Yes – finally – I started drawing in my journal. At first, forcefully, interrupted by much staring at blank pages and without being able to translate any inspiration. Then, when Twitter pal @rdenker suggested I simply try focussing on things that I like (instead of turning to another glass of wine), without thinking too much and by just doing it. The result: nothing too complicated, mind-blowing or thought-provoking (which, naturally, is always the aim), but surprisingly it appeared to be a useful exercise.
As an artist one is expected to focus on “one” theme, perhaps a few sub-themes, work in “one” style and with “one” set of favourite materials. Despite having worked in branding – thus fully aware of the power of “one” very recognisable face – I struggle with this. Tremendously.
At the basis for my career change lies a rather extreme and overpowering need to be able to operate autonomously. Which translates into many things, but on top of my list that states: being able to be “completely me” in my work. And it just happens to be that I am a generalist, that I am interested in a zillion topics, that I am at my best when searching for the yet unknown (to me) and at my worst when I get bored; that I therefore have a serious issues with repetitional tasks and too much of the same thing.
However. Oddly, when not thinking too much and just doing the creating bit, certain things, themes and topics start to recur. Apparently, even I have subconscious preferences. To be continued…
A lot of artists and non-artists keep journals for a variety of reasons and despite the fact that keeping journals – especially when being an artist – makes a lot of sense to me, I must admit that I find it difficult if not impossible to make it part of my daily routine. As such, most journals I did manage to create came about in a very non-linear fashion and do not even contain drawings – at least not from my hand.
Imagine throwing any ticket, tag, wrap, or other (pasteable) item that you come across whilst traveling, shopping or going out to a concert, theatre, etc. into a bag when you come home. I guarantee that after a couple of months or even a couple of years, you will find several bags stashed away in some corner of a closet and you will think… ‘trash or keep’? Now, despite having ignored these bags for long periods of time, I have always felt an inexplicable emotional attachment towards their contents – these little reminders of my personal history. And given that anything treasured should at least be accessible, I started pasting them into journals. So there you go, a journal can contain anything.
Having said that; in my current profession I don’t actually feel better about my personal journaling ethics and promise myself that I will find ways to fill journals with my own drawings and sketches regularly. As for you: yes! By all means do reprimand me if you don’t see any passing by in the near future.
Here are some pages from my “ticket-tag-travel” journals… Please note that they may contain copyrighted materials. Should you see any work of yours, please inform me as to how you wish me to treat the material and I will act accordingly.