Saturday, November 3, 2012

Journaling's Different Approaches ~ Arrival

This whole story is a sample of what "serendipity" or "chance", when grabbed, can create. A long while ago I took a writing class that offered different "prompts" to incite creativity. I selected this crazy image ~ I loved the joy, wildness and expression of this woman! The idea of tandem-teaching with her came to my brain ~ and I followed up online.

Long story short, Elinor Peace Bailey and I created a three day workshop, "Expand Your Art Journaling", and from my personal journal, you'll see how I expressed the experience in my pages.

I launch off to Vancouver, Washington where Elinor lives and where we are holding the workshop ... about a five hour drive from where I live. I pass thru rain and break into sunshine as I'm crossing the bridge to Washington. Upon arrival I find that I've arrived when Elinor and her sister, Muff, are out shopping. So, what else would a visual art journaler do? Yep, pulled across the street and wiggled into a comfy position in the driver's seat and start sketching the joyful yellow home. I'm near done when the colorful twosome drives up with all the food for the ensuing weekend. I help unload and get nested in.

Now when I'd spoken to Muff earlier, she'd told me I'd be staying in the "Chicken" room. I really did ponder what the heck that could really mean ... silly me!!! I didn't know Elinor Peace Bailey yet. It really was the Chicken Room!! I mean every wall, every counter or shelf space contained a chicken (painted or otherwise). There was even a big, rooster-like fella hovering from the top book shelf lookin' down upon my bed. But, never fear, he was friendly. I checked :) And after a fun dinner out and lots of chattering, I slept well admidst all the chickens.

Next day, we had planned the "Meet & Greet". Our workshop was set up in the breezy, spacious garage area with a fascinating audience to watch us ... yes, all of Elinor's amazing dolls (did I tell you she's a widely known and talented doll designer?) With Elinor's usual playful spirit, she'd gotten us all name tags with ridiculously riotous lil' creatures. I had to save mine, he made me smile and his energy was contagious ... so here he is in my journal.

Late afternoon, the diverse participants began arriving, wandering into the well lite garage space. Elinor started off the workshop, welcoming all to her home and then, gave a brief introduction into what our time together would involve and a overview of what her part would be. Then, she handed it off to me and I smiled greetings to all eleven new faces. Some were from Elinor's connections, doll makers and quilters (can you believe from Montana and back East?), and some were watercolor talents (a couple all the way from Southern California). We shared introductions and then dove into poking thru all the journals Elinor and I had pulled out to share with the group. It was frivolous fun pondering the pages and asking how each different one had evolved and what it meant to the artist.

As the sun set, we all headed off to our nests for slumber ... with visions of journaling mysteries and juicy solutions dancin' in our heads ...

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