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Week In The Life™ 2017 | How I Get Started On My Album

After a full week of documentation for Week In The Life™ I generally like to take a few days off just to take care of other stuff that needs attention and let the week's words and stories settle.

Then I start. 

I just start. 

Starting can totally be the hardest part. What in the world do you do first? There's not a right or wrong answer to this question and the more you embark on projects like this the more comfortable you will become with your own process and flow. Some people like to wait until they've printed all their photos and filled all their pockets to do their title pages, some people like to do it before the documentation phase even begins, and some people like to do it to get them going with their album after the documentation phase. 

This year I decided to begin with my title and reason why pages. They are super simple and I love them. 

Edited // I see that I have the end date wrong on the image above - I will fix that today!

I went with two full-page 6x8 photos each with text (Remington Noiseless font) typed on the photos in Photoshop before printing here at home on my Canon MG7720 printer using Epson Ultra Premium Glossy Photo Paper

Here's a look at each page within my album: 

I didn't share this photo that I took last week here on the blog because at first I thought I might use it for an upcoming Story Theme (you can hear me talk more about that in the video below) but as I was looking back through my photos from the week I thought it was the perfect way to start off this album and I love all the white space above the towels. I added our names and the date and then one of the chipboard pieces form the Week In The Life Kit™

For my Reason Why page I really wanted to include a photo with all of us and this was the only one I got during my documentation week. It's a super silly selfie of all seven of us and I love it. I did some edits in Photoshop to make the sky taller in order to create a home for my journaling and title and one of the rubber circles from the Week In The Life™ Kit. I use red line super sticky tape to adhere that rubber circle to my photo.  

My journaling for this page says: "A crazy, fun group of seven humans, each with our own thoughts and feelings and opinions and stories. This is our first year all under the same roof and it’s been quite an experience becoming “us.” This project is a look at what was going on and the comings and goings during one week in our house in April of 2017. Bring on the stories."

The "we are" word art is very similar to one you can find in the I, We, You digital package

A couple notes about what I'm using: 

Here's a video overview about my starting place for bringing my words and photos together into this album: 

In the video you'll hear me mention both my Lens Of Joy workshop and my Hybrid workshop for getting significantly more details on my overall memory keeping process. Lens Of Joy is great for learning more about looking through the lens of your camera, establishing your story, uploading, editing, printing, etc. Hybrid is great for learning the basics of working with digital scrapbooking products on traditional memory keeping projects. 

Next up for me will be formatting my stories. I'm going to do something similar to what I did last year and take all my stories for the day and bring them into one block of text vs. adding words to each photo (which I've also done in the past). Remember, don't make it more complicated than it needs to be - and what's simple for me might be complicated for you. 

After I format my stories I'll move on to dealing with my photos for each day. I like to work one day at a time so I'll most likely start with Monday and whatever I do for that day (in terms of design) will be repeated for the other six days. I don't reinvent the wheel each day - I create a design formula for myself and I repeat it for each day. This makes the whole process a lot smoother. 

Two issues that often come up for people at the start of this phase of the project include: (1) attempting to choose which photos to include in the album and having a hard time making those decisions (usually meaning you have more than could ever fit into an album) or (2) feeling like you don't have enough photos and you're not sure how to go about this next phase if you don't have enough photos even to fill the pockets that come with the album.

Both are valid challenges, but don't let them stop you from moving forward. 

Remember, and this is super important, you don't have to use every single photo you took during the week for this project. Did you take five different shots of one activity? Pick and use just one photo to tell the story of that part of your day. Look for the photo that is most in alignment with the story you want to tell. It might be the setting (the environment) or it might be the subject (person, pet, etc) or it might simply be the feeling you get when you look at the photo. I generally pick photos that work together to tell an overview story of our day. Something from the morning, something from mid-day, and something from the evening with a few others thrown in. I like to have a mix of close up shots and far away shots (not usually of the same scene because space is limited) to tell the story of my day.

Also super important, you could totally do this project with one photo per day and just a whole lot of words documenting your day. Maybe that's what you end up doing with what you were able to collect this year and then next year you try to get more photos. You don't have to throw the whole project out just because you don't have enough photos for every single day. Think about the overall story you want to tell about your week and make that the focus of your album. 

Have fun and let me know if you have any questions about my starting place!

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30 thoughts

  1. AnnaWK says…
    04/26/2017

    I'm curious to why you put April 22 as your last day, are you not planning on putting Sunday in your album?

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      Just a mistake that I will edit! Thanks for catching that!

  2. jenny_t says…
    04/26/2017

    Love this post Ali! I was literally thinking last night "where do I start" and not feeling motivated at all. This just helped me do a complete flip and now I am excited to get started on my album.

    Reply 0 Replies
  3. Lize says…
    04/26/2017

    "Then I start. I just start." Love that. And so love that selfie page!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  4. gina200 says…
    04/26/2017

    Love the pages you made and love the words and advice you've given. I have to remember in all my projects to just start. (idea for a future OLW!) Thank you so much. I am documenting this week. As much as I would like to do the same week as everyone else, I think this is working out so much better for me - I am one who needs examples and last weeks examples are an awesome way to get me going this week.

    Reply 0 Replies
  5. BSAW15 says…
    04/26/2017

    Love your work! Were your selfie pictures taken vertically? They looked horizontal in your blog post. Just wondering! Thanks!

    Reply 2 Replies
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      I made it vertical in Photoshop by making the canvas taller and extending the sky to make space for my journaling.

