Monday, March 9, 2015

What are Albums, Mini Books, Folios, and Journals

(c) 2015 P.Lynne Designs
A mini book I created in 2012

(Warning:  The following activity may cause you to cry in happiness, do lots of ahhs and oohs, joys of laughter, and may spark that part of your brain that has not been active since you were a child.  Proceed with happiness. J )
I am starting to make more mini books and journals.  I think they are fun and can be as interactive as you make them.  Today, before I give you what is called a cross posting of journaling, both from a writer’s view and a scrapbooker’s view, I want to give you an overview of the differences between all these books.  
First of all, I think it is important that you know the difference of these books (also called scrapbooks) in terms of size, content, and elements in each of these books, so you can determine for yourself if you want to make more of a traditional style album, or an interactive one.
What is it?
A traditional photo album (TPA) is just that.  Think of your parent’s photo albums.  They are commercially made, and only come in a handful of sizes.  Back in the 1970’s, magnetic albums were introduced, but the only problem is after 20 years, the photos start deteriorating.  Today, magnetic albums are just as safe in preserving photos as the others by using paper that is photo safe.  The only thing you can do on a TPA is look at photos, that’s it.  There is some reading involved (journaling) but that is it. 
A mini book is usually handmade, with some interaction.  In fact a mini book, folios, and journals all run in the same category, which is homemade.  All of these terms can be used interchangeably and they basically mean the same, a photo book of your memories.
Size does matter with photo books (which what I am going to call them throughout this post).  For your TPA, you can use any size to be considered a TPA.  For mini books, a tiny book to an 8 x 8 album is considered a mini book.  A folio and a journal is larger than 8 x 8, but no bigger than 12 x 12.   So the sizes in all of these albums do overlap.
Of course, there are photos involved, as well as journaling, and I will go more into depth on the journaling part in a separate post (as a crossover post with my other blog, My Ambiance Life).  In a TPA, the photos are arranged in either a photo protector page with no embellishments or in a layout page with embellishments. 
The other books have interactive pages.  You can make a pocket, flip up or down, waterfall (which is basically a different take on the flip page), a book within a book, and pull out pages for starters.
Themes and types of books
To me, all photo books need to have a theme, even if it just the year in which the photos were taken.   With TPA, people are use to the fact of just throwing photos in an album, no chronological, personal, or theme, but I want to challenge you to this:  Try at least putting your photos in chronological order by year, you do not have to go by month and year, unless you do a timeline of events.  Also with any photo book, you can make the following types of books (in both a TPA and homemade)
·         Smash book- add pictures, event tickets, a label from a soda you drunk in a different city or country, a card from a dear friend, a lock of hair from your baby’s first haircut, just about anything.
·         Baby book-highlights from birth to the first or second birthday.
·         Travel adventures-highlights from a cruise, family trip, or country exploring trip.
·         Event book-highlights from your event from start (planning stage) to finish (the fun times)
·         College years
·         School years- from preschool to graduating from high school
·         Wedding book
·         Adoption book (also called a life book)
·         House book- highlight from start (planning stages) to finish of a remodel or house hunting
·         Spiritual Journey book-from baptism or acceptance into your journey and your walk with God, including moments of clarity and understanding. (Can also highlight pages from your written journal, if you like)
·         Business book-highlight moments of your business, from making the decision to have one to making your first dollar.
There are many, many more themes I could have placed in this post, but these are the ones I have seen and done.  I am currently working one for a friend of the family, whose matriarch is 105 years old (also a friend of the family, who I consider my grandmother), so this is a very special album to me.
I place this last, because it does not matter rather you place pictures inside a traditional photo album, or create a paper bag album, and you can be as creative as you want to be.  I used to hear this all the time when I worked at Archiver’s, a Memory Store, the words, “But I do not know how to scrapbook.”  The next words that came out of my mouth were, “you can put photos in a photo sleeve”, then I would instruct them on what products they need to make the book.  Scrapbooks, photo books, and others do not have to be fancy, just orderly.  You can go online and copy a simple layout, as long as you use the layouts for personal use only.  I even invite my readers to copy a look I have, as long as you abide by my copyright rules.  If you decide to do that, please give credit where credit is due, and ask permission first if you wish to mention the look you have recreated.  I do not mind and I am sure other designers do not mind as well.  I always acknowledge the original designer when I am stuck on a design.
I hope you try to make an album from scratch.  For me, it is very therapeutic, and you exercise the muscles in your brain that very few adults use after the age of 20.    

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