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

1 comment:

Mary Helen-Art Saves Lives said...

I love to pick up one of my art journals a year or so later...that is when I discover the real contemplation really begins. Beautiful pages here today and....many more tomorrows... Peace, Mary Helen Fernandez Stewart