At the end of my previous Art Journal, I was thinking about 'my style'. What do I like to do in my journals, what kind of pages draw me in when looking at other people's work, that sort of thing.
I had done some pretty pages like this:
which I really enjoyed doing because I adore working in watercolours and pen/ink.
But I also love getting more messy with acrylics and then adding oil pastels and more paint and maybe some gesso and creating pages like this:
I love the texture that creates:
But Art Journaling is about more than getting messy. It's about documenting your life, working through stuff you need to 'think about on paper', (I now write a lot in my Art Journals too and I've added paper especially in my new journal so I can keep that up) even if that means the pages will not come out as pretty as you might like.
I have to admit, when I first saw Connie's recent pages I was worried something horrible had happened to her. But then I looked closer and saw the beauty in what aren't necessarily considered pretty pages. I love them because they are raw. They mean something. They are real and rough, not polished to look all nicey-nice. Working through stuff on paper.
Now I don't claim to have much going on in my life that I've got to be angry or scared about, no deep pain hidden away needing to make its way out. But it's a great feeling to let go of the idea that your pages have to at least be nice to look at if you don't want them to.
Here is what I did the other night, on those gesso-disaster-gone-good backgrounds, in calligraphy markers I had forgotten about (Cult of Stuff anyone?)but loved using and now put somewhere where I can grab them a bit easier for further use:
So does that mean I'll never stick in any more watercolour work? Of course not! I can be a bit schizophrenic when it comes to my Art Journal because hey, it's MY Art Journal, right? If one day I feel like watercolour and ink and being more neat and tidy and the next day I create a huge mess with acrylics and crayons and oil pastels and more acrylics and the day after I only write a few bits in my journal and the day after that I stick in a picture with some DIY tape and a shopping list and a doodle I did when talking on the phone, that's just fine.
I'm journaling my life.
(The 2nd half flip-through video of Art Journal 9 can be found here.)