21 juin 2013

Video review: Class with Cathy Zielske on dailycrafttv.com



It’s been a couple of weeks when DailyCraftTV.com contacted me and asked if I were interested in watching a video on their site for free and, in turn, write a review about it on my blog.Of course, I said yes.


Daily Craft TV 


DailyCraftTV.com offers online classes in several different craft areas including quilting, scrapbooking, sewing, crocheting, knitting and paper crafts. I browsed the videos and chose a video with Cathy Zielske  – a scrapbooker who doesn’t need to be introduced anymore – about photo editing techniques:


I’ve always admired Cathy Zielske’s style: for me „the“ clean & simple style by excellence. I remember that the 1st book I’ve bought in 2007 when I discovered scrapbooking was from her: Clean & Simple Scrapbooking vol. 1. Even if my style has evolved and is now very different, I still like the pureness of her creations.

The video is about 1h20min long and it’s separated in 10 chapters. It’s very clear and easy to understand, even for non-native English speakers (such as myself).

In chapter 1, we learn how Cathy Zielske started scrapbooking in 2001. It was interesting to learn that she started scrapbooking by coincidence when she read an article about a new craft store in her local newspaper, which was presenting itself as a photo memory store. She explains that she has always loved to take pictures (photography is her other passion), to write journals and to tell stories. I loved that she showed us the first pages she made. When I think about my own first pages… I feel ashamed J. Soon enough, she found her style: clean – simple title – lot of journaling – use of “white space”. That’s it! That’s a part of her signature (chapter 3). 

What was also interesting is that her design process (chapter 4) changes. She has 3 different approaches when she starts a layout. As a scrapbooker, I tend to always start with my photography. Her approach is different and very interesting and I will definitely give it a try.

She took time to list her favorite tools and the most important tool is her computer. She almost always uses her computer. 

As I am new with digital photography and want to learn a lot about photo edition, I was very interested in chapter 5 about editing techniques. In this chapter, Cathy Zielske shows us how to use actions on photos with Photoshop or Photoshop Elements to improve them (e.g. too dark or too light photos, black & white conversion and her favorite action in Word: the reverse white type).
Even if I found this part interesting and I learned some things, there was not enough details for my taste: I was expecting more tricks and step-by-step explanations of photography edition with Photoshop.

The chapter 6 about photography and equipment didn’t bring me much. 

On the other hand, I liked the 7th chapter about her photo organization. Her idea of organizing them by date is logic and works well for me too. I think I am going to follow her advice of making a DVD back up at each end of the month to safeguard my pictures. It is a very good idea.

Then I was curious about how she would organize her scrapbooking albums and I think she is right when she encourages us to use coordinated products when making an album: it’s so much easier and saves lot of time! I use a lot of scrapbooking kits and coordinated products. I love it. Her organization system is clever: each color for a different theme or person. I like that too.

In chapter 9, she tells us about her work as an Art Director in Scrapbooks Magazine. 

Last but not least, she shows us her scrap-room and I love seeing other people’s craft spaces! I spend a lot of time on the Web and on Pinterest looking for scrap-room organization tips and trying to improve my own organization at home. I really enjoyed this part. Her craft space is marvelous. I was happy to learn that she is – as me – a stand-up scrapbooker and always starts a new project with a clean desk. I also have a basket at one side of my table with the new products I got.

The quality of the video is very good and the cost reasonable ($ 4.99). What is great about this concept is that you can take a class and watch the video from your home, when you want and as many times as you like. 

Maybe a few words about the video itself: I found the presentation well done and I think Cathy Zielske has an agreeable voice and feels comfortable in front of a camera. It was never boring or too long. I had the impression that I was facing a good friend. What’s more, each chapter is different and of various lengths, what breaks the rhythm and avoids becoming monotonous. The class is divided in 10 chapters going from 3 to 20 minutes. Each chapter has a title, which makes very easy to watch.
I can only recommend watching a video on DailyCraftTV.com. Their videos are very good and professional. I’ve learned a couple of things and it gave me a lot of new ideas for other things than just photo editing, e.g. organization of albums, scrap-room, etc.

I would like to conclude by quoting something that Cathy Zielske said: “Keep record of your life because no one is going to do it for you”. So true!

Thank you DailyCraftTV.com and Eric for giving me this great opportunity!

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