Sunday, February 28, 2010

Beginnings and endings

Let's start with the endings, shall we?

I realized as I was starting my new journal that I'd not yet finished the last few pages in my old journal...something I'm notorious for. I have many, many journals that don't end, but rather sort-of peter out. In my mind I rationalize that it's because the journals themselves really are only sections along a continuum, not fixed points, and that to have them end would mean that I ended!

This last journal, the one I finished yesterday, is especially close to my heart. In it are recorded the last 3+ years, and it was a gift from my Oldest for Christmas, 2006.

These have been some busy years, on many, many levels. This book travelled all over with me (even to New Hampshire and back, twice) and was comforting in it's weight and heft as much as in its pages. It deserved a proper ending.

The pages are creamy and thick, I was able to do almost anything to them. To close out the book, I did several pages of quotes about endings of various sorts, and this is my favorite. You can click on it to see a larger version (that goes for all the photos).

I couldn't leave yesterday's page alone (it just felt 'unfinished') and went in with one of my sepia toned pencil crayons with dictionary definitions of and synonyms for 'begin'. It's a good exercise to meditate on one word like that, to explore it fully. I'll have to remember to do that if I find myself in need of creativity exercise.

The page feels much more finished now, if still a little unbalanced.

And (because I'm completely hopeless once I get going) I added a bookplate page to the new journal. This piece of paper has been kicking around for at least a year, and it's high time that it found a home. It's in need of a much more elaborate frame than it has right now, and that is coming. I learned a little with this page (don't paint over glue, it cracks and then can't be written on), and am looking forward to working it up into something much more elaborate over the next while.

Oh yes, and I finished both of my school papers yesterday and sent them off. Whew.

I'm losing my steam for being a student right now, mostly because I'm not all that well suited to being an on-line student...there's something about a classroom full of people that makes it all more interesting, makes the subject matter make more sense. I'm a little past halfway on my current courses, then one more and I'll be done!

Happy Sunday, happy end of February. Bring on March!



Saturday, February 27, 2010


A gift recently got me going on something that I've wanted to get back to for a while now: journaling.

I spent a little quality time (in between working on the papers that are due this weekend) painting up the first pages. I find it's hardest to start, and I really didn't have a direction for this page until I got really going. It seems to reflect a lot of things that I have going on right now:
my work, the academic work, and the learning I've done in the last years about myself. Every day I have to remind myself to begin, not to avoid.
I've also recently had an opportunity to do a little illustration, which makes my heart happy. The little detail photo below is from a doodle I did during some quiet minutes at work yesterday - while thinking about the illustration op.

The piece ended up being about starting the new journal (and ending the old one), but also about many other starts...the commencement of learning to read or count, the start of the day, the movement forward, the taking of risks.

From a technical point of view, there's a lot more I could play with (and perhaps will, over the next day or so). The space in the final piece does not quite seem to be effectively used, and I would love to have a sepia toned pen with which to fill in more of the background. Perhaps the art supply store is not yet closed......?