The Lie that Might Inhibit You as a Scrapbooker

follow your heart

There’s this idea that creativity and artistic abilities comes from some gifted place that only naturally-born artists have.

It’s not true.

Sure, there are some who are instinctively more inclined to the visual arts than others of us, but that really doesn’t mean much when it comes down to your ability to make beautiful things.

Dina Wakely illustrated this when she was a guest on the Roundtable recently. In sharing her scrapbooking process, we saw that her initial steps are spontaneous. But when it comes to putting her pages together into something palatable and beautiful, she draws on the design principles of composition to make it look good and give her pages unity, a focal point, balance, etc.

Someone who had listened to the show said that this logical part of Dina’s process gave her hope because she feels more adept at that part. She’s right to feel that!

Until I started scrapbooking I never explored any sort of visual arts or crafts. I put all of my energies into dancing and performing arts. When it came to visual arts I considered myself untalented and uncreative.

As a scrapbooker I wanted to develop an artistic eye. At some point I began noticing patterns — certain things that consistently looked “right.” Eventually I realized that those patterns I was noticing were design principles. Once I figured that out and I absorbed myself in learning these principles, I was finally able to turn my creativity key!


Learning design principles can help both the naturally artistic and the more logical thinkers:

  • Naturally artistic: If you’re instinctively strong in creativity but don’t feel like your work is coming together quite right, the design principles will add an artistic logic to the equation to help you bring your creative impulses into a whole unified piece.
  • Naturally logical: If you’re naturally a more logical person who struggles with art, then the logical aspect of the design principles will be your stepping stones into the creative world of visual arts! They will get you to that place in a way that is comfortable and right for you!

If you ever feel like your pages aren’t turning out quite how you wish, ignore the lie that says you’re not artistic or creative enough. That’s not true.

The amazing news is that you CAN improve. You can be a brilliantly creative person and you can learn to make gorgeous things that make you happy.

All you need to do is learn those design principles and how to apply them.

Anyone can do it.

Don’t let the lie about the “natural” artist inhibit you!

By the way, design principles are one of my biggest focuses in the video tutorials for the Paperclipping Membership and we now have 190 of them!

Click here to learn more!

  • Terricannell

    Hi Y’all,
    I love that you are soothing the nerves of those of us who are too concerned about how “artistic” and “creative” we all are in our scrapbooking process. I never realized how much POTENTIAL there was in me to develop creative skills until I attended art classes. It’s kind of a “use it or lose it” thing and, conversely, “use it and grow it” thing too! Artistry is really a learnable skill, I learned. I really believe that everyone has the potential to create wonderful expressive art, if they will allow themselves the freedom to express and to try new things.
    I highly recommend the book “Drawing on the Right Side of The Brain” for anyone who doubts this theory. I have a friend who never developed past the “stick figure” level of art projects, but took a workshop based on this book. She showed me the before and after drawings she made in the workshop and they were like they were not by the same person!! And they weren’t, in actuality, because she had learned how to see. And she is not 20 years old. She’s nearing 50! So, see… It’s never to late to learn to see things radically differently.
    Another example:
    I remember a time when I started keeping a dream journal. I had been having really interesting dreams for a few weeks and decided I wanted to write then down, in case they were in some way trying to tell me something. I found out that the more I woke up and immediately wrote down my dreams, the more detailed and numerous my dreams became! Totally a use it or lose it thing! I won’t go into what the interpretations of my dreams were :) but, suffice it to say, I got more in touch with my wishes and goals by doing that exercise! The “use it and grow it” thing again.
    Most importantly, I’d like to tell you how refreshing and enjoyable your podcasts are!
    Your enthusiasm has never waned and I am always inspired and entertained by all the scrapping banter!
    I am committed to continue to be a non-shmo and thank you for all your hard work. I KNOW how much energy must go into every episode and I want you to know I appreciate your podcasts and posts immensely! Please keep them coming!
    Thank you guys!
    Terri C

  • Thanks for your membership and kind words, Terri! I have an artist friend I haven’t talked to in a couple years and he had recommended I get the book you suggested! I was trying to remember recently what the title was and couldn’t. Now that you’ve reminded me I can go get it!