Thursday, January 17, 2013

Using iPad For Project Life Planning

*UPDATE* – please scroll to bottom of post for update and free template download for use in Bamboo Paper on iPad.

*UPDATE #2* - Evernote has decided to update Penultimate and make it completely free now! And it syncs with Evernote. My dream come true.

I discovered a couple of iPad apps yesterday that I’m excited to share with you. I know many of you are starting Project Life (or continuing with it). I’m always looking for ways to improve my process or make things easier.

If you take a lot of photos with your iPhone, you can use Apple’s iCloud Photo Stream to sync up your photos on your iPhone, iPad, and your computer. It is the easiest and most automatic way I know of to get photos from your iPhone or iPad to each other, and also to the computer. 

Once the photos are in my Photo Stream on my iPad, I discovered two ways to make notes about the photo.  I found the Bamboo Paper app and it’s FREE! It’s a digital notebook where you can write notes in it with a stylus or your hand. You can put photos onto the pages and scratch out a date and some notes.  Like this.

You can also draw and write, just as if it’s a paper notebook. Here I planned out my page and jot down some notes.

Once you’re done with each note, just save it to your Photo Album on the iPad, or you can also email it to yourself, or save it into Evernote. Once in Evernote, I tag it with “Project Life” so I can find all my Project Life notes very easily. I love the versatility of being able to plan some pages and take some notes while on the go! 

I also downloaded the Penultimate app for 99 cents. It is the best selling handwriting app for taking handwritten notes. It also integrates with Evernote, which I use extensively for organizing everything from recipes, scrapbooking assignments, and my stamp collection. You can do the same things I did above, using Penultimate.


I ordered the Wacom Bamboo Solo Stylus last night so I can write and draw more easily on my iPad. I also think it would be pretty cool to just print out the photo with handwritten notes on it for my Project Life album as well. It’s an easy and cool way to incorporate some handwriting. :)

*Update* – I designed a simple Project Life Design A planner in Photoshop and saved the jpeg file.

Then emailed it to myself and saved it to my iPad photo album. I opened up the Bamboo Paper app (discussed above). Then I started a new note in my notebook, and clicked on the photo icon to open my photo album. I chose this template file and opened it. It looks like this inside the Bamboo Paper app.

Now here’s the cool part. I clicked on that photo icon again and opened up photos one-by-one and pinched them so they are small and placed them into the template where I want them. Then I wrote some notes.
How cool is THAT??? When you are done, just hit the rectangle with the arrow key and save it into your photo album or to Evernote, or email it. Or you can just keep it in your Bamboo Paper notebook for reference.

You can download the little jpeg template I made here


  1. This is a great idea. I am just starting PL for the first time. TFS

  2. Great ideas! I don't always have paper on hand, but my ipad is an extension of me! :) Will have to check out those apps! TFS!

  3. Great tut, Christine! I went ahead and picked up a stylus, too! Thanks :)

  4. Thank you, Christine!!!!!!

  5. That is very cool, Christine!!

  6. Thanks Christine for the app tips and download. So awesome of you to share.

  7. dangit now I want an iPad even more

  8. Wow, awesome post! i will definitely incorporate this into my process!!

  9. you are amazing and always full of so much information!!! looks like you had fun at cha. let's get together soon.

  10. What were you using to write before you got the stylus?

    1. Hi Carolyn - I had a very rudimentary stylus that I got for free from somewhere... it had a big nib though, so the writing was quite big. I got the Wacom Bamboo Stylus and the nib is smaller and the writing can be more precise.

  11. Thanks! You are always full of great information and tips! Thanks for sharing.

  12. This is fantastic, Christine. I'm struggling with PL and I think that is mostly due to my lack of planning. I'm going to try this and see if planning my pages makes for an easier time. Thanks so much!

  13. Oh my gosh, best post ever!!! I do similar planning on my macbook, but have wanted to be able to do it on my ipad and hadn't figured it out yet. You're my hero! Thanks for sharing :)

  14. This is so awesome!! I just downloaded the jpeg for Design A and used it with Penultimate...LOVE IT! Any chance you have a jpeg for Design F?


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