The Making of the Crescenta Valley High School Yearbook

Posted by on Dec 22nd, 2011 and filed under Youth. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Photos by Danny Goldsworthy Amanda Lockwood, left, and Clare McCreary are two of the three CVHS Yearbook Editors and Chiefs.


When you are in high school, your yearbook is about getting your friends to sign and look through to share memories of the past year. When you get in college, the high school yearbook is the place you go when you are homesick for a simpler life. And when you are older, it is a research archive that you study, as if cramming for a test, before each reunion or when you are trying to remember a former classmate.

The Crescenta Valley High School yearbook does not just happen. It takes a lot of blood, sweat and some frustrated moments to get to the final draft. Along the way there are a few debates, laughter and a lot of snack food.

Recently the CVHS yearbook staff of students spent a long night working on their assigned pages, getting ready to send their last draft to the printer.

Sarah Shin, a sophomore and yearbook staff writer, was working on the layout for the Summer Adventures. The staff contacted students and interviewed them about what they did over summer break.

This is Shin’s first year on the yearbook and there were a lot of stories to go through.

“I enjoy it,” she said of being on staff. “I like creative writing. That’s my strong point.”

Keeping all the staff working and organizing all of the different sections are the three editors and chiefs, seniors Clare McCreary, Amanda Lockwood and Ben Shin.

Representing each section of the yearbook is a photo. Trying to find that perfect picture is not always easy.

Brian Landisi, center, looks over his student staff shoulder as they prepare the 2012 CVHS Yearbook.

Brian Landisi, center, looks over his student staff shoulder as they prepare the 2012 CVHS Yearbook.

“Sometimes we argue,” McCreary said.

But that is just part of the creative process. The business of deadlines adds pressure, too, but the seasoned editors have a handle on that as well.

“You get used to deadlines,” Lockwood said.

There are different deadlines throughout the production schedule, but each one is met.

The yearbook has its own photographers and writers that are chosen carefully by the staff.

“I love the interviewing process, “ Lockwood said.

The staff all takes the process seriously.

“What we choose [to include] is what is to be remembered,” McCreary said.

“How the year is remembered,” Lockwood added.

Several of the students have attended a yearbook camp where they learn new design techniques and network with other school staffers. The camp also allows them to get a jump-start on that year’s theme.

The 37 students are part of the staff and are mentored by teacher Brian Landisi.

“The best part of [the yearbook] is it is entirely student run and student generated, “ Landisi said.

He and his staff take a lot of pride in the fact that students produce the book.

“Kids leave this place with real world experience,” Landisi said.

It teaches students teamwork and “transferable skills,” he added.

Last year the staff designed a laser cut cover, which their publishing company Walsworth had never done before said Landisi.

Landisi said the company had to work to get the new design.

The company went above and beyond, buying a new laser cut machine to meet the specifications outlined by the students.

“It took 20 minutes per cover to [complete],” Landisi added.

But being a trailblazer has its perks, especially when others admire your work.

When the CVHS staff was at this year’s camp, several samples of their laser cut cover yearbook were displayed.

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