Arranging and decorating your photos allows you to transform your favorite memories into artwork. Whether you have hundreds or thousands of photos, there are digital scrapbooking designs for every occasion, from birthdays to family vacations. With a few tools and techniques, you can create a personalized digital scrapbook that brings your photos to life. To help you create the most beautiful scrapbook online, we’re sharing eight digital scrapbooking tips in this guide. You’ll have information on everything from cropping photos to designing eye-appealing pages.
The best part about a digital scrapbook is that it’s saved forever. You can also print your scrapbook to share it with family and friends, and have a keepsake that will last a lifetime.
1. Choose your scrapbooking tool
With digital scrapbooking, you can either build your pages with a software or on a website. If you’re a beginner, the easiest way to get started right away is to make scrapbooks online. It’s as simple as uploading your photos and choosing your designs. Websites usually offer templates, decorative elements and text to help you easily create stunning, colorful pages. As an alternative, you can purchase and download scrapbooking software. By choosing a software, you’ll have more creative control over your designs, but the process may take longer.
Digital scrapbooking tools often provide digital versions of these traditional supplies:
- Paper: Patterned and solid-colored papers for your page backgrounds
- Alphabets: Individual letter files to create words and titles
- Illustrations: Drawings with transparent backgrounds to add character to your pages
- Decorative elements: Embellishments like frames, ribbons and flowers
- Templates: Page layouts you can personalize with your own photos
- Stamps and digital art: Details and accents for your pages (i.e. suitcases and airplanes for a travel-themed page)
No matter which method you decide to use for your digital scrapbooking designs, you’ll be able to create professional-looking layouts and pages. Unlike traditional scrapbooking, the tools and supplies are reusable. And you won’t have to clean up your workspace of glitter and glue.
2. Select and organize your photos
The main focal point of any scrapbook photo album are the photos you decide to include. Take time to sort through your collection and choose the most vibrant, meaningful photos. For example, if you’re designing a book or page about a family vacation, opt for a mixture of beautiful landscapes, joyful candids and group shots. If there are duplicates or similar photos, select the one with the best coloring and the happiest faces. Your photos should bring your favorite memories to life.
If you take the time to learn how to organize your photos before you get started, it will make your entire scrapbooking project easier. When you start a page or album, you’ll have the exact photos you want to use, and can work toward designing a page that incorporates them the best.
3. Enhance your photos
While some photos might be ready to pop into a scrapbook template, others might require minor adjustment. Whether it’s brightening an image or adjusting the angle, a few edits can go a long way. You can improve the quality of your photos directly through your photo editing software or digital scrapbooking tool.
A few techniques to try:
- Adjust the shadow or contrast
- Increase the saturation
- Realign the photo angle
- Fine-tune the coloring
- Adjust the brightness
- Add fading or a vignette feature
- Blend or blur an area
- Incorporate filters
If you’re just beginning, play with one or two of these photo editing features. You’ll get a sense of what makes your photo look better. The best part of editing photos digitally is that you can always click ‘undo.’
4. Crop and resize your photos
In addition to editing your photos, you might wish to crop or resize them. When cropping, trim the image to build your main subject as the focus. For instance, if you have a photo with two people standing among trees, crop the photo to highlight the people. While the trees are an important element of the photo, you don’t want them distracting from the main characters. Many people also default to placing the subject in the center of the photo, but to create visual appeal by reframing your subject to one side or the other.
When resizing, make sure your photo quality doesn’t get distorted in the process. The height and width percentages should remain the same, both before and after. When in doubt, use a resizing tool instead of eyeballing it yourself.
In creating your digital scrapbooking designs, you may decide to cut your images into shapes, such as circles or stars. Most software programs and websites have adequate tools for modifying the shape.
5. Layer your design
Build texture and character into your digital scrapbook by layering your photos, text and embellishments. To design your cover, for example, begin with a patterned background, add your photos on top, then add one of these family photo book titles. A layered design will make your page look cohesive instead of disjointed.
As you design your pages, try layering images and word art over your photos. Collage apps are excellent tools to assist with layering. Move around a word or photo frame until it lands in the right spot. Consider including text to tell the story of your experience at the zoo or a music concert. Personal details enhance the meaning of your scrapbook pages.
6. Create themed pages
Similar to what we suggest for photo books, you can bring unity to your digital scrapbooking designs by choosing themes. For a summer album, consider a travel or beach theme. For a fall photo spread, set your color scheme to orange, red and yellow. The more cohesive each page, the more professional your scrapbook will look.
7. Don’t be afraid to get creative
Unlike gluing a photo to scrapbook paper, you have flexibility with digital scrapbooking to try various techniques before settling on one. Whether you want to try incorporating two different fonts to create a word or see how different frames look on a photo, go ahead. Sometimes your second or third attempt will be the design you love the most.
You can always undo or adjust your work, so don’t be shy in using the many tools and features of digital scrapbooking. Remember to alternate your page layouts and designs for a diverse look.
8. Save your work frequently
As you create your digital scrapbook, be sure to save your work often. You may even want to save several versions of a page you’re working on, in case you want to revert to a previous version. Ultimately, you don’t want to lose the work and creativity you’ve put in. You can even save your work over the course of days and weeks, giving you the option to work on your scrapbook in pieces.
With the ability to personalize your designs, a digital scrapbook becomes a beautiful collection of your favorite memories. The pages and photos you create can be kept for years to come. Share your scrapbook digitally, or print it to create personalized greeting cards, calendars and home decor.