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GG Team

Member Since December 2007, 108 forum posts, 2 public projects

Location: All Over the World

PeaNut Number: 352421

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Compose Yourself: Journaling on Self-Portrait Pages with Jill Sprott

"It's all about me."

This may seem like the statement of a narcissist, but it does not have to be, especially when applied to a meaningful self-portrait layout.  This month's "All About Me" theme at Two Peas in a Bucket invites you to focus on a subject that you know better than any other: yourself.  Creating a self-portrait layout does not make you a narcissist; rather, it offers you a chance to look within and to share yourself with those lucky enough to turn the pages of your scrapbooks.  From time to time, it should be all about you!  

Today det 2(from Scrapbooking from the Soul)

My recent Two Peas in a Bucket workshop, Scrapbooking from the Soul, explores ways to create layers of meaning in our scrapbooks, with a special emphasis on journaling. Although there are a wide variety of layouts featured in the workshop, some of them focus specifically on journaling about the self. Here are a few tips for self-portrait layouts: 

1. Let others' words inspire you, but don't let them speak for you. When you are feeling tongue-tied, or not quite sure where to begin, turn to a quote, a lyric, or a poem to start you off, but don't stop there -- reflect on those words, and relate them to your own life, your own experience, and your own unique way of understanding the world. 

Plath(from "I Am...")

2. Share what moves you. Articulate your philosophy and mission. What do you believe? What is your purpose? What do you think is the most meaningful way to live your one precious life? If there is anything keeping you from living it that way, talk about that, too.

Today det 1
(from Scrapbooking from the Soul)

3. Be your own audience. Rather than worry about who will read this someday, remove that worry by writing to a person you can entrust with those words: yourself. Compose a letter to yourself. Maybe you need a pep talk. Maybe you need a reprimand. You know what you need to hear, so confront yourself. Compliment yourself. Question yourself. Plead with yourself. Forgive yourself. And then sign your name to it. 

4. Write through the darkness, toward the light. Acknowledge your losses, your failures, your regrets, and your fears -- and in doing so, acknowledge your human-ness. Share the perspective that you have gained because you have experienced adversity, and in the procecss, reveal your true character.

LT j1

(from Scrapbooking from the Soul)

5. Tell a story that only you can tell. Aim to show, and not just tell, dwelling on details that will help the reader walk in your shoes and see through your lens. 

Home j(from "Growing Up Local")

6. Give advice. What wise words can you share about being a woman, a parent, a spouse, a person of faith, a citizen, a creative being?  What has experience taught you?  In turn, you might also reflect on the advice that you have been given, good or bad.  What advice has shaped you the most? What advice has influenced the path your life has taken?

7. Reflect on your origins -- how did the person that you are today come to be that way? Think about what is important to you.  How did you learn to value it? About what are you passionate? What is the source of that passion, and what fuels it? 

Arrow j

(from "A Life in Letters")

8. Don't be limited by the notion of scrapping only when you're happy, or only scrapping the happy times. What's on your mind? Work though your preoccupations. If you're worried, share that worry. Acknowledge your complexity as a person, and respect the complexity of your experience.  Do you want your scrapbooks to reflect a real person, or a persona that you have created? 

(from "On NOT Being Pregnant")

9. Go beyond the photo. Remember that a self-portrait is not just a photo -- we pose and compose ourselves constantly through our words as well. Think not just about what the photo reveals, but about what the photo does not reveal.  What can you see in yourself that others may not see in that photo? 

Dc32b3dffe984bd28da6e1569204cc45_600x600(from "The Bright Side")

10. Embrace a stream-of-consciousness approach.  Don't feel that everything you write needs to be in perfectly composed sentenes and paragraphs. Take a list approach, or jot down a series of thoughts as they emerge, separating them with dashes, commas, or ellipses. Journal the contents of your heart or the contents of your head. The writing may seem fragmented at first, but the pieces, if focused on the same general idea, will still be unified, in a sense. 

4cf0aa7a26e043b9bff7f6ac7707d82f_600x600(from "The Unsteady I")

No matter how you choose to approach a self-portrait layout, keep in mind that the self is not just revealed through images, but through words as well. Take a moment to "compose" yourself -- your scrapbooks will be even more meaningful because of it! 

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