Artists who want to create but are in their own way. I had a major burnout moment in July 2017 when my job was ‘eliminated’ on the very same day that my best friend died. I was bedfast because the week before, I broke my knee in every way you can. I mean every part of my knee except the ACL. And the job loss ended my insurance in 4 days, so I could not seek medical care for my knee for 3 more months!!!
Burnout and Mixed Messages for Artists
I had so many things to cry about, I couldn’t breathe. I tell you this, not to play the victim…tho I was, but because this story has a happy ending. Or at least it led to a new beginning. So, it ended up being a good thing.
As I slowly healed my spirit and my soul, I landed back in my art room. My job was running a university for 10,000+ bloggers with the largest social media blogger network. It took all my energy for over 7 years. I hadn’t created anything much, except 80+ courses, in ALL that time!!
In those years…..SO MUCH CHANGED in the art world. Junk Journaling had become “a thing.” A BIGGGGGGG THING! Mixed Media had exploded! And sadly, I was no longer a part of any of this.
Let me back up a bit… I created this book, named “Mixed Messages” in 2008. Over 12 years ago. At that time, there was journaling, art journaling, book making, altered books, collage, altered art, and more… but the term ‘junk journal’ was not spoken of.
I did some research and found that the earliest mention of junk journaling was: June 27, 2010 Julie Fie Fan Balzer announced her new CPS DVD Collage Fast and Furious. “There’s no need to buy special equipment—use what you have on hand (junk mail, cardboard toilet paper tubes, plastic forks, etc.) and mix it up with your art supplies.” Not really ‘junk journaling’ but a mention os using junk mail as an art supply!!
Then on May 11, 2011 a blog post by Desiree Tillman Moffett said, “I have just started to work in a junk journal that is from a swap I did. The journal size is 8x 8, which I am liking, but it also has odd size pages in.”
This research took me down a rabbit hole, as usual… anything to keep me from DOing. Right?
Let me bring us back to today and My Mixed Messages book and getting back into my studio at last!! My MM book was my very first ‘junk journal!’ Although I didn’t call it that. It was an art journal to reflect how I was feeling at the time. I will do a flip through video of this little book this week.
Getting back in the studio was a hit or miss happening while I healed. My friend Karen, The Graphics Fairy, took pity on me and asked me if I could do weekly Mixed Media and Photoshop Digital Art tutorials for her. It was so much fun to get my hands dirty once again. I have been doing that for almost 4 years now. I was doing the Photoshop Tutorials before I was outsourced!
I was doing my own thing, but I was not really committed to it. I was actually searching for a way to survive. I tried to start a Learn with me and Grow with my Facebook challenge in 2019… but they both fizzled. That left me drained and feeling that maybe my art wasn’t that good. Bad place to be.
Fast Forward to late 2019, when I had a “put up or shut up” Dark Night of the Soul moment. I was stuck, spinning in ideas and drowning is incompetence. Inertia, the lack of doing anything, was winning.
I had done a series about “How to Make a Junk Journal” for the Graphics Fairy during the Spring and Summer. I LOVED EVERY MOMENT!!! The paper, the glue, the sewing, the cutting … I discovered what I had known so clearly in the early 2000s when I started my Cre8tiva Blog. I was a bohemian artist and a book maker, no, an actual book smith. I had studied with some of the best master book makers in the universe. Keith Smith, Dan Essig, Dea Saso, DJ Pettit, et al. I was making beautiful books back then like this little jewel!!!
Then the idea hit me start a Book of the Month Club where we would make 1 beautiful themed book each month. I would create the videos, design the printables, hold people’s hands and cheerlead them through the process. That is what I have done so many times as a teacher to thousands of students world wide. My daughter even came up with the hashtag BOMO for Book of the Month!! DUH!
Problem was, I had no students or fans or followers to join me. So #DID2020 was born. I would devote and entire year to building a massive amount of hopefully good tutorial videos so people would get to know me and my teaching style. Tell me how I am doing?
Today – right now – I am creating video 47! I am actually DOing this! With YOU and FOR YOU!!! I know there are others out there who are just like me and have the creative space, the tools and supplies, and a nagging desire to create! But they don’t for whatever reason. Help me find them. Help me reach them and inspire them. If you know someone who could benefit from the 20 minutes a day concept … the contagious creativity … please pass it on!
Remember, it’s just 20 minutes of nourishing your creative self every day! Borrowing from Julie Balzer, “No need to finish anything! No need to even like it.” Just find 20 minutes to nourish yourself and your creativity every day.
All the techniques in my Dreamers Into Doers videos are done in 20 minutes! It is not about the art … it is about YOU and Your journey. There are no rules here. It is ALL about YOU and finding your personal daily creative practice. Whatever that looks like.
Find your Contagious Creativity and pass it on.
DREAMERS INTO DOERS – DAILY CREATIVE PRACTICE DAY 47
May joy be with you all!
How can I serve YOU? How can I inspire YOUR creativity today? How can I help YOU? Learn about our Dreamer Into Doers 2020 Challenge. 20 minutes per day to develop and nurture a Personal Daily Creative Practice. There is Contagious Creativity awakening all around us. Come join the Contagious Creativity movement at https://www.facebook.com/Cre8Tiva/.