last night i got some time for myself to go to a "class and crop" with mary grace abuzman at scrapbook oasis in irvine. it was like scrapbooking heaven! totally worth the drive down there in friday evening traffic.
despite it being her first class (ever), mg was totally in her element -- friendly, casual, fun, way too creative, and oh so helpful. we made a layout using katie pertiet's new date stamp documenting important dates in our life. mg's model layout is a 12x12 that's supposed to feature a picture of yourself and dates highlighting certain milestones. no surprise, i didn't finish; not only because i'm slow, but because i was having trouble deciding what i wanted to do. i used a vertical picture of me and rupert from the belle and sebastian concert, so i highlighted dates from our life together (when we started dating, our wedding anniversary, the kids' birthdays). because of the photo choice i have to make some modifications to the layout. but since i don't do 12x12, now i'm debating whether to start over in 8.5x11 so i can either display it or put it in an album. hence, i have no complete project to show here ... for now.
anyway, back to the evening. what can i say? it made me giddy. it seems silly to get excited about scrapbooking "celebrities," but that's exactly what happened. not only was mg there but tara whitney and lisa mcgarvey were taking the class, and kah-mei smith of fontwerks was there supporting mg. tara and lisa complimented me on the cutout technique i used for a layout featuring my sister's high school senior portrait, and kah-mei liked the color combination for a layout i worked on during the crop. it was so cool to have seasoned, professional scrapbookers look at your work and appreciate something about it. they were very generous with their compliments about everyone's work, and it's inspiring to see how they're eager to learn new techniques.
it also turns out the lady i was sitting next to has a bit of a fan following too: angi b. creates some beautiful layouts and mini-books. she showed me her cigar box album she created for a making memories contest (she made it to the top 20) and a mini-album she did based on ali's aezine challenge. for a working mom of four, she's an awfully productive scrapbooker!
anyway, the whole night (6pm to midnight) oozed with creative energy. whether you were young or old(er), new or experienced, i think everyone came away with something from the class and crop. mg did an unbelievable thing where she drew names of people in the class and created layouts for them on the spot. she managed to make at least five; i think they took her like 15 minutes each and they still looked fabulous. unfortunately, my i-never-win-anything streak continued and i wasn't chosen, but just watching her work was eye-opening. she said she sketches ideas throughout the day because she has so little time to scrap, but she was able to come up with layouts in the blink of an eye that i would never be able to do. i'm guessing she has an intrinsic ability to "see" layouts in a certain way, and the creative synapse in her brain must be zipping with energy.
it's been four years since i last went to a scrapbooking class and i've never been to a crop at a store before. i can see how productive it can be -- you're surrounded by other creative women and you have a whole store at your disposal with products and tools. the only problem is that it can get a bit expensive. i ended up going back and forth between my work table and the store, looking for certain items for a layout, but walking away with other cool products. needless to say i came home with a lot of new stuff. sshhhhh, don't tell rupert! (just so you know, though, i have far less stuff than some of these other scrapbooking ladies ... that made me feel better. ;))