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Friday, September 7, 2018

Art Journaling Series: Week 1, Collage

     Last week I introduced Art Journaling with the promise to walk you through all kinds of journals and techniques. Oh My! Where to start? I decided to just jump right in with a 10 week journal prompt list. One subject a week that will get us right up to the crazy holiday season and be there to remind us of the people, places and things that bring us joy. Isn't that what we all need to recapture most in the midst of all the hustle and bustle?
 Art Journal Technique: Collage

So there are all kinds of journal prompt lists. My daughter who is also an artist does this once in a while when she is going through a creative block and needs something to draw. Her peers on Instagram post a list of one drawing idea each day related to a theme. No one expects a masterpiece for these quick exercises but is does get the creative juices flowing and keeps the habit of daily creativity ingrained in them. Journal prompts are also common for writers for the same reason.
     Since art journaling is less about skill and more about mindfulness these prompts may seem a bit more abstract. But the objective is the same, healthy habits and fostering daily creativity. If you have a place to keep all your journaling materials out and readily accessible you could feasibly complete these weekly prompts in just 5-15 minutes a day. Or if your schedule is less routine like mine do it all in one or two sittings. So lets get started.

Here is your prompts for the Pre-Holiday season 2018:

 Pre- Holiday Inner Happiness Journal prompts

     I completed a list like this a few years ago and can I just tell you how happy it makes me even today to look at it and be reminded where my heart really dwells. When all the noise of the media and advertising, success gurus and corporate bosses and even family and friends are telling me how I should act or feel, I look at this list and know who I really am and what truly makes my spirit happy. I am not saying to be completely selfish in this. Charity and serving others truly does feed our souls but we all have our own talents, our own pet causes, and our personal style. So, explore that. You can serve the world so much better when you are true to you!

WEEK 1 PROMPT: Top 5 life priorities to focus everything else on. 

     Years ago I learned that naming these and reminding myself of them often was a huge help in deciding what to concern myself with and what to let go. The world would have you believe that every little thing is important. And usually the squeakiest door gets your attention. It is OK to just let some doors whine while you take care of what is really important to you. This goes right back to the purpose of a vision board that I wrote about at the beginning of the year.
     So really think about these. Make them broad enough to really encompass what motivates you. If you feel like your career takes up all of your time decide why that is. Is it the accolades that you are seeking, for others to recognize you as an inspiration or a innovator in the field? maybe it is the field itself you are passionate about. You just really can't get enough of the subject that you working. Or maybe it is to live in a luxurious beautiful home. Then you could say that beauty and comfort motivate you. Maybe you work because you have a sick loved one to support or so that your children can have every opportunity possible in school and life. It's safe to say your priority is family. Maybe you work hard just because you believe it is the Right thing to do. Then one of your priorities should be a moral belief system of some kind. None of these are right or wrong. Only you know what motivates you. 
 Organize your collage clippings to save for later
I like to save every image and word the grabs me because I may want to do a collage again later and I don't want to have to keep all those magazines laying around the house. So I file the clips and toss the the magazine.


   Since, this isn't mamsy pansy stuff we are thinking about here I picked a tried and true journaling technique for this week. One you have probably all done at some point in elementary school. The great thing about collage for this prompt is you spend a lot of time thinking about the words you are choosing to express your thoughts. I will admit that is prompt is pretty deep but I truly believe it belongs in EVERY journal that is concerned with your self expression, inner peace, or life goals. Shoot I even copy my priority list into every planner and calendar I start. It is key to living a life you choose and excel at. 

Magazines, ads, books, and newspapers you don't mind cutting
Paste or mod podge
Your Journal
A few envelops
Markers, puffy paints, glitter glue, stickers
Scrap paper or drop cloth to apply paste over 

🖌Step 1. Collect all of your magazines, mailers, advertisement flyers, all that junk mail, even old books if you can bring your self to cutting them up. I am telling you advertisers know what motivates people better than anyone. And of course they use that info to sell you cars, jewelry, and makeup. Even medication ads have some great words that you can use to express your priorities in life. So any piece of copy with ads in it will be a resource for you. You can also find magazines at some recycling centers. Ours has a self for materials that can be reused. The thrifty teacher is well aware of where to get  old magazines in your area. 
Step 2: Roughly jot down what you think you five priorities are. 
🖌Step 3. Scan the magazines for imagines and the bold words that jump out at you most. This is very intuitive. Enjoy this process and don't be to rigid about find the exact words you jotted down. 
Step 4: Cut out those images and words for later. You can divide them into categories that fit each of your priorities and place them in a labeled envelope.  If you start finding certain images and words that you love but that do not fit your categories make a miscellaneous envelope and when you are done see if a new theme emerges. Perhaps that subject means more to you than you thought before. 
🖌Step 5: Arrange them in your journal on the first two pages (two pages facing each other is called a spread). I arranged mine by topic. I love using Elmer's disappearing school glue sticks because you can put a little dab of glue on the your pieces, place them on the page and they will stay if a breeze blows through. If you change your mind, you can gently lift the piece off and re-position it while the glue is still purple. 
Step 6: Glue them firmly down. This is where I like to have some scrap paper so that I can go all the way to the edge of the clips with my glue and not get the glue on everything. Some prefer Mod Podge both under and on top of their collage. It gives it a nice finished look. A word to the wise though. Do not use glossy Mod Podge in your journals. It will cause the pages to stick together no mater how long it has to dry. They do make matte Mod Podge I imagine this would not have the same problem but I have not tried it yet. 
🖌Step 7: If you feel like your final arrangement or images are a little to abstract for your taste, you can now go back and write your priorities right onto the page like labels. Or you can use alphabet stickers to really spell it out. Puffy pain or glitter glue can really make things stand out too.

Now you have the first two page spread of your Happiness Journal. I hope you will do this with us and maybe even post your results in the comments here or on my Facebook page. I would love to see how everyone's turns out and how different they are from each others. Really let your personality shine. 
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