Friday, June 20, 2014

Introducing a New Tutorial

It's finally done! Part 2 of the Altered Book Journal Tutorial for making background pages in the style I use most often. I find that I enjoy making tutorials. I have always enjoyed breaking projects or tasks down into step by step instructions. I've done it a lot over the years I have been on staff at the church, making Bible Study in the inductive study method easy to follow. My job before the church was as a manager at a cross stitch and quilting store. I taught a lot of classes there. My favorite ones to teach were the classes that I developed to turn a quilting project ,such as a wall hanging, into an easy project for people with limited sewing skills using iron on adhesive and hand sewing. So it just seems like a natural progression for my art journaling practice to move into sharing how I do things. I have been surprised, however, at how much time it takes ~ photographing every step, editing the photos, then typing it all out and putting together a layout. But I'm enjoying it and hope you are as well! Here is the link or you can also click on the page above. Tutorial

My next project will be a class combining faith, identity and art. Look for it to appear here before the end of the summer. Art journaling has been such a transformative part of my  faith journey in recent years and has become a spiritual practice or discipline for me. 

Well, I am trying to squeeze the last few pages for June into my bursting Documented Life Journal. My new altered book binder journal is ready to go for the second half of the year. This project is really a lot of fun - it combines using a planner to record the highlights of your week with weekly art challenges. It's not too late to join in! The Documented Life Project
Doc Life Journal for second half of the year

I'm on a roll making journals for my Etsy shop.These two were made with books I found last week at the book sales. They have great art journaling titles and are going in the shop this weekend.

Tomorrow we are heading out to a huge flea market in Tiffin! Hoping to find lots of goodies! I hope you enjoy your weekend. :)

Monday, June 16, 2014

More Art Journaling Today

I started a new altered book art journal earlier this year, but I found as I got further into it that the pages were just too thin, so I'm not too happy with how they hold up under paint and glue. I'll have to cut out the pages I have done and add them to another journal.

I mainly have been plugging along keeping up with my journal for the Documented Life Project. Here are the pages I finished this weekend as I work to catch up. The challenge for week 23 was to practice gratitude and write what we were grateful for each day. So, for week 23 I combined the challenge with my planner pages. And had some fun with cut-out letters!  I find cut-out letters to be a relaxing activity and I'm always pleased with the results.

In April I made a new altered book binder journal so I could take step-by-step pictures for the tutorial I made. I have been working on a few pages here and there in that journal as well. 

A quote from a book I am reading:
The Artisan Soul, by Erwin McManus
This was a page I never posted from May's Gratitude Challenge
I love working in the binder style of altered book journals, but I found this past week that I missed working in the other style of altered book journal, especially when it comes to making double page spreads. So I started altering one of the books I picked up at the book sales I attended last Thursday. I haven't taken any pictures yet, but they'll come soon. :)

Tomorrow I go back to the office and meetings after a 10 day break. It was a good period of rest and renewing my energy....I could go for another week! If all goes well through the week I intend to have part 2 of the Altered Book Journal tutorial done and posted by the weekend.

Hoping you all have a good week and that you are able to make some white space in each day to make a little art. :)

Saturday, June 14, 2014

June Art Journaling So Far

So far this month I have been trying to catch up in my Documented Life Project journal. The project is in week 24 and I got caught up through week 22 and started on week 23. So I'm not too far behind! I'm just amazed that I've kept up with the project this far into the year, being the great starter of projects that I am!
Week 21 page spread ~
pictures from Memorial weekend at my sister's house on a lake.

Week 21 side 1

Week 21 side 2

Week 22 page spread

Week 22 side 1

Week 22 side 2

Week 22 challenge ~ add a house

Collage on May's divider page

Friday, June 13, 2014

Rest and Creativity

Since Memorial Day life for me has been a whirlwind of activity with preparation for end of the school year events for our ministry to the public school we adopted as our community partner. Each year the school and Parent's Club holds a Field Day in the last week. The role of our church is to provide a bag lunch for each student and to provide two volunteers to supervise lunch in each classroom while the teachers get a much needed lunch break. Since I lead our school partnership ministry this makes for a very busy end of the year in addition to my other activities at the school. April and May are always very busy months at our church and for me in the roles I serve in on staff. I find, that when June comes and we have finished our events and activities at the school, that I have been operating on adrenaline, and my energy quickly leaves me like air leaving a balloon, and I deflate! So I scheduled a 10 day vacation for the week after school closed - a "staycation", a time to rest and renew.

On day one, I was amazed how quickly I felt re-energized just by doing some of the things that I know bring me energy and joy. This is where knowing yourself is beneficial. I know what drains me and I know what energizes me. Part of self-care is being in touch with these things and doing what is necessary to keep them in balance. Someone said, "Stress kills creativity" (sorry, I can't find who said it!), and I resonate with this from experience. When I get overly busy and tired I find I have a hard time creating. So, this week at home has been about restoring and making time for creativity, art and some of the other things that are enjoyable to me.

Some highlights from my past week:

  • My pastor had asked me to share in a Sunday service while we are in our series on the Theology of Sabbath. He had asked me specifically to share how practicing a Sabbath Day has enriched my soul and to share some of the spiritual practices and "non-spiritual" practices that fill my Sabbath day. So I did that last Sunday. One thing that really stood out for me as I prepared for sharing was that keeping a Sabbath Day has been an instrumental part of getting to know how I am wired and what energizes me. It has helped me discover how much being creative energizes me. Sabbath rest is a gift from God and a spiritual practice I am very thankful for. Check out the Sabbath Society at Redemption's Beauty for more Sabbath practice information and ideas.
  • I got on a roll making altered book art journals for my Etsy shop:{found on brighton}

I have already sold three! I participated in a course by Jeanne Oliver ( about how to have a creative business and this past week I have been catching up on watching the videos. I made a decision a while back that if I was going to have an Etsy shop I might as well be serious about it being a small business. So far I am enjoying my little business. :)
  • I have done very little outside my home this week and have really enjoyed it! This is when I have no doubts that I am more of an introvert than an extrovert (another discovery made through practicing Sabbath!). The few things I have done were: attending the boys Little League baseball games. participating in my spiritual direction group, and yesterday my friend Rox and I went to two library book sales. We found a lot of goodies! They will be used for my personal journals and to make altered book journals and paper packs for my shop.
  • I have also been catching up on my art journaling challenge projects, making art, and catching up on some movie watching (two I highly recommend are Monuments Men and Philomena). I post some of my art pictures in another post this weekend.
So, that is the start of my summer. I'm hoping for a slowed down pace - actually, not hoping for - I intend to have a slowed down pace this summer. How are you planning to spend your summer?