I was able to document & complete my WITL album in the very same week using free design software called Canva.
Using a template that I set up ahead of time was the key!
In 2018 I created a memory keeping album using the concept created by Ali Edwards called "Week in the Life". She's been doing this project year after year since 2008, and has a huge community that join with her every year to document this one week. For me, this is one of my most treasured albums.
For 2020 I knew I wanted to participate again and document what this "new normal" we are experiencing right now & how that may show up our days through photos and the stories that go with them. I also was very realistic about everything was happening in my life right now. I needed a simple plan, a duplicatable plan and a place that I could easily use to document what was happening in "real time" so I wouldn't loose the details of each day. In the past I've tried keeping daily notes, but I fade fast with that method. (to be honest, I can type & edit way faster than I can write). There are many ways to keep track of the daily details using; apps, social media sites & blogs. But I was looking for a way that I could combine my journaling with the photos at the same time. And give me a head start on finishing my album quickly so I don't loose steam on completing this project.
I had purchased a Life Crafted Album from CTK last year, with a few ideas in mind, but hadn't actually used it yet. I thought the 4"x8" page size was perfect, but I didn't realize that the page protectors inside were all full size 4x8 page protectors. It didn't include any pocket style pages. (it's the first album I had purchased from CTK and it was still in the plastic until this project). Now I really needed a plan especially since I wanted to incorporate some of the physical elements of Ali's 2019 WITL kit I purchased last year, and didn't use.
I decided I would set up templates in a design software called Canva. Canva is easy graphic design software that anyone can use. And it's FREE to use for ever! For me, Canva is an awesome alternative to using Photoshop because it's so user friendly. I have had an account with them for a couple of years now, and use it to design business presentations & documents for a business. But...I had never used it to complete a scrapbook! Until now.
To start this project I chose custom dimensions and selected 4 in x 8 in. Then clicked the box to create my design. This made the first blank page.
Next I Dragged and dropped in a photo place holder (called grids) put it into position on the page and cropped it to fit a 4x4 photo.
I added multiple lines/boxes of text to create the title. This allowed me to resize the fonts individually. Then just drag your mouse over all the text to highlight and group them together. DESIGN TIP: There are tons of fonts in Canva to play around with, and the paid Pro version allows you to upload custom fonts.
I added two more text boxes & a line to create the date under the title.
And just like that I had a template page to use as the opening page to my WITL album.
Adding the next page is as easy as selecting the "copy" icon and bam! just like that you have another page.
Select the text box and type in a new page title.
Delete any text or elements you don't need. Now I had a template for my "intentions" page of the project.
These first two pages probably took me less than 10 min to design. Once you get the software layout of the icons and the drag and drop you'll be creating templates super quick.
Keep repeating the steps above to create more page templates that lay out the entire week's project.
DESIGN TIP: Canva works with digital .png +.svg files (aka digital stamps). It's easy to upload these elements and use on any page.
These four templates were the base for my album design. Here's how it looks laid out for the full week. You should be able to see the pattern come together here to make the album cohesive in design.
Templates with photo grids.
Knowing I now had a home for my photos & journaling I had a new found confidence about completing this project as I was documenting each day. For this project the camera I used was an iPhone 7. I back up all my photos using Google Photos. I also completed this project using my laptop, a MacBook Pro. Canva also has an app if you want to complete this project on a tablet or phone. Here's what worked for me: Day One - Knowing what my template looked like in advance, I knew how many photos I would need for each day; 2 full size 4x8 photos, and 4-6 supporting photos that represented each day. I found that I was more intentional about the photos I was taking. Since I had done the set up work ahead of time, I was actually really excited to see what my templates would look like with the photos in them. Here's the steps I took to complete the first day:
Using Google Photos, I reviewed the photos I had taken for that day, then cropped, rotated or edited lighting if needed.
I downloaded each photo I wanted to use from Google onto my computer.
I then uploaded the photo into Canva via drag and drop. (It is possible to connect google photos to Canva, and add photos into a folder in Canva, but either way you are downloading & uploading). In the end I just found this way to be faster for me.
Next I selected the recently uploaded photo I wanted to insert into my template and again used the super quick drag and drop method into the photo grid area. It automatically adjusts the photo to fit. Double click the photo to reposition if needed, and click the checkmark when you're done.
I continued the steps above for each photo template I was using. Once my photos were in place, the next step was to document the details of each day while they were fresh on my mind. Using a text box on the journal card template, I started to just type out my thoughts. It's ok if I didn't finish my thought, Canva auto saves everything, so I found myself typing a few lines, then coming back to it again as the day went on. Similar to using a notebook, but loving this option because for me typing is faster, and I can edit my words as I go.
Templates completed with photos & words.
I love that the hole/ring design on most pocket pages are now made to universally fit most albums, so I was able to incorporate two 3"x4" pockets in the middle for each day.
When you're ready to print your templates this post will walk you through the steps. I hope that I have inspired you to try Canva for Hybrid scrapbooking. It's user friendly and it makes designing projects like this easy & fun!
Kelly | Thanks so much for sharing this. Having foundation pages is so helpful and I'm excited to set them up for WITL in Canva this year. Using the templates to help plan out photos for each day is going to be huge for me. In past years, found some days I felt I didn't have enough photos to chose from. This is going to help me be more intentional. So looking forward to your class. Thanks so much Kim!