Monday, August 15, 2011

Last Creative Journey installment for a while.....

I have been so enjoying reading everyone's thoughts about the creative journey posts. My purpose in organizing this series was to remind everyone (myself included) that most experiences in the industry aren't a straight, quick shoot to the top. Instead, the roads are long and windy and fraught with self-doubt and rejection. But don't let that stop you, because it doesn't mean that you aren't good enough. It just doesn't.

Today, I'm going to share a few of my thoughts about this topic. I hope to get another set of guests on in a month or two to continue--if you know someone who would fit or are interested in being profiled yourself, email me and let me know! So excuse me while I interview myself!

So Keshet, tell us about your scrapbooking journey.....

When I first started scrapbooking, it was when I discovered a bag of Creative Memories product in my basement. Even though I've moved away from Creative Memories since then, I'm so glad I started that way, because it was a narrow universe of scrapbooking and not too overwhelming. The first time I saw a "mainstream" scrapbook layout in a magazine, I was actually horrified--there were dozens of flowers, one photo, and nary a mention of which baby the layout was about! Despite my initial reaction, I slowly began using traditional products in my Creative Memories albums and mixing up my techniques.

I scrapbooked on vacations only in high school and college, even though I read magazines here and there and wished I could spend more time with my stash! For about 8 years, I didn't even know the online scrapbooking world existed, let alone have any aspirations to submit to magazines, etc. When I moved to New Jersey and didn't have scrapbook stores close by, I discovered online stores like Two Peas, and through that discovered message board forums and blogs. I also joined Studio Calico as a subscriber, which introduced me to a whole community of savvy online scrappers.

As soon as I found out there was free scrapbook stuff to be had out there, I was hooked--ha! I began submitting to magazines and was really upset when my first submissions were not picked up. I also still remember my first two design team rejections and how much they hurt. Over time, I started investing less emotions in the trying, waiting to get excited if I actually got accepted to the team. After at least 6 months, I had a layout accepted in Scrapbook Trends, and after about a year of trying I made my first design team. A few months after that, I had a crazy two week period when I got four teams. The fact that I get to work with such fantastic companies and people is still surreal to me, and I feel very grateful for it.

Well, that's very nice Keshet. But do you have any actual ADVICE for people??

Advice--that's the key part, huh? I don't feel very qualified to give advice (that's why I got GUESTS for this, people!), but here goes.

1. Don't give upLink
As you know from my last post, I'm on the Elle's Studio team. I usually make my gallery layouts without realizing it, that's how much I love her products. What you may not know is that this was my fourth time applying for the team. Yep, you heard right--fourth. I almost didn't apply this last time thinking that it was a lost cause, but I figured if I still loved her products (which I do), I wasn't going to let fear of rejection stop me. I read the email about 200 times to make sure it wasn't a mistake:) It just goes to show--you really never know when your chance will come.

2. Be a good marketer

To matter how lovely a layout is, an editor won't search for its inner beauty behind a dark and grainy photograph. Try to take the best photos you can of your projects to show them off! (And Gabrielle, I'm planning a tutorial on photographing layouts to answer your question!)

3. Do what you love and love what you do

Try not to worry about if your layouts are "good" and REALLY really don't compare your work to others! Just create things you love, pour your heart into them, and the rest will fall into place over time.

And there you have it--my take on the creative journey. You can also find more information on publications and design team advice on this post and this post.

If there's ONE QUESTION you could ask about publications/design teams/"the industry," what would it be??

24 comments:

  1. I love this post about your scrapbook journey. I have missed the other posts as I have been on vacation, but am making a point to take the time to read them. Thanks for sharing! :-)

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  2. Thanks for sharing...loved all the stories! I don't submit, but I've been thinking about it. One thing I've always wondered is how new of layouts do you submit? I like to use up older kits and I always think it's not "new" enough to submit. Thanks!

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  3. Such great wisdom!!!! Thanks for sharing!

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  4. fun to read - thanks for sharing!

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  5. I Started with CM also and was horrified at all of the other stuff the scrapbooking industry put on the LO's ~ funny how things change :)

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  6. I've loved this series, I find that my journey has been so similar to so many ladies you profiled, including yourself :) I think the question I would probably ask, is how do you deal with the rejection?

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  7. These have been great-and I loved reading about your journey. I've never submitted for a magazine or a call. I love sharing my layouts with my friends and my family but I feel like most of what I do is pretty "simple" compared to what's out there. But you have a great point-as long as I love what I'm doing and my heart's in it-that's all that really matters!

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  8. Keshet,
    This post is spot on! Create for those you love, what you love. If you want to submit, submit. Just because others may or may not love your work, doesn't mean it is not appreciated by others!!! Thank goodness we are all different! Life would be boring without individuality. Thanks for posting this as I am sure it will help others on their creative journeys. :)

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  9. Love this series Keshet! Thanks for posting about your own experience too:)

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  10. love this post, keshet, and where you've come with your journey!

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  11. This has been a great series, Keshet...I guess the one thing I want to know, is sort of not really a question..why do the manufacturers seem to want the same people over and over for their teams? You'd think they'd want to take a chance on someone new for a fresh look. Glad Elle's took a chance on you!!

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  12. I've enjoyed reading this series. Thank you for taking the time to do it.

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  13. Oh, I loved reading about your creative journey! I guess my question would be how do you keep from getting burned out?

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  14. Glad you included yourself too Keshet! Loved reading your perspective on all this too!

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  15. Great series! Your articles answer the questions that, I think, we all have in the backs of our minds. Looking forward to the continuation of this series, whenever you feel ready. Thanks!

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  16. Another great article Keshet! Thanks for posting it for all of us. I started with CM also and distinctly recall the distributor telling me there was no way I could trust 'other' companies to be safe for my scrapbooks and I really should just stick with CM. I didn't listen, and promptly quit using most of the CM products as a result. She had no idea how that would backfire.

    I'd like to know what it is they look for when they are look for pubs and DT members. It seems to be without rhyme or reason to me sometimes.

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  17. i understand wbout getting overwhelmed.. totally! thank you for interviewing yourself, Keshet!

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  18. My question is "What is your end goal in doing all the submitting to design teams and magazines?"

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  19. I like BabyBokChoy's question!
    But my question is: don't you sometimes just not want to scrap? And when that happens (if it does) and you have an assignment due, don't you just h*te scrapbooking?

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  20. Thanks keshet for a great series. Something I struggled with, is that if I am creating for my family and recording our memories, shouldn't I not care about publishing and design teams? But, I think to myself, if I were another kind of artist-a writer, or a painter-no one would think twice about wanting an audience for your work. I'm just venting, btw, but my point is that it's nice to see that others have the same drive.
    Also, I do have a question: Do any companies or magazines offer payment for design work?

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  21. Thanks for sharing your own experiences! Looking forward to when the series continues.

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  22. I love that you could sum it up so well & so succinctly. I so agree with the end part - just love what you do & it will really show - and it does! Hmmmm...what would I ask...I think I have pretty much worked out all the answers myself now, nothing mystifies me any longer. It's a long, hard road & rejection isn't to be taken personally, it's all about the bottom line in any industry & I think eventually we all find our perfect fit!

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I love hearing your thoughts:)