Tuesday, April 19, 2016

My Experiment with Visual (and Spiritual?) Journaling

Last week, I bought the most expensive markers I've ever bought--perhaps the most expensive art supply ever (or does a sewing machine count?).  For more on that day, see this post.

What I want to document/explore today is what I've done in less than a week.  I will confess that I want to create great art at the same time I'm making a record of a moment in time, and perhaps of my emotional life.  But I'm not spending hours with the goal of great art.  These are more like sketches, done in less than 1/2 hour for most of them, and when I'm done, I haven't thus far gone back to do more to them.

Friday night I drew this:

People have told me that they see a stone being rolled away, and that they love my wonky spirals.  I see a planet and/or an eye.  Or three eyes.  I was just experimenting to see the colors and the types of strokes, and then to see if my older markers could also work with the newer, more expensive markers.

On Saturday, I drew this.

The words are from a hymn:  "When peace like a river . . ." and "it is well with my soul."

On Sunday, I was ready for a different challenge.  I took my markers and my journal to church.  I sketched while our pastor preached his sermon:

Our pastor has been off-lectionary, so we were studying the story of Elijah and Elisha and the transition of power.  There was a parting of the seas, so I started with that--swirls a river parting, a space down the middle.  For more on the process, see this post.

Yesterday evening, after wine on the deck with friends while my spouse gave their daughter a violin lesson, I sat outside on my front porch and read My Life in Middlemarch.  Then I drew.  I had in mind a tree, a river, and a cottage.  But I came up with this:

As it got darker, and my spouse continued to play his violin, I filled in the colors and added dots.  I put in words:  Middlemarch, and Hobbit at the top, hide away and cozy in the middle of the tree.

I plan to explore the blending of color more, as well as doing more with dots and other aspects of drawing instead of swooping lines.

In terms of capturing my mood or capturing the day--am I doing that?  In a way.  But it's not the way I thought, when I've thought about doing this.  For example, I might have thought I would draw a wine glass yesterday, not a hobbit house in a tree.    But the hobbit house in the tree might capture my mood even more perfectly, as my spouse played his violin, and I felt comforted in a number of ways.

I plan to continue doing this, and I'll blog about it occasionally.  It's an interesting aspect of creative life, spiritual life, and inner life.

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