Thursday, October 12, 2006

I LOVE My Journal!!

And I hate it!! Yes, it CAN be a love hate relationship. But isn't that what it's all about? (No, not the Hokey Pokey! lol)
There has been a lot of talk lately about journaling. Visual Journaling is the journey of the artist. And like all journeys....there will be clear skies, and easy sailing. And there will also be detours and times of getting lost. There will be love and laughter, pain and confusion. And this my friends, is WHY we journal. To give voice to the journey.
A Visual Journal is like a portal to a passage of time in an artists life. And as we are afflicted and affected by all that life has to offer us during that time, we express it....conciously or subconciously in our own little private retreat, our visual journal. It is our place of exploration and growth. It is our voice during that passage of time.
And since we all have our own unique voice, and our own journeys, we will all have a different and unique journaling experience.
We may admire the style of other artist's visual journals, but no matter how hard we try, we can not duplicate them. And that in itself would defeat the purpose of your visual journal, as it would not be your true voice and style coming through. It would not be YOUR journey.
Part of the journey is about play and exploration. And so to that end, we certainly can- and should- incorporate certain techniques, color schemes, and the like, of other artists into our journals. It is that play, exploration, and experimentation that allows us to grow as artists and in the end, that will give our journey some destination.
And that is why I LOVE my journal! I can play and explore. Experiment and have fun. AND I notice that if I do it consistently enough (which really is what journaling is...a consistent outpour)it inspires me to other ideas to explore in the future. I find myself jotting down notes everywhere for future projects. Creativity breeds creativity. It is also very therapeutic to create for process, not just for product. Just mindless, fun creating!
But as I said, I also hate my journal. Why? Well, because I am not always happy with the outcome. I know that sounds like a contradiction to my prior statement of creating for process but after all, I am an artist. And like all artists, I can be my harshest critic. And I can also have a hard time silencing those critics in my head. But usually, the pieces I hate most, are the ones I tried too hard with, to be like someone else.
And usually the pieces I hate most, have taught me something. Kind of like a detour in the road. Okay, I say...going down that road didn't work. But lets make a turn here, keep going and see where it takes us. And usually, the road it leads to- is just where I want to be heading! Or need to heading at that time.
When I can accept that whatever I'm working on, is going to just turn out to be what it is; a little piece of me and my own personal expression, then I'm okay with it. I try to look at it as something valid and good, in it's own right, for what it's worth and the purpose it served. It then has merit. Afterall, you can't have "good art" without doing some "bad art". Though the "bad art" is really just a detour in the road, on your artistic journey.
So, let go and let yourself enjoy the ride. YOUR ride through the passage in time in YOUR Visual Journal.


Nancy Baumiller said...

Excellent post! Like you said and have said.."Enjoy The Ride"...a visual "road trip" hehe Your growing as an artist darlin! You said things that make perfect sense...It does to me! Sometimes I hate those detours...stay on your path...the adventures are there without having to detour...Now if I could just figure out where I am going right's foward I know that adventure I new things...different I might add LOL If only you were here you could see what I am talking about...has to do with a piece I am working on...I dont think its a bad thing..kinda weird...I will show the piece when I am done with should scare ya lol...and no not BOO ...weird and bizarre things happen when I PMS LMAO

BlueJude said...

funny...weird and bizarre things happen to me all to frequently! cheers darlin'

Maija said...

You are so right, my guru journal coach!

Paulette said...

What a great post Darcy! I've been struggling for months with keeping a visual journal...I think mostly because of my inner critic who I'm having the toughest time silencing...which keeps me from creating as much as I'd like to. That whole fear of failure thing that has always been a constant struggle for me.

I know that an art journal is just supposed to be a place where I can just play and experiment, but as with everything I do, I want to be able to produce something great...which of course isn't always going to happen...I'm only human right? Ah the vicious neverending cycle. *sigh*

I love how you view your visual journal and I know if I can find a way to allow myself to see things that way and find a way to silence my inner critic, that I would be much more able to create just for the fun of it and not worry about the end product (probably why I've stuck with just drawing for so's something I feel "safe" doing). I've long lost touch with the child inside of me who love to create for just the love of the process...hopefully one day soon I'll find my way back to her.

BlueJude said...

Thanks all....and Paulette turn on some music and drown out the voices of those critics!! lol
Look forward to more coming on art journaling!

Nancy Baumiller said...

Im at that point where things are not I have started an altered book as my journal. I would start something and set it aside and my desk...oh wait! Where is my desk?! Ha you should see whats on it! lol It is completely covered with stuff! Collage sheets,tear sheets, printouts, crayons, glue, paint pencils you name it its there somewheres lol...hopefully this will pull me out of this weird feeling. I better go try to clean some of this mess up hehe! Hugs!

Tanaya said...

Grrr. dont ya hate it when you hate it?!?!? Thanks for sharing this, part of YOUR process. It is always a good feeling when you know that others are experiencing much of the same things/fellings/experiences that you are.

Keep up the great writing!

Suzie Q said...

Brilliant post, Darcy! It's a strange & educational process, eh? I started a few weeks ago but have stopped & started, on & off - that inner critic is a total nightmare! lol! ;) Thing is, it feels like a very important part of the creative process - a really valuable tool. So, Thanks for the reminder that we all have our off-days! I shall persevere...

Q xXx

Anonymous said...

this is a great post on journalling. I really need to do more of this, and yes, like your points on the "playing" and "bad art" part, I hear ya! thank you for sharing these insights! --Lia