Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Value of an Idea Journal

I tried so hard to be a "journaler" when that avenue of art first became so popular.  I both made and bought journal after journal each time promising myself that I would fill it with my art.  What I discovered is that I am NOT a journaler!!  Haha!  The reason:  I am an all or nothing person.  A page in those journals is exactly like a one of my complete paintings (translation:  hours and hours of work, with pressure to make it perfect!).  Not that my paintings are perfect but I like a certain look and can't get past the feeling that something is not complete until I hit that level of detail I am looking for.  Here are a few journal pages (I just took pics of the pages, I didn't crop them or try to make them more presentable!):

I so admire the people who can make amazing journal pages in a reasonable amount of time.  I'm not one of those people!!  Consequently, I stopped trying to do this type of journaling.  That's not to say I don't keep a journal!  I keep an IDEA journal....a place to put the things that pop into my head all day long.  A LOT of the ideas in this journal become complete paintings, though on wood, not in the journal.  Here is my current journal (I posted a picture a while back):

This journal is never far from me.  I have so many weird things bouncing around in my head that I can't possibly remember them all.  I add little drawings to the pages constantly.  The best part for me is that there is no pressure to make any of the drawings anything other than "ideas".  Here are a couple of pages:

As you can see from the first page, three of the little drawings have already become completed paintings, click here to see the completed paintings.  On the second page, I am currently working on pendants from the little drawings (I'll do a post when they are ready).

Personally, I have so much inside my head that I can't possibly remember all the ideas.  I can't tell you how many times I look through my journal for an idea for a new painting and I don't even remember drawing some of the pictures.  That means that idea would have been forgotten forever had I not drawn it right then!  There is no pressure because I know these are just ideas and the details will be added elsewhere when I start the actual painting.

I only show you all of this to encourage you to do whatever type of "journaling" that appeals to you.  I have accepted my own limitations to traditional journaling and embraced the style of journaling that works for me.  There is HUGE value in that!

xoxo                  I love you guys!


Mindy Lacefield said...

LOVE your ideas journal! those little drawings are like candy to my eyes!! i remember first opening your journal....(the two page spread one) and i almost fainted.....with admiration...wow!!! so lucky to call you a friend.

the video of the girls is so great! keep singing ya'll! xoxo

The Secret Hermit said...

I'm not a journaler either, everything I have an idea for ends up on canvas board or wood and then put in my shop ;o)

I don't even sketch that often either, I have an ideas book but it is mainly words with a few scribbles in any old pen/pencil I can grab to hand.

Most of the time I don't have a plan when I start a painting I just go with whatever flows from my hand at that time.

I love your journal pages both the painted and pen, they are all wonderful, I love to peek in peoples journals ;o)

Micki x

patricias fabric art said...

I never get the idea of journaling -why put all that effort into doing something when it can't be displayed for everyone to enjoy-its just someone's "artcraze"-by all means keep a sketch pad to jot down ideas everybody does that!I have another problem 2 friends made me beautiful journals but I don't know what to use them for -they are far too beautiful for scribbling in-any ideas?

Daniele Valois said...

hehe, I am not a great journaler either!!! I wish I were! I adore this first page like crazy!

Kristin said...

i love your journal! i love seeing your ideas, your creative process. I've tried to start an art journal and so far I haven't been very successful. I think I am like you in that I would rather create whole, finished pieces

Clare said...

I know what you mean - there's that look, the idea and it has to work or else it just isn't right. I love art but it takes time and is hard work. I just love your work, the detail, the thought - its great. And all those ideas swimming around - I hope you have a great year and fill many journals this year.

~Tonya said...

I love your blog. I found you through Micki's blog and you posting there.

The idea of a journal for most is fabulous, but I am somewhat like you, and don't use it the way others do. I guess we all have to do what works for us. I am glad that you take the time to draw out your ideas, otherwise they would've been lost.

Have a great day.

Amanda said...

Thanks for this, Sunny. Your post is confirmation of my own journalung journey.

Tracy said...

LOVE seeing a peek inside your journal, Sunny--very fun! I keep a written journal, have for years. But also keep an idea journal, which is divided for ideas for my Etsy shop, as well as ideas of paintings, etc. It's great to have a place to go with all the overflow of ideas and develop the ideas. And whatever works, right? ;o) Happy Days ((HUGS))

Hands to Work, Hearts to God said...

Those are WOW journal pages and really, they should be on canvas!

patricias fabric art said...

Thank you Sunny for the advice on the ball joints-I just could'nt get it right and there's nowhere here I can get classes- I did take some classes from this guy but he knew even less than me about making dolls-his stuffs all kind of abstract-oh well I'll just have to keep on trying!!!

danielle daniel said...

Oh Sunny, your pages are AMAZING!!! I too am NOT a journaler... I have tried but I end up not liking one of the pages and I just want to tear it out... I don`t think that`s what you`re supposed to do with a journal. I had my own romantic notions of having piles of them with my artwork... Not going to happen any time soon I`m afraid... I`m a journal dabbler. Thank-you for sharing your absolute lovely work. TOTALLY inspiring! Happy New Year dear girl! xoxo

Petie said...

Sunny Huney!! Thank you so much for sharing your journal!! This is a wonderful idea and much more practical while traveling. I'll give this a try!! Love your paintings so maybe this will hold my ideas until I get back home!
Phyllis xoxo