Keeping an Art Journal – Making it a Regular Practice

We all struggle to find time, even for things we want to do.  The demands of work and the demands of family and friends can make it hard to find time for yourself.  But by taking a few simple steps you can change that.  The key is to set a realistic goal – many will tell you that it needs to be a daily practice but if committing to this fills you with dread set yourself a weekly target.

Some tips for finding the time…

  • Journal during your lunch hour – this gives you a great switch off if you have a stressful job
  • Keep a journal in your pocket/bag at all times – this really is a good idea as you never know when you might see something and what to draw or write a note and also means that you can capture things when you’re out and about rather than staring at a blank page and looking for inspiration at home. Also if you find yourself often sat in coffee shops waiting for friends it’s a great time filler.
  • Theme it – you can have more than one journal on the go at one time and if there is something particular you’re working on – home renovations, portraiture, etc you can switch between
  • Buddy Up – if any of your friends journal share ideas
  • Add a wash to blank pages – a blank page can be intimidating, adding something as simple as a colour wash can make it less daunting
  • Use journal prompts – these can challenge you to experiment and also act as a structure giving you an extra nudge. Why not create a 30 day list to get you started – you can download a suggested list here.

I’ve been trying to remember to carry around a sketchbook and a few days ago when my train into Birmingham was delayed instead of feeling my usual frustration I remembered I had a little sketchbook in my bag and spent a few minutes appreciating the architecture at the station.  My sketch isn’t a masterpiece but it definitely got the day off to a much better start.

Train Station doodle



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