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In the PressRoom with Becky Pogatchnik

Happy PressRoom Wednesday everyone! This week we are featuring Becky Pogatchnik. She is an inspiration to me and a wonderful friend. When I started designing, she was the first person that I asked to be on my creative team. I’m thrilled that she accepted my request and has stuck by me all these years.
To say that I am a HUGE fan of Becky’s work is an understatement. Her style is clean, classic and always tugs at the heartstrings. She has an incredible way with words. An incredible knack for capturing moments with her camera. Every time I see her work I am inspired – she makes me want to be a better writer, a better photographer, a better scrapper.

– a little bit about Becky –

program I use to create your layouts – Photoshop CS4

camera – Canon Rebel XT – Tamron 17-50mm 2.8 is my favorite lens.

I’m a morning person. Rise and shine at 0500 nearly every day.

things that inspire me – in life: my family, my daughter, exemplary citizens, my best friend, my work. In scrapping: my daughter, magazine ads, the creativity of others, simplicity.things that make me happy: family time, me time, Diet Coke with a fresh lime, a clean house, kindness in others, good manners, my ipod, a great pair of jeans, snapping the perfect photo, scrapbooking.favorite technique – stripping down a template or bare bones scrapbooking
my scrapping style is simple. very simple. For me, it’s about the story, the photo, the design (in that order.)

I can’t get through the day without a kiss from my husband, a hug from my daughter, and a Diet Coke.

favorite movie? song? artist/band?
It changes every day. Today it’s Seven Pounds, So Small by Carrie Underwood, and Taylor Swift. (and the last two are ironic, because I am not generally a fan of country music. I think I’m growing up.) :)

favorite vacation destination:Anywhere, as long as I’m with my family.

. . . . . . . . . .

I don’t know about you, but seeing Becky’s work makes me want to be a better journaler! More often than not, I end up skipping the journaling because I struggle so much with writing. I often look back on old layouts and cringe because my journaling reads more like a diary entry (that should be kept private) rather than an engaging story. We all have stories to tell and we all have a “writing voice”. Some of us just need a little help finding it. I asked Becky to share some journaling tips and here’s what she drafted:
– journaling tips –
written by Becky Pogatchnik

Write soon after the occasion/situation/interaction/milestone. You’ll remember the details and more importantly, you’ll remember the emotion.

Write in the first person. I find that it is so much easier to tell our stories if *I* am literally telling it to *my daughter* So it’s “I” and “you.” It has a completely different feel than if I were to try to tell a story about “Samantha asking me about the tooth fairy.” It makes it distant. And that’s the last thing I am going for in my girly’s scrapbooks.

Intermixing quotes in a story gives it life. I have post-it notes on my kitchen cabinets and in my car for just that reason. I’ll jot down a thing or two after she says it and then sprinkle them in my story.

Experiment with different phrasing. For example, at the bottom of the first page, where I wrote “as you outstretched your littlest finger to mine,” I could have easily said “as you tried to give me a pinky swear” but it would not have sounded as descriptive and would have actually sounded repetitive. Same thing midway through the second page where I said “the generous man in red.” We all know I am referring to Santa Claus, so being somewhat evasive about it makes for a more interesting story.

Don’t always worry about grammar. Write like you talk. Those last few sentences of mine might now win any awards for proper use of the English language, but that’s how I talk. I want my daughter to literally hear my voice through these pages.

Throw down the *sigh* and the *gulp* – they add to the emotion of the stories. I include them where they naturally occur when I am writing. As my fingers are flying on the keyboard and I find myself exhaling deeply because of something in the story, I add a*sigh*.

Reuse phrases and verbage, just like we do in real life. That title “Your life. Our stories” is something I made up a few years ago that I continue to use today. The “that’s my girl” is something I use regularly too. Having some of the same verbage threaded through different layouts, spanning years, brings some real authenticity to our stories.

Lastly, just write. Sit down at that keyboard and start typing what you feel. Don’t stop to over think it. You can rework it later.

This week we are leaving you with another pressroom freebie – press plate no. 20 – a layered template courtesy of Becky (complete with Becky’s journaling guides and prompts). One last note regarding journaling + typography when using this template: Becky recommends changing the lead and the tracking of the font to get things to fit correctly (evenly).
Hope you enjoy this pressroom goodie. I’d love to see what you do with the template so if you used it, please come back and post a link to your layout.


{ 14 comments… add one }
  • Digi Free May 21, 2009, 6:14 am

    Thank you! Your blog post will be advertised on the DigiFree Digital Scrapbooking Freebie search engine today (look for timestamp: 21 May [LA 02:50am, NY 04:50am, UK 09:50am, OZ 07:50pm] ).

  • stevie kay May 21, 2009, 8:38 pm

    I love Becky’s work! Does she currently post to any galleries that we cvould see more of her work?

  • Heather Taylor Photography May 21, 2009, 9:11 pm

    I agree- Becky is amazing and such an inspiration! Thanks (both you and Beck!) for sharing some of her latest layouts… I’ve missed seeing her sweetie’s beautiful face. :)

    Hope you’re feeling well, Liz!

  • **Nancy** May 22, 2009, 12:28 pm

    WOW! It’s been a while since I have seen some of Becky’s work!! Still amazing as always!!! You girls continue to be such an inspiration to me!!

  • Leora May 22, 2009, 7:14 pm

    YAY..becky!! Looks like you still rock the simple, to the point style! LOVE IT. :)

  • Carol May 22, 2009, 9:22 pm

    Oh I am so glad to read the journalling tips. My husband is always wanting to correct my grammar or punctuation when he reads my pages and I tell him exactly what she said, about how it’s my voice, how I speak, I don’t speak with commas and semi colans and in proper words. LOL. Thank you! I now have something to show him as living proof I’m not the only one!

  • Kim H. May 23, 2009, 8:08 am

    You gave me a Becky fix, I will be forever grateful!

  • Kelly May 24, 2009, 1:19 pm

    Great tips! I am definitely going to make it a point to do a bit more journaling.

  • Zee May 24, 2009, 6:16 pm

    Awesome tips! I never thought about some of those tips before…! :) Thanks Becky!

  • Dúnia May 29, 2009, 5:51 am

    Becky love to know more about you! Thanks for the tips!

  • *reyanna klein* June 10, 2009, 10:24 pm

    LOVED reading this! Becky is the person who inspired me to be a simple scrapper, and it was she I had in mind as I did my first digi page. She was my first "favorite scrapper," and she will always be one of my most favorite artists of all time. Thank you SO much for profiling her today. 😀

  • Kate October 19, 2009, 2:00 pm

    Aww Becky…the illusive scrapper who pops up when you least expect it!! We miss you…and we miss Sam!! I'm sure you are doing great things…it's nice to see you here and there girl!!


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