Friday, 12 April 2013

Art Journal Pages as a Place of Contemplation

art journal spread, ink and watercolor drawing, girl with bird, Zom Osborne
Your God art journal spread, using a quote from the book 'Caleb's Crossing'
Art Journals can serve many purposes. Often I am just fooling around with colour and images, not knowing where it is going, allowing myself to play or make something pretty. But an art journal can also serve a more serious purpose, of supporting change or healing.

Yesterday for our final class of the term, we each picked a card from Caroline Myss's archetype deck. I suggested to my students to have a question in mind such as "What is coming into my life?" as they picked their card.

It wasn't until we were all seated, looking at our cards, that I remembered when you ask for something to be shown, there is a good possibility that the answer can be a little uncomfortable. One student picked the addict card, another the gossip card - both qualities that most people share but not really what you want to hear about yourself.

The news is not necessarily bad, but if it was something that fit comfortably in with our present image of ourself,  we would probably already be aware of it and not need that card to show itself.

I got the priest archetype card . That was uncomfortable. The nun or monk archetype I am familiar with. The priest has a responsibility and power that I find unsettling.

art journal spread, environmental art journal page, Zom Osborne
Some art journal spreads are mostly writing, or all writing -why not?
But back to our art journals.The great thing about an art journal is that it isn't only for making 'art'. Meaning that what you make doesn't need to be beautiful, precious, meaningful or even finished. In this case I am using my journal spread to consider and mull over the possibility that the priest archetype has something to tell me. Rather than thinking about it too much, analysing it or trying to figure it out. I can mull it over, not thinking so much as fooling around with gathered definitions, random thoughts, images. Giving it time to stew.

art journal spread in process, I am still collecting definitions etc. I would like a priestess image up there.
I don't have to come to a conclusion. Ever. But in my art journal I have let it rise to my consciousness, float around there a bit, have some room and time. I can feel this working on me without the need to come to any conclusion.
Zom Osborne, art journaling, art journal background
an unfinished art journal page

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

A Few of my Creature Neighbours

I thought I would pull you in with someone cute. 

The wallabies have gotten much friendlier in the past few years. We have lived here 16 years, and it wasn't until about 4 years ago that they started coming right up to the house. They live about 10 years, so I reckon it is the new generation. They have grown up with us on the land.

These are the same steps you see to the right of the first photo. Can you see the red arrow? That points a new arrival, a black snake. I quite like black snakes, but as they are deadly I kind of wish this one would not keep hanging around the back verandah and steps.

In this photo, she is partly inside a hole in the rock steps. We should have filled that hole in years ago, but now we can't because it is the home of a large green frog. He has lived there for about 10 years and every year we hear him yell as some snake sticks their head in his hole to try and eat him. They never succeed because once they are in the hole, they can't open their mouth wide enough to bite him. 

I got very close to take this photo, but there was no danger as this snake hadn't moved for 30 minutes. Think of the poor snake's longing - she can see the frog but she can't eat it.

I took the snake photos sometime last week and I thought perhaps she had moved on. But this is what awaited me when I went to put my shoes on for my early morning walk. Its skin. *sigh* looks like I am going to have to keep my eyes open.

Here is another cute picture before you go so I don't leave you with just snake thoughts. These are a mob of micro bats who were roosting on the front porch of the studio for a few days before they moved on.