Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Art of Artful Journaling

Since I returned from Missouri, I’ve been scrambling to catch up in my latest art class, Laure Ferlita’s Artful Journaling: Foundations. (I’m two lessons behind, and should be working on an assignment, but instead I’m writing about the class…)

I’ve wanted to learn how to do illustrated journaling for several years, after seeing an acquaintance’s gorgeous journal while on a trip to Greece. I’ve drooled over books about creating illustrated journals by Hannah Hinchman and Clare Walker Leslie and started sketching off and on. Since I love the look of watercolor, I wanted to incorporate it into my journal, but the first time I tried it (with the help of a library book), I realized I needed a real class with a teacher I could ask questions of. Laure’s current class is the best so far for what I actually want to do: add sketching and painting to my journal when I travel, as well as work on a nature journal here at home. Each lesson helps us build what Laure calls a “visual vocabulary,” techniques and skills for creating different effects, page design and so on. Assignments have included making a color chart (surprisingly soothing and fun), creating a set of borders, using a “placement map,” and making word art (one of the assignments I haven’t done yet).

Here are three of my pages (the color isn't quite right because I have to take a photo of the art instead of scanning it):



(Still need to darken the cast shadow between the cookie sides.)

Summer’s more relaxed schedule is a good time for exploring new hobbies and experiences. For me, illustrated journaling is both a simple pleasure and an everyday adventure. It’s fun—and it stretches me just a little outside my comfort zone while helping me move towards one of my goals.

What about you? What kind of simple pleasures and everyday adventures are you taking part in this summer? Do share!
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13 comments:

Scrappy Cat said...

As you know, I'm taking the same class - Laure is the best, isn't she? I also took a watercolor pencils class from Marilyn Harris-Mills in Artists of the Round Table yahoo group that just finished up. I've learned I really prefer "real" watercolors to the pencils. And now I'm thinking of signing up for an online quilting class with Ellen Lindner, called Design Your Own Nature Quilt. Am I crazy or what? LOL!! Definitely addicted to online classes!

Meredith said...

I love the fortune you painted for yourself, Kathy. It's so great that you are stretching yourself artistically -- and already achieving such beautiful, satisfying results. :)

I think I'm doing that kind of stretching this summer without intending to, but all in the writing area. I signed up for that creativity workshop, which has turned out to be tough and good for me. And then a friend of mine and I discussed, when I was back home for a visit, that I would have loved to make her my freewriting partner, but she was too far away. We finally solved that within the format of a private blog to do the sessions, just as if we were live sitting across from one another in a cafe, sharing the results of our timed writings for each other's prompts. It's worked out perfectly, and been a great way to build up those rusty speed-writing skills. ;)

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Cheryl--wow! You're really getting into the online classes. Your class assignments have been terrific--I've loved them. I think it's great that the internet has turned into such a tool for artistic growth.

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Meredith--I've been following your progress in the creativity workshop through One Swaying Being, and by checking in with Merilee's blog periodically (I enjoyed your guest post). I am so impressed with what everyone is accomplishing. Your solution to bridging the distance with your friend is a great idea--that's actually how we keep in touch in the artful journaling class. We have a class blog and everyone posts their assignments and comments on the others' assignments, and Laure adds her feedback that way, too.

Elizabeth Patch said...

hooray for watercolors! and journals! 2 terrific ways to record some of the happiness that you are catching. :)

Kathy A. Johnson said...

They both definitely contribute to my happiness!

Teresa said...

Your watercolors are great, Kathy! You're doing one fine job.

Oh, and I love Claire Walker Leslie's journals too!

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Thanks, Teresa. They don't really compare to yours--but I know they don't have to, so that's OK. I'm pleased with my progress, and that's what matters.

Clare's work is beautiful, isn't it? I have her Nature Drawing book as well, but haven't done anything with it yet.

Krista Meister said...

Kathy, you are doing great in the class! My favorite is the fortune cookie. Keep at it, girl!

Krista Meister said...

Oops, forgot to "share" summer pleasures. Family time, watermelons, sitting in the shade in the backyard, sketching, camping... that's been our summer so far and I'm loving it. Glad you're finding your summer relaxing as well.

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Mmm, Krista, sounds like you're having a wonderful summer! I'm enjoying the class a lot, and it's really stretching me. Now if I could only catch up on assignments!

Quilting Librarian said...

I follow your blog because I saw you mentioned on Laura's blog. I am taking my first class with her in July ...a Christmas in July class. I just started watercolor journals in March with an online class with Jane LaFazio. I never thought I could draw or paint..it has been so fun. I love your writing style and following you from afar. sue from Utah

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Sue--Thank you so much for reading and following me, and for your kind comments. I loved Laure's watercolor journal classes and learned so much from them. Hope you enjoy her class just as much!