Bringing Out The “Real” Story

May 27 2015 Bringing out the real story blog header
Hello hello howdy aloha!!!! I am wayyyy excited to be writing my first blog post and hosting only my second challenge. (you couldn’t tell could you?!!!)

You know how everyone talks about a picture being worth a thousand words. I couldn’t agree more but sometimes just sometimes pictures also need a bit of help – with words. Especially when documenting those little firecrackers otherwise known as children! I’m fortunate to have two of the species and I can’t be more thankful or grateful for having given this opportunity to grow up (once again!) with them. Sometimes I feel like an outsider observing and documenting their changes, their ups and downs and their extra special every-day-not-one-like-any-other one!!!!

What I’m trying to say is that if I could capture all the nitty gritties and quirks of my ever-restless and unpredictable rug rats, I would consider myself  a photographer par excellence! Sadly that doesn’t always happen. Most of the times I’m laughing too hard, clutching my stomach to reach for my iphone or Nikon D5100! What I can do is grab my notebook and write down the precious moment to be preserved for posterity. If I can find pics from the similar time period I will most likely include them or I’ll just go on with the story solo.

You will have come across many different ways of documenting the “real” story. It can be in form of interviews or lists or just a conversation captured. I personally like to make these pages with an eye-catching tile so it is quite evident what they are about – what happened, what was said and the aftermath lol!!!

Here are a few of examples to bring the concept alive for you:

1. I used this for the recently hosted NSD journaling challenge. The pictures here tell a contradicting story to the “real” moments. So it was quite important that I recorded those details for posterity with a pinch of humour of course!

bringing out the real story

(Not) love!!!


2. Here’s one where just two lines of conversation tell you the entire story – the dynamics of it and brings the scene alive for you. These photos are from the same day but not exactly when the conversation happened.


brining out the real story

You are welcome didi!


3. Here’s another style I like – capturing a sort of theme around my daughter’s dare-devil jumps.


brining out the real story

Trisha’s jumps


4. And here’s my final example. I didn’t have photos for this but that didn’t stop me from documenting the very cute and important aspect of the two sisters’ talk. It is much more fun this way I think. Leaves you to do the imagining bit.


brining out the real story

No way you said that!!!


So that’s it. There is no one mantra for story telling, it should be what appeals to you, what brings it alive for you. Hopefully, this gives you a bit of inspiration to scrap about things that don’t always have photos or the right corresponding photos or any photos at all!!!

I am also hosting a challenge on this theme.Come join me in playing here;use some of the tips from above or share one of  your own.

Happy story telling – the “real” way.

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About the author: Shivani Sohal is a donner of many alter-egos. A finance professional by day in busy London, she morphs into a seemingly normal mum of two in the evenings and weekends. She is constantly found with her fingers in too many pies and juggling the metaphorical balls. That is living on the edge for her; aided by the two ankle biters and a darling hubby who define the warm and mushy for her. She is ferociuosly dedicated to memory keeping – almost immune to any nay-sayers (or equally disruptive crying children or annoying house fires!!!);keeping her head down and forging ahead at all times.

Real Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

Finding Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts


We all know that Pinterest is a great source for inspiration for layouts, but beyond being inspired by other people’s layouts, what do you look at for inspiration? I’m a firm believer than inspiration can come from anywhere. One of my very favorite ways to get inspired is by looking at vintage record covers. I have several of these pinned on my inspiration board.

Find Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

For this layout, I found a record cover that I really loved and modeled my layout almost exactly after it. I used The Digital Press’s shop Collab called Go Play and created a sketch in Silhouette Studio and used print and cut with my Silhouette Cameo to cut out all the different pieces of this layout.

blog 2

Source here

Another example of a layout based off of a record cover is this layout I made using Mari Koegelenberg’s and Laura Passage’s #HappyThings collection.

Finding Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

This layout was based off of another record cover and made within the Silhouette Studio. This collection was so fun and inspired me to document all the things that make me happy currently. The record cover was very graphic and geometric which is one of my favorite ways to scrapbook— clean and with lots of circles/triangles/stars, etc.

Finding Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

Source here.

And if you can’t find the inspiration you are looking for in record covers, I recommend finding a good scrapbook sketch.

Finding Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

I found a sketch on the Paper Issues blog and was immediately inspired to use Amanda Yi’s and Karla Dudley’s Limitless collection. Again, I recreated the sketch in the Silhouette studio using the shape tool and shapes I owned and dropped the digital patterned papers directly into the shapes. Then I did a print and cut and assembled and added a few extra embellishments.

Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box when it comes to finding inspiration. Record covers or any sort of visual art can be great forms of inspiration. And if all else fails, find a great paper scrapbooking sketch and go from there!

Finding Inspiration for Hybrid Layouts

About the Author: Brenda Smith is a mother of two littles and wife located in Southern California. When she is not scrapbooking, you can find her working full-time, trying to finish up her college degree with online classes, or sleeping because there are never enough hours in the day. Hybrid scrapping satisfies her addiction to technology and her addiction to paper and glue.

