I started actual scrapbooking (i.e. beyond collages!) when I was invited to my first Creative Memories party back in 1998. I went as a way to get to know fellow Marine Corps wives, and I'm so glad I did! I scrapbooked off and on until I had Ella (baby #2) and bought Cathy Zielske’s first book, Clean and Simple. After that, I was a changed scrapper!
I joined a kit club and saw what the designers were doing with the product and was very intrigued. I loved how they looked at paper and embellishments a little differently and I wanted to venture down that road as well. It was around that time that I began subscribing to scrapbook magazines as well and looked, really looked at what was being published. So, after many, many, many submissions over many, many months, and many, many, many rejections I finally got a layout picked up in November 2009, with of all magazines--Scrapbooks, Etc! I couldn’t believe it. That seemed to get the ball rolling and I started getting submission requests regularly from Scrapbook Trends, Creating Keepsakes and more from Scrapbooks, Etc. too. And I am forever grateful for each and every one of those.
Even after getting work published on a semi-regular basis, I still go through “dry” spells if you will. For example, I’m in one right now. I have had less than a handful of requests over the last few months, but that’s how things go in this industry I think. Things ebb and flow, but I don’t stop submitting. One of the difficult pieces for me is that I’m not technique-y and often fall into the trap of thinking that I have nothing to offer. I always have to remind myself that I have my stories to offer and if that isn’t enough, then so be it. I create for me and this is just a nice side effect from it!
Christa also had some great advice for people who are trying to submit:
I don’t feel like I’m one who is overly qualified to give advice on getting published and making a name for yourself in the industry, but here goes. Keep submitting. I know, people hear this all the time, but you never know exactly what the editors are looking for at any given time for an article. Layouts I think are great go without ever getting picked up, while others that I nearly don’t submit sometimes do get picked up--you just never know! I also submit the same layout several times because what might not work for one article, may work for one another month.
And submit a lot. When a call is for a subject area where I have several layouts that fit then I submit them all. That can mean 3-5 for one specific call.
I don’t make layouts for a call unless it is a subject/event I would scrap anyway. It takes the fun out of it! A lot of times calls get the ball rolling for me. For example, since I’m not an event scrapper holiday photos sit forever, but when a call comes out then I dig them out because I do want them documented and this is the kick in the hiney I need!
I feel like my niche is journaling and scrapbooking the out of the ordinary. I tell the story behind the photos and use lots of journaling on my pages. I also try to look at photos outside of what is physically going on in them. I go with my gut and scrap how I feel about them.
I currently LIVE in the DC suburbs in Northern Virginia. I've been married to my college sweetheart for 13 years who keeps us moving with his career in the Marine Corps. We have lived on each coast several times with more moves in sight! We have 2 beautiful and drama filled daughters, Maya and Ella. I work part time as a school social worker in a large high school and I absolutely love it! I can't imagine doing anything else, but also love that it's part time!
My style has definitely evolved over the years and my main focus is and always has been the story behind the photos. I love to focus on what isn't seen in the photos, including our personalities and quirks. I love to journal and like to make space to get as much in as possible!
I currently design for Pebbles, Inc., Creative Memories, Ormolu and Write.Click.Scrapbook. I have been published in Creating Keepsakes, Scrapbooks, Etc., Scrapbook Trends, Scrapbook and Cards Today and several idea boohttp://www.blogger.com/post-create.g?blogID=3891972351431603536ks. I am grateful for all that comes my way!
I chose this layout to feature not because I love the design (which I do), but because of the story behind it. I’m a story girl and this one is one I’m so glad I documented. My husband and I got engaged at the Capitol Building in Washington, DC and it holds a special place for us. I created this for the sketch class at Two Peas in a Bucket and I love the large photo from the sketch and thought the photo of the Capitol was perfect. I want my girls to know this story about us and how we came to be our family!
Thank you, Christa! Learn more about her on her beautiful blog, right here:)
And a question for you--what have YOU found to be the most helpful advice for getting into the scrapbook industry?