Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Beginning of Art Jounaling

 I have been intrigued about the whole art journaling craze. I am not usually one to join a band wagon but it as just kind of happened.
It started with the purchase of a large mole skin notebook a couple of weeks ago. At the time, I didn't know why I was buying it.
Then, for the first in my life, I allowed myself to collect something. I have always been drawn towards old books, papers, writings and cloth. But have never let myself collect anything.It felt excessive and unnecessary, at least for me.
 However, my husband is a collector. Mostly of stamps. In fact a large part of his music room is dedicated to sorting stamps. I have watched him do this activity for the 27 years we have been together.
I love the old stamps.

 For some reason several days ago I started pawing through this large leaf bag that is filled with his rejects.

  I began pulling out the stamps that intrigued me. Usually it was the stamp itself that attracted my attention, but sometimes it was the the relationship of the color of the stamp against the color of the envelope. Or sometimes it was the pattern inside the envelope, or even simply someone's handwriting.
Now I have my own boxes of stamps.
I stared collaging the stamps with other art elements of my own into my new 12" x 16" mole skin book. 
Then I began thinking about how years ago, (before early rising children and a day job)
I would spend the first 30 minutes of almost every day writing my morning papers ala
Julie Cameron and her book "The Artists' Way."
 I found it be be an excellent way to start the day.
It was quite grounding and a completely different experience to journaling at the end of the day.
I look forward to the time I can maintain that practice again.
So here's the thing though -I have an entire shelf of notebooks filled with those journal writings. I've often wondered what to do with them. It would be strange to simply throw them away.And they certainly don't need to be read. That's what's so odd.
Those notebooks are filled with words that begged to be written but oddly enough, they don't need to be read.

So I decided that the perfect thing to do with the written journal pages is
to incorporate them into the pages of my art journal along with painting,
drawing, stamping and writing.
And so it has begun.Here is first art journal entry. 
Please  click on the image for a larger view

Of course in the process of creating this collage, the original written journal page is now covered up with paint and paper - and that is as it should be.
There is history in this page -
that of my hand and the people who licked those stamps, 
and of the person who wrote the delicate hand written message on the tiny scrap of an old envelope I decided to include,
as well as the recipients of those letters and documents.
And that too is how it should be.
How did your art journaling begin?


LA Paylor said...

Cheryl, it's always interesting as a concept, but I don't journal regularly. The closest I come is sketching, or notes made, and now my beloved blog holds many thoughts. the only thing is I don't say most of the negative stuff and it has an impact on me. There is a lot of content, hidden in the label section of my blog.
LeeAnna Paylor

Mary Ritter said...

I consider my blog to be a sort of journal… a collection of the steps I've taken to create a piece, but also a record of what has been accomplished. Interspliced within that content are some personal notes here and there. We've moved a lot; this is our 20th home in 47 years, so I've always avoided having journals that would require packing and lugging. When the computer, and then the blog, came along, it seemed the perfect answer to making a record of data without having a physical pile of papers to keep track of. Your have found a wonderful use for your journals… eager to see more!

Misty said...

I have always loved making collages, and for me, art journaling is a mixed media extension of collaging. I like to incorporate other things I've learned as well. It's just a quick, fun way to make a piece of art, and I love that it's so portable. I often use my art journals as a travel journal or a way to work out a larger composition.

Michelle Berkey said...

I'm working through the process of journaling too. I have to admit to a collection of started and abandoned art and writing journals. I just pulled one out to start again and I'm not sure how it will turn out. Good luck on your journey and I do have to say, that because I collage, I am absolutely salivating at his reject bag!!

jeanne Marklin said...

Those stamps make me feel like I'm traveling to other places and memories. I love them in your work.
I'm starting an online drawing class in January and hope to roll that into a journal type thing for 2014. I tend to leave sketchbooks and then start a new one because I can't find the one I was working on. A good resolution would be to put it in the same place so I can build on ideas, eh?

upstateLisa said...

I also was so intrigued with art journaling. I started reading blogs and looking at photos online. One day I emailed Dawn Devries Sokol for some advice. She told me to grab a sketchbook, some paint and so I did. Enjoy!

Cheryl Rezendes said...

Thanks so much everyone for sharing your journaling stories. It is always so interesting. Some of you I have heard of but some of you are new to me so I will go to all your blogs to learn more of your journeys as artists.

Lee Ann , I will have to dig deeper into yours. I know what you mean - I tend to keep blogging on the upswing as well. But we all have our darker moments too!

Mary, I can't imagine moving 20 times in 47 years. That lifestyle would definitly have to play a major role in many of he decisions you make.

Jeanne, I can't wait to see how your drawing class turns out and what you turn out as a result as a result of that influence.

Misty, Michelle and Lisa - I will be following you for inspiration for sure.

Happy holidays to you all.!
Thanks again for sharing.