This is Mike’s third installment in our series of blog posts for creating a heritage album. Click here to see the first in this series, and click here to see the second installment.
Based on previous blog posts, by this time you have hopefully managed to complete your intel gathering with relatives and late-night scanning sessions. In addition, you should have created a book project and added a name to each page to help determine the book contents and length, and started to think about the design of the book. Now the fun really begins as we start to select backgrounds and add images to pages.
First, I suggest determining the general look & feel of your book, and adding background to each page. Here are several options, though there are certainly many different ideas for page backgrounds. And remember that you can always go back later and change your mind (ahh, the beauty of digital scrapbooking!):
- The Same Background Throughout – This simple option can be highly effective: make each page background identical. This may be something as basic as a solid color or a single piece of paper. Move ahead and insert that background now onto all of the pages in the album.
- Different Page Backgrounds – With different backgrounds, the layout of each page may be similar in style, but they will each be distinct in their own way. They still may be simple in design, such as a variety of solid colors, but they may also be far more intricate, making it difficult to do until you are specifically working on that page. An example would be using different photographs on the background of each page.
- Predesigned Template – You should already have the names of the people on each page of your heritage album. If you decide to use predesigned pages, I recommend selecting a predesigned page that best suits that person, then adding the name of the person back to the page once you have selected the template to use. Remember, you can always add or remove photo boxes to predesigned pages, so don’t get too hung up on the number of photos on the predesigned page. You may also end up using the same page template on multiple pages in the book. I recommend not using the same template on pages that face one another, or it may make the final product look awkward and visually out of sync (unless you use a layout that’s exactly the opposite of the facing page).
They say it is almost impossible to pick your favorite child, and I suppose with most families that is true. The good news is you won’t have to in this lesson, but you will want to think about what your favorite pictures are, as they will be the focal points of your pages. Most of us will have them: that special picture of a parent or grandparent that we already know without a doubt will be incorporated into that person’s page in your heritage album. Now’s the time to add a focal point to each page. Remember: it may be a photograph, but it may also be an image of a document, newspaper clipping, or some other special piece of family history. After inserting it I would also size it at this point of how large or small you want it. This may change as you work on the page itself, but once done, it will give you a much clearer view of how much page you will have left to work with for any other photos, documents and text. So between now and lesson 4:
- Insert and rearrange the backgrounds for each page you intend on doing, if possible (remember, you can change your mind later as the heritage album takes firmer shape).
- Pick your focal point for each page.
- Insert and size your focal point pictures onto the corresponding pages.