When I started teaching art journaling 4 years ago, I did not anticipate how quickly teaching will take over my life, how many people would want to study Art Journaling and how quickly it will spread via word of mouth.
I cannot emphasize enough how teaching art journaling has changed me. Preparing lessons for my 6 weekly groups has greatly influenced my own creative practice. As a result, I have spent time in creating, journaling and writing processes that connect people to their inner places with the use of simple materials and techniques.
However, it is only when I decided to open a special course for Art Journaling facilitators, I really started to think of the basic questions - what is Art Journaling and what makes it such an evocative and healing art practice?
My students kept asking me- how did I know to create such beautiful Art Journaling processes?
The answer is that I had to find a way to understand the building blocks of visual journaling in order to help them gain confidence to teach others.
I realize that Art Journaling, the way I teach it, is a healing artistic practice with a few distinctive elements that are the basis of each journal spread. When people start to understand the meaning of each element, they usually come up with inventive, stunning processes that are totally new and unique in their own right.
The 7 Main Elements of an Art Journaling spread are- Intention, magical coincidence, background, images, lines, color and text.
Each of these elements represents an inner part of our creative being.
In every spread that I create, I usually use all of the elements combined, so that the outcome is unique. I noticed that my students developed their own unique ways with these Elements. Some love text and use it greatly in their spreads, some focus on doodling, others on characters etc...
Understanding the additional meaning behind these elements helped the students incorporate additional layers into their work.
The first two elements- Intention and “Magical Coincidence” are Mega Elements that are connected to all the other elements. They are like the “mother and father” of the Elements.
The other 5 Elements - Background, Images. Lines, Colors, and Text are more visual elements in their core, but when you examine each of them thoroughly, they become the manifestation of more complex inner voices.
I also want to share with you my way of working in layers, which I call- Parallel Journaling.
Parallel Journaling is about creating several pages at the same time, each time concentrating on one element. I discovered that parallel Journaling helped me connect the pages of my journal and create a coherent story that wants to be told.
The 1 st Element- Intention
Every art journaling spread is built on the person’s intention, conscious or unconscious.
The Intention element is like air. You don’t have to see it visually, but it exists around you and let the spread feels alive.
The Intention element is a Mega element. It is connected to all of the other elements and is difficult to describe in visual terms, as it is more theoretic and elusive.
I believe that inside each one of us there is a free dreaming child that wants to be happy and follow his dreams. When we journal, we have to try and connect with this dreaming child so he could help us to loosen up, dream and create without any judgment.
Our intention is always connected to this dreaming child. , he is our core inner part and he wants to be heard. He is very pure and vulnerable; he remembers all of our childhood dreams and is connected to our true calling in this world. This child has passion and energy to dream and fulfill our dreams.
(From an introduction to a book in a writing process)
If you want to learn more about the Elements of visual journaling... sign up to this blog and my facebook page- rakefet hadar-creative journey