What You'll Find Here

I post daily (photos of my journal pages, things that inspire me and personal bits and pieces) to inspire and encourage others. I have always believed that if I can do it, so can you.

You'll find resources (my favorite supplies, books, slideshows of my art journal pages, favorite bloggers, etc...) listed along the right hand side of my blog.

I've been teaching both in person and online workshops for almost twenty years now. You can find out more about my classes by scrolling down along the right hand side of my blog. I strive to make classes accessible to everyone (both beginner to advanced).

I love teaching and truly believe that deep down inside everyone is an artist, capable of creating something. There is power and knowledge in the act of creating something with your own hands, made from your own heart and head.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at EGorey99@sbcglobal.net

Thanks for stopping by!

-Kelly

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Some Thoughts on Keeping a Journal, Taking Classes and Making it all Work

I've been a long time advocate of taking a minimum of fifteen minutes a day and using it to work in your journal. If you have 15 minutes to read blogs (including this one), watch tv, etc... than you have time to work in your journal. The only successful key to keeping a journal is doing the work. There is no wrong or right way to do it. The more you put in the time and effort, the more you will learn what works best for you, what you like and the best way that works for you.

I work in my journal every day. I don't always complete a page but I will work in stages. One day, I will start a page with collage, doing what I can until I have to stop. The next day (or later on in the day), I'll pick up my journal and working on the same page, I might start to add my journaling. Later, I may go back and add other things to the page. You never have to finish a page in one setting. It's better (and more rewarding) to spend your time working however you can in your art journal than to spend your time berating yourself that you never finish a page. Do what you can and think in terms of baby steps.

I've heard many students come back over time after taking a class and tell me what worked for them or what didn't work. I always appreciate good, honest feedback. Sometimes I hear that the students didn't like a class (my class, someone else's class, etc...). I've taken classes that I didn't love. Hell, I've taught classes that I didn't love (many years ago and now I will ONLY teach classes that I want to teach and am passionate about or else it shows!) as well as I've taken classes that I didn't love. The one question I always ask is, "Did you do the work?" or "Did you take what you could from the class, work with it and try to make it work for you?" Sometimes that's all we have to work with. We can have the best teacher and the best class on the planet and unless we commit ourselves to actually doing the work hands on, NOTHING will make that class beneficial to you unless you just dive in and just do the work. It's the same thing with art journaling. It's not going to "work" until you do the work.

What does this all mean? Am I writing this from a cough medicine induced stupor? Maybe. It's something that percolates in my head again and again and I had to get it out (just like with my journal pages) and onto the blog in the hopes that maybe it will percolate and brew in your head. It's food for thought and something that I muse on again and again.

What do you think? Do you think you have time to create daily? What about taking a small journal, a glue stick and a pen with you to work and gluing bits and bobs in on your lunch hour? What about using your time before you go to bed to just write about your day, reflecting upon what happened and thoughts that are swirling through your head? What about taking that little tidbit of information you liked from that last art class you took and seeing how you can get it to work in your journal? How can you make it work for you?

All in all, in the time it took you to read this, you could've started a page. What are you waiting for?

22 comments:

Sarah said...

I quite often do a little bit daily-and start and finish pages on different occasions. When I am at home my journal is usually on the kitchen table, along with whatever is my current favourite media and materials. As you say-a little bit at a time is fine -I take that approach to a lot of things or I would go mad! Hope your cough gets better soon!

Melanie said...

I do a bit a day ... usually right before bed. Even if it it is just LOOKING back through my journal, I touch it once a day. Helps fuel my creativity.

Marrianna said...

I think more about my art journal than I do the artwork. A few weeks ago, I decided to do fabric collage art journaling and actually got 3 different collages complete. I still want to play in an art journal and have one that I started that I've taken photos of artwork of my favorite online sites, gotten permission to print images, and printed them to glue in my idea/personal journal. I got the idea from the latest Somerset ART JOURNAL magazine. I keep the idea journal on the end table next to my spot on the couch but haven't picked it up lately. Your delightful commentary is spurring me forward to carry the lovely darling with me to work so I can play on my lunch break. Thank you.

Melissa said...

"I don't have time" is the most popular exuse out there! I use it sometimes... it either means I spent the whole day doing chores, waiting for buses, OR it means I really just don't want to do something and would rather get out of it.

I rarely take online workshops and things, but whenever I do, I don't get much out of them. But then, I also don't really follow along close enough to get into it.

