Sunday, February 15, 2015

Art Journaling

A silly card from

When I started painting, I bought several sketchbooks.  Did I use them to sketch?  No.

I used these books as personal art inspiration journals where I would cut and paste photos of artwork and quotations I liked.  I make a habit of looking at them all the time since they are full of ideas.  Here are samples of a few pages.

This is the first page of the first sketchbook I bought.  I regret failing to note the name of the author of this quote because it is an idea that is ingrained in my mind.

 Every time I look at this photo, I am reminded of sneaking out of bed when I was a little girl to take a peek at my parents.  One night, I caught them dancing. 
  The photo also reminds me of something Renoir once said; that he loved painting people and their stories.

Just fun.  We can dream...

Several years ago,  I took a techniques workshop from Michigan artist Nita Engle.  This is a photo of Nita's painting.  I purchased her book "How to Make a Watercolor Paint Itself" prior to the workshop and she was kind enough to autograph it - a happy memory for the art journal.

Ah, this is one concept I need to remember.    Painting in a series is a creative way of sparking new ideas by zeroing in on one subject or theme. 
 I personally like to create "one-zies" (one of these, one of those, ...).  I'm starting a new series that is loaded with one-zie opportunities because the challenge is to do a painting based on each letter of the alphabet.  The great thing is that each painting will probably kindle a few ideas for a future series.

The new alphabet series will begin this week.  Already, "A is for America" is giving me a problem because my model (AKA my daughter) has been too busy to pose.

I found this in the journal, too.  It's next to the "No Whining!" page.

On to Plan B.  It's not really what you paint anyway; it's how you paint it.  It's how you infuse something that matters to you with your energy.  I guess that's what it means when they say you always paint yourself.


  1. Great way to keep track of your memories and your inspirations, Chris. Love the story of catching your parents dancing together after you went to bed. That is what love should be.

  2. Thank you, Chris, for sharing these great ideas and thoughts. The series idea is one I should try..for lots of reasons. Cool things to look at. I think you've just inspired me to keep a journal!

  3. Thanks,Sherry. There is only room for happy memories in that journal.

  4. Thanks, Laurie. Hope you start a journal. No one even has to see it. It's just for YOU!

  5. I love this idea! Casey Baugh strongly recommends keeping an inspiration notebook, and really examining it to ask specifically what is inspiring about a given image, and to keep it very current. I've not done anything this organized. Having a Pinterest board isn't the same, is it? I am starting tonight!!!