One of the reasons I find Scrapbooking in it’s many forms so fascinating, is the fact that people are just so unique and their views and stories are amazingly diverse and special. I have never formally met Lauren in real life but, her “crazy amazing talented self” has touched so many folks in the scrapbooking industry, including many of my own students, I feel as if I have known her for years. I am very thankful to have gotten to know Lauren better and am excited to share a bit of her world with you…. her story emphasizes the fact that many folks who start Scrapbooking, discover many other ways to document and express their stories in the process.
Lauren Ferguson-Nwachukwu is currently an Altered Arts Magazine Design Team Member as well as being a part of both the Quietfire and Tattered Angels Design Teams. Her blog, Everything Altered reflects her daily journey from scrapbooking to oh so much more!
Welcome Lauren Ferguson-Nwachukwu
The first step on my journey to becoming a mixed media artist. It is where I got my love of paper.
What inspires you?
It is always about the image and the texture. Either one of those two can take over my creative process. Because I have a difficult time seeing color, I have had to depend on things other than color to work for me. When I see paper/fabric/embellishments, I see a pattern that speaks to me…. that’s when I decide to buy it. I love the way that rusty things feel in my hand.
If you are stranded on an island, what 5 art things do you bring with you?
Craft knife, metal ruler, needle and thread, bug spray.
What is your all time favorite piece and why?
My copper books. Each one seems to get better than the last. I love them. I love the process of etching the copper and then sewing the book. I like making the choices in mood and feel of each book.
Most memorable moment teaching?
My most memorable teaching moment actually happend after I had taught that day with one of my teaching assistants. We were at a crop and I just walked to the table and asked her what she was working on. She showed me a picture of an ultrasound. I said congratulations is it a boy or a girl. That was when she told me that this was the last live picture that she had of her daughter who died in-utero. She had been carrying the photo for years and still had not been able to get any closure. She looks me dead in my face and said, “Lauren will you finish this for me?” I had been teaching all day and was beat. And then for a quick second, I got my wits about me and said yes. All the ladies at the table let me dig thru all of their supplies. They gave me the perfect brads, the perfect jewels. I mean this was such a labor of love. Well, I am now at that point in the layout where you have to commit the picture and finish embellishing. I am working with some paper flowers that were cut with an electric die cut machine and pop dots and my Stickles. I am finally in the zone and at the point where you know you are almost done. I look over and she is crying. I thought that she hated it. I thought that she felt like I had ruined her only photo. I began to apologize and tell her that I have adhesive remover and I will fix it. She then stops me in mid sentence and says to me, “Oh, No, it is perfect. That is what I saw in my head and I just could not get it onto the paper. I just could not let it go.” Wow. That was my most memorable moment.
Most memorable moment as a student?
As a student, it was when I was in a scrapbooking class and the layout was designed for a 12 by 12. At the time I scrapped in 8 by 8. I started cutting my paper down to scale so that it would work for me. The instructor actually told me that I was doing it wrong and to stop cutting the paper. I told her that I did not do12 by 12 and that I was making it work for me. She was so angry at me that she said, ” Well, I cannot help you when you make a mistake if you cut your paper…. it is at your own risk”. Well, I looked at her and said, “I did not ask you for any help” and, from there, I proceeded to continue to cut my paper. In about the same amount of time, I finished my layout and was packing my bags to go. My friend Debbie was sitting next to me and she said, “Lauren hold it and let them see that you can do what you want”. So that is what I did. I held up mine and told them that I shrunk it down to fit my book size. The instructor looked at me with a great bit of indifference. Oh well.
I don’t have a favorite one. I really like it all. I love learning how to take something new or even something old and making it mine with my own personal twist on it
Interesting Trends you see?
I see a new alternative movement of women coming out of the scrapbooking world. For me, I was a professional woman who had to make a choice to either stay home and raise my children, or work. My husband and I made the decision for me to stay home. Scrapbooking was my entry in the crafting world. I was looking to express that side of me that I rediscovered while making the transition into motherhood. Yikes, and then to find out that I am really good at it, was just a plus.
Anything else you’d like to plug- classes coming up, projects you are involved with…..your choice
I have a class that I am teaching in Florida in September. You can see all the updates on my blog Everything Altered.