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Five Different Ways to Use your Photos in Project Life by Abigail Beach

five different ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

I’m a digital project lifer. As of 2013 I have been recording my memories with journaling cards, Instagram photos and quotes. I take a lot of pictures and on average I have too many to fit into a double spread each week. I also found, after only a few weeks of doing Project Life that I wanted a fresh way to display my photos in each spread. I got bored of simply popping them in the assigned pocket. Instead I was keen to use the imperfect pictures, keen to tell the stories and keen to include as many photos as I could. I developed several techniques to achieve this and these are my five go to methods that seem to work every time. My techniques for using your photos in Project Life are digital but would be just as easy to apply to paper and ink.

five ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

five ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

The Imperfect Photo
I strongly believe that my project life shouldn’t be a collection of perfect moments and pictures. Life isn’t like that and nor are my photos! This is an easy way to incorporate an imperfect photo into your spread.
Stop thinking of that photo as a photo and instead think of it as a patterned canvas-an abstract rather than a still life. With these photos I run them through a simple blur in Photoshop (filter, Gaussian blur) and then add text, or a strong black and white filter. By making the photo the background to the story, the imperfection isn’t noticed or even important. This would be easy to achieve in paper. Write straight over your photo with a permanent pen or add some tracing paper or vellum to blur the photo slightly and then write over it.

five different ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

Blow it Up
Some photos need to be emphasized. If I want to make a statement I merge several of the pockets together to allow for one large photo. This also gives you a bit more artistic license with the photo. As in this layout, the photo stretched across several pockets however I used one of the pockets to contain the journaling. If the photo is big you can get away with a relatively large journaling card.

five different ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

Use a Photo as a ‘Filler’
This is a great technique for the imperfect photo or a photo that doesn’t really have a story. I use these photos to add quotes or shapes. They then become a filler in my layout. For instance I really liked this photo of Autumn leaves but didn’t feel there was a lot I could say about it. Instead I added a circle of transparency and then added one of my favourite quotes. The photo is still documented in my spread but it is part of showcasing the quote as well.

five different ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

White Space
This technique needs thinking about before you have even started creating a page. Consider how you take photos. Consider how you crop them. I will often frame my subject at one side of the photo so that I will have a lot of white space in which to write in.

The photo of the burger bar in this spread is a good example. When taking the photo I made sure that I framed the name of the restaurant at the bottom of the picture. That black background made the picture pop but also gave me lots of space to write in. It becomes a journaling card and photo in one.

five different ways to use your photos in project life by abigail beach @

Make a Collage
There are some weeks when there are just too many photos! Consider making a collage. Many photos can fit in one pocket and if they are of a similar theme or event, the result can be dramatic. I chose to put some of my favourite photos of Autumn together into a circle. This is easy to achieve in Photoshop with a clipping mask but just as easy to achieve with paper. Select the photos you would like to include and print them relatively small. On a 6 × 4 card arrange your photos so that they overlap and no white shows through. Add another 6 × 4 card over the top of these with a circle cut out. Your collage of photos will appear in a beautiful circle shape!

Abi Beach is a student studying at Durham University. She used to be a paper scrapbooker but with the demands of a student life and budget she has turned to digital memory keeping. She loves documenting the everyday, rejoicing in the ordinary and trying out all sorts of crafts. She writes about this at Creating Paper Dreams. You can also find her on Instagram as @abibeach.

14 November 2013

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13 Comments for Five Different Ways to Use your Photos in Project Life by Abigail Beach

  1. Jacky S Says:

    Lovely to see Abi here….and so many good ideas shared.

  2. Cheri Andrews Says:

    Some fantastic ideas here Abi – you clearly have those Project Life pockets all figured out! I love the ideas for what to do with photos that are just pretty photos that you don’t have much to say about – I take a lot of those!

  3. Tilla Says:

    Thanks for this great post – I am considering doing a monthly PL next year and maybe going digi would be the way to go before buying yet more stuff !

  4. Deb @ PaperTurtle Says:

    I’m a big fan of your Project Life pages, Abi, and it’s fun to see you over here showing some of your great ideas! :)

  5. Sarah Says:

    Lovely to see Abi guesting!! Love the photos & all your ideas & tips … Will def be trying some of this! X

  6. Alexa Says:

    Such a great clutch of ideas, Abi, and I especially like how you use transparencies and add text to the photos.

  7. kirsty A Says:

    Good job Abi. I love your PL and it’s great to see you over here at Shimelle as well

  8. Miriam Rogers Says:

    You have some lovely creative ideas Abi and how lovely to see you here.

  9. jasmine Says:

    These are really great tips!! Thank you so much. :)

  10. Birgit Says:

    Thank you for your inspiration! So great ideas to break the square format.

  11. Gab Says:

    Great tips, thank you so much!

  12. Lisa-Jane Johnson Says:

    I’ve Pinned the piece about using photos as fillers – I have so many photos that don’t have a story but I want to keep them in so this is perfect – great work!

  13. Custom Essay Writer Says:

    deep information for the share keep it up.

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