“Real Life” can be “Real Tough” – Scrap Therapy

"Real Life" can be "Real Tough"

As “Memory Keepers” we strive to document our lives, from the everyday “little” things to the big events or occasions, vacations or day trips and milestones or achievements. Our pages and projects tell our story, document our life, and they will be around for generations to come! Our loved ones, ourselves, family, friends all smiling and joyful, jubilant and merry!

Now all of this is absolutely great to see, amazing to look back on, and it is simply wonderful to reminisce about those magical and joyous times in our lives when looking through our printed books, or handmade projects! However, what about those times of worry, times of stress, those hiccups along life’s path? Those cloudy days, the sick days, times when you or a loved one has felt heavy hearted? We all have these moments, and there is no harm in sharing or documenting them! Don’t be afraid to lay testimony to those moments in your life too, because “Real Life” can be “Real Tough”!

The tough times, sadness, down days and nail biting moments are just as important to remember, and sometimes scrapping them out can make dealing with those sad, gloomy and bleak times a little easier! I like to call it “Scrap Therapy!”

Here is an example of documenting the sad and difficult times of family life. Erin (Miimsgirl) documents here in this layout the passing of a family pet and shows the sadness and grieving from her sons eyes. A part of  life we all experience for the first time in many different ways, and something that is monumental for a child and can be the very beginning of watching your children grow into compassionate  and caring young people.

Goodbye Tiger

Real Life can be "Real Tough"

Credits:  Monsters in my Head by Sugarplum Paperie & Studio Basic 


“Scrap Therapy” can also take you out of your usual comfort zone, I first tried an “Art Journal” style page when I was going through a particularly tough time back in 2013, I was struggling with my chronic illness and the comments of “But you don’t look sick” plus lots of  “well meant” advice or “bright ideas” had me ready to just scream! My page was dark and messy with a mix of brushed, painted  and bold stamped alphas, lots of paint and some serious heartfelt journaling! It took a whole weight off my shoulders just by  “scrapping it out”.

“Real Tough” doesn’t necessarily mean something heavy or depressing!  I’d like to share with you my most recent “Art Journal” style page. In this page I’m expressing what’s going on right now in my weight loss journey, it is starting to get a bit rocky, I’ve hit a bump in the road and need to power on through it! I’m reminding myself to “keep my chin up” I’m documenting my struggle yet being positive about it too,  reminding myself that this is a journey and I need to keep going!

Keep Going

Real Life can be "Real Tough"

Credits: Heart Art : Value Bundle #10 & Let’s Go Outside : Collection by Sugarplum Paperie


Another visit to the gallery had me admiring this arty and creative layout by Pamie! Journaling is a fantastic way to document your feelings and emotions, your thoughts and worries.

Here Pamie documents a time in her families life when things seemed so uncertain, yet there were some blessings in disguise too! Getting those thoughts out of her mind and into a visual diary of sorts, had her noticing and realizing that although it was a rough ride, life had a way of working things out in the end!

Trust The Process

Real Life can be "Real Tough"


I’m going to leave you with this page I made documenting my everyday life living with chronic pain and having to self inject every 2 weeks. I scrap my families every day moments, vacations and achievements in “Pocket Style” pages, so why leave out the “Real Tough” side of our life in this style of memory keeping? It is telling a story of part of me, the fact I have overcome my fear of needles to a certain extent, that I have been braver in the last year than I ever though I could be.

I’m hoping that one day I can look back on this time in my life  and see how far I have come since the treatment began, that I can remember how tough it was and hopefully how easier it has become? Who knows what the future holds, but at least I have documented  the memories and events of my life right now!

Be Brave

Real Life can be "Real Tough"

Credits: Be Brave : The Kit & Be Brave : Journal Cards by KimB – Everyday Life Templates Set 4 by Sabrina’s Creations


So yes, “Real Life” can be “Real Tough” but I hope you can see that documenting those tough times is easier than you think, and that these moments are just as important to document  as all the wonderful happy, bright and cheery pages we see in the galleries and have printed in our memory keeping books.

Please join me in the Forum where I am hosting a challenge this month, and hoping to help you get those “Real Tough” times documented too.




About the Author: Vicky is a member of the Creative Team here at The Digital Press. She is a stay at home Mum who lives in the UK about 10 or so miles from Central London, with her husband and their “karate mad” 8 year old son. She is an avid reader, memory keeper and coffee lover! With an obsession for Yankee candles!










Be Real with your Mess

Real Life is messy in all aspects, especially if you have children. I’m sure you have taken pictures of the messes your children or pet or even YOU have made. What have you done with them? For me, I usually decide to scrap a ‘better’ photo or one that makes life look ‘better’. Not anymore, though. This year I am being brave and more real with my scrapbooking. I am documenting life and all the messes that go along with it.

