Yep, that’s right, and I know because I just counted again: 86 layouts went into the making of Textuality. As I’ve wrapped up writing the class, I find myself thinking: 86 layouts, and still I only wrote half of what I wanted to! I wish I could keep on building more lessons and layouts and writing that all revolve around one thing: the word. Because if there’s one thing that’s consistent about me, it’s this crush I have on words.
I think they are perfect. The can stand all alone, the only thing you need to make your layouts unforgettable.
But the other thing that’s true about me is this: I know I’m sort of odd in this regard. Not everyone loves words, or has a secret desire to do a happy dance at the sight of her favorite on a billboard somewhere, or buys letter stickers—just one more package of black ones!—simply because they are her scrapping drug of choice. (Forget vampires! My brand of heroin is the perfect letter sticker!) Textuality will help you love words too.
Back when I was teaching English, one of my students was complaining about writing an essay. “The problem, Mrs. Sorensen,” he explained, “is that words just aren’t sexy.” As I bounced between responses—send him to the principal’s office because who says that to a teacher? or point out his logical fallacy? or tell him to quit whining and start writing?—I knew I was having A Moment, the kind that sticks with a person for a long time. I think what he meant was: words are easily overlooked. They aren’t flashy. We use them so much they’re almost invisible.
That can go for scrapbooking, too. Words are just the things you plunk down, the journaling afterthought, the obligatory title. They’re not flashy—they aren’t photographs, with all the attendant emotion, that immediate eye-to-heart gratification, and they aren’t colorful (well, not literally!)—they aren’t patterned paper or lengths of gorgeous ribbon or the elegant nub of a well-chosen brad.
They’re just words.
Of course, I think my student was entirely wrong. Words, used right, are absolutely flashy. They can be the thing that grabs the eye. Titles and word embellishments and quotes and song lyrics, that amazing journaling you just wrote down—combined with your pile of alphabet rub-ons and your drawer-full of chipboard letters (not to mention that hard drive stocked with fonts) they can become your layout’s art. There’s a billion things you can do with words, and that’s what Textuality focuses on: using words in new ways.
Making them flashy.
Here’s something else you should know about Textuality: you are going to use your supplies. I am not a scrapping-supply hoarder. I think if you buy it you should use it, not keep it in a basket (no matter how cute the basket is. Or the supplies). That is the class’s focus: using your letter-based supplies in flashy ways. Looking at your journaling space, your titles, your spots for embellishments in ways that make your words visible—visually and emotionally here.
Last night, I sat down to make a new layout. (I used a bit of a poem I’d discovered a few days ago, and a few new chipboard letters, with an old grouping of photos I’ve been wanting to scrap for awhile now.) At one in the morning, my husband wandered in, wondering why I was still awake. “You’re making more layouts?” he asked. “Didn’t you just make 86 of them?” Well, yes. But I’m not done yet. I can’t help it. I love scrapbooking, love mixing photos with writing. There’s always just one more thing left to say, and words are the only medium to do it with.
On to 87!
I will be doing a drawing on my blog: www.amysorensen.typepad.com this morning! Come by if you'd like the chance to win a stamping kit!