I’ve wanted to be an art journaler for a long time, but every time I started I’d stop. I think it was because subconsciously I never really felt good enough. I loved other people’s art journals – in books, with loads of paint, or collages. But I’ve never really been able to do that (I can’t bring myself to write in books) and I wanted my journal to look cool too, so I sort of just got hung up.
A few days ago, I discovered The Art Journaler and their April prompt which somehow made it okay. Then, yesterday, I was hunting down a letter to tape to my journal-journal with another letter and I stumbled across some of my old notebooks from 2009 on. As I flipped through them, with the rambled notes and illustrations in the corner I realized, I’d been art journaling before I even realized I was an artist. And it wasn’t perfect, and it wasn’t collage-y or dedicated (I had business ideas, math, sermon notes, and random marriage notes in with my thoughts) it was mine – and my art has improved a lot since then.
Which somehow made me realize something. It’s just a journal, and I don’t have to compare it and it doesn’t have to be like anyone else’s and it doesn’t have to be worthy, because it already is, because it’s mine. So lately, I’ve been toting around my pentalic recycled drawing book that I got on vacation last summer, and my sign pen markers I got for christmas; and drawing, coloring, and writing whatever prompts me, whatever thoughts I have in my head, and whatever I feel like I need to get down before I lose it.
If it’s particularly lengthy though, I have my shiny “live free” notebook my sister-in-law gave me for christmas that I’ve turned into my journal-journal. Pretty notebooks make good journals.