Studio Work / Our Family Journal

Studio Work—Our Family Journal (Design work by Rhonda.H.Y.Mason)
Studio Work—Our Family Journal (Design work by Rhonda.H.Y.Mason)
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Some of you who used to read my Pink Ronnie blog and our LIFE:CAPTURED blog will know that I’ve been creating scrapbooks, journals, albums, and photo books for more than a decade now.

About two years ago, I realised I needed to simplify my entire memory-keeping system because it was getting too complicated and becoming too much of a mental burden.

As I mulled over this for a month or more, I eventually settled on the idea of an all-encompassing ‘family journal’ concept that would include our family’s daily journaling and photos taken over the course of the year. Instead of the week-by-week framework that I previously used for my Project Life albums, this new family journal concept would be divided into monthly chapters. This would allow great flexibility with images—that is, I wouldn’t have to take photos every week if I didn’t feel that there was a story to be told.

Around that time, the first volume of Faculty Department (created by Justin Chung) was released. The simplicity of the cover really spoke to me, and I envisioned doing something similar with my new family journals. While all my previous photo books and story books had a photo on the cover, I decided that simple black text on a white background would work well for these new books. I could see myself making several books a year, and I wanted to be able to line them up on a shelf and have them looking like a series of periodicals.

Like the SOULT Journals that we released at the end of 2016, I decided that English library buckram would be the perfect choice for the cover material given its durability and its ability to resist both scratches and stains. (Even though I love the look and feel of linen, I just know that linen will not stand the test of time.)

Armed with my concept for these family journals, I approached Carbon8 to discuss how these could be printed economically. Together, we worked out that if each of the books had the same number of pages, the same internal stock, and the same cover material, Carbon8 would be able to print multiple (different) books in one go—at more or less the same price of printing multiple copies of the same book. Win!

Earlier this year, I created a mock-up for the cover.

I like it.

A lot.

It’s exactly what I had pictured when I first came up with the idea.

I have also started created mock-ups of the internal pages. I will share some of these in the coming weeks.

Which I was mulling all over this over two years ago, I decided that 2016 would be the last year of my Project Life albums. Which means that for the years 2017 and following, I will be documenting our family’s journey in this format.

I am in no rush to create the actual books. I figure I will savour this time with Lewis not yet at school. And when he does start school…well, let’s just say that my husband might need to build me a new bookshelf.


You can read the other posts in this series here.