Sunday, 30 November 2008

Survey Results

Thanks to all of you who voted. There were 32 voters and you were allowed to vote for more than one thing. (Hey, what happened to my other 19 followers? Does not voting mean you like the present mix?)

I am happy that the journal pages got a huge majority at 26 votes. Because that is my favourite too! Creativity raves, personal stuff and videos all came in the same at 11 votes. 
I am not so into writing about personal stuff, maybe I overloaded with many years of journaling. But it's nice to know that you guys are interested.

Thanks again to those that voted.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

What has Happened to Play?

In my survey you asked for more videos, so here you go.

Well, a few of you said more videos.

(I have discovered that I don't have to put on makeup or change from my studio clothes to make a video just cause everyone else seems to. tee hee)

Thank you, thank you

I am so grateful to have a place to share my art journal pages. Thank you, thank you for coming to my blog, reading my posts, looking at my pages and writing your comments. 

Oh funny, I just remembered it is Thanksgiving. Is that a coincidence or synchronicity? (Of course we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia, but I am going to an american friend's place for turkey tonight.)

Monday, 24 November 2008

Ego and Inner Child duke it out Journal Page

I hope you can read what I have written on these pages, it's pretty funny. (you can click on the picture to see it larger.) I was having an inner dialogue and who should pop in but my inner child. She is written in green.
I started these pages with black gesso, two coats. It gives a nice matt black that is easy to work on. 
Later I doodled the guy with the birdie in his hand. He really looks like a Joe ordinary doesn't he? except for the bird. I cut him out and glued him onto the page.
Then I drew in the design (which I had seen in some magazine, might have been from a piece of fabric) with my metallic gel pens. Don't you think they come out well on the black gesso? 
The birdies in the top left corner are cut from a magazine. The page seems to be getting a real theme. Click on the picture to see it bigger (if you can't see the birds.)
Then another bird. This one is done with a packing tape transfer. I like the grunge effect of the transfer.
As always, I didn't know why I wanted to add this writing but just trusted the impulse. Afterwards, it felt right
I think the little bird is some vulnerable and precious aspect.

Saturday, 22 November 2008

a Great Idea

I had a great idea last night. It was the last day of my Creativity class today and I thought it would be cool to exchange a journal page with everyone. 

I am so glad that I did. It has given me the time to really look at some of their journal pages, which are wonderful. People hold them up in class, but get shy and don't give everyone enough time to look. Of course no one realises how good their own pages are. 

And now I get to put those pages in my book. I will cut them up and reuse them - the most respectful, honouring thing that I can think of to do with them.  Because my art is the most sacred honouring action that I do. 
I hope that they will use my pages the same way, instead of feeling that they should preserve the pages as I made them. It is like we are mixing our creativity up. A new kind of love and intimacy. 

I will miss everyone. I had so much fun. 

Friday, 21 November 2008

A Survey

Anybody want to give an opinion? I have put a survey up in the left corner.
Everyone is always so nice, no one ever says "gee, that video was crap" or " just put up the journal pages, I don't want to hear your opinions."

I'm not saying be mean, but the survey is an opportunity to say what you prefer in my blog. You can always add comments if I haven't listed what you would secretly like.

Go on, get if off your chest.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Saturn Journal Pages

I seem to be on a bit of a pink run at the moment. I have other moods and colours in process, these were just the ones that I have finished. I started these pages over a month ago. They stayed at the border stage for ages.
Click on the pages if you want to see them larger. 
I had already gessoed these pages with white gesso. It isn't necessary but it gives you a different, less slippery, surface to work on. The gesso also adds strength. Then I painted them with acrylic paint. I wasn't worried about getting them evenly painted as I like a bit of texture.
In my "Creativity will Change Your Life" class we had tried out frottage, or making rubbings. Basically you just put a piece of paper on top of some uneven surface and rub a crayon (or other mark-making tool) over the surface. I ended up with some not terribly interesting rubbings so I cut them up to make a border for this page. The solid green and pink bits are done with water soluable crayons.
I like working with black and white photocopies. The woman in the 80's shoulder pads is me when I was 27. I drew in a couch for me to sit on with white gel pen. The little cutie in the upper right is a photo of my sister as a child.
The wonderful goddess face is a portrayal of Saturn I cut from a magazine. Whoever made it gave Saturn dragon wings. Isn't that interesting?
The little birdies on a teapot are from a birthday card. I soaked the cutout in water for ten minutes so that I could peel away some of the card as I didn't want it too thick. 
Then I added some writing that I had in my notebook. It is a message from a day when I had asked about getting older. I had noticed that I no longer get the same attention from men, even men my own age. I was a little annoyed that it bothered me.
It was only later that I noticed how well the subject of the writing went with the Saturn planet and the photo of the younger me. I love that chance aspect.

As you can't read the writing, I will add it here if anyone is interested:
It is true that you are struggling with self-worth in this life. And you have lots of company. You are not unusual in that regard. Perhaps with less confidence than most in terms of the worldly, but you are approaching it at a much deeper level than most. 
Be compassionate with yourself. Out of a kind of necessity, some of your confidence was based on the shaky foundation of youth and beauty and the false power of that. You certainly didn't use that power the way many have, or even emphasised it much. That will work in your favour now; that is a kind of karma as well. You did not feed your vanity to a great extent and that makes this transition easier.
Still, there will be small losses. Blows to the vanity. And the resentments that will bring up. Use this opportunity to see how the entire artiface works. Try to see everyone with compassion. It is easy to become bitter, to see women as abused and resent men. Women are abused, but we all pay for the predjudice. We will all become old, so how stupid is it for us to hate the elderly?
It is a time to unwind all this. A slow unwinding that you are only just beginning. Watch and see where you are afraid of humiliation.

