Friday, January 28, 2011

Thought Rhyme and Dreaming Awake

Thought Rhyme is a type of poetry, like the Psalms of the Old Testament where the first line and the second line are different but echo each other, its pattern is ababab...  I find that it is an important element of what I love to do on a page.  I mentioned in  a much earlier post how I like to find patterns in paired photographs.  A great deal of it is unconscious.  When I gather collage elements together, there is often something going on in the choices.  When I glue it all down at first it looks disjointed as though there is no common thread, but the more time I spend with it, the more the images start binding together.  It's like a dream where the elements seem to have nothing in common, but when you analyze it, it starts to fall into place to create what is going on inside that we tend to ignore during our conscious life. 

Sometimes I will get out my dream book and analyze my page as though it is a dream.  They do a similar job.  It really makes or breaks an art journal.  The photographic term 'depth of field' comes to mind.  What is in sharp focus, what is in soft focus in your page. 

Conversely, you may use a technique that just fills the background.  But is that really all it does?  What goes on in your mind when you do it?  Is it a quick and messy process that just moves you forward?  Or is it slow and meditative and you are a thousand miles away while you create it?  I find that very restful and rejuvenating.  A background of tiny lines may seem to be just filler, but when you look at that page again you will remember in some way, the density of thought that created it. 

I've been recently painting pages for backgrounds.  And sometimes it turns into a page on its own.  I am no painter, but the joy it brings me is just marvelous.  And that is why I have been able to grow and keep working in my journals for so many years, the joy is intoxicating and I am always ready to drink deeply of it again. 

Some of the other processes that fill me up are cutting magazine photos out.  Not just severing them from the page, but cutting a photo out to ready it for use.  Some I like to cut the image out in its own shape, like a flower, or a bird or a dancer.  If there is movement in the photo, such as a dancer, then cutting away the background will add that movement to my page. 

Whatever you are doing, whatever your style, you bring a depth to the page that no one else will ever fully realize.  Your pages are a gift to yourself.  Do not worry that your work isn't like some other artitst's, it is yours, and you really need to express yourself.  That is the difference between art and craft.  You might feel uncomfortable with your handwriting sloping up or down the page, or not being readable.  Maybe it shouldn't be readable by everyone.  Maybe you should develop a code in your script that isn't readable.  How mysterious that would be.