Monday, August 10, 2009


I know that my posts have been very sporadic lately but I'm going to try to be more regular in the future. Scrapbooking, and all of its various components, is something that I really have a passion for and updating this blog makes me happy. Plain and simple.

This weekend I attended a memorial service for my grandparents. The last few years, any sort of event like this, I create a little slideshow documenting the life of the person being remembered. This event was no exception. I assembled a chronological review of my grandparents life in photographs. So far, people have always had kind words to say about the slideshows. As much as I'd like to take all the credit for this and claim that it's simply my amazing talent, I realize that it's actually the photographs themselves that are particularly compelling.

After this particular memorial, I chanced into a conversation with someone. She had just snapped some photos for me of my extended family and it prompted a conversation about photography. I don't think she realized I had anything to do with the slideshow, the conversation just came up because she'd taken pictures for me. She commented that just the day before, as she was sorting through some photographs, she started to question what she was doing. She said, "I was looking at a photo and thinking, my children don't even know who these people are. But this service reminded me that my photographs are meaningful."

To know that I'd had that impact on someone made me feel great. Because I too believe in the importance of pictures. I'm diligently documenting the lives of my family, my life, and on some small scale, the lives of people who are important to me. I don't know how many people will ever want to look at my photographs, but I hope some will and honestly, if no one else cares to, at least I know that I will enjoy looking back through my pictures and remembering times past.

The past few weeks, while working on this slideshow, I've looked at many photographs of my grandparents. As I tried to put the photographs into chronological order, I would ask my mother and my aunt for help. But in many cases they no longer remembered the details - if they ever even knew them to begin with. This is not the first time I've had this experience. When trying to organize pictures from my own childhood, I encountered the same difficulty. On numerous occasions my parents disagreed about the details - when and where the pictures were taken. I was always happy when there was a notation on the back of the photograph to steer me in the right direction. It doesn't take long to forget because even with my photographs of my own children, who have been a part of my life for less than a decade, I look back at pictures from the beginning and I've already forgotten so much.

Taking photographs is only half of preserving your history. The other half is recording the story. To me, that's the magic of scrapbooking. It's an opportunity to showcase photographs AND highlight the special stories that go along with them. And blogging is the newest way to accomplish this same goal. I'm still drawn to scrapbooking because it's also an opportunity to be creative and make something visually pleasing. I enjoy it. But I most of all, I just think it's so cool to put your stories and photographs together.

Sitting next to me is a stack of letters that my grandfather wrote to my grandmother while he was in the war. I offered to scan them so that my entire family can have copies of them. So I KNOW for a fact that if my grandparents had kept some sort of scrapbook, it's something we'd all treasure.

From Rapt 2 Scrap

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