Sunday, January 4, 2009

Art Journaling

Art (art) n. 1. The ability of man to arrange or adapt natural things or conditions to his own uses. 2. The creation of works that are, in form, content, and execution, esthetically pleasing and meaningful, as in music, painting, sculpture, literature, architecture, dance, etc. 3. The principles and techniques governing the creation of such works. 4. The works so created, esp. paintings, drawings, and sculpture. 5. Skilled workmanship; craft. 6. Any skill, craft, trade or profession: the art of cooking: a teacher’s art. 7. Printing Any illustrative or decorative material that accompanies the text….

Jour-nal (jur’ nel) n. 1. A record of daily occurrences, as a diary. 2. A record of the proceedings of a legislature, club etc. 3. A daily newspaper. 4. Any periodical or magazine. 5. Naut. A logbook

Diary (di’ e-ree) n. pl. –ries 1. A written, daily record of the writer’s experiences, feelings, activities, etc. 2. A book for keeping such a record. [diarium >L dies a day]

As you can read in the above, Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary has a lot to say about art, more than I was willing to type. The three dots mean that there were more meanings mostly to do with artifice etc. And then Mr. Webster defines Journal and in the definition used the word diary – which he also defines. The highlighting is my own.

There are as many different expressions of ‘Art Journaling” out there as there are ‘Art Journalers.’ I have taken a few (art journal) classes where there is nothing written or only one word (usually dream or believe) that is then illustrated. Then I have taken classes where there were only words, with funny fonts or embellishments. My art journaling has words, illustrations, collaging and paint! My definition – my name is close to Webster – comes down to:

Art Journaling v. The act of making a daily record of the artist’s experiences, feelings, lessons and expressions.

Art Journal n. A book for keeping a daily record of the artist’s experiences, feelings, lessons and expressions.

Art Journaling fits my life like a glove and I love it. I have book after book of pages. Pages that are the art itself and pages that have spaces left just for writing in at some other date. Being self-taught I am always experimenting with techniques I have read about. Often I don’t care for the result. When I try something out on a page-sized paper and it doesn’t do what I think it should, I can just turn the page and try again.

Another thing about art journaling is that it can be done in ten-minute (or 20, 30 etc) increments and be very satisfying. No matter what the reason, we usually do not have hours and hours to sit around with a pen or a paint brush. When I have a few minutes, even if I am not feeling artistic, I can always do a little something to a page. I always have more than one set of pages in the works.

As the pages add up the growth of the skill is obvious and progress can be seen. Progress more as progression…

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