documenting kids’ artwork
Say hello to today’s guest here on the blog — Megan, who is a part of our Project Life® App Creative Team! You likely know that I have done a LOT with my kids’ albums and getting all of their STUFF preserved / scanned / photographed / scrapbooked. We’re delighted to have someone else share what’s working for HER! Take it away, Megan!
Hey everyone! If you follow me on Instagram, you may know I am a complete sucker for any artwork that my boys bring home from school or therapy. It took them so long to master their fine motor skills that make holding a paint brush or a marker even possible, so it makes me cherish their little works of art even more!
I always want to include their artwork into my Project Life albums, but generally I run into two big problems: 1) a lot of times they are way too large to fit into my 12 x 12 albums and 2) I am an app girl. All of my layouts are done using the Project Life App, and therefore I don’t have the option to cut down the artwork they bring home to slip into my pocket pages. I also can’t give them journal cards to draw on for my albums.
Luckily, after watching Becky share her process for catching up on her kids’ albums (catch part 1, part 2, and part 3), I now have a system down that allows me to document all of the boys’ artwork into either our family album or their school albums. I would love to share with you how I document these memories using the Project Life App and the Little Picasso Overlays Kit. This will be coming in the next app update, so watch for it!
Before I can start making my layouts, I first have to get all of the boys’ artwork into digital format. I do not have a scanner, so instead I use my iPhone and a white foam board that I picked up at Target. I take all of my photos in my living room because that is where I get the most natural light. I set their artwork on the board one at a time (unless I am combining multiple projects into one picture) and then I snap a photo using my iPhone. I usually try to capture some of the white board in the photo too as a border for their artwork. This gives me a little more flexibility with the overlays in the app (sometimes they are easier to see on a white border versus a very colorful art project).
Once I have all of the artwork photographed, I am ready to start my pages! Before starting the first layout, I like to scroll through the kit to see what kind of specific overlays there are. For example, the Little Picasso Overlays Kit has some great overlays that specifically reference favorite animals, foods, toys, etc. I find it helpful knowing this before I start making my pages so I can remember to use them if I have artwork that matches up with them. As far as my actual layouts go, there really is no specific system I use for placing photos where I do. A lot of times I try to find a good balance between artwork photos that are very colorful and photos where more of a white background is showing. I generally try to group artwork photos together when they represent a similar theme (holidays, seasons, etc.).
When I add one of my photos of the boys’ artwork to the layout, I usually will brighten it up right in the app and add a little saturation to it as well to make it pop a bit more. Then I choose an overlay that complements it. I play around a bit with the cropping of the photo if I need to help it line up with the overlay. I am also a big fan of colored backgrounds for my layouts, so I try and pick one color and use that for all of my pages. I don’t get caught up in trying to change the background color to work with the specific artwork on that page.
Once I have the pages completed, I get them printed and slip them into my boys’ school albums! (Did you know you can order prints directly through the app? It’s the most convenient option, the best quality, and great prices!) I love that the Little Picasso Overlays offer little details about the artwork like my house, my favorite season, etc. This allows me to add more photos to my layouts and less journaling cards describing what the artwork represents.
I love having all of the boys’ artwork in their school albums! Every once in awhile I will include one of the photos in our family album, but having them all in one place is so nice! My boys love to look through it and see their masterpieces! The other added bonus is being able to toss all of the artwork after I am done making the pages. It is a guilt-free process because I know they are documented and preserved!
Note: The Little Picasso Overlays are now available at Digital Project Life and are coming soon to the Project Life App.