Fearless Art Journaling: DLP Confession

In last week’s post about printing onto deli paper, I mentioned that my mojo for The Documented Life Project had dried up. I started out gang-busters through Week 6 and then found it harder and harder to complete a page in my journal. This year-long challenge had become … well a challenge.

JarOfHeartsThe concept of the project is to use a day planner (a lovely Moleskein) as the vehicle to document the year – art journal style. Even though I keep an electronic calendar, and even though this particular Moleskein was not designed for wet media – or any media for that matter –  I started with the same journal everyone else in the project was using. The Admins of the DLP – all of whom create wonderful art – were making beautiful pages – clear, saturated colors and wonderful texture. Their pages were lovely and wrinkle free. My pages, however, we’re bulky and bleeding through to other pages, wrinkled and ummm .. well ugly. And worse, they didn’t feel like “me.”  It got to the point where I just stared at the journal, trying to figure out how to work on a page without making a complete mess. And with few exceptions, I hated the way completed pages turned out. I knew others in the project were facing some of the same challenges and that the Admins had all sorts of advice for us. But it. Exams clear that, for me, the journal itself had become a roadblock. I was frustrated and didn’t know how to fix the problem so I avoided thinking about how far behind I had become.

Fast-forward to the middle of June and my “art-cation” play date with my friend Amber. During our conversation about the DLP she, rather matter-of-factly, suggested I change journals! DUH. It was so simple – one of those “can’t see the forest for the trees” moments, ya know?

And that’s my confession. I went rogue. I decided I was doing The Documented Life Project for me, not for anyone else and I gave myself permission to do the project in a way that worked for me. And you know what? Once that decision had been made, I felt as if  a burden had been lifted. I flew through the 20 challenges I needed to do in order to catch up – in no time at all. Once the constraint of the journal had been removed, I saw I had lots of options for how I completed the remaining challenges. There’s a life lesson in here somewhere, isn’t there?

I’ve recorded a short (under 15 minutes) video to show you what I did, if you’re interested and below that is a gallery of each of the completed challenges in my new journal. Thanks for looking!  And, thank you Amber, for helping me remember to be fearless!

The pages of my new journal


13 thoughts on “Fearless Art Journaling: DLP Confession

  1. Pingback: Artsy Blog Hop - Part 1 - Vicki Robinson

  2. I too, was stuck. I did not like the idea of the Moleskine at all, so I constructed my own journal from an old encyclopaedia and watercolour paper. Much better. I use it as a journal not a planner and am really happy with it.
    Good to see you in the Sketchbookery class!

    • Hey Trish! I should have known right from the start that the planner was going to be a problem for me. Love your idea of making your own journal. I’ve only just started to get into some basic journal making and want to play with that more! Thank you so much for stopping by my blog! I’ll look for you in Sketchbookery – my blind contour drawings are hysterical!!

  3. Thank you for sharing about going “rogue” with your planner glad to know I am not alone :). I used a comp notebook for DLP and decided to keep important events/quotes and art swap dates.

    • That’s so much for stopping by my blog. It’s nice for me to know that I’m not the only one doing my own thing, Susan!

  4. Love your new journal Vicki! I did exactly the same thing…..I hated how my llanner was turning out, so I changed journals and the layout and am loving it now. I too use a electronic planner for appts and work, I didn’t want every entry in my “art” planner to be about boring routine things. I, like you have learnt that I do this for myself, no one else (a hard lesson to learn). 🙂

    • Thank you, Sandra! I’m glad you also found a way to manage the project! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  5. Awe I loved your confessional video, you even mentioned me and I’m so glad you switched journals and stayed fearless. Hugs!!!

  6. Thank you for sharing. I am stuck with my journal also. I use a huge planner and the moleskin is a disaster. Love love love your idea to just have a separate journal. Thank you!!!!

    • That decision was the best for me, Shawna — I think I would have given up otherwise. Hope you find a journal you like!

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