Recently I realized I have been a professional graphic designer for 10 years. But I have been honing my craft for over 15 years on one personal project, my concert scrapbooks. My concert scrapbooks follow my artistic development in the most personal way possible. They combine my life, personal interests, and unedited creativity in a timeline that can be tracked back 15+ years. They are not pristine pages made with templates, sheet protectors, and premade scrapbooking adornments. They are collages of my photos, momentos and ephemera from events, and all kinds of craft supplies creatively documenting my experiences. Each book shows real wear and tear from over the years.
My concert scrapbooks are the creative outlet synthesis of my love for art and music. Not only do I experience great live music but I get to relive the show while designing the pages. To date I have filled up 10 scrapbooks with musical adventures.
The 11th scrapbook is in progress. This fangirl is torn as to what should be on the cover. It might be
show on the cover or maybe the upcoming Hollywood Vampires show in Hollywood, CA at the Roxy in September.
Early on it became obvious that flat items such as autographs, ticket stubs, guitar picks, setlists, pictures, and backstage passes are ideal for scrapbooking. My favorite items to document shows are setlists and photos. They show the experience and give an account of what was played. I also like to challenge myself to get autographs, backstage passes, and photos with the band. All of which are easier to obtain from front row.
As the years go on you can see how I have evolved as an artist. I use more graphic minded layouts and solutions. I explore all kinds of design elements and techniques. I have featured photos of a few below.
Using different textures in design gives pages depth and variation.
I have used different materials such as duct tape.
I have also created unique textures with ribbon and fabics.
Actual dried flowers can be found on pages.
And I have even used fire to create different effects. I have learned how to work with all kinds of materials because of my concert scrapbooks and that knowledge has been indefinitely valuable to me in all my artistic pursuits.
I have also used these books as practices in layout.
Sometimes I would come up with layouts before the show and have artists sign on the scrapbook page. Having the artist sign wherever they wanted on the pages tied the book to the actual event. Being held by the artists truly made the scrapbook part of that day.
As time goes on you can see how my layouts become more advanced.
I even utilized see-through elements on pages in my layouts.
I also like to create interactive elements. Seeing both sides of a ticket or a guitar pick are common in the books. But my favorite elements are the interactive and elaborate pop-up pages.
My concert scrapbooks are by far the most in-depth art project I have ever undertaken. They are a legacy of creativity and adventure that showcases my talents in a way a portfolio never will. Photographs will never do them justice.
I invite you to pay me a visit sometime and page through them with me. You can see all 10 times I saw Steven Tyler live and all the other concerts turned scrapbook pages.