Wednesday, 28 December 2016


 For me, the week between Christmas & New Year is a strange kind of no-man's land.  This is   because... in my head... Christmas marks the end of one year & New Year marks the beginning of another. This is a week outside of the usual routine, & because of that it is both unsettling and exciting. 
In my workroom (aka the studio) I like to use this week as a preparation time for the art making year ahead.  The room gets tidied & the floor gets swept.  The whiteboard is cleaned off ready for a fresh lot of dates, deadlines & 'to do's'. Random piles of fabrics & scraps are sorted & put away.

But the fun preparing my journals for the coming year!

My workroom is attached to my home.  My home & garden are quite big,  and I could easily spend every minute of every day doing some sort of work relating to my home & family. When I enter my workspace, I need to get myself OUT of the' house' mindset & INTO the art one.

 Journals help me to do that.

One form of Art Journalling I use is purely meditative. Each morning I start my art practice with a 10-15 minute drawing/stencilling/collaging/writing... of whatever pops into the end of my fingertips... onto a previously prepared piece of painted paper. Each piece of paper represents a month.

After trialing a variety of  drawing based meditation ideas, this one was inspired by the book 'A World Of Artist Journal Pages'.  Although a lot of the images included in that book are from artists who clearly create these pages as an art form, that is not the case for me.  I just flow with whatever comes into my head at that moment.  It most certainly is not great art... a lot of cases it's purging whatever is going on with my art or how I am feeling about it. It's an exercise I began  in 2016 & it has really worked for me, although I have to be very strict with myself to NOT try & 'compose' a picture!

Another form of journalling I use is collage.  This is something I start each new year with & then I use it again throughout the year if I have a particular knot to sort out. I find it helpful to use a technique that I dont employ in my everyday practice. Sometimes it loosens my brain up!

 I also use it in conjunction with a timely quote that speaks to me in some way!

By far the most important journals though, are my written ones.  They are beyond price in value to me, because it is here that I record my ideas, struggles, lessons learnt, questions & inspirations. Each one is housed in covers I hand stitch myself, using fabric I love. They are art vessels that I am invested in.

In these blank pages I will wrestle with technique & design issues. I will confront myself with options & decisions that need to be made.  And hopefully...I will also be writing..."YES! IT WORKED"!
Oh boy...I hope there are LOTS of sentences that say that this year!

1 comment:

  1. thank you for sharing Joy. I am tidying and organising my studio post study, whiteboard all clean, tools of the trade sorted. I have to think long and hard about how to proceed in 2017. the time in the studio is precious and will hopefully be productive.