Great for the beginner? When I first discovered digital scrapbooking I used Hp Creative Scrapbooking Assistant. Its a very inexpensive way to get started in digital. I picked up my copy on ebay for around $8 including shipping. A new copy is about $30 plus shipping.
The program has a great demo that tells you exactly how to get started. Which is great as with most products it takes a little while to get used to. It has been I while since I've used this program. After looking at it now it seems a little bit clunky and slow.
It has themes and allows you to import your own designs. You can create shapes or frames. There is no option for adding drop shadows to elements. Also included are quotes. It has options to turn photos and elements sepia or black and white. But that's about it when it comes to editing. Hp Creative Scrapbooking Assistant is for making pages or cards.It is not for someone who wants to be a digital designer.
Qvc calls it the serious scapbookers secret. I doubt it. Once I really started to get into digital and printing 12x12 I found out the quality isn't that great. It doesn't give you any options for saving. It automatically saves at 150dpi(it didn't tell me that I had to figure it out). Which is fine if you are going to print from a standard printer. I have printed many layouts this way and they turned out beautifully. How ever if you want to print 12x12 then this is not the program for you.
Overall I feel Hp Creative Scrapbooking Assistant is a good choice if you are just starting out and don't want to invest a lot of money, and print from your standard printer. I would not recommend paying full price for this product. I'd spend a little more and get something with more options that can grow with you.