This post is by Guest Postess Chris, who is one of my husband’s rockin’ cousins.
Digiscrapping is for those who would like to preserve their memories in a scrapbook-type style, but for whatever reason do not want to work with traditional paper supplies. I do not want to bag on my fellow sister scrapbookers who work in paper, but for me the advantages to digital scrapping are numerous:
1. No mess! You don't have to drag out your supplies and pack them back up when finished.
2. The only storage you need is on your hard drive.
3. It is goof proof. Don't like what you just did? Hit undo and start over.
4. You can reuse all your supplies over and over and over again. Recolor them. Alter them. Change the shape, size, orientation.
5. There are a ton of free digital supplies out there. Yep, you read it right. FREE!
6. You do not have to print out your pictures to add them to layouts. You just use them straight from your digital camera. You can also edit them in creative ways.
7. Because your final product is digital, it is easy to share with family and friends. No need to drag your huge album around to show people your work. Just e-mail it!!
8. You can be so much more creative with good editing software than you can with paper. There is no limitation to this medium.
9. There is an amazing group of women (and a few men) involved in this hobby, and they are right there on-line whenever you need them. No need to go to a crop.
10. Did I mention no mess?
I could go on, but I will rest my case and leave it to you to decide if you are a paper or digi gal! (Or maybe you are hybrid, but that is a whole 'nother post!)
If you are thinking digi might be your thing there are a few things that you need to be able to get into the game. Obviously you need a computer and a digital camera. You need some sort of basic photo editing-type software. A good one that is not terribly expensive is Photoshop Elements. It is the baby brother to the huge -- and expensive -- Photoshop program. But it has great functionality, and the learning curve is not terribly steep. If your budget is super tight, Paint.net and Gimp are both free. I have heard that Gimp is feature rich, but pretty complicated. Paint.net is supposed to be great!
Once you have all of the aforementioned in place you are almost ready to get started. All you need now is pictures to scrap and your supplies. Digi supplies are just like paper supplies, just in a digital format. Where do you get this stuff? Well, I am glad you asked. There are literally a gabillion digi scrapping sites out there anxious to sell you their stuff. Two of my favorites are Plaindigitalwrapper and Scrapbookgraphics. I am a Creative Team Member for both sites and can vouch that they sell quality stuff. However, since you are new to this, lets start with freebies!!!! The best place to go for freebies is Ikea Goddess. She combs tons of digi-scrapping blogs everyday and posts the best freebies she finds for you to download. So, go to her site, troll around and download some things that catch your eye.
Now that you have supplies and photos you are ready to start. Open up your editing program. Bring in a background paper and start placing all of the things on your paper that you would like. How this is done varies from program to program. If you have no idea how to use your program, Google it. There are tutorials out there to get you started.
Well, those are the very basics. I am going to leave you with just a few more links.
The hub of the digiscrap community is digishoptalk. There are amazing forums to answer any questions you might have. Another good idea is to browse through the gallery to see some amazing digi layouts in person.
Hummiesworld is specifically geared towards PSE users (Photoshop Elements), but she has some great general tutorials. This site is where I got my start, and I recommend it for beginners.