Why I do this.

(I made this layout a couple years back. It’s with photos from 2003.)

The other day I read Tina’s post “Explain Thyself Scrapbooker!” She asked, “Do you feel the need to defend your art? Your hobby?”

I haven’t really said much about my scrapbooking on here besides showing the layouts I’ve been currently working on, so I thought I’d share my feelings on this here. I identified with her completely. The other day I was talking to my neighbor (and friend) about all the stuff I’ve been planting this year, and then I got my garden notebook out to tell him the name of a couple of things I had planted this summer. He knows about my scrapbooks and notebooks and things, and he commented on all the stuff I document, and my need to document everything. He was just fascinated by it. Before that I had never really thought about how much I actually do document, but I document a lot, and I always have.

You may wonder why someone would ask scrapbookers if they feel the need to defend their hobby. For some reason, not everyone finds it an acceptable or at least understandable hobby. There have been many times where I’ve felt put down because I scrapbook. I don’t know why people put it down more than other hobbies or see it as so silly. Scrapbooking is documenting photos and words, memories and feelings. Anyone can do it if they choose to. I love the creative aspect of it, but I really believe that anyone can do it. People have made comments to me about how they don’t know how I find the time, or that they could never have the time. This makes it seem like I have more time than them, or my time is less valuable than theirs. True, I don’t have a job right now, but I’ve been scrapbooking for 11 years, so I don’t really factor that in. Even when I was busy with a job I made time to scrapbook. I don’t HAVE to take the time to make cards or little scrapbooks for gifts, but I MAKE the time to do it. Everyone has their hobbies that they choose to make time for, whether it’s TV, sewing, running, etc. Obviously I have other hobbies and things I do, but it’s important for me to make time to do the things I love, and make things for the people I love.

(I made this LO a few years ago, but the photos I took with my own camera at age 8 in 1988.)

Since I was 8 years old I have been journaling about my life, writing poetry, and taking pictures. For as long as I can remember I’ve loved saving mementos, notes, souvenirs. I’ve loved making collages and looking through photo albums. I used notebooks and little books I made myself to document high school friends, each year of high school, etc. I also started keeping quotebooks when I was 15. At age 18 I started always keeping a “list book” with me to write down lists of every sort of thing. When I was 19 my mom discovered what is now the hobby of scrapbooking and bought me my first scrapbook and papers. It was meant to be! Not only did I love to document my life and all my adventures and people I love, but since age 13 I had loved school and office supplies, buying what I could on clearance at Wal-Mart or the office supply store in the neighborhood. Being able to buy, organize, and use all sorts of paper, paints, and other embellishments was like heaven!

I have always had the need for a creative release and right now it’s scrapbooking.  To me it is more than just a chore of getting my photos in a book. It is about the creative process and documenting my thoughts on those things. It’s how I feel when I think about all these people and places that I love. I don’t have kids, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have photos to scrap. I’m not doing it for anyone else or for future generations, although that will be an added bonus. I am doing this for me. I don’t care if I’m ever “caught up.” I just want to get these memories and stories in books and make it pretty while I’m at it, and I’m sad that I have to justify what I’m doing. Thanks for letting me explain.

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3 thoughts on “Why I do this.

  1. Good job, Karin! I love your scrapbooks. I’m so not creative that way, nor do I enjoy doing crafty things, but I am always amazed at others’ work. What fun to look back on all those memories.

  2. Beautiful description and words on your hobby! Somebody asked me last week about what I’ll do with all of my scrapbooks – I probably have about 75 of them now. I said my kids can take what they want and throw away what they don’t want. For me to have enjoyed making them and enjoy looking at them is such a great pleasure for me. It really doesn’t matter if noone else wants them after I’m gone. I create my own little works of art and it satisfies me.

  3. I’m right along with ya.

    I’m older than you, so I don’t think I get quite the same reaction…just the ones about time and such.

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