Monday, December 7, 2009

Have you met Lynn Ghahary? If not, you are in for a treat! I recently had the opportunity to get to know this very talented gal better and what a fun time we had! Here is my conversation with her...

How long have you been scrapbooking? How did you start?
I started scrapbooking way back in 2000 after I was introduced to this wonderful hobby by my sister. I didn’t really have a lot of time to scrapbook as I worked a very demanding full time job and I did a lot more buying of supplies to use in my scrapbooks than actually creating them (although don’t we all? lol) and gave it up completely in 2004 when my oldest son was born. I then came back to scrapbooking again in 2008 and haven’t looked back ever since.

What inspires you?

This is a tough question because I really want to say “everything!” Colors, patterns, textures, magazine ads, commercials, songs … you name it and it has probably inspired me in some way. When it comes to actually sitting down and creating a layout my biggest inspiration is usually the pictures I am using and the story I want to tell. Those two elements help direct the “feel” of my layout and everything else falls into place from there.

When do you do the majority of your scrapbooking?

Most of my scrapbooking is done at night after my two boys are in bed but I have to say now that my oldest is in kindergarten and my youngest is in preschool I’ve been able to sneak in a few hours in the mornings here and there and I LOVE it!

Do you prefer single or double page layouts? What type of cards do you enjoy making?

If you would have asked me this question a few months ago I would have said I am a singles only type of gal. But very recently (thanks to Val’s Got Sketch? Doubles class) I have learned to love doubles and have actually made a few double pagers – willingly – all on my own! LOL

Believe it or not I used to really struggle with cards and their design. Maybe because I didn’t have the photos and story leading the way. But I was given the advice to just think of a card as a tiny scrapbook layout and that has helped tremendously. Now I can’t stop making them! And for this mom of two boys it is a GREAT way to use all of those pretty pink and girly papers and embellishments that I insist on buying. J

What sizes do you primarily scrap?

primarily scrap 12x12 but I definitely have my fair share of 8.5x11 layouts in my collection as well. I don’t like to feel restricted by a given size so if I think a layout will work better in one size than another I go for it!

How would you describe your style?

Eek! This is always such a hard question for me to answer since my “style” sometimes depends on the photos I’m scrapping or the papers I’m using. I’ll tell you what I love – I love clean lines, bright colors, and fun patterns. I love lots of texture and dimension on my layouts with “just the right amount” of embellishments. I also love to sew on my scrapbook pages either with my sewing machine or by hand.

How do you organize your albums?

Very simply – by year. I like to skip around when I scrapbook so the easiest way for me to get my layouts in an album is to categorize them up by year. Easy peasy.

If you had not discovered scrapbooking, what would your passion be?

Well I love to garden and I also love photography so if I had more free time (i.e., time not spent scrapbooking) it would be devoted to those two hobbies.

What do you love about your scrap space? What would you like to change?

My scrap space is the bonus room off of my master bedroom. I have to say I am pretty lucky to have a room of my own and love what I’ve been able to do with it in terms of my work island, storage, etc. There’s also a great big picture window at the far end of the room that lets in some great natural light. What would I change? Well a girl can always use a bigger space for more stuff, right?

Do you have something scrap related whenever you go?

I do carry a point and shoot camera in my purse with me wherever I go since you just never know when the perfect scrapworthy moment will happen.

Do you keep a journal?

I don’t keep a journal. I used to a long time ago but not anymore.

Do you scrap alone, with friends or at a crop?

I mostly scrap alone. Occasionally a few friends will come over to scrap or we’ll head to a crop but honestly it’s hard to coordinate schedules since we all have little ones at home to care for.

How did you meet Valerie and become involved in Got Sketch?

I actually met Valerie through Got Sketch! I took the first Got Sketch? class (Got Sketch 101) that was offered by Val and Janna (Wilson) in the spring of 2008 and we just became friends throughout the course of the class. Val had asked me to contribute to the Got Sketch? blog the summer after Got Sketch 101 ended and somehow we started chatting about me helping out a bit more with the blog, classes, etc. and it all kinda fell into place from there.

Can you tell us what you love best about Got Sketch?

