I hoard journals. I love all sizes and types, from purse-size Moleskine to hand-made and hand-bound journals, board books, bound pages, whatever. I treasure journals I have received as gifts. I have a gorgeous handmade one from Laurie Blau-Marshall. I have a beautifully-covered one from Michelle Geller. My great-niece just gave me a pretty one for my birthday. I just bought one on clearance at Pier 1.
So what is the problem, you ask? I don't ever seem to write in them. I have journals with watercolor paper, lined pages, blank pages, pages made from maps and cool ephemera. I love to look at them, and I love knowing I have them in case inspiration strikes. But I couldn't seem to make a mark.
I guess I felt I'd be ruining the beauty of the journal somehow, which I know is dumb, especially because I actually drool over examples of others' filled journals. Even my great-niece has a totally cool journal she writes and doodles in and add mementos. She even stitched herself a fabric cover for it. I bought her Dawn DeVries Sokol's Doodle Diary to keep her inspired.
And she did just that.
And she did just that.
Meanwhile, I would buy Stampington's Art Journaling magazine. I would stare for hours on end at cool blogs, especially work by Pam Garrison and Pam Carriker. I even advanced to tearing out magazine pages and pieces of magazine pages that inspired me. In fact, I have baggies of paper bits just waiting for a place to call home.
Finally, I decided the new year and new month are a very good reason to start a journal. That, and the fact that I had been itching to paint, draw, make collages, doodle, draw zentangles, do Zettiology-like art, and what better place to do everything, than in a journal. When I mentally commited, I was so excited, I woke up at 5:30 a.m. on a Saturday and started right in preparing pages.
I am using a plain, 9" x 12" *ish* journal by Canson with watercolor paper pages. I collaged several pages with my paper stash. I was further inspired by a "supply swap" I had just done with Jade Adams, and could hardly wait to use the goodies she sent. I also have a ton of new rubber stamps from Unity and their kit-of-the-month club, as well as Unity Stamps by Suzi Blu, all of which I want to play with.
After I collaged a few pages, I realized I hadn't left myself any room for the "dreaded" writing down of thoughts. Intentional? Maybe. Or maybe just inexperience. So I painted the back side of the pages with watercolors, and ended up making color-theme spreads, each with a blank page for my thoughts.....if I happen to have any.