Wednesday, October 2, 2013

What I write about in my journal

Again and again when I post pages from my daily journal I get comments about all the writing. I also notice it when I show the actual journal to a person in real life or write in public. For all those who keep wondering what all that writing is actually literally about, this post is for you!

People are forever fascinated by writing, especially if it's done by hand. For me this really odd, since it's the most natural thing for me and I can't imagine not writing. Really, I mean it. I don't know how all you non writers manage to stay sane. Writing helps me to get my overflow of thoughts out of my head, structure my ideas, set my priorities and know what I'm actually all about. Through writing I get to know myself.

That doesn't mean that the writing in my journal is profound and deep or even interesting. It can be, but most of the time it's repetitive, everyday drivel, complaints or just boring. But that's not the point. The point is in the writing itself.

I will not get into my ideas about writing here, since I did a huge tutorial on it a few year ago which you can find here.  What I do want to do today is just give you some details about what I write about, because I know you're all curious about it (I have the comments and mails to prove it) and I want to dispel the myth that journal writing needs to be deep and interesting. So here are a few pages from my current journal The White Book of which I will tell you what the writing on them is about.

They are just a few random spreads I've already shown you and I have no intention to translate them word for word, just to give you a little idea of what's on my pages when it comes to all that writing.

Here we go!

This spread was written on Friday July 12 at 7:25 am. (I always write the date and the time I start writing)
I start by saying it had been a strange workweek since I'd only been in the office for one day and had to go the main land for work related meetings the other two. I also contemplate whether I can still consider my workweek a workweek since I only work three days a week now. I talk about phone calls I had to make to a person who is rather hard to catch on the phone and about the details of my two meetings. One was to a historical center and it was really fascinating. Then I talk about the coming workweek and how I hope it will be quieter and more regular (I'm really bad at things that take me out of my regular routines). And finally I talk about having almost finished canceling all the things I wanted to cancel to save money and my plans for the coming day starting with my morning walk. 

This spread was written on Friday August 2 at 7:50 am.
It starts (as many of my journal entries do) with the weather, stating that this is promising to be the hottest day of the year and how I'm bummed about it, because on really hot days my studio gets too warm to work in and I just had this great idea for a new journal. I talk about this idea and what inspired it. I talk about my use of colour in general and how I intend to use it in the new journal and go deeper into my ideas about the journal in general. Then I talk about working in the Compostion Book and how much I am enjoying that and why. Furthermore I talk about a tutorial I saw on YouTube by Jennibellie (who also gifted me the images on this spread by the way) about making paper beads and how inspiring that was and how I'm considering giving that a shot.

This spread was written on Sunday August 11 at 7:15 am.
Again I start with the weather. Apparently it was a gray day. ;-) I talk about the long hike I intend to make across the island that morning and about the walk I took the day before. Then I talk about a recurring theme in my journal which is the lay out of my days and how I always struggle to get some rhythm into my days. Then I talk about finishing the watercolour sketchbook and which book I have picked to be its successor. Next I talk about working on the patterns in my Moleskine sketchbook and how much I love how that book is starting to look with all those colourful patterns in it and how I love doodling and patterning in general and why. I also talk about some small changes I made in the studio so my acrylic paints would be better organized and to make it easier for me to find the different colours. 

This spread was written on Tuesday September 10 at 8:25 (this was in my vacation)
This very much starts out with complaining about how so far this vacation is not what I intended it to be and how it is making me restless. Because of all the appointments and the painters around the house.  I talk about the book club meeting the night before and about having slept badly. Then I talk about how I have to go to the farmacy for the second time, because my medication hadn't arrived the day before and complain a little more. After that I talk about my plans for that afternoon when I want to go to main land and visit the library and do a little shopping and how, if all goes well on Wednesday I might actually have a whole day to myself. Then I talk a little more about more appointments for that week and my upcoming visit to the dentist which makes me nervous and then I complain how the painters are making a ton of noise with their sanding machine. 
(This last spread makes me laugh in hindsight, but I remember being really annoyed when I wrote it.)

Well, there you have it. That's about as representative as it gets actually. Mostly I either write about what my day was like the day before, about my plans for the coming day, about my art, about the weather or I complain about stuff that's bugging me. No poetry there, no masterpiece,  just actual everyday real life thoughts and that's all your journal really needs to be: REAL!

I hope I have demystified my writing a little now. Of course there will be sessions every now and then when I will do some deep thinking, but mostly it's stuff like the above. I write it because that way I can look at it and get it out of my head instead of turning it over and over inside my mind.

I truly believe writing should be for you and no one else. I do show my spreads and I don't mind if people read them, but I show them for the visual aspect more than the writing. However the writing is an essential part of my journal and I might as well share that with you as well.

I also want to encourage want anyone who wants to write, but doesn't because they think they need to write important prose to get over it and just write for writings sake. It's good for you, it really is!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy Wednesday!