Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Creative Journey - Part Five: Visual Journaling

A funny thing happens when you allow yourself to just experiment and have fun. You try new things, you take chances. Sure you end up with some pretty hideous stuff. Who cares? Because you will also end up with some gems. Maybe a new color combination. Maybe a new brush stroke. Or maybe you’ll discover using your fingers or a rag or letting paint drip.

Try starting out every session in your studio with 15 minutes of visual journaling. Or try it when you are feeling blocked. Just like writing in a journal, visual journaling will help unlock the doors and windows to your creativity and your artistic voice.

Imagine you are about four years old, wearing your smock and standing in front of an easel, contemplating the big white piece of paper that beckons you to dip your brush in tempera paint and make a mark!

The paper is your world, it can be anything! Perhaps without conscious thought, you choose a color, and with a flourish of your arm (dripping paint on the floor) you stroke a bold line across the paper. Another dip of the brush, perhaps into a different color, and another confident mark. Dots, lines, thick strokes, thin – a flower! a bird! a whirling kaleidoscope of colors cover the paper. You step back. You are finished with this painting. You are proud of your accomplishment. You ask for a new piece of paper and begin again.

Invite your four-year old self to paint. No judgments, no pre-conceived notions, no goals (other than to have fun). Go ahead, make mud!

Kate Dardine
Marketing Consultant