Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My Congo Album, part 1

I just wanted to thank everyone for you kind comments and emails. I felt very encouraged after my last post and am very appreciative for your support and care.

A highlight of the past weekend for me was finishing my Congo album. I had a bit of incentive-- the Congo committee at my church asked if they could display it at their fundraising evening this Saturday-- just the kick in the pants I needed to get it done. ;)

So, I thought I share it here on my blog. There are over 40 layouts, so I'll spread it out over several posts. To see any original photos/stories that I posted about my trip back in March, you can just click on the "Trip to Congo 2010" link at the bottom of this post and it will show all of them.

To explain a few things...

I wanted the album to have a cohesive feel, so I used kraft cardstock and Pink Paislee 365 Degrees patterned paper (with a few sheets of Fancy Pants and October Afternoon thrown in here and there.)

I also wanted to use simple design and chose not to use a lot of embellishments. I wanted the focus to primarily be on the photos and stories.

Because I'm not a huge fan of 2 page layouts and tire of them quickly, I decided to use WeR Memory Keepers: 12x12 Page Protectors Multi-Pack 10 pack to house some of my photos, while creating a regular 12x12 layout beside it. I found that this worked very well for me. It gave me a variety of choices for the orientation of the photos and kept the album feeling fresh.

If you have any other questions about my process, please don't hesitate to ask.

Here we go...

The title page. This photo was taken in front of the Kwilu River, in Kikwit.

Where the story began... with the fundraising I needed to do to be able to afford the trip.

Our commissionning at church. This took place several weeks before we left because two of our team members (Ken & Len) left earlier to go to South Africa first.

A layout using a photo taken of me in the Toronto airport. This is where it began to sink in that I was really going to Congo.

The hostel we stayed in in Kinshasa.

Scenes form Kinshasa. I was only able to take a few photos in the city for fear that police officers or soldiers would take my camera away from me. In Kinshasa, I had to be very discreet with my photo-taking.

Such a different culture there, I had to journal about it.

The walk to the Bon Berger clinic was something I'd never experienced before. There was garbage everywhere.

At the Bon Berger Clinic. The name means "Good Shepherd."

We were able to witness a cool Congolese tradition. When a woman has a baby and is ready to go home, friends will come and do her hair and nails and toenails. Then she gets all dressed up and her friends come to the hospital (all dressed up) to take her home. They walk together down the street, singing really loudly, rejoicing in the birth of the baby. Later, when we left the clinic to go back to M.P.H., we passed the house where they were partying/celebrating. It was very cool.

Thanks for looking!


Elizabeth said...

Leigh what an amazing opportunity and an amazing trip!!! I love every single one of your pages and you highlighted the trip really well!!!

Tanya said...

Your album looks fantastic Leigh!!

Kim said...