Hi Everyone – i’m back from a month long hiatus! I feel like i am turning a corner and feel much more hopeful and energized! Thanks for all the good vibes xo
I was asked by the kind folks at Patience Brewster to create a post for National Craft Month. I have been a huge fan of Patience’s whimsical creations for many years so was delighted to create a post. Do check out her glorious characters and lovely stationary. They will blow your socks off!
Patience’s daughter Marietta asked me why crafting was important to me. Well that’s a big questions! I have pretty much crafted my entire life………i also call drawing crafting as that’s my earliest memory of being creative. When i was little i did plastic mosaics, paint by numbers, crochet as well as a bit of clay work. I loved it all. I found my bliss while drawing though.
As I grew older i spent many happy hours drawing and crafting when i had my children. Crafting has been a constant in my life bringing me joy and solace as well. When i suffered from depression (and still do from time to time) i would turn to arts and crafts to lift my spirits.
Although i love drawing and i find it to be a solitary pursuit – i enjoying getting together with friends to art journal and chat about what’s going on in our lives and about the latest supplies. (in the photo above are some of my art journaling friends).
I’ve met many online friends through my art and my first blog which i created over 11 years ago. It was a wonderful way to connect with kindred spirits virtually. I loved how creatives all gathered on my blog’s forum and how some of us made lasting connections, shared our art, our lives and participated in swaps.
As time went on i discovered art journaling – something i had been doing but did not have a name for it yet. I shared my journal pages online and found that people actually loved them. So i did some tutorials and even learned how to shoot videos. You can check some of my how to videos on my youtube channel. So being online and being connected with so many lovely creative spirits truly helped me grow as an artist. I took more risks and grew my skills because i felt people were counting on me. It was easier for me to do new things for others rather than just for myself. As a result of art journaling and sharing my pages with folks online my first book on Art Journaling called Journal Bliss was published. That was 6 years ago. Wow! Hard to believe.
I used art journaling to document the joys in my life but also the sorrows. Creating art around depression or something upsetting in life helped me move through grief and sorrow. As i shared these pages i do know they helped others as well.
I have said it before and will say it again Art really saved my life. I know it has saved the lives of so many others as well.
I love how art often has a message for me……….i simply sit down with a pencil and a piece of paper and begin to draw. Usually if i’m quiet enough the doodle tells me what it wants to be and also the story of the piece is revealed. So i usually get a message that i need to hear like the above Gypsy message “I predict you’ll be as happy as you decide to be”. Obviously a message my moody self needed to hear on that day!
The messages i receive often repeat themselves like “Do what you love” “Love what you do”, “be yourself” “love yourself” etc. What’s not to love about that?
I continue to stretch and grow as i’m inspired by all the wonderfulness that is available online – pinterest and instagram are chalk full of artsy goodness!
Lately i have been working in a moleskine book – something i had not done for quite a while as i don’t like to commit art to a book. I keep most of my journal pages in a box loosely. Recently i took up a challenge put out by Suzi Blu to create art and writing and keep a calendar in a moleskine book. I began actually liking it………..but sadly i have not been able to keep up with the prompts and am mostly using the book for my art journal pages and little sketches and writing.
It’s been fun though to have a book that’s gradually getting bigger by the day and poofy that documents my life. I couldn’t commit to the Documented life project but felt this was a bit more doable.
Wow – it’s been a while since I’ve blogged so i am going overboard here. I hope you are still with me. So now i want to circle back to the question Why crafting was important to me. Well it’s pretty much my life. I use it daily to adorn my Magic Cottage, to make art and to craft a life that’s beautiful, eccentric and that’s worth living. I use it to connect with my little grandchildren who i’m teaching arts and crafts to.
Little Toby feeling very proud with his Christmas Shadow box!
Sam colouring Easter eggs and decorating them.
Cillian glittering a painted Rock for his Dad for Father’s day.
Arts and Crafts have totally enriched my life. I hope they have yours too!
What are you doing to celebrate National Craft Month?
Love, Violette xo