Thursday, June 28, 2012

Behind the Scenes: Why I Blog and My Timeline

I'm getting started a little late in Kim Klassen and Xanthe Berkeley's Behind the Scenes, so I'll combine the first two assignments, but first I have to start with some of my favorite cups for Kim's Beyond Layers Cuppa Cuppa Love.

Thanks to Kim for texture: felicity
Have any of you noticed how the size of our cups have gotten bigger over the years. A mere six ounce cup of coffee just doesn't do anymore. A single serving seems to have grown to 12 or 16 ounces. Now if you put sugar and milk/cream in that, does it make you wonder what that does to our waistlines? A side note: my oldest son, Phillip, made the blue cup (a set of four) and a teapot, sugar bowl, and creamer to match. Sweet! One of my "motherly" treasures.

Anyway, on to the assignments for Behind the Scenes before I get off track completely. My headers are made with Kim's texture Phoebe (one of my all-time favorites). And one more aside, I just love how Kim and Xanthe interact in their Skype call videos. They just make me laugh as I watch them banter back and forth.

Assignment: Grab a notebook, a favorite pen ... and 'write' your Why story?

Hmmm ... why I blog? This seems to be ever-morphing. Originally, laf Custom Designs was intended to be a place to showcase design projects and photomagic from a business standpoint. I began displaying not only the pictures I posted on Flickr after I took Kim's Photoshop Essentials course, but telling the stories behind the photographs. Before long, my ever-present need to document life events and experiences crept in and now my blog has morphed into impressions and inspiration.

Now the question comes up ... who is my audience? Don't know if I can really answer that except in lots of ways my blog is for me. Isn't that pathetic? I wanted to have a place to put my work and my stories so it was easily accessible. I find revisiting the things I've recorded comforting somehow. I also love to design blogs ... I have several for different phases of my life and projects over time. In addition, I know that we are all in this life together and in many ways my stories are universal, but only I can give my spin and interpretation on those experiences. I guess I hope that somewhere in all of that lies something that will resonate with others and help give folks a different perspective--maybe a different way of thinking or doing.

So that brings me to the bigger part. The part where I need/like to connect with other creatives who are talented, share insights and geeky new how-to's,  and seem to be aligned philosophically with me. For me, connecting through my blog is not just about getting nice comments, it's about making new friendships. In my experience, the way to do that is to reach out ... someone comments, I comment back. It goes like that ... then I send a personal note and start a conversation ... a private conversation. Everything doesn't need to be out there in the open. I've made some great friends through my blog and on Flickr (where this all started).  Now I have more friends 'round the globe. Thanks to all of you who have been open to this idea and taken the ride with me. ;->

Assignment: In order to move forward let's look back first. Look at your journey that brought you to this moment ...

Well, let's see. How far back shall I go? Obviously, no one wants to hear/read my life story all in one post or at all, but here is my effort to share my most recent journey.

My current photography and blogging beginnings were born out of the need for survival. Well, not literally. But the environment I was working in was very stressful for me, so I looked inside and out to discover new joy and beauty in the world. The Stroll was a weekly newsletter I created from October 2010 through December 2011. It also gave me an excuse to learn InDesign at a deeper level than I was using at work although I must give credit there. Taking walks with Kobi, snapping pictures, and writing my observations saved me.

From there I discovered Kim Klassen--the greatest teacher I've ever had probably since grade school -- maybe the best of all time! I fell in love with photo-manipulation using her textures and have been following her in Beyond Layers and now Behind the Scenes. I'm so grateful for this creative outlet and have hopes that it may take me toward a new vocation.

I find it quite amusing that I used boxes for my timeline as I really detest being put in a box! I guess my analytical side has its place. ;-> And I suppose it's my way of creating order.

The font used in my graphics is Havlova-Austral.


  1. I love your blog and feel like I know you just from this brief visit, I look forward to seeing you again and again as we post our course experiences!

  2. I second what Lee says - I love your blog too.

    I also love the name of your blog, we can share a LAF together.

  3. I do not think its pathetic your blog is primarily for you...as my blog is primarily for me :) I follow lots of blogs and find people create blogs for many different reasons. Some of us use the blog as an online journal...and by being online we are able to share, create and grow along with whoever happens to find and follow our blog. Some of the more "popular" blogs I follow have a commercial aspect. Regardless of their purpose, blogs can be such a wonderful, creative outlet! And source of inspiration!

    You'll have to let me know how the Behind the Scenes course goes...I was intrigued by
    it, but know I don't have the time to take another e-course.

    Oh, and I sure hope this comment doesn't come across as me lecturing cause that is surely not my intent.

  4. I agree with Lisa - it is not pathetic at all. It's kind of a way of journaling that we do for everyone to see. I think of mine as a timeline for my kids too...maybe eventually they will read my blog (ha!) By the way, I love the mug your son made you and I agree that mugs have gotten bigger over the years. I limit myself to 1 Tablespoon of half and half (I measure) and 1 teaspoon of sugar, so I can stay on the Weight Watchers plan =) I also love Kim...she's a great teacher,photographer and creator of textures.

  5. Lissa, this is fantastic, and I truly enjoyed reading it (twice!).
    I am VERY glad you are here!

  6. Lissa - I enjoyed seeing your timeline and how this creative project evolved. I really love what you do here! Thanks for being an inspiration!

    Hmm...have you ever considered designing blogs for others? I wish my blog was as beautiful and comprehensive and user friendly and inspiring as yours!

  7. I blog for many of the same reasons - as an outlet and showcase for my creative side and also to document my journey and experiences for myself. Loved your timeline and reading about your own journey. Glad we've connected on here!!

  8. Lissa, I enjoyed reading your "why" and seeing your timeline...your blog is lovely. Your writing voice is friendly and inviting - I'm glad to be in class with you! Oh, and I love your son's mug. :)

  9. Lissa,
    This was so fun! I read it twice as well and feel like I got a better glimpse of who Lissa is and a bit of your journey. Thank you for writing, for being real, and for being such an encouragement across the miles!


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