Sunday, November 28, 2010

Creative Journaling

Many years ago at an art class, the facilitator gave us a large blank sketch book as part of the class supplies. In an Artist Way fashion, she gave us ideas of how to use the journal and suggested we had artist's dates with ourselves in our "journals." Now many years later, I would like to share with you that this can be a POWERFULLY HEALING process. For me, this is a foundation corner stone to cultivating my creative self.

I am sharing this NOW because a week ago I met a young artist at a show and we stumbled into a conversation about this process. So I promised to blog about it. This entry is dedicated to this young mother in Denver who is a fabulous jewelry designer and a walking canvas of creativity; may it bless her creative path.

A small but potent book, "Write It Down and Make It Happen," by Henriette Anne Klauser, Ph.D., gave me the validation that what I was finding was not just a random fluke. Dr. Klauser is one of America's leading authorities on communications and writing productivity; she documents stories of folks from all walks of life who have changed their lives simply by engaging in the act of writing down what they wanted.

I have been using a creative journal with intention for many years. Carefully, positively and gratefully writing, drawing, cutting and pasting images, I am affirming my creative self. I am captivated by the power of my Creative Journal in creating my wonderful life. Thank you for allowing me to share this with you. Here are some of my Creative Journaling ideas:

- I use it to capture creative ideas that excite me, but I do not yet have time to do anything about (but I now feel confident I will find the time when I capture the inspiration in my creative journal...:)).

- I use it to keep notes of my creative projects (like a recipe) as it is unfolding (eg. pictures I down load from the internet, drawings of an image I am working on to stitch into a quilt, ideas I am gleaning from a magazine article or instructional video).

- I use it to express my gratitude. Focusing on those things that are working well in my life, those people who are blessing me, and all the small everyday things that keep me nourished and smiling have been magically helpful to my creative process.

- I also use it to work through those places of resistance, moments of self reflection and opportunities for growth...

- I write down websites I plan to go back to, scribbles while talking to a dear friend on the phone, random words that grab me but have no other place to be at that time. It is a sacred vessel for all those nourishing tidbits of my life until it finds a place to bloom.

- I work out my class outlines in my journal. I keep copies of poems. I paste in images and articles from my dear friends.

- My creative journal holds the last card my grandmother "Gaga" sent me before she past away. This reminds me that Gaga was my number one fan and always encouraged my artworks. My creative journal is a safe place to hold all these tender feelings.

- Once a month I write a list of what new I would like to create in my life. AND I write it down as if it has already happened.

- My Creative Journal also holds space for me during those times when I have little to share or capture ... and it is OK with me being creatively quiet.

- I paste my coloring pages in them (yes, I still "color" at times, just because it FEELS GOOD!!).

- I draw sketches of our house remodel or other family projects in them.

- Sometimes I write stories of my day in them... not often as I am not really a "Dear Diary" type of person ... but sometimes I do...

Being an artist can, at times, be a solo journey. Sometimes we are blessed with a friend or two, or a class, that validates our creative selves. Often we are out there on a walkabout. My creative journal gives me faith about myself and my journey as an artist.

I hope these musings inspire your along your creative journey.

Gratefully Yours

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