Hello! And welcome back for 2016. Yes I know I’m a bit late for the New Year welcome but we are still very much in holiday mode here. Having a husband who is a school teacher and three kids still at school means we don’t think about going back to work until around mid- late January. I try (I really do) to get work done around the holiday household but it is sooo hard. So anyway happy New Year to you all. Have you made any resolutions? I have resolved to no longer make new year resolutions. Ha ha – that is my resolution – no more resolutions! Rather I am setting myself some creative intentions. This was reinforced after reading Kate’s blog post over at One Small Life. Wow! Life changing stuff there. Kate’s post clarified a lot of stuff for me and really got me thinking about the way I live my life. A big part of my life in recent years has been my creativity and finding ways to fit it into my daily routine. So this year I’ve set about creating my “Creative Intentions for 2016”.
These intentions are not set in concrete. It’s really just a bit of a framework for the creative pursuits that are available to me and that I would like to pursue. Hand lettering is the number one thing I want to focus on this year. I think I have relatively OK hand lettering and calligraphy skills, so I want to try to hone those skills further and get into a daily practice.
So first up I’ve started Random Olive’s challenge on Instagram called #brushletterpracticechallenge Each month Olivia (aka Olive) posts a list of word prompts. The idea is you brush letter that word and it gives you practice at your brush lettering skills. I am trying really hard to keep up with this one and it’s not too hard. Just one word, once a day. Once I start on my one word I often then spend a bit more time practising my brush lettering and calligraphy skills.
I’ve also just recently joined Dawn Nicole’s Art and Hand Lettering Class on Facebook. Her website has some fabulous resources and the group page seems to be very supportive with lots of opportunities for sharing.
Get Messy Art Journalling – I am continuing with this from last year. I was a bit up and down with my commitment to art journalling but I found my mojo again towards the end of last year and am loving it. I don’t put too much pressure on myself with this. Again you are given prompts to work through for the month and I just do what I can. The girls who created Get Messy have a brand spanking new website and new memberships are being taken now for the February start. When you join you ask to be part of the Facebook group as well which is full of super supportive people.
Still on art journalling there is some great info and inspiration over at Julie Fei Fan Balzer’s website Balzer Designs for art journalling and much more! Wow I find her so inspiring. She first came to my attention when I was googling projects to do with my Brother Scan N Cut. She has so many tutorials if you happen to be looking for that. But it’s her art journalling that really caught my eye and her use of rubber stamps and stencilling and doodling and lettering. I could spend hours exploring her website.
FMS Photo a Day – is something I’ve always had my eye on but have never taken part in. This is a huge community. It follows the same monthly prompt route but this time for photography. I am trying to get into the habit of taking more every day photos, rather than just photos of big occasions, like birthdays, etc. I’m also trying to improve my photography skills and use my DSLR camera more often. My aim is to get off the auto setting. Again I am not putting pressure on myself to take a photo every day but it’s there for those times when I’m in the mood.
Monthly calendar doodle a day – this is my own my page (but not my idea). I saw this somewhere online and thought it was such a clever idea, so I’ve created my own. Basically I’ve printed off a blank calendar page for the month and in each little blank daily square I create a mini piece of artwork. Mostly doodling and this first month has been a bit random so far. I’m just getting a feel for the idea. However I’d like to do a theme of sorts each month. For example next month I’m going to stick to a colour palette, perhaps the two pantone colours of the year (upcoming post about this soon). Maybe I’ll do a hand lettering theme, perhaps floral, or abstract, that kind of thing. If you’d like to do this yourself I’ve created a printable for this month and will create one for each month of the year. You can download January here.
Collage Club – I would like to do some more collage this year. When I do manage to find the time, it is a most creative outlet. There are no rules, it is full play. Some of the ladies in our group have gone on to huge things. Karen Lynch and Kate Cuthbert were both chosen to put a piece of their collage artwork in an upcoming book featuring the best 100 collage artists from around the world. So amazing!
Last year I took part in the Elle Luna‘s #100 day project at the Great Discontent. While I didn’t make it to 100 days, I did get a lot of out it. I chose 100 days of hand lettering and honestly I think my skills improved doing this daily challenge and I formed a creative habit. This is what I really want to get out of my creative intentions : to make creativity part of my daily life.
And for some other creative endeavours :
I have a number of planners that I am really enjoying decorating and organising.
I am starting a 2016 project life family album.
I intend to finish a lot of my other scrapbook albums.
I am going to use my Brother Scan N Cut for creative projects to share here on this blog.
I will endeavour to send more snail mail.
And as part of my snail mail I am going to explore Pocket Letters (something I came across on Pinterest recently and joined). It is just another way to send mail more creatively. I will do a post on this sometime in the future.
The great thing about most of these groups is that you become part of a team of like-minded people who will cheer you on, offer you advice and provide inspiration. If you feel unmotivated it doesn’t last long. But if you really don’t have the time or inclination, then that is OK too.
But what I love most about undertaking these creative projects is the effect it has on my children. When I pull the paintbrushes, pens and paper out, they do the same. They ask if they can join in. Creativity is becoming part of their daily experience and this is a really good thing. I am inspiring them to lead creative lives.
I will be posting updates of the various challenges right here and on social media. I would love you to join me in all or some of these challenges. Are you already in one of these groups? Is it changing your life? I look forward to hearing from you and about your creative journey.