Sunday, April 24, 2016


Today's darkened pages.
So. Journal reconstruction continues in a meandering fashion. Pages are painted or collaged in between other activities. Put on some laundry; lay down some black gesso. Do the dishes; spray some sparkly ink. Feed the chickens; spread some acrylic. Singsong movements. 

Another random pull in the old journal pile brought me to 1998 ~ the year of my daughter's birth, a year fraught with this and that, getting things done with little to no resources. How I felt about it all. Bleh. Yes. These can go. The actual date of my daughter's birth wasn't recorded. I was in the hospital and navigating the parenthood of three children. Time was rarely on my side. Not that I feel resentment ~ I'm neither here nor there about it. Just the facts, ma'am.

Most of these pages are going dark with black gesso. Which is too dark for future writing or sketching unless using white or metallic pens. Add some white acrylic spray or a smear of lighter acrylic (the cheap stuff) and one has a workable surface. I've taken to sketching on some of the pages in another journal. Simple black line stuff. I'm playing. I'm making mistakes. I don't care if what I draw sucks that day or not.

What matters is the action of sketching ~ I'm doing it.

A spinning wheel study.

A cooperative rooster.

Tuesday, April 05, 2016


What I am enjoying, noticing, is how flipping through a reconstructed journal delights me. Pages spliced in from old photographic books, paint, my own images all create a new landscape to write (or not) in. They are not precious pages, but I have a desire to take care what is written on them. I'd like to avoid another book burning twenty years from now. 

I'm greeted by these new landscapes in different ways. Step into some blue with writings peeking from behind my favorite Georgia O'Keeffe photo. I'm blessed to have her in my studio overseeing operations with that challenging gaze. I do my work. What words might I put here? Another To Do List? Platitudes of gratitudes? Let it be for now. Bask in blue.

Deli paper scraps from protecting other pages become pages. It's taken a good long search, but I found a pen that'll actually write on this slick surface without smearing or washing away under watery paints or spray inks. (Yes, it's across the Pond, but worth the wait. Unless you're already there, of course.)

Words from an old book, spliced in, become random poetry. Even these dark pages can take writings ~ white ink, slips of pretty paper glued into place. Or nothing.

Another blue page waiting to take flight . . .

gentle sky blue pink . . .

but having a writing prompt is helpful. I let this mind ramble in Morning Pages ~ the To Do's, the irritations, the Everyday, and tiny epiphanies (and I don't always write them in the morning ~ sorry, Julia). When I come to these journals, I'd like that out of my system, but I often circle back to that stuff of life, feeling a little repetitive (ad nauseum, in fact). The page isn't precious. It's organic and meant to shift and change, but not with the same material from the Morning Pages. Those writings are the compost, these landscapes are my gardens.
So I found prompts. Susannah Conway is hosting April Love 2016 and I found Ronna Detrick's Sacred Muse app. A prompt helps me focus the writing. I'm already sorted out about the other stuff of life for the day ~ the laundry list, the grocery list, the whining murmurs, the desire rant, or whatever. I come to this shifting landscape with some intention. And if I'm stuck without a prompt, a good place to begin might be, At this moment . . .