Document Your Hobby & Document Your Life

I love when I find old photos on my hard drive that maybe didn’t make much sense at the time they were taken, but have details that suddenly make sense to me NOW. As I looked through the photos of an old layout yesterday, I found this one:

My living room table, January 2008

I remember that I used to take loads of photos like this, just documenting my work surface at the time (it changed rather often, I lived my crafting life in bags) and how it changed through the process. Documenting the time I spent crafting and creating. The funny thing is how it turns into a sort of time capsule. In this photo I notice:

  • My first cutting mat, all flat and nice back then, now all wonky from too much embossing
  • My first set of water-proof black pens, still in use and working perfectly (that was a good buy!)
  • My glue pens, which I thought was the shizzle back then, but now… not so much (thank you, hindsight…)
  • Some of my very first scraps of paper, linen white with gold flecks in it, bless my little cotton socks! (I still have some left. Some things lasts you forever)
  • My old and old-school mobile phone, a tiny black Sony Ericsson. The battery lasted for days! Mostly because I kept it as an alarm clock, on mute, forgotten under my pillow.
  • My old living room table, oak finish, handmade in India, which I’ve had since I was 19.

When this photo was taken I had two small shopping bags with material and tools for paper crafting, which I stored in my closet. I usually did my crafting by my living room table. I remember exactly how my living room was furnished; the small couch, the bookcases filled with books behind me, the large window to my right, the TV by the wall opposite from me. Stuff EVERYWHERE, that had to be cleaned up and put away when I was done. I find it funny that just looking at this photo, I remember how it felt starting out, trying to figure out what materials and techniques to use, trying to understand it all.

Scrapbooking is a hobby used to preserve memories, and much time is spent on creating pages highlighting various events in your life. But what about the hobby itself, the time spent doing something you love? While I wouldn’t put this photo on a 12×12 layout with loads of pretty embellishments, I would very much use it in a project documenting my everyday life (like Project Life, or Week in the Life), because arts and crafts are such a big part of it. It not always about the end result like a finished layout), but also the process and the journey. It’s a part of your story that maybe never gets told. If you feel you never get anything done, these will be the images to look back on, just as much as those of the big events in your life. It’s your work in progress.

Like I said, I used to take photos of my work surface during crafting. I think I forgot about it, at some point, trying to learn how to take better photos of the end results. I think I’ll try to remember to take more photos like this from now on.┬áDon’t forget to document the process of your hobby, be it scrapbooking, wood working, sewing, cooking… As you evolve, these photos will be a time line of your process. Small time capsules of something you love to do.


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