Monday, 1 May 2017


Our monthly theme for May is working with sketches.  We will all be working with these two sketches over the next few weeks...

In today's joint post we'll talk you through our individual experiences with sketches and how we use them...

Susan:  I rarely scrap without a sketch!  If I can’t find one (Pinterest is a super resource for sketches) then I draw one myself, sometimes with a drawing programme and sometimes just a scribbled idea.  Even if I scraplift I’ll draw a sketch first.  You could say I’m a ‘sketch addict’ but if I haven’t got a sketch I spend an age shuffling papers and photos around being completely indecisive.  Always remember that a sketch is just a starting point to get you going - where your creativity takes you after that is entirely up to you.  It doesn’t matter if the sketch you find has a portrait photo and yours is landscape, just flip the sketch to see if it works for you from another angle.  If the sketch has four photos and you’ve only got one, try replacing some of the photos with patterned papers.  Don’t be worried if your finished page looks nothing like the sketch you started with - if the sketch got you started and you are happy with your work the sketch has done its job.  To finish, I will unashamedly link you to my blog where you will find a tonne of sketches; please use any of them as you like, but do link back to my blog.

Michelle: as a ‘newb’ to 12x12 scrapbooking I often follow sketches, usually sourced from Google, but they very rarely end up looking anything like them. I think it is more of a confidence thing for me, to ensure I'm doing things ‘correctly’ and to give me a starting point and inspiration.

Roxy: When I started scrapbooking, I had no idea what sketches were. I just went with the flow. The first time I encountered them was when I subscribed to a UK kit club. The sketch sheet baffled me, what did I do with? I thought you had to make your layout the same as the sketch, which I disliked! After a while I noticed on Pinterest that you could add your own style, now I find using sketches easier! You don't have to take everything from the sketch, maybe you like the layers or how they've placed the embellishments. Go with the flow, it's your scrapbook page after all!

Maria: I remember the first time that I followed a sketch to make a layout ... it wasn't that long ago and I took the sketch quite literally! I put my layers exactly where the sketch had them, and the same with all the embellishments. Since then, I have used more and more sketches and have become more and more confident in ‘interpreting’ them to suit my style. I don't think I have ever rotated one, but if the sketch had hearts or circles in it, I may have changed them to stars or other shapes. I am still more literal in my interpretations than other scrappers, however, I love the challenge that some sketches give me! I have worked with some ‘interesting’ ones and with some other more straightforward. There are lots of blogs out there where they set up challenges based on sketches and I love participating in these!

Pol: I hate using sketches LOL. I take them far too literally and feel stifled. I prefer to go with the flow of my own style - quite often I have no idea in my head of a layout when I sit at my desk, and it just takes on a life of its own. Sometimes I have a rough idea but I never know where I'm going to place the elements of a page till I actually make it. Sketches are a great starting point if you're just beginning, or have lost your mojo a bit, but they aren't my favourite thing.

Jess: I've only used a sketch once and it was for a challenge. I took some of the ideas and elements but created a Traveller’s Notebook page from the 12x12 sketch. I'd never used a sketch before and generally I prefer to scraplift but I found this particular sketch really inspiring. The stars fitted so well with some of the galaxy themed papers I had and a photo I'd taken that day. The sketch had a square photo but I used a smaller, rectangular one and I moved the direction of the stars. Using the sketch on a smaller scale was easier than I expected, I just used the same shapes which I made using a punch and I added a title and a tag with journalling. Most of my pages have quite a lot of journalling which isn't always a big part of sketches so if anyone has some with space for lots of journalling please send them my way.

Emma C: When I first started scrapping I didn't really get how to use sketches to their full advantage. Sometimes, using a sketch, it’s incredibly easy to feel trapped by someone else’s design. However, I think the real beauty of using a sketch is that the thinking has been done for you. Some kind soul has already thought about design and composition and photo sizing for you, and your job...? To let go and get creative. Think of a sketch as a blueprint or a rough draft. You don't HAVE to stick rigidly to it, go with the flow, see where your photo or product takes you, but use the sketch as a really awesome jumping off point!  I also love that many scrappers can use the same sketch and each end up with a completely different layout, all totally original!

Lisa-Jane: I have a bit of a love/ hate relationship with sketches... When I have to use them for a challenge or a Design Team assignment etc, I find that it really helps to get me started. I might flip or rotate the design to suit my supplies or photos but that initial “where do I start?!” overwhelm doesn’t get the chance to kick in. Once I have started though I sometimes forget about the sketch altogether and then I end up with a finished project that bears no resemblance to the inspiration at all! I have to keep it somewhere prominent when I’m working and not lose it under a pile of scraps otherwise I veer too far from the brief. My other issue with them is that they don’t inspire me on sight. I can look through loads of saved sketches on my Pinterest board but none of them will spark that desperation to start scrapping. Show me already-scrapped versions of those same sketches though and I am itching to get sticking! I guess I’m not very good at seeing the potential in a sketch where there is no colour or pattern whereas I can see potential in rooms and houses for interior design with ease! I definitely think I should challenge myself more to use bare sketches because I usually like what I come up with and I love seeing how different other people’s versions are from the same starting point.

Laura: I love designing sketches.  When I don't have the time or energy to sit at my desk and create a layout I doodle my ideas in a notebook.  The advice I give to people using my sketches is as follows; It's a jumping off point - you don't need to copy it.  Turn it, mirror it, remove a bit, add at bit, squash it smaller or stretch it larger, switch up the photo size.  Swap a circle for a star, or a flower for a flamingo!  Another shameless plug - you can find my sketches here.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so happy with the choice of sketchs this month. As a 'sew-a-phobe' I was flummoxed by last months but I'm looking forward to getting stuck in this month.


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