Friday, February 05, 2010

Looking back: January Experiments

Looking for inspiration for the Creative Every Day challenge, I turned to some of the experiments suggested by Tammy at Daisy Yellow. As suggested, I noted down the ones I wanted to work on, and kept a list for myself to check off in one of my sketchbooks. From the main list, I chose:

  •  Develop a mind map on any topic
  •  Play a card or board game with other real people  (on-line doesn't count)
  •  Read 1 book just for you, not for school/work
  •  Alter a recipe you frequently make
  •  Attend a brainstorming group or book club meeting
  • Do something creative at a library, book store, cafe or restaurant (i.e. knit, draw, write)
  • Write/Update/Make Progress on a 101 Things in 1001 Days List 
  • Create one art journal page, from background to journaling 
It actually looks like I did okay managing to cross off a number of items, but in reality, half of them are already regular habits that were fairly easy to continue - reading, going to book club, writing/knitting/drawing while waiting at the library or restaurant. I only had partial success at the ones that were really quite new to me.

It should have been easy to play a real card/board game with my kids, as they often ask to do so, but somehow this one slipped by undone. I also didn't get around to purposely altering a recipe, though I did inadvertently and absentmindedly dump some ketchup instead of chili sauce into the chili. I don't really think that counts and besides it tasted funny.  And although I did the background of an art journal page, it pretty much just stayed a background. On the other hand, there's nothing to stop me from continuing to work on it through February (or March, or....). Also, I enjoyed working on the mind map. I do these once in a while anyway, often when problem solving or preparing to write a paper, and in fact this time around I used it to help start compiling my list of 101 things.

I also found I learned something from the ones I set out to avoid, just by fact of avoiding them:
  • Write down a quote and share it with a friend
  • Make or update an inspiration board for your home/ studio
  • make and send  handmade card
  • Gesso a piece of art and start over again
The first three made me realize how reticent I am about sharing anything I do in terms of art and creativity. For instance, I kept trying to visualize myself sharing something inspirational with someone around me - my husband, my lab mate, even one of my girlfriends. Even in my imagination, it still felt like...oversharing. I'm not really sure what that means, but it's something I'll continue to think about for the next while. 

As for the gesso, I still don't really know what that stuff  is! I suppose that leads nicely into one of the February experiments, though: watch an art tutorial on YouTube. That should help.


organicsyes said...

Yes..what is it about board games?

Stephen Webber said...

Hey, love the site. We started an online magazine showcasing awesome images of handwritten journals and art journal images -- would you like to submit a couple of images for the site?

It's at

Sophie_vf said...

thanks for your interest, Stephen! I'll have a look at the site and see what might fit in well for submission.