There's been a lot of talk over on TwoPeas lately about the publishing and Design Team aspect of the scrapbooking industry. (For the non-scrapbookers among you, scrappers can submit to have their work published in the scrapbook magazines and idea books, or to be on a Design Team for a store, magazine or manufacturer. Basically Design Teams produce work to be showcased either in mags, brick and mortar stores, online or at tradeshows etc. Oh and you usually get free product to work with.)
There's a lot of competition in the industry and lately some scrappers have been stating their frustrations with not getting a break, even though they have been submitting their work for over a year. Sadly this leads to them thinking that their work isn't "good enough" and wanting to even give up the hobby. I won't lie, I'd love to be published or be on a DT and I do submit my work, so all this talk has made me think about what my reasons are for scrapping.
Well I originally started scrapping because I needed something to do a few years back when I was out of work, but I quickly fell in love with the hobby. I didn't get much done though because then I started school (MBA) and had very little time for crafts. After moving to France I started back again, but in a hit and miss manner, until I found the about scrapbooking forum, and then TwoPeas, both of which totally opened my eyes to what scrapbooking could be really like.
About a year ago I discovered scrapsubmit.com, a website that lists all the calls for magazines, books, design teams and contests and I started submitting a bit. My approach would be to check what the calls were and then try to create work to suit. The end result of course was scrapper's block and after a while I decided to stop. Then I got caught up with the swapping rage on the forum and for the last 6 months of 2005 I didn't create one scrapbook page for myself.
Thankfully I have crawled out from under the swap pile and already since January I have made half as many pages as I did in 2005. And if I say so myself they are great pages! I have totally changed my approach to creating pages and also to submitting. I still look at calls, but I don't scrap in response to them. I scrap my pages for me and for Lucas (he loves looking at them), and if a page happens to suit a call I submit it, but not with any great hope of being published, or getting on a DT. That would just be the icing on the cake. I feel like I am still learning and growing in this craft anyway, still defining what my "style" is, still trying techniques to discover those I love and am good at. I do challenges that fit in with topics or ideas that I have, and maybe one day, when I am truly in the zone I'll even submit to a contest.
They say we all have our 15 minutes of fame, and maybe one day I'll get mine in the scrapping world. But nothing beats the feeling I get when I complete a page I love, and absolutely nothing will beat the feeling I got at my husband's reaction to the page I created for him for Valentine's Day.