Journal Giveaway

A quick post to announce that little black kitty is giving away one of her handmade journals. Wonderful. 

Monday, 17 November 2008

How to Get Past the Censor

Do you have a pad and pen by your bed?

I am amazed by the amount of ideas I get early in the morning. The most common scenario is similar to what happened  this morning. As I woke, I remembered what I had being dreaming. (Hey Vicki, do you remember our adventure last night? I came to visit; you took me to an artist meeting that turned into a spiritual meeting - as they do lol. Ekhart Tolle was there.) I wrote down the dream, and then lay back down, thinking of who I had met and what had happened.

On this open door, entered more ideas. The first was a new approach for the exhibition proposal that I am writing. Then came an idea for my current painting series. And finally the idea for this post. I wrote them all down and went back to sleep.

One of the main things standing between us and our ideas is the censor. He tells us not to bother, it isn't a good idea, go back to sleep. If you learn to write everything down, without bothering about what is good or bad, you can get past the censor. 

If you want to learn more about the censor, in his other guise as the critic, click here.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Being Genuine Journal Page

I named these pages after they were finished. I like not knowing what the pages are about until the end. It is a surprise for me.
I forgot to scan the first few steps of these pages, but I have posted about this oft-used way of beginning pages in an earlier post, go here. I did some journaling in permanent ink and then gessoed over the top. I painted over the gesso with pink acrylic paint and created the dark pink border with watersoluable oil pastels. 
The girl is a drawing that I did on card, then cut out and stuck on the page. The vine on the left is a rub-on.
I added the photocopy of the Page of Cups and then these pages just sat for quite a while. I felt uninspired by them. Wondered if they were dud/dead journal pages.
To be honest, the whole thing was just too sweet and pink. 
So, finally I thought: some black gesso to balance all this sweetness. I didn't like how the silver writing looked on the pink so I covered it.
Then I glued on some strips from magazines and a strip of a photocopy of one of my earlier journal pages.
And a little crow I cut from a magazine. I love crows. The pages feel more balanced to me now.
The writing enters. No plan here, just whatever feels right. It is only later that I realise that the 3 different writings coincide in the subject of being genuine. At this point, I thought the pages were finished.
But later pushed them a bit further, and I am glad I did. I added the background circles with gel pen and the extra blue flower. My journal pages are becoming more crowded, less like paintings. I like the change.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

The Inner Critic and the Inner Editor

I gave a talk today to my class on the difference between the inner critic and the inner editor. As creatives we can often struggle with how listen to the 'constructive criticism' that will improve our work, while protecting ourselves from the harsh inner critic who can cause us to feel discouraged and defeated.

To help with this dilemma, I have tried to list some distinguishing features of both the inner editor and the inner critic. Sometimes just realising that they are not the same voice is a good start.
Be patient with yourself. It can take a while to tease these two voices apart.

Here are a few of the  differences:

The inner editor values your creative work. The editor wants to support and help your work.

The inner critic is not here for you. He doesn't really care about you or your work. The inner critic has his own agenda and it usually has to do with how he appears. The inner critic is not your friend.

The inner editor needs time to grow, learn, and mature. She often doesn't know a lot when you are just beginning your creative journey, but she is willing to learn.

The inner critic thinks he already knows everything and is eager to tell you where you are going wrong. 
He is not to be trusted in your creative work space.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Blooper Journal Pages

I have been posting my finished journal pages, pages that I like. I thought it was about time that I show you some that I don't like. I just look at these pages and think 'ug'. Will they stay ugly and unfinished even when my journal is full? I don't know. 
And they aren't the only ones.
I tried a new technique where you plop down some different colours of paint and close your journal. Then  you work with that. 
On the left I put down some watersoluable oil pastels and smoothed it down with a little water. On the right I painted a wash of green watercolour and added a green border of the watersoluable oil pastels.
I saw a rather intriguing image emerging from the paintblot on the left, kind of a bird woman, that I tried to emphasise with pencil. The right side I decided to cover with black gesso- which ended up looking looked like crap.
So then I sanded the right page and covered it with gesso. I had hoped to feel newly inspired after that. I did that nearly a month ago and all I do is cringe every time I go past  it.

I will go into teacher mode and say there is no reason to cringe. It is not a failure to have unfinished and crap-looking journal pages. The purpose of the journal is experimenting, playing and anything else  you want to do. In a way, it is really a good thing to have crap pages, it means that I am not playing it safe and just repeating stuff that has worked in the past. 

 I feel better now. 
What if I made crap pages on purpose? That might be fun.

If you want to see more of my journal pages, you can go to the left hand column where it says labels and click on 'my journal pages'. You will bring up all of my posts that have that label. 

Sunday, 2 November 2008

How Creative are You Really?

Here is a little story I found on the internet that I read to my class.

"In 1968 NASA distributed a creativity test among 1600 five year olds. 98% of the children scored as highly creative. 
When retested five years later, only 30% of the ten-year-olds scored in the highly creative category. 
By the age of fifteen, only 12% fell into the same category. 

When the test was give to 280,000 adults, only 2% fell into the highly creative category."

Do we lose our creativity, or is it just hiding?