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Jennifer Schaerer

Jennifer Schaerer

We try not to, but sometimes we get so focused on publishing our magazines that we lose sight of the final product once it’s “out there.” We’re so used to Christmas in July and Mother’s Day in December that we’re always well on our way to the next inspiring issue. 

That wasn’t the case with Go-to Sketches. From the very first moment we sat down to discuss the concept, we were giddy with anticipation. It all came together so perfectly, including the photo shoot that coincided with our annual editorial board meeting. As Paper Crafts Go-to Gal Teri Anderson said, it was an instant connection for our newly-minted Go-to Gals even though they had never been all together as a group before. 

Oh, the laughter! The teasing! 

And, of course, the primping. Since these six lovely ladies had to pose not only for their official headshots (the black and whites we use here and in the magazine), but also the colorful opener shots AND group shot for Go-to Sketches, you can only imagine the quick changes and hair brushing going on. 

Brian Smith of BPD Studios

Brian takes a test shot and looks back at the monitor to check the lighting.

Luckily, our intrepid photographer Brian Smith of BPD Studios is not only talented but a really good sport. He and Matt are the Dynamic Duo of girly stuff whenever a Paper Crafts issue heads for the studio. It might even bring out the best in him, but he’ll never admit it…right, Brian? Hee hee! He definitely brought out the best in our Go-to Gals, though.

Go-to Sketches group shot

One of many attempts at a group shot. Can't you just hear the laughter?

Then it was on to the individual shots for the section opening pages. Not only were there six boisterous Go-to Gals in the studio, there was also an audience of editors to help keep things lively. 

The audience

Is it any wonder there are dozens of outtakes for each one of these shots?

And here’s your insider secret for the day: although the final shots in the issue are just beautiful and appear effortless, each one was meticulously arranged and checked on the monitor. 

Checking the monitor

Matt, Brian and stylist Claudia Daniels check the all-white set on the monitor.

It was only after their shots were complete that the Go-to Gals remembered to have a quick bite to eat. After all, we literally whisked them straight from the airport right to the studio and then ordered them to smile pretty. 

Maren and Jess taking a break

Maren, is that a little lettuce between your teeth? Just kidding!

This has truly been a fun and fulfilling journey bringing this very special issue from early concept last August to the newsstand a few weeks ago. Your other insider secret for the day: we’ve got something else up our collective sleeves for later this summer, so you might want to hang around and find out more. Shhhhhhhh. Don’t tell anyone, though. 

If you haven’t already gotten your copy of Go-to Sketches, you can check out our sneak peek HERE. (Psst…today’s the last day for the 20% off plus free shipping offer! Just enter the promotion code “SKETCH20” HERE.) 

I’m sending heartfelt thanks to our fantastic group of Go-to Gals for making this week so much fun with all the blog hopping and exclusive new projects using some of the sketches from this issue, because we sure couldn’t have done this without the group effort. You ladies are the very best! 

And since our readers are the very best, too, I’ve got three more copies of Go-to Sketches to give away! Leave a comment telling me your favorite aspect of this promotional week (so far!). All comments must be received by midnight (MDT) on Friday, April 9. 


P.S. The fun is just beginning! Hop over to Moxie Fab World as Cath talks about stretching a sketch to suit different styles, purposes, occasions, holidays, gender, age, etc. And the Go-to Gals each take a single sketch and turn it six different ways to create six unique new projects!

Brynn Lilliwhite

Brynn Lillywhite

Welcome to Magazine Monday! Isn’t it incredible the things that are created just by paper and ribbon (and a few other supplies)? I’ve always thought of myself as creative; however, as I see the masterpieces in the pages of Paper Crafts magazine, I realize that I still have a lot to learn in the world of paper crafting.

When I heard from our wonderful managing editor, Brandy, that Paper Crafts was looking for a design intern and that I had the job, I was thrilled! This internship is the best of both worlds. I get to design (my career of choice) and I get to do it surrounded by crafty people and projects (my passion).

I spent my first day in the photo studio helping our art director, Stace, stylize and photograph cards for an upcoming issue. We created a scene for each set of cards using props and different background colors. I was surprised by the level of detail that goes into making each shot absolutely perfect. I guess I never really thought about how a magazine is put together, but I definitely never imagined that cards were first created by designers and then photographed before being added to each page in the magazine. I definitely learned something new and it was fun to lay the groundwork for the issue in such a tangible way. 

Heres our photographers Brian and Symoni looking at an image on their computer. Notice the rainbow of colorful drapes and background boards in the background.

Here's our photographers Brian Smith and Symoni Johnson looking at an image on their computer. Notice the rainbow of colorful drapes and background boards behind them.

My next assignment was to design a few Simple Sentiments downloads. That was much harder than it looked! I tend to make my projects much too involved and get in way over my head. Stace helped me to see that with these designs, less is more. It took some time, but I finally created simple designs that I’m very excited about. Go figure, Simple Sentiments are supposed to be simple!

Since I started over a month ago, I’ve grown and experienced things that I didn’t think I would learn from a paper crafting magazine:

  • I’ve experienced the freedom of creating and been given the opportunity to potentially see my work in a finished publication.
  • I’ve experienced the joy of becoming friends with people I might not have met otherwise, and to see them be a part of each other’s lives, both in and outside of work.
  • I’ve experienced the excitement of seeing a magazine take shape from start to finish, and to be a part of all the behind-the-scenes events.

I now understand that the Paper Crafts team, the readers (all of you), each individual page and every detail in between make up something greater – the finished product. I have loved being part of that and look forward to the next several weeks here at Paper Crafts!

Your design intern,
Brynn Lillywhite

P.S. It’s time to announce the three winners from Matt’s Lone Design Man post from last week! Here they are in no particular order:

1. Rachel Hope (May 7, 9:19 a.m.)
2. Ginger Hollner (May 7, 6:52 a.m.)
3. Mary (May 8, 6:08 a.m.)

Each of you will receive a collection of magazines featuring Matt’s amazing openers! Kelly will be e-mailing you shortly for your mailing addresses! Thanks to all who left comments and played along!

P.P.S. It’s also time to announce the three winners from Kelly’s Freebie Friday – Matt, Mom and a Blooming Giveaway post! Here they are in no particular order:

1. Darlene (May 8, 2:02 p.m.)
2. Sammie (May 8, 7:13 a.m.)
3. Elizabeth S. (May 8, 10:04 a.m.)

Each of you has won the flower-themed prize package! Kelly will be e-mailing you shortly for your mailing addresses. Thanks to all who left so many great bits of motherly advice!

Paper Crafts Calendar

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