Today, I want to show you a couple of examples of what we might call "Scratch Paper" Journaling.
I carry pens and paper around in a business-style notepad case. I replace the pad of ruled sheets with about 25 sheets of plain copy paper. I feel that the unruled sheets (no lines) help promote visual thinking. So I doodle ideas on cheap copy paper - usually - with a ballpoint pen. Here's the advantage: With scratch paper, there's no strings attached and there's no hidden agenda. You see, we are under too much pressure to share and tweet every little thing we make. It's a strategy to have a free, offline journaling session that serves a personal interest to sort things out without a larger audience.
Often, I start out with making a grocery list or a list of things to do. From there, I go off on a tangent, and anything is possible. The pages tend to look cluttered and sloppy. But I get some things clear in my mind. Plus, I accomplish another purpose: I jump-start the creative process. Once I have cleared my mind, in the spirit of notes on the back of an envelope, the intention is to throw the paper away. And I do throw some of it away. But for most of these scratch paper pages, I always seem to find something that might be worth considering later on. So I collect these scraps in a three-ring binder.
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Like kayaking, journaling helps me reinvigorate my creative life. The kayak and journal permit me the freedom to meander and wander as I please. As I do so, what comes back to me is a strong sense of playful curiosity and a renewed hunger to explore.
Creativity has a lot to do with our state of mind. And that playful sense of exploration ...that's what I'm trying to bring to my studio work.
How about you? Where do your ideas come from? How do you cultivate your creative life?
Please leave your thoughts in the comments section.
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