Visual journaling for me has been a progression, and a many-years-long adventure.
When I first started keeping a journal (back in middle school!) it was spiral notebooks filled with words.
In college and architecture school, I had sketchbooks and idea books, but these did not get to the essence of what I wanted to say, they were just a place to take notes, a place to record what other people were saying.
As I started on this visual journaling path, I added pictures and sketches to illustrate the words. I started to let my right brain/sub-conscious tell me secrets through the process of letting my mind wander, letting my creative brain take charge.
Words then became less common.
Images took over. I found that there was a pre-language place in my brain, and by collaging and painting without direction, I could more easily access the creative and non-verbal, it felt like I could access secrets and discovery of things my rational self didn't always have access to.
I still work this way, but sometimes, to shake things up, it's nice to go back to the beginning, and let the spiral of evolution bring the work to a new place. I can start with lots of words, then see what happens after that. It's good to shake it up, to not get in a rut, to try new ways of working.
I recently attended a workshop based on Spiritual ideas; not art. Some of the speakers were artists, and I listened closely to what they had to say. One in particular got my attention. She has lots of interesting talk and ideas. I ended up sitting with her at lunch, wanting to hear more about her process. When I got home, I looked up her website - there was nothing there.
I was not surprised.
It is so easy to talk about art, it's so hard to do it. Don't listen to others who declare themselves masters. Find your own work inside yourself, keep at it, work long and hard.
If you are serious, you will punch in and work a solid 8 hour day.
If you are serious, you will keep at it even when frustrated, or bored, or scared.
If you are serious, you will work through the anxiety and doubts.
You will learn to follow through with your ideas, and not just have them.
Doing this, you not only contribute to your own evolution, you contribute to the evolution of us all. How many of us really commit to the process of finding our truest voice?
of finding a totally unique and personal way to express ourselves?
Doing this is a huge gift to the world.
Make your work and your life a gift. Don't just follow others' shallow talk, find your own evolution.
I am going back to basics a bit - putting words on paper. Then working through with my ideas to completion, seeing where I am to go.
Stop reading about art on the internet.
Go make some.