Sunday, January 13, 2008

Journaling Tips I've Learned

I've learned some interesting things in working on journals this past year. I find journaling to be a great way to find the art in the trivial and the everyday. I've also found that writing about an unpleasant event or aspect of life can bring me perspective and humor about the subject.

The two pages above left give an account of two inebriated men who crossed my path on Christmas Day, no less! The seated man sat next to me on the plane to New York. He was drunk, I realized, as he delivered himself of unacceptable opinions on the supposed sexual orientation of our flight attendant and of the need to close our borders to immigrants. He ended by calling us dorks for telling him to keep his opinions to himself. By including this delightful seat-mate in my journal, I was able to get rid of the bad feeling he left me with and to transform the experience into a somewhat humorous anecdote.

The man to his right I met while sitting on our friend

Thomas' stoop in Brooklyn. He too, had been imbibing and he mistook me for his estranged mother. It was an odd experience and again, it helped to get the incident in my journal. I also thought it was an interesting example of projection. In one day I had been a "dork" and a sainted mother.

Above right is an example of the trivial and fun--a slice of life!

I made the picture below left by using my imagination to create something out of a stain of spilled coffee on my journal page.

Below right is a page of the everyday--strange hats seen on subway riders during freezing weather. On the right of the hats is a page used to contain some emotions about a recent death in the family. I put the "stuff" in a box so I could come back to it at a later time.

The pages below commemorate breaking my glasses and going to Starbucks (left side) and seeing John Singer Sargent's "Madame X"

Below is a silly drawing of two Oregonians out in the NY rain. On the right is a collage of hand-painted papers. Sometimes my drawing Sharpie shows through the next page, so then I just do a collage on the page with the show-through.

I'm working on keeping the habit of taking my journal almost everywhere, along with pens and pastel pencils. Later I can add paint or whatever else I want. I've decided no experience or subject is too mundane for my journal, and that my journal can console, comfort, and inspire me any time I get it out, add to it, or go through it!


Sandra Evertson said...

FUnny and amazing journaling book!
Sandra Evertson

Emma said...

I love your journal - I love that you decided to take it everywhere and that no experience or subject is too mundane. I've struggled with my internal content filter-er when I've tried to do something like that. So this is inspiring.