Art Journaling

a sketchbook flip-thru | Something from the Studio 15

Creativity is about connections, and connections are not made by siloing everything off into its own space. New ideas are formed by interesting juxtapositions, and interesting juxtapositions happen when things are out of place.
— Austin Kleon

I finally edited this flip-through video of a "patchwork" sketchbook I put together earlier this year.

By "patchwork" I mean a conglomeration of spreads created by pieces and parts from my creative practice, sketches, fodder, unfinished art journals+such - and even remnants from art I made 20+ years ago - all hanging around in my studio in various places. 

Putting two sketches, paintings or visual ideas next to each other, that weren't necessarily made with one another in mind, is a wonderful way to see some of your own style or visual language coming through, without even really trying. You begin to see the way you make marks even as you change mediums or focus, the colors and movement, the energy within the simpler pages, and the beauty behind the messy pages and nonsensical leftovers.

This sketchbook is not one of my more intentional contemplative or intuitive practices at all, and it's certainly no masterpiece or poster-child for intricately completed art or art journaling. 

It's a sketchbook. An idea book. A place of collection and everyday creative-randomness, noticing, expression... coming together eventually in unexpected ways. Unexpected visual dialogues and juxtapositions.

It IS a unique approach, though, in that I don't always put together sketchbooks like this one usually.

My current everyday sketchbook approach has more of a sequence in time as I capture ideas, and a lot more writing involved. But this one definitely became an interesting contemplation in its own right, in the process of bringing things together from a span of many years... with some pages that surprised me with a spark of curiosity and have led to more meditative or interesting explorations and ideas since. 

Things had to be pulled out of their tidy places to be seen fresh in new relationships with one another. They found a new place to be, so there is a bit of that mysterious process paradox at play, too.

This video/sketchbook also includes a peek at a couple of sketches that did become larger paintings and meditations in my process. Those paintings are here and here.

A flip-thru video of a mixed-media sketchbook art journal | Hali Karla Arts

Join me on Patreon for Creative Practice explorations, behind-the-scenes updates, and live-online get-togethers.

Also - that Austin Kleon quote is from his book Keep Going - it’s a good one.

Thanks for stopping by - Happy Creating!


FREE online Creative Retreat weekend: Make Create Express

sign up for a FREE online creative retreat weekend with 27 art lessons: Make Create Express

I’m happy to finally get to share that I’m one of the 27 teachers for the Make Create Express workshop this year!

Over the last couple of years, I’ve said ‘no’ to most invitations for collaborative programs, webinars and such, but there was no way I could say anything but YES to this one for 2019, because I know what an incredible job Galia Alena does coordinating and hosting creative courses over at Art Is Magic.

join us for 27 FREE art lessons for your mixed-media creative practice. 27 stellar art teachers to guide the way

The complete Make Create Express experience is actually a year long creative adventure which kicks off with the Free Creative Retreat weekend.

That weekend, you will have access to enjoy and explore 27 lessons for your mixed-media Creative Practice - totally free.

If you can’t make it that weekend, or would like to enjoy a year of goodness with 27 additional lessons, you can opt-in for the Ongoing Creative Journey.

Check out this sweet video Galia put together to get us excited (I know it makes me want to paint!):

It’s even more exciting when you see the full line-up of teachers from around the world, and the different lessons they’ve been cooking up to share for your art journaling, mixed-media or creative practice.

Here is this year’s teacher/artist collective…

Make create Express mixed-media online creative journey kicks off with 27 FREE lessons - come sign up

Of course we want you to come play and connect with us for the whole year if you like, but make sure you treat yourself and at least join us for the free retreat. Because, FREE!

My lesson for the free retreat is called LandShapes - and includes 4 guided Creative Practices, inspired by landscapes, shapes, color, and contemplations on connecting with the land and making space come to life on the page through how we see, experiment and express with our materials and basic art element ideas.

My second lesson, in the ongoing retreat, is DreamScapes, where we create a painted world (or art journal spread) from start to finish, incorporating ideas we explored in LandShapes with an intuitive and process-oriented journey that will lead us somewhere we can’t predict.

peeks at a few of the lesson activities from my offerings for Make Create Express - join us for the FREE 27 lesson weekend

You can read the full description about my lessons over at the Free retreat sign-up page, with all the details about the other teacher’s lessons, too:

Please share and tell all your creative friends about the free offering, especially those who don’t yet know how wonderfully creative they are or who may be feeling a bit creatively dry.

This could be just the thing they need to look forward to and put a little spark back into their Creative Spirit self-care and practice.

It’s going to be packed with creative inspiration and fun - I hope to see you there!

simple mood-shifting visual journal practice (video) | Something From the Studio 13

In this short video, I muse and paint in an altered book art journal, sharing a very simple and uplifting Creative Practice approach… a sort of meditation, where I let the thoughts, pressures or agenda of my day roll on by for a little while.

This practice is not about making grand fine art or even an exemplary, layered art journaling spread.

It’s not about refining skill or challenging yourself or setting and meeting an intention even.

This approach is just about showing up to your practice, as you are - maybe even when you are likely to find a million excuses not to - but doing it anyway, because you know you feel better when you take that time to just breathe and let go.

It’s a pressure-free way to relax into a very simple approach - in my case, in an altered book.

Despite its simplicity, though, it can still spark inspiration, form and develop how you see and express in your visual language, bring a little beauty into your day, and shift your mood or focus from worries, tension or stress into the peace of the present moment.

At least that’s what I find. Even though that’s not the point. ;-)

This approach works well in altered landscape, nature or geographical books (like mine in the video), or you could easily do this with a magazine image - loose or adhered into another art journal or sketchbook.

Like in the video, try first finding and filling the negative spaces on your image with colors that delight you.

Try going thick with your paints or medium.

Or maybe fall into the flow of making a repetitive pattern for a bit.

See where that leads your interest or aesthetic desire on the page.

But most importantly, just move color and play around on the page for the sheer sake of enjoying yourself.

video demo of a simple art journal creative practice that can uplift and inspire | Hali Karla Arts