Tips for Trimming Photos

Any time you scrapbook, what’s one thing you almost always have to do? Trim your photos! We’d guess you usually have a stack of photos that you have to cut and crop to fit on your layouts. This is also true in our newest Story by Stacy™ workshop kit, Short Story, where you work with a large group of photos to create a 6″ x 6″ album. What makes Short Story special is the approach it takes for creating a visual story with your photos. Using this workshop kit, you learn how to trust your own intuition and take some of the decision-making out of how to use your photos. The secret is … trimming your photos FIRST!

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Before you create a page or a layout, you’re going to trim your photos. This might seem a little strange or even feel uncomfortable, but it’s so worth it in the process. Here’s how it works. You take your stack of photos and start trimming off the pieces that aren’t necessary. When you’re working with a stack of 4″ x 6″ photos, the photo trimmer is the perfect tool to help you. Trimming your photos before making pages will help you create visual impact in your album, and it keeps the focus of your album on the elements of your photos that are the most meaningful to you.

We know it’s hard to try to trim and resize photos BEFORE you know what your layout looks like, but that’s part of what makes this process so exciting and a great reboot for your creativity. Try these tips to get started.

  1. Begin by trimming just a little bit, then trim a little more.

If the thought of taking several inches off a photo is too much, baby steps are a great way to start. Try removing just a small piece off one side and then the other. Take a look at what you have left, and BEFORE you move on to your next photo, try to trim just a little bit more.

  1. Trim to focus on the most important part of the photo.

If the photo, for example, is of your kids playing together, think about what the most important part of that photo actually is. Do you have to see all the background, or is the point of the photo that they are enjoying being together? You can trim parts of people’s legs or arms, too. Don’t feel like you need to keep the entire person in the photo. Maybe there is someone you don’t know on the edge of the photo. It’s not necessary to keep them, either. Get rid of all the extra things that can distract from the focus of the photo.

  1. Trim some of the landscape out of the photo.

You don’t need several inches of water, grass, or sky. These things can usually always be trimmed.

  1. Trim your photos into sizes that are easy to use on a 6″ x 6″ page.

When you’re working with Short Short, try to trim your photos into sizes that fit nicely together on a 6″ x 6″ page. Use sizes like 3″ x 4″, 2″ x 6″, or 2″ and 3″ squares. This makes it just a little bit easier when you assemble your pages. If you are scrapbooking in a different format, you can apply this same concept. Consider how much space you have to work with and how many photos you’d like on the page. Then trim away!

  1. Not every single photo needs to be trimmed!

You could have two or three photos that you really love in their original 4″ x 6″ size. That’s perfectly okay! This is your album and your story. Keep in mind, the more photos you trim, the more photos you can include in your album. For a Short Story album, just remember if you leave every photo in the normal 4″ x 6″ size, you won’t be able to fit many on the 6″ x 6″ pages.

Now that you have some ideas for getting started, here are a couple examples for you of how the concept of trimming your photos first works.

We trimmed these two photos using some of the tips we’ve given you. In these examples, strangers in the background or the car they are sitting in isn’t really the most important part of the photo. Plus, as you can see in the layout below, we already had one photo that showed more of the car. It wasn’t necessary to have two photos with the same car. What makes these photos interesting and special are those facial expressions.

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By trimming photos, we were able to combine five photos on this one Short Story layout. Using this process takes some of the time and energy out of deciding how to resize photos and how to attach them to your pages. With the Short Story workshop kit, you will use your trimmed photos to create one page at a time, adding as many photos as you can to each page. Then you’ll pull it all together with patterned paper and embellishments.

If you haven’t tried the Short Story workshop kit yet, check out our Visual Storytelling with Short Story blog post for more details about this new Story by Stacy™ product. Then, grab a friend, and give this workshop kit a try! Whether you are scrapbooking your story with Short Story, an Everyday Life™ album, or a 12″ x 12″ page, these tips can help you focus on what’s important in the photos you take and the memories they represent. Do you have tips for trimming photos? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!

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Visual Storytelling with Short Story

When we scrapbook, sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in planning our pages. We spend lots of time deciding where to put the photos, what paper to use, and how to add the perfect embellishments. Never fear! Stacy Julian and Close To My Heart have a new Story by Stacy™ program to help you overcome those hurdles to scrapbook a large amount of photos in a short amount of time. The Short Story workshop kits will teach you a new way to tell your stories. With Short Story, you will re-energize your creativity and learn to trust your intuition as you go.

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The Story by Stacy™ product line is all about building stronger storytellers. Through Story Starter, you learned how to access detailed memories and then write them down as small, quick stories with a photo illustration. Now we’re building on that to teach you a new process for working with your photos and memories. Through Short Story, you’ll create an entire album about a person, place, thing, or experience that you love. Short Story focuses on a visual storytelling process with a written summary at the end. Included in each workshop kit is a workbook to walk you through how to do this.

The video above gives you a small peak into what you’ll do using the Short Story workshop kit. First, you’ll consider the surface information related to your photos like where you are or the people you’re with. You’ll also think about questions that will help you interact with your photos. Then it’s time to move on to the creative part and make pages with your photos. This is where you’ll discover how to really let go and allow your creativity to flow. You’ll learn how to trim your photos BEFORE making pages, then attach photos and add patterned paper to each page, and top it all off with embellishments. By the end of the creative process, you’ll be ready to write a story summary to give your unique, authentic point of view at the end of the album.

Short Story workshop kits come with everything you need to complete a 6″ x 6″ album. Each kit has Memory Protectors™, colorful patterned paper, White Daisy cardstock, black and white embellishments, and a workbook to guide you through the process. Just pick the kit with the album you like best, Lagoon or black and white gingham. All you need is a photo trimmer, journaling pen, adhesive, scissors, and, of course, a stack of photos about your subject.

The colorful patterned paper included in your kit will make your photos stand out in a Short Story album. These double-sided papers are designed to work well with any photos with a variety of solid color prints, multi-color prints, and even a few black and white designs.

Short Story workshop kits also come with lots of options for embellishing your pages, like you see in the photos above. Each kit includes die-cuts, stickers, gingham ribbon, dots, and white twine. You’ll notice that all of the Short Story embellishments are black and white. Black and white embellishments will help you tie your layouts together and create visual flow without distracting from the story your photos are telling.

To make personalizing your pages even more fun, there is also a special stamp set designed to use in a Short Story album. The My Acrylix® Simply Said stamp set includes letters, numbers, symbols, and icons that are just the right size for the Short Story format.

There are so many stories you can tell with Short Story. It could be a specific event or vacation. You could use Short Story to document a relationship over time with a family member or friend, or it could be about something else you just really love. Whatever subject you choose, this process allows you to scrapbook a large amount of photos in a fun, colorful way. Just like Story Starter, this is a project you can start and FINISH. You don’t have to plan ahead or worry about making decisions as you go. Trust your own creative intuition and see where it takes you!

What kinds of stories do you plan to tell with Short Story? Share your ideas with us in the comments below.

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Surprise Giveaway from Stacy Julian!

Stacy Julian wants to make your weekend with a surprise giveaway!!! Find out how to win a new Story by Stacy™ Short Story workshop kit below!

You have until 11 a.m. (MDT) Sunday, September 9, to enter the giveaway. Winners will be notified by email on Monday.

Good luck! 😉

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