Sunday, January 3, 2016

Faithbooking Experiments

As I mentioned yesterday (wow, haven't said that in a blog post in a long time, since I've only posted once every 3 months or so lately, LOL), I've done quite a lot of experimenting in the last few months.  I thought I'd show you some of them.  I always find it helpful to see what others are doing as a springboard for my own thoughts.  Even if it's a style I would never do myself, the smallest thing can trigger a whole host of my own ideas.

My first examples are pretty much basic digital scrapping.

This first one was in response to a request from my husband - these verses were in a devotion that he read, and he remarked on the revelation they were to him about events in his past.  I took a photo I had taken when we explored a tunnel a couple of weeks earlier and used it as a foil for the verses.  It seemed perfect in context, and the reminder of the experience coupled with the message will help him keep the revelation fresh in his mind and heart.  (I created this in 8x10 and put it in a frame which he keeps on the dresser).

 These two were inspired by favorite hymns:

 Then came the scribbling on note cards with sharpies, LOL.  We were away from home and I didn't have access to my design computer or my "stuff."  So I spent some time on pinterest looking at Bible Journaling and feeling intimidated!

That led to creating "margin art"  I scanned the doodly stuff and created line art.  I filled this one in with Photoshop, then added styles to give it texture.  This could be printed for a bookmark or to glue into a real book margin.  Or added to a planner page margin or notes section. If you are feeling adventurous, you could even trace them onto your Bible margin and then color to taste.

One of my original reasons for wanting to do some sort of artistic faith expression was that I find so many nuggets of wisdom in my daily devotions, and I felt as though they were slipping away from me; I would remember for a day or two but then I'd forget, or couldn't remember where I'd read them.  I wanted to be able to make an easily accessed reminder so I continue to grow.  I finally found a notebook/journal that felt wonderful in my hand, and looks presentable enough to leave on the end table where I read.

So now when I read something I try to condense the meat of it into a simple concept or visual reminder.  They are certainly not great art, in fact they are even kind of lousy doodles LOL.  However, they provide a quick refresher at a glance, and I have some notes on the page as well.  

That eye is kind of creepy, LOL.  But it doesn't matter, because it does the job of reminding me, and quite honestly, the more senses I can involve, the more impact it makes on my memory :)

So there you have a peek at the spectrum of my experimentation.  I hope it gives you some ideas, even if it's just to quietly say to yourself, "I'm never doing THAT!"

I also packaged up the two doodly margin art pieces for you to play with:

You can download them HERE.

I'll try to keep my projects posted here, and I hope you will share yours with me as well!

Saturday, January 2, 2016

New Year, New Projects. See What I Did There?

The last year has been one of those years where you look back and think, "Whew, that was tough, glad it's over!"  I am certainly ready to move on, and I have glad hopes for a blessed new year :)

There's something about a new year or a fresh beginning that makes you ruminate just a bit about what you've done and where you're going.  I'm not one for resolutions; I find that the very word "resolve" makes my toes curl and good behavior flee for safer pastures.  Safer pastures?  Oy, way to mix metaphors.  But you get the point.  I'm also not that much of a goal setting type person, preferring to have vague ideas of stuff and then sneak up on it without scaring it away (or making my toes curl, LOL).  Really committed.  That being said, I'm not against an occasional assessment of what is making me happy and what I wish I wasn't doing.  If there's something I can do to bring the two things closer together, then that's what I work on.

Back in... hmm.  June?  July? of last year, I found myself wanting to use my scrapbooking skills to say or do something about my faith.  I made some vague gestures in that direction, but could never really decide on a path to follow in a dedicated and purposeful manner.  Then I found out that a couple of other designer friends very much wanted to do the same thing, and we decided to put something together for the new year to provide support and offer an opportunity to others in the scrapping community to participate.  Once I was committed, the angst set in.  Because somehow there was no magic revelation of how to pursue that end - in fact, it got much worse, because Wendy and Jen showed me example after example of real Bible Journaling, and it was so fascinating and beautiful and... well, intimidating.  I spent the next 6 months 1) looking at what other people were doing, 2) Deciding I could never do that, and 3) trying out different approaches for myself.

And you know what?  I'm still confused.  I like traditional (digital) scrapping - I like pretty clusters and rich colors and a touch of shabby, and I'm not comfortable if things go too far outside the lines.  I'm also pretty much a digital girl - that undo button is precious to me, and I don't really want to give it up.  I'm not much of an art journaler, and the thought of drawing and coloring in my Bible frankly horrifies me (much as I admire the way others do it).

So I figure I will do the things I like.

It only took 6 months to decide that.  It's a good thing I'm not running a country or anything.

Anyway, the Faithbooking workshop is set to begin Monday, January 4, with our theme being Galations 5:22-23 -  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control."

If this is something that interests you, you can sign up HERE.  I mean, for sure you won't be intimidated by my sure and steady resolve and single-minded pursuit of the only way to do things, LOL!  We will be using the Slack app to communicate and share; it's more private and does some really neat things (and is available for Windows or Mac, as well as iOS and Android).

The other thing I've gotten rather enthused about in the last few months signals an about-face for me.  I know that there has been something of a planner craze underway (even *I* was aware of it, so that means it must be sweeping the world in a fiery torrent, because I am not a particularly trendy person).  I thought that was kind of a boring idea, to be honest.  I excuse myself for that thought by claiming ignorance ;)  Ignorant that I could make pretty fun pages in photoshop and combine my love of creating with some basic organization.  I've made some templates, and I've practiced decorating pages - I even purchased a cutting machine so I can make stamps and that sort of fun stuff.  But I think the real revelation in all of this designing printing and cutting is that I am ready to move away from only scrapping 12 x 12 pages that I upload at the end of the year and have a book printed.  I love a smaller format - 6x8 or half-letter.  I like the immediacy of printing it out and handling it and having it.  I wasn't a big fan of pocket scrapping because I thought it was too utilitarian-looking and a bit... well, dull.  But now I can see the appeal of a modified version.  And I love the idea of combining the various disparate pieces of my days into a book of my life - part journal, calendar, and album.  I hope to be able to share some examples as I explore the possibilities, and I'm thinking about creating some templates and designs for the smaller format pages, too.

Enough philosophizing for one day.  I created a little example of a journal page that fits into both categories - one side is a doodly faith journal page for jotting down your thoughts and coloring or doodling as you think and meditate.  The other side is grid paper which is an excellent place to make lists, draw, doodle - whatever floats your boat!

You can download it HERE