Unity On the Page – Paperclipping 224

paperclipping 224

How do you know when it’s finished?

If you’re like a lot of other scrapbookers, you’ve wondered this same thing.

You may have also wondered why some pages slam-dunk it, while others don’t — even sometimes layouts that were scraplifted by someone else’s perfect page.

Believe it or not, there’s probably one thing that is not in place whenever you’re asking these questions.

That one thing is unity. But then, all the other design principles work together to create unity, so it’s kind of a catch-all answer.

It also might feel like kind of a vague an elusive answer. What exactly is unity?

Well, if you’ve ever been part of a team, including a family, then you know when you have it and when you don’t. When people aren’t working together, when someone is bickering behind someone else’s back, when one person secretly wants another to fail, or when there’s straight-up fighting, you just don’t have it.

In those magical moments when everyone is united toward a common goal, when everyone wants the same thing, when everyone is enjoying everyone else, or at the very least accepting everyone else, and we’re all getting along — we’ve got unity.

And that’s exactly how it works in art and design and scrapbooking. When all of the elements, or pieces, on the page are working together, when they’re not fighting for attention, and no one part is trying to overshadow the others, then you have unity. You know that the page is done because it all just feels so right.

You don’t even have to ask, “Is this done,” because you know that it is.

Cant's into Cans (closeup)

Even if the concept of unity still feels hard to grasp, if you think of your layouts as a whole, whether standard pages or pocketed pages, and you make sure all the different pieces “get along” and support one another, you’ll go a long way.

But we can break it down even further and give you something more concrete to work with. As you choose and place items to put on your pages, you get a unified page if you think in terms of grouping. This goes for even simple single-photo pages. It’s all about grouping your items in various ways.

There are lots of ways to group items to achieve unity in your layouts. I share them as I assemble two different pages in this week’s episode of Paperclipping. This video tutorial is now available for Paperclipping Members in the Member’s Area and on iTunes.

Want information about a membership? CLICK HERE!

Status Update (closeup)

En Pointe (closeup)

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  • Another great episode :)

  • Thank you!

  • Sorken

    It still fascinates me when I’m creating how it all comes together. Like today I was making a front for a note pad. I started with a plain piece of patterned paper and put a border of scrap paper on it, ok but boring. I added another piece of paper, still boring. I cut it in half to frame the first piece. Much better. And with the addition of some washi tape, a stamped image and some banner flags it turned into something I really liked. A ‘something’ instead of just pieces of paper put together. A unity!

    Looking at it now that it’s all done I can find what binds it together; the colours, the obvious lines from the border, implied lines from a non-existing triangle and the edges distressed in brown.

    I really like how you break it down, analyze it and put it all into words. It’s like a puzzle, we put pieces together and move them around and then suddenly they become something else. Only that here, in scrapbooking/cardmaking, there’s not just one right solution. Thanks!

  • Kim L.

    Thanks for another great video! I also wanted to take this opportunity to put in a plug for a membership to Paperclipping. I have been an on again/off again member for 2 and a-half years, and I just renewed my membership today. I am a scrapbooker who has spent the past 4 years purchasing more product but creating less layouts. I’ve spent the entire weekend fighting the urge to buy something at a popular online retailer because they are having a Labor Day sale. I have filled and emptied a cart multiple times. Yes, it is a great time to buy some new product at a discount, but what about all of the beautiful unused product sitting in my scrap room? I had an epiphany this morning and decided that what I would benefit from right now is not new product, but inspiration to use what I already have. So I renewed my membership to Paperclipping and I purchased an online class I had been thinking about also. So, for less money than I would have spent buying product that I didn’t need, I now have lots of inspiration to help me jump back into scrapbooking in a tangible way. Thanks for the instructive videos and the wonderful PRT episodes each week! I love being a non-schmo again!

  • Thank you, Kim — both for the nice comment but also for your renewed membership! :)

  • Agree — design is awesome like that! Thanks so much!

  • Rochelle

    When I’ve completed a layout I hang it, temporarily on a wire in my scraproom. I have 4 there at the moment. they are all different, but they are done. I know that by how I feel when I look at them. One doesn’t have any journalling, most unusual for me, but still i feel it tells a story through the photos, & I am content with it. Sometimes i will have a layout hanging from the wire that is not finished, it makes me uneasy, it isn’t quite right, frequently the adjustment is minor, & then i get it – unity.

  • I like to leave my layouts for a day or so, too! Sometimes we’re zeroed in too close while we’re actively working on it and can’t see the whole of it accurately.

  • Bethany Rielage

    Thanks for another great video! The way you are able to explain design principles really helps me understand and be able to apply them to my own layouts. In the past you’ve sent an email with links to pictures of all the layouts. Do you have pictures of all the completed layouts? I always enjoy seeing them finished with the journaling :-)

  • Yes! I like to do that when I have time as an extra. I ran out of time when we released this episode. Maybe I can do it this week. :)

  • Jennifer G.

    Finally got to watch this episode and I think it will help me make my pages look even better. Most of the items on my pages don’t touch, but I am finding that I like the pages where photos and ephemera and embellishments do touch. Thank you for putting it so simply for me. I do not have an artistic brain and the way you explain things really help me to feel like I am being artistic. And I really hope that this does not sound strange or stalkerish, but I thought that you possibly had a really light tattoo of a butterfly on your back until I read your journaling. I still think it looks like butterfly wings.

  • I always see a “W” when I look at my back, but I’ll go with the butterfly! Thank you for helping me see something better!