Flipping through this journal now is almost like looking through the journal of a stranger. This journal marked the beginning of the most artistic work I had done since elementary school, and my work today seems very different from this. I stuck stickers on nearly every page, and used a lot of acrylic paint backgrounds. My drawings are small and awkward, my paint strokes are bold, and my colours are bright and, occasionally, clashing. The book I used was a hard-covered journal that I had used for taking notes in before. I painted the cover, but because it was such a smooth surface, much of the paint simply flaked off again. I had to tear out over half the pages so that the book wouldn't splay out too much. It had a glued rather than a sewn binding and I'm amazed that this book actually survived in one piece - it must be all the acrylic paint holding it together. I also used this journal for some of my early attempts at writing poetry using exercises in the book The Practice of Poetry, edited by Robin Behn and Chase Twichell - hence the title I gave it, the "Art and Poetry Journal."
The page spread I chose to share with you today is one of the earliest ones in the book. Both of these pages were created separately, but the page spread as a whole really expresses the dichotomy I was experiencing in my life at the time: the happiness at exploring my creativity, and the depression that I was also going through then. It is a page spread that I feel both happy and sad to look at today: sadness for how trapped I felt then, and happiness for how, even at one of the darkest times of my life, I was able to find some joy in art.
What do your old journal pages say about you? What do you think when you re-read your old journals today?
Other pages from this journal: Old Art Journal Pages, Art Journal Prompts.
Old Art Journals Rediscovered is a series of posts dedicated to rediscovering the art journals that I have created over the past four years. In each post, I will introduce you to one of my old art journals, and share with you one page spread from that journal - not the page spread that is the prettiest or the fanciest, but the one that speaks most clearly to me today. I hope that by sharing with you the evolution of my own art journals, you will feel inspired to start your own explorations with art.