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 more than twenty years. 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!


Monday, July 05, 2010

Building a Visual Vocabulary

The above page is from the Kara/Kelly swap book.

One thing that you will notice when you see my pages is that I know what I like. :) I've built up and amassed what I call my Visual Vocabulary. You will see things like:

The color pink, yellow, buttercreams and black and white (I love pink and exploring and expanding it's many possibilities. Yellow is a hard color to find and I love how it POPS things. Buttercreams are just yummy. Black and White is striking and always pulls your eye into the page.)
Hands (I go out of my way to collect images of hands)
Henna hands (what could be better)
Hearts (and the word love, I use them a lot)
Peace Symbols
Eyes (ahhh, look deep)
Women (I often use imagery of women to 'say' what I don't write on the page)
Religious Iconography (though I am not religious, the images of various faiths appeal to me)

to name a few...

The majority of my work is done in journal or book form. I know what I like and what I can use visually to 'speak' volumes for me without having to describe the colors or the images on the page. I use these colors and images to express my emotions, thoughts and feelings.

You'll notice a lot of other artists do this as well in their journals (and obviously, in their artwork). They have images and colors that appeal to them and speak volumes. Artists over time will devote countless paintings, pages and studies to specific colors and images that resonate and speak to them. What speaks to you?

Open your journal up and play with colors and imagery. Don't worry about it just start to work in your journal. Continue to work in your book (books) over time. Go back and look over your pages. Notice a pattern? See any colors that you gravitate towards? How about images that you use again and again? Note them. Journal about what these colors and images mean to you. Don't stress or worry about these things, they will appear with time. That's one of the many bonuses of keeping an art journal! You'll start to notice the little things more...Trust me. Be open to it and it will happen.
Open your eyes. Watch to see what your pages are 'saying'. You'll be amazed what you didn't see before...


Anonymous said...

I have a thing for images of hands and some religious symbols as well. Can you share where are the best places to find these?

donna!ee said...

huge kudos and humonguous thank you kelly for sharing your time, talents & treasures with these posts that expose your authentic creativity & process ... it truly does make an impact on my "artful fearlessness" AND thereby eliminates any vague expressions AND promotes boldness of vocabulary!!! prayerfully, ;)

Kelly Kilmer said...

I don't have any hidden sources for where I find my images. I've mentioned it several times over the years on my blogs. I collect the images. I look in books at used bookstores. I look in magazines. I use the internet. Friends know the images that I like. I keep my eyes open and am always looking for images to use. :)

sheilasab@sbcglobal.net said...

kelly--unbelievable how your work has evolved--when i took your class in Willow Glen to now it has really changed--color and images--it is more sophisticated and out standing---somehow i missed your swap with Kara--2 wonderful artists together---was it through a class? Kelly, i can't begin to tell you how scrumptious your work is now---i have always enjoyed your creativity---that's why i try to take your on-lines and when you are near San Jose--OUTSTANDING, GIRL !!! should i take this new class? keep on trucking---xxxooo sam

Kelly Kilmer said...

Thanks Sheila. No, we didn't work through a class we just swapped journals.
We're having fun with the new class!!! :) I'm not closing it so people can sign up at any time!!!

Sandy said...

Love this. I'm starting to see things repeating in my journals that I love and am looking for more and more. It is true if you take the time to notice it.

Anonymous said...

I am really lucky: my psychologist encourages me to work in my art journals and to bring them in to my sessions. Often she'll raise subjects that I didn't consciously know I was working through - she says looking through my art journals is really helpful in her work with me. It's also a good record of my moods and helps identify triggers and cycles in my mental illness...

Mixed Media Martyr said...

Thanks for this post Kelly! You say things so concisely. I like the idea of looking back over my pages to see what I keep coming back to, what pages I like and why I like them. Then I can take those things (colours, symbols, etc) and explore them more. Leanne.

Anonymous said...

I love the idea of building up a catalog of images and colors and symbols for my pages. I already use favorite colors a lot, and I think I incorporate favorite images I like to draw quite often. It seems to me that we tend to naturally use imagery that not only expresses how we feel, but that attracts us. Thanks for this great post! Isn't it amazing what happens when we take the time to just LOOK and observe a little closer sometimes?