    2. mugsie says…
      04/26/2017

      I would love to know how to do that. I spent some time a couple months ago trying to do that for a layout and couldn't get it to work :)

  6. MeliF says…
    04/26/2017

    They look gorgeous so far. Do you ever use the matte presentation paper and does it work as well with the Canon Printer as the glossy paper? Last time I printed my own pictures from an inkjet printer was about 15-20 years ago and they always seemed sticky? So I'm hoping the technology has moved on a lot since then. Looking forward to seeing the rest of the album unfold soon :)

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      With the Canon for non-glossy paper for digital embellishments and journaling I've been using Neenah Bright White (http://amzn.to/2oJvL0z). In the Hybrid workshop I did a comparison with that paper and the Matte Presentation paper and I found I liked it better for printing the digital products personally. I don't use that paper for photos generally - for photos I just use the glossy photo paper and am super happy with the results.

  7. Jeannew says…
    04/26/2017

    How do you print 6x8 on Canon? On the 8.5 x 11paper? Love your title page!!

    Reply 3 Replies
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      Yep! If you watch the video I show the 6x8 on the 8.5x11 paper before I cut it :).

    2. Jeannew says…
      04/26/2017

      Thanks! I so love being able to print my photos at home. I'm actually keeping up with PL and getting projects like WITL done. Slowly learning the printing and photoshop thing. I keep referring back to Hybrid for all the great tips.

    3. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      Love reading that!

  8. PoochPatrol says…
    04/26/2017

    Hi,

    What a simple and effective layout. I was wondering, do you sometimes take pictures with a specific embellishment in mind? By that I mean by topic, colour, composition of photo etc.

    I know I sometimes buy embellishments and then tell my husband "oh we need to go somewhere warm and tropical so I can use these cards or stamps!" lol.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/26/2017

      Hi! I don't usually take my photos with a specific embellishment in mind but I would say that I do take photos with "white space" in mind that can later be used for journaling or embellishments or something along those lines.

  9. Untiedt says…
    04/26/2017

    Love this post. You understand the challenge I have, too many photos.:) I love the video because now I'm excited to begin my album. Beginning is always the hardest part for me. I can't wait to see more.

    Reply 0 Replies
  10. LilyandTwig says…
    04/26/2017

    Love these pages and this project!! Thanks for all the inspiration!

    Reply 0 Replies
  11. agnes_and_co says…
    04/26/2017

    love this beginning of your album... so simply
    a very good idea

    thanks an good work

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. YolandaL says…
    04/26/2017

    I love this encouragement that the project could be completed with just 1 photo per day. I know how frustrated and discouraged people can get when life derails a little bit and you wind up with fewer photos than you expected. But even when that happens, you always have words. In 10 years you are going to LOVE those words and the peek they give into your life in 2017. You will. It miss the 42 photos you didn't take.

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. paminsc says…
    04/26/2017

    Love these pages as the start to your album. As usual, the tips on the video are practical and helpful. I am looking forward to getting a good start on my first ever WITL album this weekend....just before we do a photo shoot of my middle child for his High School graduation. Where does the time go? So glad to have discovered scrapbooking all those years ago. My methods for putting the memories and stories together has changed over the years but SO GLAD to have albums to look back on.

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. scholcomb says…
    04/26/2017

    I found that I don't have as many photos this year and was not sure what to do, but I realized I have some items from every day that I can include in a 6x8 page (Chick Fil-A bag, shopping bags, wedding shower invite). I think it's going to look really good - gives the album some "texture."

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/27/2017

      Love that!

  15. whitehart says…
    04/27/2017

    In answer to your question: "Starting can totally be the hardest part. What in the world do you do first?" It was pretty simple for me:
    "Wait until Ali publishes some posts about her album to help me out with mine" :) Because it's the first time I'm doing this and I-HAVE-NO-CLUE haha. Loving your layouts already!

    Reply 0 Replies
  16. ccrowell says…
    04/27/2017

    I'm loving what you've done so far. You're always such an inspiration. I was hoping for your thoughts.
    I captured my week, but now I'm not sure if I should do the album. My kids started Spring break so the first half of the week was usual routine, but the other half is all Disney since we were celebrating my daughter's birthday. Just a Disney album or should I just do the week? Or just start a new week for the project?

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. sparkle says…
    04/27/2017

    Awesome video! Thank you for the part about 'easing into it." I needed the reminder that this 'whole' process needs to be fun and not stressful. Funny- I don't think there is any other hobby that brings stress or guilt like scrapbooking. I realize the guilt/stress sometimes comes from our desire to document our ongoing life and precious photos and memories in a special way, but this has GOT to be fun or I don't want to do it. Thanks for constantly reminding us of that. Sharon

    Reply 0 Replies
  18. Lwills54 says…
    04/27/2017

    Which lesson in hybrid shows how to do this on title pages. I have the class just made it thru first lesson;(

    Reply 0 Replies
  19. Islandgirl says…
    04/29/2017

    So this is my question. I have 5 children, all going in different directions. My days are hectic and life is busy. How do I capture the busy? I have taken a heap of photos and written lots of stories. Love to have your advice?

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      04/30/2017

      Hi! You said that you took a bunch of photos and wrote a lot of stories - now you just need to bring them together. Are you asking how to create an album that has "more" content? Sounds like you probably captured the busy just by documenting it all during your week.

  20. Lize says…
    05/03/2017

    Hi Ali, I'm probably going to sound nitpicky, but I've just downloaded the "We are" digital file and the word art just doesn't look the same as on your photo. Eg. the "e" doesn't have any white space in the middle. As if it was written with a thicker khoki? Mine also looks pixelated, but probably because I'm editing in a Microsoft program, and not resizing correctly by dragging and dropping it onto my photo.

    Reply 0 Replies

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