Point of View in Layouts

Additional Articles
Article courtesy Scrapbook.com; by Denise Gormish

Every scrapbook page has a point of view. You might not consciously choose a point of view before writing your journaling, but your journaling will still have a point of view. However, to get the best journaling, you should consider and carefully choose your point of view.

Point of view means the perspective from which the story is told. The following are examples and uses of each of the three points of view:

First Person. In first person point of view, the author provides the point of view for the narrative. First person is obvious when the word "I" or "we" is used in the journaling. For example, "I loved the zoo" would be first person point of view. The advantage of first person is that the audience can see exactly what the author is feeling and thinking. In my layout "So You Think You're an Engineer" I wrote in first person, emphasizing my own thoughts, observations and feelings about my husband.



I have never really doubted that Mike was a true engineer at heart. His childhood exploits and career path demonstrated that. But if there was any shred of doubt it was erased when we visited Railtown 1897 State Historic Park in Jamestown, CA. Mike signed us up for the tour, which was led by a docent who knew the ins and outs of every train in the park. Mike immediately began asking all kinds of question about how the engines operate, how certain aspects of the engines perform and what is required for maintenance the engines. Question after question... I should have known. How can you take an engineer to a place that specializes in historic trains and not get this endless series of questions? I don't think he's an engineer. I know. True to heart, he's an engineer.

Second Person. In second person point of view the author is telling the story to another specific person. Second person is obvious when the word "you" is used in the journaling. For example, "You loved the zoo" would be second person point of view. In scrapbooking, second person works well when you want to address someone else. In my layout "Today You Said" I spoke directly to my daughter as the focal point of what I was writing:



Did I hear you right?
"I want to go to the mall," you said. "I love shopping."
Is this really you - my daughter?

Third Person. In third person point of view the author is telling a story to the reader ("you" or second person, usually not referred to in the story) about yet another person, thus "third person." Third person will use pronouns like "he," "she," and "they" or a person's name in the journaling. For example, "Jessica loved the zoo" would be third person point of view. In third person, the author can chose to tell the story from one person's point of view or switch between several people. In the other two points of view, the author is limited to one person. Third person is also used to document facts. In my layout "Bobbin Lacing" the journaling features facts about the hobby of bobbin lacing.



Bobbin Lacing is an old form of lace making for household linens and clothing. The equipment includes pillows (a firm surface to pin the lace), bobbins, and pins. The bobbins are wound and used in pairs. A pricking pattern guide can be used for the design. There are two basic movements or stitches that make up the basis of all bobbin lace, the "cross" and the "twist."

One common writing mistake is getting caught using the same point of view all the time. Mix it up. Think about the page, what you want to say and whose narrative would present the best point of view . An even more common mistake is to switch point of view in the middle of a piece of writing, which you'll also want to avoid in order to prevent confusion for your readers.

Challenge yourself to write the journaling in more than one narrative to find out which voice works the best. You'll be surprised at what can happen with a different voice.


  • So You Think You're an Engineer: Jesse Edwards: Clean and Serene Solids Paper Pack, Hearts Brushes-n-Stamps and Kelly Mize: Double Dates No. 01 Brushes-n-Stamps, Designer Digitals
  • Today You Said: Katie Pertiet: Simple Classics No. 01 Kit, Petite Paper Flowers and Pinned Sentiments, Designer Digitals
  • Bobbin Lacing: American Crafts pattern paper and stickers, Bazzill white cardstock, Bazzill black cardstock and Li'l Davis letter stickers