tell a story .. isn’t it about those series of funny photos, the story that happened, tickets, scenery photos whatever .. embellishments that mean something.
…how does using just one photo in a layout tell a story? A few days ago, a woman (a rubber stamp demonstrator) told me she would not take up scrapbooking because she had hundreds of photos and it was too daunting a task to make a page for every one. There is little in today’s scrapbook promotions to suggest to the newcomer that other layouts are options.
Now originally scrapbook pages would always have multiple photos on them (assuming they were available), as well as snippets of memorabilia and then any other pretty bits and pieces that would embellish the whole. There was no real focus on the artistic or creative side. It was purely the fun of capturing a bunch of memorabilia that told a story.
I think most of us probably would have started scrapbooking with that approach in our minds. I know I did. All my layouts had multiple photos on them. and other than putting them on a matt or in a frame and adding a small accents to the page together with journaling, that was how I designed my layouts.
And I do love going back through those albums and leafing through the layouts; enjoying the memories they evoke. Bear in mind that I brought up my daughter prior to the advent of digital cameras and as a family we had never been either very good or very prolific photographers. So I don’t have a lot photographs to choose from.
And somewhere along the line, I think it was when I had embraced digital scrapbooking, the artistic side started to kick in. And I found that one photo on my layout gave me the scope to create something that was as much about the design, look and feel, as it was about the story.
Sometimes one photo is enough for the story, if it captures the essence of the moment in, say, your subject’s expression. But often (not always) it’s because it is easier for me to create a pleasing layout design with one photo than with multiples.
Having said that, when I do scrapbook layouts of past events; such as my daughter’s earlier birthdays, I will always use multiple photos, even though they are frequently of shockingly bad quality (even after a bit of work in Photoshop Elements…thank God for the scanner) because those photos have a ‘scarcity’ value.
And I wonder if the sheer volume of photos that we now have at our disposal is a contributing factor to the popularity of the single photo scrapbook layout design. Is the sheer volume of photos making it too hard to select a few and is it, in fact easier to just pick one for your scrapbook layout? Or do we now have so many that we don’t treasure them as much as we used to?
What do you think?
Are you a single photo scrapper or do your layouts usually include multiple photos? Or maybe, like me, you apply each style to different genres of your scrapbooking (does that sound too deep?).
Why do you prefer to design your scrapbook layouts with a single photo or with multiple photos?