lesson 7

UNFOLD 101

THE TECHNIQUE IS: 

JOURNALING

 

Getting words on the page

TITLES, QUOTES, POETRY, STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS, STORYTELLING, JOURNALING, LISTS

Words on the page are a big part of art journaling.

Journaling is verbal. It taps into a very different part of your brain and your experience than painting and collaging. Switching to words after working in images, color, and texture OR switching to color, images, and texture after working with words allows different understandings to come to light. New revelations. New insights. New meanings. In general, using different modes to express yourself is powerful stuff and you will find your work goes deeper with each process of expression.

My philosophy about journaling in an art journal (as opposed to journaling in a diary or daily writing journal) is that the words are meant to be a part of the page and a part of the process. I do love to write, I've kept a blog and journals over the years, but my writing in my art journals differs in a big way. I never approach this writing as something I will refer back to to save or work on. This is not writing to be edited. This is not writing to even, necessarily, be reread. It is almost like a mind-dump. I think of my art journal as a good friend. I pour my heart out to her and then I'm done. I feel better after getting thoughts off my chest, but I don't go back to it to reread looking for beautiful nuggets of poetry or prose.

Because of this, the pressure is off. I don't have to worry about it being in any way perfect or polished. It is writing that I don't even need to be legible 5 minutes later. And it's writing that oftentimes, I like to cover up as a part of my process. 

HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF WAYS I'VE JOURNALED ON MY PAGES. CLICKING ON A PICTURE WILL ENLARGE IT. FEEL FREE TO ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THEM IN OUR FACEBOOK GROUP.

(click on each photo to see it in larger scale)

Use a white gel pen on dark paint and follow the outlines of shapes.

Use a white gel pen on dark paint and follow the outlines of shapes.

Type your journaling out on a piece of paper.

Type your journaling out on a piece of paper.

Alternate white gel pen with black rubber stamping. Alternate big and little writing.

Alternate white gel pen with black rubber stamping. Alternate big and little writing.

Cultivate a messy and loopy script for your journaling.

Cultivate a messy and loopy script for your journaling.

Type your journaling out on strips of paper and then glue it down on the page.

Type your journaling out on strips of paper and then glue it down on the page.

Put some words on fabric with paint and rubber stamps. 

Put some words on fabric with paint and rubber stamps. 

Journal in a circle, and don't worry if things follow or not.

Journal in a circle, and don't worry if things follow or not.

Try out some cool decorative lettering for your writing.

Try out some cool decorative lettering for your writing.

Use magnetic poetry to add to your journaling.

Use magnetic poetry to add to your journaling.

KEEPING YOUR JOURNALING PRIVATE

Art journaling in community is a little different from art journaling solo. If you are choosing to participate in our ongoing, online community then it's helpful to consider the following: there are times you may want to make your journaling a little more obscured from the eyes that will land upon your pages. In my art studio, that is definitely the case and I make sure people respect a "don't read the fine print" rule. We can read the large words and titles (because basically if you're looking at it and you can read, it's an immediate thing that you can't even control) but we don't lean over each others' work and parse out the tiny journaling, unless we have permission from the artist.

Here, online, we can click on each others' work in our Facebook group page and read it all, if we choose. So, I'd like to teach you a few ways to keep your journaling private. Having these techniques in your toolbox does two things: 1) Gives you the freedom to journal without a need to censor yourself...thus allowing yourself to really let out all the private thoughts and the nitty gritty, painful and ugly feelings you may have inside, and 2) Gives you some very creative ways to incorporate journaling and words onto your page which will ultimately add visually and metaphorically to your work and experience.

Paint over your journaling. Use a pen that pushes into the paper or leaves raised 3D writing and the paint will catch on it.

Journal first in black. Then journal over it (same words) in white gel pen. Makes it hard to read but really looks interesting.

Glue an envelope to your page for very private journaling. You can put a letter in it, or a bunch of words on strips of paper. You can put anything you want in it. And you can seal it shut, too

Paint over your words first, then paint one big statement or title over the whole page with a paintbrush

Journal one direction, then turn the page 90 degrees and journal over the previous journaling

Use a pen that blends into the background of the page. 

Journal on a separate sheet of paper and then cut up to use on your page. (Here I turned my journaling into speech bubbles.)

Journal on a visually very busy background. (Here I journaled on a background that is collaged and painted.)

Journal one direction in a color that fades into the background. Then journal over it, in an alternate direction, in a color that pops out. Make your journaling more general with the top layer. (Here I wrote: "This is a page about..." over and over.

TITLES, QUOTES & MORE

An art journal is a fantastic place to just make a statement or to use a quote or piece of poetry for inspiration. Sometimes all you need on a page is one word to finish things off. There are lots of ways to highlight words on your pages. Here are some possibilities.

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shine selfie hi res 2.jpg
holy yes v2.jpg
i am my own cheerleader.jpg
no more miss nice guy L side.jpg
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shoe drops.jpg