Since January 2015 have been working using an art journal as my method – it has been liberating going into the process and going with the flow
rather than planning and working through roughs and ideas to the nth degree. I found it liberating at the beginning of the year and it has continued as my method of choice
I am drawing and developing my hand eye co -ordination everyday my confidence has improved . I don’t really have to think so much about the marks , proportions and the relationships of the marks on the page with each other. The process has become more embodied.
I started working with letter journals with a friend, we produced pages that looked at feelings and emotions. I wanted to do more work this way so I started exploring situations and conditions that I have found myself in over the years e.g miscarriages , migraines and irritable bowel.
It was cathartic the immersing my self in the experiences around my symptoms and working through them felt very powerful.
In the past I have found that if I can step out of a situation and think about it and voice my feelings it had a similar effect on how I coped with each situation.
Last week a friend and I were working together on ideas around terrorism we were both feeling heavy and sad about the events in Paris and Beruit the previous week.
I am going to explain the process that I worked through – it is not exactly what I was thinking at the time because I try not to think , in retrospect it is what I think I would have been thinking – in reality it is much more intuitive
I started with paint layering a purple acrylic over gesso through a stencil
I scanned a couple of magazines whilst waiting for the paint to dry and ripped out anything that appealed to me without over thinking. I chose lots of blood red so I started ripping the sheets into strips of colour. When I layered the colour on top of the purple I hated it. I had to stop and breathe through the clashing colours and textures. The red was so emotive I felt waves of it coursing through me
I talked about this with my friend , speaking out loud rather than engaging in conversation , we acknowledged the situation and moved on.
I found I had collected words like Burnt , hot stories , heartbreak , walk of shame. I added these over the top of the red and collected stop from my alphabet collection ( I keep cut letters in envelopes in a index file for this purpose) – I also added ‘can be hot and cold ‘ – I felt it fitted in well with the heartbreak and burnt
The red was too fresh too vibrant I needed to knock it back – but keep some of the intensity
So I added a layer of fluorescent yellow – this had the effect of making some of the red look like old blood.
I wanted to add a feeling of destruction and explosion – a face is recognise able and can be split into many fine parts and still be recognise able so I ripped one into strips and added it at the bottom of the page
My friend was working on her design and wanted to add blood dripping down the page , I liked the effect so much I used it too, I spritzed the paint making it thin and almost transparent in places.
I have been thinking about what it is liked to be absorbed in the work .I liked this description of – Flow- it describes what it feels like to be in the moment and to journal .
– the mental state of being completely present and fully immersed in a task- is a strong contributor to creativity. When in flow, the creator and the universe become one, outside distractions recede from consciousness, and one’s mind is fully open and attuned to the act of creating.
https://www.psychologytoday.com/ 2010 June 11th