Friday, 28 October 2016


Apologies that I was AWOL last week - life got a bit complicated with one friend having surgery which she might not survive and another having a major stroke.

When I'm stressed, which of course I was, it tends to make my pain worse so all in all it wasn't a very good time ... and that's when I made this page.  As ever, it really REALLY helps to get things off my chest like this.

I was just painting pages in a random fashion, and one of them was this lovely lime green with a touch of brighter green.  It seemed like the right kind of colour for the mood I was in.
And then, having no particular plan, I just began to add bits of collage.  A besetting sin of mine is to reach for more of the same colour, and sometimes I have to remind myself that you are allowed to use more than one shade - as many as you like in fact.  But anyway, this page remained steadfastly green.
As you know, I often put a black line or a shadow around elements on my pages, and the following picture shows what a difference doing so can make.  I used a grey paint pen rather than black here and you can see how it can be used to unify the different elements into a whole.
A bit more collage and then it was out with the white paint pen, and I found myself doing these wavy stripey lines - not something I've done before, but I like the effect.
Then finally I wrote down what was going through my head - on this occasion a bit of a wallow in self-pity.  It happens sometimes but I try not to let it too often, because it only leads to even darker moods and places.  As ever, getting it onto paper also helps to get it OUT and that's the best way I know to let go of a black mood.
A little image to signify a small sick and tired me, plus some more white doodling and a touch of turquoise, and it was done.  The white "tentacles" creeping towards me strongly suggest the feeling of being overwhelmed don't they? I didn't plan it that way but my subconscious possibly did.

It is SO good to be journalling again (I may have mentioned that already) and as an unexpected bonus finding new friends as a result!

PS One friend came through the surgery and is now recovering really well.  The other has had a series of complications and is now dying ... so I'm making another page about that.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016



I got so absorbed in making this page that I completely forgot to take pictures until it was half done - but my excuse is that I was teaching someone else how to journal at the time and that's why my mind wasn't fully operational.  I can only do one thing at a time these days!

Anyway - you can probably guess that I began with an orange page to which I added (for no particular reason) a pink blob.  Then I was showing my friend how I use random collage pieces to make a kind of frame or border.  I cull these from free catalogues, and sometimes photocopies of my own pages.  The Modigliani lady is one of my favourites from a selection I use regularly.

I was also demonstrating how putting a black line around the collage elements can be used to bring them together as a joined up whole - I draw curves that link them and this simple technique works really well.  I also outlined the pink rose I found in my stash of collage stuff - this was not in Modigliani's original painting but I think it suits her?
The words just "came" as they often do - I was in hopeful mode and wanted to record that as I have so often recorded my less hopeful days.  I needed to get down on paper the feeling that, a year on from the move and the cancer, and retirement, and all the HUGE things which have happened ... I'm beginning to find my way in a new town and make new friends.
So that's what I wrote, and added a few doodles with a white Posca paint pen, not to mention turning the pink blob into another rose, also with Posca pens.

Its been an often terrifying journey, made all the harder because we had to do most of it in a new town where we knew almost no-one. It WAS the right decision but it didn't always feel like it.  Thank you for all the support along the way - all his tests are clear and we are able to look ahead again.