What helps me? Blogging. LOL! Seriously, when you have to update a blog everyday, you start putting aside time to do artsy things or else you won't have anything to blog about!:D

Lori Wostl said...

I do art everyday-usually journal everyday too. I'm not well today, but will still get some thing glued down, otherwise I'd feel even less well.

Autumn Hathaway said...

I agree Kelly, well stated. It is an evolving work in progress, page to page. The pages don't finish themselves. Doing it regularly creates a habit and there is nothing better than this kind of habit. But it does take work which really, now for me equals love.

Kelly Kilmer said...

Melissa, that's part of my discussion. You won't get anything out of a class (or any experience) unless you put in the time and effort. Everything takes time, effort, patience and practice. ;)

Kelly Kilmer said...

Lori, I'm also not feeling well but even then one can glue something down or even read an artsy book or magazine and let the ideas percolate until they are well and rested up!

Kelly Kilmer said...

:) Love and commitment in so many aspects of our lives is a good thing, indeed.

Kelly Kilmer said...

Onward to your journal! :)

Kelly Kilmer said...

Journal love!!!

Kelly Kilmer said...

Thanks, Sarah! I can't wait to stop coughing. I feel the same way about other aspects of life: cleaning house is overwhelming unless I break it down into areas, times and goals. Then I can get it done. Just like art journaling, I make the time to do it.

Heather said...

first I want to say I really love this post! Great reminder. I create these days about 3-4 times a week, sometimes more. I have learned as you said that you can start a page and not finish it. I also keep an inspiration journal so when all else "fails" I can just glue in images and words etc that inspire me and not feel like I need to do a theme or have any real rhye or reason to it. This post is a wonderful reminder though that I can create a littl more time always!

Nicole Austin said...

i agree. i do a lot better in the summer with my daily journaling because i made it a habit to take the girls out to the park and to bring my journal and a few supplies with me. now that it's warming up again, i can see getting back into a daily habit. but you're right. the time it takes to read all our blogs, we could at least start a page or finish another.

Brian Kasstle said...

I love it when I have long afternoons in my backyard to work in my journals. I tend to work more bits at a time now. It takes time to develope a page and I think they look better that way, over time. Quality takes time is not a cliche. Folks want to be amazing art journalers now, it takes time. Develope your skills. Layer, play.

Carol said...

This was very inspiring and so true. We cam all use a little pep talk now and then. Going tom dust off one of my many started journals right now!

irene said...

A timely post. Thanks, Kelly. I do both, complete a page at a sitting and work bit by bit. I work quickly but do find that trying a different pace brings satisfying results.

Desert Mermaid said...

I'm finally at a place with my family (sons are grown, independent, one of them off with his own family), and job that I have time to create every single day, and for as long as I wish. For me, that means I come through the door after work, beeline through to the patio with journal and pens, and I'm out there until dark (4:30 to 6:30, right now). 3 evenings a week, when I come in from the patio, I go into my studio to collage or create in some other way. A little at a time is over, for me ... my hubby is cool with that, my 21 year old (still at home) son is never actually IN the house at the same time I am, or so it seems ... hubby and I coordinate chores and cooking pretty well ...

Cat said...

I never worry about finishing a page and I try to leave what ever piece of artwork I'm working on out in the open so I have to pass by it every time I walk in/out of my room. And sometimes it snags me and I sit down to do a little work on it--paint something, glue something down, spray fixative, whatever. I watch TV from my bed so for the past couple months I've done my paper collage work right there, with papers spread out all around me. I get to feed the TV demon and be creative at the same time!! Heck, I barely watched NCIS (fave show!!) last night as I was too busy taking an on-line class!! But, I'm also guilty of taking a class and not putting in the time and doing the work. Shame on me!! At least I don't blame the class or the instructor!! This is an awesome post, Kelly--it really makes us think about our priorities.

Hagit said...

Thanks for the reminder! :)) I can work in my journal instead of reading so many blogs! So true! getting off the computer NOW!

Antares Cryptos said...

While inspiring, my sketching or journaling does not work that way. The art muse shows up when she will. I have tried the daily approach and it felt forced, but reading your post has inspired me to finally finish my post on visual journaling.;)

Hope you feel better soon.

Autumn Rinaldi said...

Unfortunately, my blog grows in spurts: I write and draw in it for days and then neglect it. Great post, it makes me want to spend a lot more time journaling!