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Heritage Scrapbooking: Part II

Artistic Choices: Continuing Interview with Scrapbooking Instructor Karin Dean

Rebecca: Karen, thank you for the wonderful information that you provided for us in last week's article about getting organized to start an heritage album. This time, I would like to focus on the creative or artistic choices to be made when putting the album together. How do you decide what colors to use when you make an album of this type?

Karin: Using the same background color throughout unifies your album. Because you’re probably dealing with such a variety of tones in your black and white photos (everything from grays, to sepias, to yellowish or pinkish tones) a background color that’s in the medium to light range looks quite nice.  Best to avoid a stark white background (makes B&W photos look dingy).  A very dark background looks great with most formal B&Ws but might be a little too heavy for B&W snapshots.  Take into consideration all the different types of photos you’ll be using.

R: So some of the bolder colors will work well. What about selecting matting or accent colors?

K: Color should compliment; don’t let it overwhelm or detract from the pictures.  Avoid fluorescents and very bright colors that will overpower your photos. Softer, more muted colors look better with old photos, but the colors don’t need to be wimpy or somber.  Try putting your photos against many different colored papers to get a feel for what looks best.  Some colors suck the life out of the photo; others suddenly make the person’s face just jump right out at you.  No color is off limits – just look for the right shade or tone of that color to compliment your photos.

R: In what ways should the photos themselves dictate the colors we choose?

K: Consider the formality of the photo.  A formal wedding photo will need different treatment than a snapshot of toddlers in the backyard.  You can capture the formality or playfulness of a photo in the colors and patterns you choose.  If you know or remember the color of something in the photos, pick that up in your mat color and then be sure to journal about it.  (Red dress or green car  or gold sofa)

R: What about patterned paper?

K: Pattern can add a lot to old photos – if you’ve looked at old wallpaper, you know there were some pretty incredible patterns at one time!  Many scrapbook papers are created especially for heritage albums; many others (quiet stripes, plaids, tone-on-tone papers) are also appropriate.  You can cut paper apart and use it as borders or accents.

R: Now a big question. What about stickers and heritage albums? You can see that I used a few on my sample pages from last week, so you know how I feel, but I want to get your take on the subject.

Next Page>Stickers, Accents, and Cropping>Page 1, 2, 3

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