Kelly Kilmer‘s workshops here in my town happened 7 weeks ago. Seven. Why am I writing about it now? That’s a good question. I’ve been wrestling with some stuff lately. The kind of stuff that has me questioning everything and ending my internal conversations with the question, “What’s the point?” and my psychiatrist asking me if I ever think of hurting myself.
I’m not. But still, Not Good.
I’m listening to an audio book called The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck and getting schooled by a millennial. He’s saying all of the things I already know, but for some reason, it’s resonating this time.
So I’m going to post this thing I’ve been wanting to post for 7 weeks now.
Kelly’s workshops, as always, were fantastic. The woman can really teach and she definitely inspires me. I can’t recommend her more highly. All of the ladies who were in the class were inspiring, too. It’s great to go around and see everyone’s work. There was laughter and sharing and the woman who let us use her home for our weekend, Bev Perina, is a kind and generous joy to be around.
I’ve been in a serious art rut for a long time now, but I think these workshops have helped me to start getting out of it. I’ve worked in my Kelly journals a tiny bit since the weekend I started them, but not a lot. Maybe in sharing them here, I’ll get re-inspired.
The past few nights have seen me in my studio, hard at work on journals and other random things. Here’s this week’s journal spread (WIP) and some corrugated cardboard pages I’m making, also WIP. I am not sure if they’ll be postcards or if they’ll be pages for a book — what do you think?
I never think I have anything to share on this site, but I realized today that I do. I love looking at journal pages done by other people, so why not share my own?
My everyday book is a journal that I keep for a year. Currently, I do one week per 2-page spread and I’m using the 11.375″ x 8.25″ Dylusions Creative Journal. I love the book, and the paper in it, as well as the way it’s bound, but it’s not my #1 choice for my everyday book because it’s SO heavy. I can’t carry it around easily, which is a bummer because I always like to have my journal with me in case of a spare moment. Doesn’t everyone?
In November, I posted my photos from an online challenge called NaNoJouMo, organized by Dawn Devries Sokol. I also signed up for one of her online workshops that is running from the end of November to the end of February, called “Winter Wonderfull.”
We’ve been at it for just over a month and I’m, of course, totally behind (I have a two-year-old, people!), but I am loving what I’ve done so far. My biggest takeaway so far is learning to paint with my fingers. I love Dawn’s pages and the effects she gets with layering and with paint, so I finally broke down and started painting with my fingers.
I have one word for you: Control. And boy, do I love control.
The part I don’t love is the way it feels — I have neuropathy in my feet and I think it’s starting in my fingers now, too, so it feels really yucky if I spend too much time thinking about it. Also, washing my hands so much in our dry climate makes my fingers feel extra icky. But as long as I’m liking the results, I’m going to keep doing it.
Here are the pages I’ve completed so far in this workshop. Enjoy!
I had a little bit more time to work on this during Thanksgiving weekend, so that was fun. I had no expectations as I worked on it, so it’s a bit of a jumble.
22 – crown. doodled jaggedy lines, similar to a sketchy crown.
23 – “groups of 4” was the prompt, but I did “group of 4” instead. 🙂
24 – sisters. The prompt was a photo of 2 girls, so I pulled out a copy of a photo of my sisters and myself.
25 – circles. I love making circles.
26 – gratitude. Words about what I’m grateful for in my life.
27 – shine on. I used some glitter on the page, of course.
28 – focus in on the color yellow.
And for the last two days in November…
29 – ferris wheel. I used a new stencil from the Stencil Girl Club that mimics the lines on the ferris wheel.
30 – house. The prompt image used a really great shade of turquoise, so I decided to just use that on the page. (Spread isn’t finished, but November is.)
Weeks 2 and 3 were challenging on a number of levels, but mostly because I didn’t have as much child care as I normally do in a week. It was difficult to get things completed and I got behind on bills and groceries and all of the house management stuff, not to mention work, but I snuck in little bits of work on this here and there throughout that time. I’m pleased with what I did in the time I had.
15 – Disney quote
16 – When in Rome
17 – Things to climb
18 – The city
19 – “simple as this”
20 – trees
21 – lady liberty (musings underneath the flap)
I approached week 2 in dribs and drabs and completely out of “order,” but I love how this page spread ended up. The prompts are below the image and I thought it would be fun to tag the photo so you can see where I applied the prompts to the page. Click on the image to see more detail.
Day 8: 5 hot things (I made a list around the edge of the page) Day 9: start a bucket list (I’ve never been big on bucket lists, but I put down a few things that weigh on me as I approach birthday #49) Day 10: little houses (I applied the color scheme from the prompt to my background, tied in with the prompt from day 12) Day 11: just doodle (there is doodling underneath the flaps on the right, you just can’t see it!) Day 12: spread paint and find an image (that sticker from Rubbermoon just happened to be in the right spot to sketch in a long, tall body wearing a dark dress) Day 13: dreams (Saturday, I thought a lot about the attacks in Paris (and around the world, and I wrote down my biggest wish for humankind) Day 14: I am (lyrics from an old R.E.M. song)
Artist and author Dawn Devries Sokol is running a daily journaling prompt project this month and she called it NaNoJouMo (National Nonstop Journaling Month), in a takeoff on NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).
Every day on her blog, Dawn gives followers a prompt and we are to take whatever we want from that prompt and use it to jumpstart our journaling for the day. Folks are encouraged to take what they want and leave what they want, to journal for 5 minutes, or 5 hours or anything in between, as long as we’re getting something down in our journals daily.
I love this project. I used to journal daily, first throughout the day, then every evening on the living room sofa, and now I find that most of my journaling is hit or miss, with no set times, but I try very hard to fill in the details of each day, even if I’m catching up a week’s worth of days. So what I decided to do this month is, since I work weekly in my journal, to take what speaks to me from each prompt and incorporate it into the page spread for the week. Here’s week 1 (I put the thought bubble over some sensitive writing for privacy):
Day 1: The “Hello my name is” sticker
Day 2: I pulled a similar orange-y color from Dawn’s prompt image and painted it around these two little weird guys.
Day 3: I added a tag to the page and wrote a little on it about “I’m not really…”
Day 4: Added stars and scribbles using a scarlet watercolor crayon and then mushed the color around a tiny bit.
Day 5: Added the little house shape, torn out of a book page.
Day 6: I scribbled around the edges of the little guys’ clothes.
Day 7: I may have forgotten to do the “the way to…” prompt. HAHA!
So, I started this week’s spread last night and I’m super excited about what is starting to happen there. But you’ll have to wait till next week to see it! 🙂
I think I started this in the wee hours of 7/25 in one of the journals I made in last weekend’s Kelly Kilmer workshops. This book is huge, with the pages measuring about 9.5″x13.5″. We worked with large images in our collage exercise in class, but I felt like painting the other night and grabbed this book. I was having fun twisting the delicate papers to enhance what I painted. I think this spread is awaiting a special focal image still.
(acrylic paint, oil pastels, watercolor crayon, pen, marker and collage)