This week, we are launching our new section under Project Life Tuesday. We’ve always talked about featuring Filipinos who use pocket page scrapbooking to document their lives. To kick off this new series, we invited our friend Liz to share one of her albums.
Travel is the most common theme our participants choose for their albums during workshops. We wanted to feature Liz’s album, since it shows another side of memory-keeping that we haven’t talked about on the blog yet.
Did you plan to make an album before your trip, or was it something you decided on after? If you already planned to make an album prior to leaving, did you pack any supplies with you?
I knew I definitely wanted to document it somehow—by making an album, a minibook, or doing a few Project Life inserts. I never bring scrapbooking supplies with me when I travel, though. When I’m on a trip, I want to be all there. I’ll take pictures and collect mementos, but I’ll worry about getting everything into an album later.
What are your favorite kinds of memorabilia to collect? Do you have a specific, favorite one? Did you consciously collect cards, tags, and other memorabilia while you were on your trip? How did you keep these little things while on your trip?
Hard to pinpoint a favorite. I collect everything! Business cards from restaurants, city maps, baggage tags, food packaging.. seriously, everything is fair game. I bring several Ziploc bags with me whenever I travel. At the end of each day, I empty my pockets and my bag, and stash any mementos I’ve collected in the Ziploc bag. If something is too big for the bag, I tuck it into whatever book or magazine I’ve brought along. I have an entire drawer of Ziploc bags waiting to be scrapped!
How do you record or recall your stories from the trip? Did you journal on the road?
Personally, the best way to record and recall stories from my trips is through Instagram and Twitter. Sometimes I’ll also write notes to myself on my phone, but usually social media is the way to go. For my New York trip, I used the hashtag #LYinNY on all my Instagram photos. Makes it easier to pull up the photos I took on the trip (if I posted it on Instagram, it’s probably something I want to include in the album).
With a background in publishing, does this affect how you approach your album? (Good or bad?)
I think it’s both good and bad. I always know what I want my PL spreads to look like, but the problem is making sure it turns out exactly as I see it in my head. I am guilty of always, always, always overthinking my PL albums and spreads. I think my publishing background is to blame, haha! I was trained to make sure every page looks as good as it can be, and that’s not the best approach to Project Life.
Ali Edwards has this mantra: The most important thing is to get the story told. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to tell your story. Honestly, sometimes I’ll go through pages I’ve done months ago and I have to fight the urge to redo them because I want things to look a certain way. Haha! It’s unhealthy. As they say, perfection is the enemy of the good. 10, 20 years from now, I probably won’t care if the ink got smudged or if something is off-center—I’ll just be happy that I documented these stories. I have to remember that more often.
We asked Liz to share some spreads from her album. Here are some highlights, featuring ideas that you might want to try in your own projects.
CREATING A PHOTO COLLAGE (6X8)
I love food and I knew I wanted to splurge on one really good meal on my trip. I chose Eleven Madison Park, and it was worth every penny! I had too many photos from the meal (15 courses!) so I decided to do a collage. I had already edited most of the photos using the VSCO iPhone app, so putting the collage together was super easy. To balance the photo-heavy spread, the opposite page is all text.
INCLUDING “STUFF” (not just photos or journal cards)
One of the highlights of my trip: watching a Colbert Report taping! I wanted to include the printout I got for my ticket reservation, but I didn’t know how until Pinky and Yam gave me the idea of punching holes into the side of the sheet at the LDM workshop! I put a paper clip to make sure it would stay folded and stuck another photo there too.
On the other side of the spread is the ticket I got from the Daily Show taping we also attended. It’s a nondescript piece of paper but I love that it has the date and that it shows I was 80th in line that day.
Used the same technique to include a map of the High Line in this spread:
On the other side of the spread, I stapled the label from a cup of Siggi’s yogurt to a 3×4 card. (Told you, I’ll collect anything!)
This spread (below) contains some of my favorite things to include in my PL pages: subway cards, screenshots, and photos of food! The screenshot is from HopStop, the app I used to navigate the city.
I had a photo of the compost cookie from Momofuku Milk Bar (YUM!) on a white background and thought it would be cute to stamp something on top. The ink got smudged a bit but I’m trying not to let that bother me too much, haha.
While pocket page scrapbooking aims to minimize the cutting and pasting of photos, there are times when you may want to take one extra step to make your pages look just a bit different.
My friend Lady and I share the same love for vintage treasures, so we went to the Brooklyn Flea on my first Sunday there! She ended up buying a vintage map of the Philippines, while I brought home mahjong tiles made of resin, an Ovenex pan from the 1950s/1960s, and maps of Japan.
I didn’t want the spread to be all 3×4 photos, so I used my round punch to cut out a photo of the mahjong tiles and the Ovenex pan. Glued it onto a filler card from the Vintage Travel kit that I got from LDM and called it a day!
I like including full 6×8 pages in the mix—it breaks up the monotony of pocket pages and it’s a chance to get creative!
I had a postcard from Russ & Daughters that I didn’t want to cut up, so I thought of doing a page highlighting it. The inset photo is one I took and posted on Instagram, and I wrote what I ordered on the gold label. Super simple but it was really fun to do!
We’re always curious about the process and organization of our fellow memory-keepers. Liz was game to answer a few more questions:
How and where do you print your photos?
I edit them in batches and take them to a photo printing shop. I’m looking into getting a Selphy, though, because getting photos printed is the most time-consuming part of the process for me.
How do you organize your photos and supplies?
Alphabet stickers in a box, washi tape in another box, Project Life cards in trays, wood veneer embellishments in a container I got from Muji. I got a Raskog cart from Ikea but I haven’t gotten around to assembling it yet.. hoping I’ll become more organized once I start using it!
What are your favorite tools/products to use?
I LOVE alphabet stickers. It’s embarrassing how many I have. I also can’t live without my paper trimmer and my Tiny Attacher.
Who are some of your favorite memory-keepers who do Project Life albums?
Ali Edwards, France of Bananafishstudio, Elise Cripe, Kelly Purkey, Liz Tamanaha, Jamaica Edgell. I like memory keepers who keep things simple. Life is complicated, but documenting it shouldn’t be.
We hope you enjoyed today’s feature. If you have more questions for Liz about her spreads, or her Project Life process, please leave a comment. You may also follow Liz on Instagram @airplanedream. We love her feed, and we’re sure you will, too!