The Journal as Art

I have boasted about my local librarians being so very obliging whenever I have an idea for a book I think they should buy. A book I want to read, but is too frugal to buy, that is. However, once they actually said no. I thought about it for a few days, and then I bought it. It´s Jennifer New´s "Drawing from Life: The Journal as Art". It´s an amazing book about creativity, focused on the visual.

Thirty-one journalkeepers have shared their pages, and I look in wonder at the talent, genious even, that some of them display on pages that are made for no one but themselves. Because, as New writes in her introduction:

Observations, by Jenny Keller, science illustrator.
Visual journals are created in a secret language of symbols. Intentional or not, they are private maps only their makers can follow. No one else can look at a page and understand the specific meaning of a punching bag or a set of arrows. And no one else can remember the moment of its making. Joni Mitchell blaring on the stereo. Sage wafting in a hidden garden. The discomforting echo of last night´s argument.

The journals are presented in four chapters: Observation, Reflection, Exploration, and Creation. Of course, most journal keepers use their pages for all these things, but some are more into one or two of these categories. Every time I leaf through these pages, I become inspired to do more with my own journals, to start drawing again. There is so much wonderful stuff going on here, I´d have liked to show you every page.

Reflection, by Anderson Kenny, architecht.
Reflection, by John Copeland, illustrator.
Exploration, by Sofie Binder, traveller.
Creation, by Mike Figgis, director.

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