AJ daily practice notes: first spread 2015

AJ Daily header2 Background: Day by day, I add to my art journal. Over several days I complete a spread. And then I begin again. Some days I spend only five minutes, some days I look up after an hour or more, and some days—yes, I skip. But most days, I art journal. These are my notes where I reflect on my pages and record what I learn. I do not art journal to record time, but to make it a practice to BE in time. Time to be creative, to experiment, to play and to learn. It's a regular date with myself. Like what I used to do on the yoga mat. Breathe. Check in. How are you? How's the universe? What should we create today? 


December 29 - January 1, 2015

Spread: Year of Mastery

This is the spread where I celebrate clear goals for the new year and a renewed sense of mission. No, scratch that. A clear and focused mission for my creative life--for. the. first. time. ever! I was super excited about gaining this clarity and I think it shows on the pages--happy glow.


Watercolor, acrylics, collage (ephemera from the week--christmas wrap, bags and a special Christmas card I'd received), markers

What I like about this page

  • The colors. Transluscent, light watercolor background, bright acrylic accents, rich colors in the collage elements, too
  • Bold graphic headlines with varying fonts (love 2015 numerals)!
  • Including meaningful ephemera from the week, organically. It wasn't planned. I just grabbed what was present. I especially love Patricia's note as focal point on the right page--along with the "Make Something" in the right colors from a paper bag I kept. Fits right in with my week!
  • Using the acrylic gold as a resist beneath watercolor elements.

What I learned

  • Using watercolor as a background and as transparent layers on top of other color, whether acrylic resist OR other watercolor. I haven't worked with watercolors in my journal much before--a whole new medium!
  • Black accents always work.
  • Using acrylic paint as a resist underneath watercolor.
  • I've resisted journaling as a daily diary for a long time. I am not a memory keeper (seems like writing in the wet sand on the beach). But once I could see journaling as a daily practice, a time and place to be in time rather than record it, well, it makes sense to add dates, days of week--and even times when journaling (for later reference). It's going to be fun to play with all the numbers as the weeks go by.  I need more number stamps!
  • I don't like to write with Faber Castell Pitt pens. Yes, they're waterproof--but you can't write at an angle with them. They only work if the pen is at a 90 degree angle to the page. Need to use other waterproof, black pens—and find the ones I like best.

What could have been better—or I could do another time another way

  • I tried using other colors than black for the journaling (Pitt pens). I'm thinking colored pens just just miss something. They're too transluscent. Maybe black is the better choice after all because it is opaque.
  • Writing my own numbers for days of week. These are the weakest elements on the page in my opinion.
  • Handwrittten headlines - ehh, kind of sloppy. I need to work on my lettering skills.
  • Speaking of lettering, I have the "outlining script" technique down--time to learn other ways to letter headlines.
  • I need to experiment with other creative ways to demark journaling sections.

I look forward to sharing my notes on each completed spread as a final part of the process of my daily art journaling practice. I think over time I will value having recorded my thoughts and learning. I also hope sharing my process will help others find their own!