... exploring in my creativity further in 2017

11 May 2010

Pondering April's FAKE Journal Experience

The final request Roz had for us FAKE journal writers during IFJM was to write up our thoughts about the experience. I'm a bit late doing this because of bad news, unexpected and then planned travelling but I did want to reflect on April's efforts.

I have never kept this type of journal before. I discovered IFJM on April Fool's Day (appropriate?!) and spontaneously decided to "just do it"! I am very glad I did! I am amazed at the results. The story really wrote itself. I did a bit of research as ideas popped into my head but I really did not over-think the journal, preferring to keep as a simple memory of my writer's voyage. I devoted time to it but not too much. Some days took longer than others but really it was fairly straightforward and enjoyable. An excellent creative experience!

Will I start a real journal? Yes, I will try. In fact I am starting 3. The first I also started last month and it is devoted to my garden. I will write in it when I am in the garden or seriously thinking about it but likely only then. It has some art in it already. I liked that and will continue to do it. The second I started earlier but haven't done much in it except paint some backgrounds with leftover paint. I want to try some of the art journaling techniques I have seen some of you use - with collage, words, images, altered book images etc. I am thinking of it as more "art" and less as journaling. Maybe as "art therapy" too - I wrote some words on two darkly painted pages after learning two week ago about the death of a girlfriend in San Diego and then again of my sister's death in Saskatoon last week. I may need more of that "therapy". The last, and perhaps my main new journal, I just bought and it will be more like my FAKE journal.

I have kept "morning pages" on and off for a while but they are very different. This new journal will not replace them and I will likely continue them too in my current haphazard fashion.

What will be different?
  • My FAKE journal was 4x6. It was a bit too small. But the "art" journal and the garden journal are bigger than I'd want for everyday.
  • It was a cheap blank journal with a pretty cover from the dollar store. I'd like something with better quality paper. 
  • The paints I used were quite chalky to write over - but they were convenient.
  • Quickly writing in my office at home, with the watercolours to brighten up the pages worked for me. I think my "painting" improved and the visuals helped the writing to come alive.

What will stay the same?

  • I liked the focus on everyday activities. My life may not have most of the unusual sightings that my writer just experienced but I suspect I may be more observant of the little things in my day-to-day life as a result of keeping such a journal.
  • I liked combining drawing, painting and writing. I may add more media as I go forward.
  • I will try to write most days but won't be quite as stringent as with the FAKE one. Knowing you only need to write 30 entries is easier than writing for a prolonged and indefinite time period. Having said that, I may give myself a challenge to journal every day for 3 weeks or something like that - to get the habit formed. Travelling has disrupted the habit and it needs to get restarted.
  • If art is like golf, you only need fancy tools when your skill improves. Buying them too early is a waste, so I am going to stick to my cheap materials until I get better at this and learn what really to use. Well, that's the thought but I have fairly good golf clubs and I still can't break 100!

I went out today and bought a medium size spiral bound sketch book from the art store. It is 5.5 " x 8" with a hard black cover. You know the kind. I also bought a mini paint set. These seem manageable to work with at my desk and to take with me when/if I travel. I suspect I will do something to the cover (like paint it with acrylics) eventually but not immediately.

Will I participate again? I think so. I already have other ideas that are currently percolating through my mind. I was fascinated by some of the other IFJM journalers' ideas - Melinda's Executive Protection Specialist's journal  was suspenseful and spellbinding at times; - Neonfog's Tour of Corsica was just like being there; - Evie's coverage of Saints and their Feasts was wonderful and so um enlightening! and The Journal of Marco Polo's Fourth Wife lovely and philosophical (though the link seems to no longer be working). These are only just a few of amazingly creative participants efforts.

My only suggestion is that I missed the weekly check-ins with Mr. Linky that Leah uses in CED2010 and Sophia in Sunday Sketches. It is so easy to follow other participants efforts that way.  I like the camaraderie that check-ins give. Roz posted everyone on a sidebar though, so I tried to visit everyone from time to time.

Thank you Roz for the idea and the great IFJM experience!

I hope some of you fellow CED2010 participants will join me in this next year!

** (Argh! Blogger did crazy things after writing this but before posting it, added an incredible amount of html garbage and in cleaning it up I lost some of what I wrote and I''m unsure what! ARGH! Hope it still makes sense!))


  1. Hi Eva,
    I am so sorry to hear about the losses you've experienced as late. I hope your creative expression helps...I know it does for me.
    I've kept different journals over the years and am planing on re-starting the Morning Pages this month. I think they really helped.
    Good luck and wishes for healing.

  2. Thanks so much Andrea!

    I've had the morning pages book out several times this week but always seem to be interrupted before writing.

  3. Firstly, I'm very sorry to hear about the bad news. You have my condolences. And hope that it didn't affect you too much.

    Secondly, you're so inspiring to keep 3 journals. I haven't got one! I've been talking about keep one for ages! (sigh)

    Last by not least, your art is growing and I enjoy your doodles very much. The line work is so fluid and expressive. Keep at it! You're strong in that area.

    It's a real treat to have you as fellow creative / blogger in blogland.

    Cheers, xo

  4. Thanks so much J.

    I'm trying to keep them! The gardening one and art one are and will be intermittent as I focus on those areas. Seems doable.

    The one inspired by the IFJM ideally will be daily and I only started it Monday. But so far so good! Debating whether to post it or not though.

    And a treat for me, to have you in Blogland too!



Looking forward to hearing from you!