Be Real with your Mess


Mommy Just Wants a Shower- I’m sure most Moms can relate to just wanting a shower without the house burning down.


Be Real with your Mess


This is Our Everyday- Two photos from that week that perfectly define our evenings. laughter, noise and utter silliness.


Be Real with your Mess


Real Life is Messy- My toddler is nicknamed the Tornado Toddler for good reason.


Be Real with your Mess


Lastly, this two pager documents all my favorite messes- literally and in terms of just a busy, messy life.


Be Real with your Mess


This quote sums up how I am approaching the mess of every day life. The actual messes, the long hours, the frustrations and the struggles with raising children.


Be Real with your Mess


So do you think you are up for the challenge of Being Real with your Mess? Head over to my challenge to scrap a page that perfectly captures your messy life.


Sabrina About the Author: Sabrina is a wife and mom to two kiddos- Captain and Sunshine- living in sunny California. When she has free time she loves to do some type of  project whether it is scrapbooking, a string art board, a washi tape project or other DIY project that is usually inspired by Pinterest. Her favorites are creating colorful  layouts or pocket pages.  Another lofty goal she has for the year is reading 100 books.

Real Life: Document Your Days

Real Life: Document Your Days

If you’re anything at all like me, you reach for the camera when something catches your eye – or your heart. A sweet little moment, amazing light, beautiful colours, whatever it may be. Collecting these images together, however you approach your memory keeping, is powerful and can be a comprehensive record of your life and what you’ve seen and done. What it might not do is reflect the reality of your day-to-day: your real life.

Any given day can include a myriad of moments and details that taken together form a rich picture about how you live your life. From your morning coffee routine to your child’s favourite storytime read, from your commute to the changing view outside your kitchen window. Capturing the ebb and flow of a normal day in your life can be a beautiful way to document the memory of this life – the here and now.

I have been super inspired by two projects that do exactly that: the Day In The Life mini album project by Ali Edwards, and the Day In The Life photo-essay project by Clickin’ Moms. I love this quote from the awesome series of tips from Clickin’ Moms:

There’s something remarkable about the power of a single photograph to tell an entire story … but don’t dismiss the distinct but equally compelling strength of the photo essay. Allow the images of your Day in the Life project to speak collectively, to build on one another, to relay context and details about your life that would be impossible to convey with a single image.

If you’re not up for doing a whole project, I think it would be pretty to incorporate this approach to memory keeping into your normal scrapbook style, whether you do page or pocket scrapbooks. All it takes is to either journal or photograph your normal daily routine, or to scrapbook a series of photographs taken on a single day that document that day in your life. I chose to document a single day, one of the last days I have multiple photos before my son was born. This layout made me think that this approach would be an awesome way to document the changes week to week or month to month during your pregnancy or over the first weeks or months of your child’s life.


Real Life: Document Your Days


You’ll find plenty of perfectly matched goodies in the TDP store to help you out – I used the gorgeous Daily Routine {Collection} from Anita Designs:


Daily Routine Collection by Anita Designs


Make sure you check out our May challenge series in the forum that’s full of ideas for keeping it real this month. If this has motivated you to scrap a day in your life, our Document Your Days challenge starts May 6.
KathrynAbout the author: Kathryn Wilson shares her 1920s New Zealand home with her husband, her brand new baby boy, a wauzer, and a cavoodle. She is a photographer, and both a digital and hybrid pocket scrapbooker, who has lots of DIY projects she should probably be working on right now.

Be REAL, Be Brave, Be Honest


This month we are focusing on the word: Real

Thinking about this word, I was drawn to how powerful it can be.  To me, it means honesty, bravery, truth – really diving in to topics and seeing what comes out of you.  Personally, I myself need to be a bit more real and brave with myself and step out from behind the lens and be in my own stories I am sharing, not just sharing those of my children and family.  What about you?

Searching for inspiration on Pinterest, I came across several quotes that inspired:


Sources (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)

As you can see, the word Real can be used in many different ways.  What really jumped out at me is to really open your eyes and be brave and focused in your storytelling, photography, etc.  As you think of this word, please think about what it could mean to you – how it can stretch your own thoughts and feelings both personally and creatively.

Each month, we like to encourage you to step out of the box at times with our challenges.  Below are the list of upcoming challenges for the month that focus on Real. For more information about our challenge system please read this post in our forums.


This gorgeous challenge schedule was created by creative team member Alina, using the brand new store collab Go Play that you can purchase for only $4 for the first 4 days of the month! We look forward to seeing you in the forums and here on the blog! Have a great May!


About the Author: Rachel Alles is on the Creative Team here at The Digital Press.  She is fortunate to share her life with her loving husband, Doug, and two blessings: Madeline and Maxwell.  The three of them are her main source of inspiration for her pocket and traditional style pages.  When she’s not scrapping, she enjoys anything Disney related, learning more about photography (and attempting to turn the dial off Auto) and dabbling in home decor projects.