Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Old Art Journals Rediscovered: Palimpsest Journal

I title all of my art journals.  I don't really know why.  Perhaps simply because it serves as an easier way to remember and refer to them rather than saying "number three" or "number four."  I titled this journal, my fourth completed art journal, Palimpsest: An Art Journal, because I was recycling it from a notebook I had used before.  The word palimpsest actually refers to a parchment that has had its original writing removed to make way for a new text.  Because many pages of this journal have their previous notes showing through my backgrounds, I thought "palimpsest" would be a suitable title.  The journal itself is a mix including complex multi-layered pages as well as grids, mandalas, and even several pages that contain nothing but stickers.


Despite the diversity of styles, it was easy to pick my favourite page spread.  On this page spread, I'm starting to shift toward a slightly simpler style.  These pages consist of little more than a collection of squares of paper collaged on a painted background and outlined with markers and gel pens, and one of my favourite quotes from Henry David Thoreau, that begins, suitably enough, with, "Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!"  I really love the colours and textures that I collected in these paper scraps, because I usually do prefer muted colours over brighter shades.

Do you prefer simpler art journal pages, or more complex multi-layered pages?  What kinds of colours do you prefer to use?

Other pages from this journal: Hand + Mandala, Grid, Grid + Mandala

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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.

6 comments:

  1. My art journals have gotten simpler and simpler over time. I've "tried on" a lot of journaling styles that I've admired or seen on blogs and in books, usually in a more complex, multi-layered style. But ultimately I seem to come back to my own, simpler style, which I now really like (I used to think it needed to be more this or that - like the styles I had seen). It's nice to accept the journal style I have! :-) I enjoy your blog...I have the same green Lamy pen and love it, too! :-)

    - Tina
    http://www.tina-koyama.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Tina! I've experienced a very similar process with my own art journal. Like you, I've experimented with a lot of different styles, and most of my first art journals were also very complex and multi-layered. In the last couple years or so though, I've really fallen in love with my own much simpler style. My current art journal is simply a plain sketchbook and the only tools I use in it are a black felt-tip pen and my watercolour pencils. I am planning to start a new art journal that may be a bit more open-ended, but I'm still going to try to keep things simple.

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  2. I am working through Quinn McDonlad's Raw Art Journaling, which is great fun. I keep a notebook for poetry and another for drawing/watercolor, but I've never really tried journaling - this is a new adventure for me.

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    1. I'm so glad you checked that book out, Duncan! I want to get back to working through it as well. I borrowed it from the library a while back, but now I have my own copy. I'm glad you like it.

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  3. I began my journaling career in the 80's with a simple writing only journal. AS time progressed I went through the stages of journaling addiction. At one point I could not 'write' in my journal unless it was a full blown art page. When I realized that because I felt I needed to make it art page rather than a journal I reassessed and now do a combination of written, types and art pages. Whatever makes me more consistent and represents a glimpse of what I was doing at that point in time.

    PS: I followed the link to you from Rhodia Drive

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    1. Thanks for the comment, Marie! I really love the idea of having a journal that combines writing and art. In the past I have usually separated my journals out, but as I complete my old journals I am starting to combine them all together. A journal, for me, is not a finished work of art, but a constant work in progress.

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