Interview by Amy Kingsford


GIS Username: rinda

Member Since: October 2009

Post Count: 148

Alum of: Building Pages with Debbie Hodge;  Art Journaling 101, 102, 201, 301 and 103 with Dina Wakley.

Blog: Gallo Organico


Maria Ontiveros  is from El Granada, California (a semi-rural coastal town about twenty miles south of San Francisco). In cyberspace, she goes by her childhood nickname “Rinda” (a condensed version of Maria Linda). Maria’s artistic interests include scrapbooking, card making, photography, art journaling and mixed media collage.  She has been happily married for 25 years, and has two wonderful children (Henry, 15, and Clara, 12).  Maria makes her living as a law professor at the University of San Francisco, where her area of specialty is labor and employment law, with an emphasis on workplaces issues affecting immigrants and women of color.




When I asked Maria to tell us a little more about her life as a Scrapbooker…here’s what she had to say:

  • I started scrapbooking in 1994 when Creative Memories was just starting to expand. My husband and I needed to create a scrapbook as part of the adoption process, and one of my friends had just been to a CM party, so she got me started. In 2001, I joined Club Scrap and became completely obsessed with scrapbooking!
  • I am mainly a chronological scrapbooker, scrapping the regular events of our lives.  So, most of my scrapbook pages are about the kids’ activities, family gatherings and vacations.  I have very slowly been working on a heritage scrapbook as well.  I’m a non-digi, paper girl all the way.
  • I tend to scrapbook in bursts – at weekend getaways or in response to online classes.  I usually scrapbook in the morning, after the kids are at school and before I feel the need to get “real work” done.



  • I think what stands out in my scapbooking style is that I scrap a lot of pictures!  My typical scrapbook layout is a two page spread, featuring nine photographs and lots of journaling. The pages tend to be linear and fairly uncluttered.
  • My scrappy must-haves include my large tonic guillotine cutter, my ATG tape gun, Club Scrap paper, ink and brads.
  • Three things on my scrappy wish-list include more Tim Holtz distress inks, a crop-o-dile, and every single paper made by Graphic 45!
  • I’d really like to try out all those new texture and embossing folders that Tim Holtz and others have created, but I haven’t had a chance yet.
  • I tend to draw my inspiration primarily from my photographs and the story I want to tell with them.  This leads me to a certain color palette, style of papers and embellishments.
  • I have two favorite GIS classes:  Building Pages with Debbie Hodge and Art Journaling 101 with Dina Wakley.  Building Pages really helped me understand why I liked certain page styles more than others and helped my scrapbooking evolve, while still remaining true to my own style.  Dina’s class opened up the world of art journaling to me in a way that allows me to record my memories and thoughts and to be creative on an almost daily basis.



  • I love this layout first because it’s a picture that made me stop and catch my breath. The focal image photograph made me realize just how grown up my daughter and her friend have become! Truthfully, I still think of them as toddlers, but here they really appear to be on the cusp of becoming teenagers! I also love the contrasting colors and the assortment of embellishments I used (the painted chipboard flourishes, the various ribbons, all the charms). Finally, I love it because it was a stretch for me – I don’t tend to leave “white space” on my pages, but I did hear and I love the way it turned out.


I’d like to offer a big thanks to Maria for sharing her art with us this month and invite all of you to take the time to visit her blog and her gallery, as I know you will be inspired by all of her creativity!  Thanks for reading this month’s Member Spotlight and if you are interested in participating in a future Spotlight please contact me