six steps to get started
 
Putting your feelings into words can often feel like a monumental task. But it’s way easier than you think (especially when you’ve already written it). When you really want to say it best—and you've probably got so much to say—consider the following tips from our storyboarding experts at memorymatte to help you get started!
 
You might already have written it!
 
A love letter. Wedding vows and toasts. Birthday cards and bar mitzvah tributes. Retirement speeches. Commencement addresses. You’ve already spent months doing the heavy lifting of finding the right words and putting pen to paper. Why just put them away in a file folder when you can not only memorialize them, but put them on display for life! The gift of a memorymatte is so incredibly easy when you pair the right photo with words you’ve already written down on paper.
 
Speak It Before You Write It
 
If you’re starting fresh, we always find that speaking your thoughts, feelings and memories is a perfect way to initiate the task. Using the voice memo recorder on your smartphone, speak your thoughts out loud. Speaking off the cuff about memories and feelings and moments can help you break through. And then go back to listen later when you're ready to put pen to paper—or enter text into the tool.
 
Answer Specific Questions
 
We find that using questions as cues is a great way to extract your thoughts into words. Questions could include: "How did you meet? What's your favorite memory with the recipient? What three words would you use to describe the recipient? In 100 words or less, describe how your giftee makes you feel? What was the one moment that had you laughing in tears? If you could give a piece of advice to the recipient, what would it be?" And so on. Answering individual questions can often help you break through and break it down.
 
Use an Outline
 
Whether it's a simple "beginning, middle and end" outline for telling your favorite memory—or—using a list like "10 Things I Love About..." memorymatte story specialists often recommend using an outline structure. Doing so not only helps to organize your thoughts but also gives a natural narrative to your text!
 
Use the Picture
 
In the end, a memorymatte is the most special photo album you can find, hanging on the wall. Use the photograph as a cue to describe your feelings. What was happening in that photograph? How did you feel then? How does that photograph make you feel now? Why do you tear up, laugh, cry, smile every time you look at that photo? Asking yourself these questions will make this exercise super easy, super fun and super fulfilling.
 
Crowdsource
 
Sometimes, working in a vacuum can limit your creative process. Writing a memorymatte together with friends or colleagues can be a fun, friendly and uplifting activity—and help you find a lot to talk about when doing it on your own isn't so easy. We give more group gifting advice on our Art of Your Life blog.

Ready to get started? Make your memorymatte.