Monday, August 25, 2014

Art Journals are Awesome!

Recently I’ve read Artist Journal Workshop by Cathy Johnson, and it made me totally reevaluate the value of keeping a journal.

Lately, I’ve made it a new habit of mine to write in my journal every morning for about 5 to 10 minutes after breakfast. I’ve been doing it for about three months now, and one month into my new journaling habit I read this book, and I realized that I was totally limiting the potential of my journal.

I was a writer before I became a comic artist, so for me a journal has always been write, write, write. But now, I’m a comic artist, so I realized that my journal should also have more visual elements: more sketches,diagrams, and pictures done with more mediums than just ink pen. So I’ve tried color pencils and markers in my journal. I’ve added pockets by gluing envelopes to the inside cover for ideas that I scribble on loose bits of paper.

I’ve also made it a point for my journal to contain more than just my feelings and thoughts for the day, but it also has my to-do lists and my goals for every week.

Over the past few months I’ve found that journaling regularly has really cut down on the overwhelmed feeling that I used to get from having so many thoughts of stuff to do and being unable to organize them. I also feel like it has given me an outlet to be creative in away that is not as polished as something that I would post on Taptastic or Deviant Art.

I really encourage everyone to have a journal, and if you have a journal, be sure to make it yours. If you don’t like writing about what happened to you everyday, but you like listing your favorite movies and writing about them, make your journal about that. If you’re not a visual artist and you don’t like sketching, don’t try to force sketches into your journal just because you read a book on journaling that suggests that’s what you should do. A journal should be about putting what you love to do into it. 

If you're still stuck on where to start with, I definitely recommend looking up art journal pages on Pinterest. Here's a peek at my pin collection of art journal pages that I like.

Some artists have very little writing in their journal and a lot of artwork, because that reflects who they are. My journal has a lot of writing because that reflects who I am. There’s no strict rule on how to create a journal and how much of it should or should not be text.

Have you ever tried keeping a journal?