The sketches! Easy enough answer right? LOL Seriously though, Val’s sketches are just wonderful. Lots of details so you’re not left scratching your head wondering what is supposed to go where but easily adaptable to any style, photos, or theme.

Can you share some tips on how to photograph your layout or card? Do you recommend using a flash?

I definitely suggest that you avoid using a flash if you can. Unless you have an external flash that you can direct away from your project you will probably always get some kind of glare on your photos or color distortion otherwise. My best advice is to find a spot in your house (or outside for that matter) with lots of great indirect (again to avoid glare) sunlight. I simply lay my layout flat on a nice big piece of white foam board and stand over top of it and shoot directly down onto my project. I line up my project with the hash marks in my camera to guarantee I’m shooting straight on and not on an angle. I will then do a bit of tweaking (straightening, cropping, color correcting if needed) in Photoshop. If I am shooting cards or another type of project I will set up two pieces of foam board (one as the base and one as the background) and shoot that way. You want to know where the best light in my house is? My master bathroom (we have a skylight and two really large windows over the tub area) so you’ll often find me setting up my foam boards to shoot cards on the toilet – no joke! LOL

Can you give tips on how to edit photos of layouts and/or cards?

use a Mac so I download all of my photos into iPhoto and do a quick initial edit – straightening and cropping. I then open my image in Photoshop and will often correct the exposure, adjust colors (sometimes shooting with no flash in natural light will give a blue tinge to my projects), sharpening, as well as save my images for the web (smaller file size).

How do you select contributors?

First and foremost we look for contributors whose style we think will translate well using one of Valerie’s sketches. We like to see a good use of photos as well as general design principles. We really encourage our Got Sketch? followers to drop us an email with a link to their online gallery, blog (if you have one), preference (12x12, 8.5x11, or cards). We are always on the lookout for more contributors.

What is the format of the Got Sketch classes?

All of our Got Sketch? classes are hosted by ning - an online website. Once students register and are approved for a class they will then be able to sign into the site and view all of the class content (as it is revealed), participate in the forum, post in our gallery, and connect with both teachers and other students. Class content is also available in pdf format so that it may be saved to your computer (or printed out) for future reference.

Can anyone post to the Got Sketch gallery?

Absolutely! We love to see how others interpret Valerie’s sketches so post away!

Can layouts based on Got Sketch sketches be submitted for publication? How should Got Sketch be referenced?

Per the terms of the Got Sketch? blog Valerie’s sketches are for personal use only and may not be used as reference for publication submissions, contest entries, design team projects, class projects, or other similar purposes. Permission is also required before taking any images from the Got Sketch? blog to post elsewhere (such as your own personal blog, forums, etc). Proper credit for their use in galleries, forums, and blogs is appreciated. These terms vary for Got Sketch? contributors.

What is one scrappy goal that you would like to achieve in 2010?

Honestly, 2009 has been such an amazing year for me in the “scrapbooking world” so to speak. I’ve been able to accomplish so many goals and dreams such as getting my work published in many of my favorite scrapbook magazines and joining some incredible design teams. I guess my goal for 2010 is just to keep that momentum going!

Here is one of Lynn's favourite layouts - I think you will agree with me that it is beautiful! Thank you so much Lynn for your time!

Please leave Lynn some love in the comments section :-)


dcarter said...

Wow!!! I love your layout. Very nice and I adore the picture. What a cutie. Thanks for your advice and info.:)

Anonymous said...

Hello Lynn... I love this photo you used for this layout. how cute....
love it...Nice to get to you know you better.

Amber T. said...

So nice learning more about you Lynn!That is a gorgeous page, thanks so much for sharing with us!

Anonymous said...

What a great interview Lynn. It's nice to learn more about you and about Got Sketch. As a new mom I can totally relate to your gorgeous layout. It's very inspiring.
Thanks for sharing.


Lorraine said...

Nice to meet you, Lynn!

I'm always inspired by a sketch, so I'll be checking out Got Sketch more often!

Heather M. said...

So awesome to learn more about you, Lynn! You know I love your work and that layout is just stunning! I can't believe you've only been hard-core scrapping since last year! WOW!

Jess said...

Amazing work from you as always! Love the site... and it was great to get to know you better!

MidniteScrapper said...

Love the tips about photographing work, I'm never quite sure how to get a good result. TFS!