Oftentimes words are a marvelous aid to finding my visual images. When I am working to externalize in visual form what lies hidden within, words can assist me.  At beginning points, at stopping points, at questioning points, at stymied points, I stop and write, the words help me find my message. The process produces a variety of results: clarification, motivation, new perspectives, correction, challenges, hope, direction, excitement. Sometimes the writing consists only of word lists. Recently the following list developed in my journal/sketchbook:

opening, revealing, reaching, mysterious, ridges, cliffs, rocky, hard, harsh environment, energy, life was held protected by cliff walls, softness required protection, vulnerability held close, interior is complex, intricacy, reverence, worshipful, private, bound, prepared, restrained, valued, meditative, contemplative, private joy, personal peace, rare grace, more exposed in the world, emerging, carrier, enveloped…….

mixed media, 14X12 inches

“Always give your ideas time to take hold. Keep your dreams alive.” (I’m not sure of the source of this quote)

I journal regularly. Often I’m sorting through my ideas as I write so some of the work is done before I go to the studio to paint. My journals and my sketchbooks overlap. I write to myself about my ideas in my journal and sometimes that writing includes a sketch. My sketchbook contains sentences and paragraphs along with drawings, sketches and pasted scraps of papers which remind me of my thoughts. I recommend keeping journals, visual journals, and sketchbooks. They are a rich source to supply your visual works with expressions of your authentic self.

Deep Canyon                  The Cliff Gifts Series: DEEP CANYON
                             watermedia/collage, 15X28X2 inches
“To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.”
Mary Oliver

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