Thank you so much for the kind words and encouragement on my last art journaling post. I’m playing a bit of catch-up, but most of my pages were at least in some way inspired by the Get Messy membership prompts for weeks 3 and 4. (You can learn all about– and join!– the program here.)
Get Messy Art Journal | Weeks 3 + 4
Real talk: This has been a bit of a challenging week. In a good way, but also in an exhausting, nerve-fraying way. I knew spending some time making crap would help. And it did.
I worked on most of these pages in one sitting. And that sitting happened to be on the sofa, with a bowl of peanut butter cups, after Grace was sound asleep, with our temporarily disabled Frenchie snuggled close, while Nick watched the CrossFit Open live announcement.
I didn’t want to break out all of my art stuff, mostly because I didn’t want to give up any space already occupied by Clark. Or the peanut butter cups. Limiting my materials proved to be surprisingly helpful. I spent less time thinking about what to use, and more time using what I had in my lap. Also, using permanent black ink while sitting on a cream colored sofa? This is me living on the edge, people.
One of the prompts was “What would the world be like devoid of love?” I can tell you, I wouldn’t want to live in that world. I worked quickly on this one, to avoid getting depressed (just kidding… kind of). I used black and grey watercolors (I’m obsessed with this travel set) with a water brush, a white paint pen and a red Micron.
I mostly stuck with black watercolor and black ink. The result: most of these pages look tense and moody. Which, frankly, is how I’ve felt lately. Until the sun came out on Wednesday… and I became a normal person again, along with everyone else in Boston.
I started the backgrounds for these pages a few days ago before having a clue what I wanted them to become. I used a thick coat of white gesso on the left side and added very watered down acrylics along with a spritz of watercolor while the gesso was still wet. On the right side, I used a more aggressive spritz of that same green watercolor and doodled a bit with a grey sign pen. I used black ink and a detail brush to paint the abstract-map-ish design on the left hand page, and used strips from a Chanel ad for the right hand page. I believe the letter stickers are from a Studio Calico kit, but my mind is full of Raffi songs at the moment, so I could be wrong.
One of the prompts for Week 4 was to describe the greatest act of love. This time of year, a lot of my work centers around families and clearly that’s on my mind (see the crop top photo below). There are so many different ways a family can come to be. I knew the second I heard Grace’s heartbeat that we belonged together. But I also know you don’t need a biological relation to belong to someone. This may not be my final answer, but I think that giving someone a place to belong, and being open to belonging to someone else, takes tremendous love.
I like how the hand-stitching from the previous page peeks through on the lower left. The stamp is from A Beautiful Mess, and I used black archival ink. Which never. Comes. Off. The ripped paper on the left is a e.e.cummings poem (supplied as one of the prompts). I can’t really decide if these pages are done are not. I’ve been trying to let them be, rather than over-work them. Perfectionist habits die hard (that’s a movie script Bruce Willis and I are currently co-writing.)
This photo is of me and my mom (I am the one wearing the hot shorts and crop top. That’s not something I get to say every day. Or, really… ever.) I am not sure if my head is actually shaped like that, or if I am scissors-challenged. The full quote is “We are born of love; love is our mother.” Preach it, Rumi. When working through many of this season’s prompts about love, I couldn’t help but think how lucky I am to have come from such a loving home, and to have such a solid foundation. I love this photo and owe so much to my parents.
I’m already itching to sit back down with my sketch book. But I think I will stick to the table going forward. I’m certain I’ve jinxed myself with the ink on the sofa comment.
Also On Tap for Today:
- Love these sleep tips for beating the time change from Amanda
- New app-session: Squiggly
What kind of mood are you in this week?