Welcome to The Life Journal Workshop
Do you remember being a child with a new box of crayons, a pair of scissors and a bottle of glue? Remember how proud you were of everything you created? There was no ego attached, no judgment, just joy and wonder!
A life journal is like a notebook or diary you might use for a variety of reasons:
- Adult craft time (I never get enough time for creative play!)
- Quiet reflection
- Celebration of life's moments, big or small
- Creative problem solving
- Remembering how to be creative
Many of us stopped thinking of ourselves as creative a long time ago. Maybe we heard someone say we weren't creative or would never be an artist. Creativity lives inside each of us and we all have a unique way of expressing our creativity. Maybe cooking, gardening, fitness, creative problem solving at the office or being a homeschooling mom is your channel for creativity. This column is about acknowledging and celebrating our innate creativity through journaling.
The Life Journal workshop is designed to remind you how to be creative again. This weekly series will offer ideas, tips and writing prompts for creating an art journal that combines writing, doodling, collage and personal development. This workshop is a way for you to celebrate your life, share your challenges and work out your problems. I will share journaling resources, tools and fun techniques for making your life journal bright, colorful and joyful.
I set up a portable table in my guest room so that I have a semi-permanent place to create. Here’s my crafting space. I share this space with my kids, who love to craft with me, so you will notice kids’ art in the picture, too. I love having them in the room playing with me. We usually listen to a book on tape while we are working. I also enjoying have time in the room by myself, which I don’t usually get until they are off to bed!
Maybe you are saying, Oh, that looks like fun, but I don't have time to play. I promise you that if you set aside one hour each week to create a life journal page, a new, more creative you will begin to emerge.
I ask you right now to set aside all self-judgment and give yourself permission to be creative. I promise, the more you feed and nurture your creativity, the more it grows.
Along the way, I will share my personal life journal, what I am learning and what I am creating. While I have been writing for years, I am enjoying having fun with my notebook and adding color, texture, collage and layers of meaning. You can see a two page spread below that I created recently. I don’t know why I connected the image of the wheat with spirituality, but I did. The rest of the two pages flowed from that one word and one image. I was also listening to a lecture by one of my favorite authors, David Whyte, that inspired some of my scribbles.
How to Start Your Life Journal
Here are a few tools you might want to get you started. In next week's column, I will talk more about the process and share a few writing prompts to get you started. For this week, make a quick trip to Michael's or Hobby Lobby (make sure to sign up for their email list so you get their weekly coupons.) Invest in yourself! Buy a nice journal in a size that feels comfortable. I have a variety of sizes and usually carry one with me for capturing notes or doodles or diary entries. For my art journal, I like a larger 9×12 format.
Life Journal Resources
- Good writing pen like Sakura Micron pens
- Colored pens
- Colored pencils
- Old magazines
- Sharp scissors
- Glue stick
You can add other tools as you go along, but for now just get started. For your first journal entry, write or create a collage about yourself as a child who loved to color!
Remember, it's important to just get it going, not to get it perfect!