If Your Art Journal Could Speak

Dear Art Journal Maker,

Each time you sit down at the table to open up my pages, I see you.

Pen or paint brush in hand, I’m the holder of your dreams, your secrets, your longings, fulfilled and not.

I want you to know something. I got you. Right here, in these pages. You can do no wrong. You can’t mess up. Everything is just right.

You’re accepted with love and belonging. Don’t worry about the way your art looks, worrying yourself with having to do something every single day, or bettering your work. That’s not for here.

This is a place to give you a safe space to express yourself, to play, and to explore.

Don’t worry about judgement

So tell me your biggest secrets.

Lay it all on me.  You will never be “too much”.  Don’t hold anything back.

If you haven’t dusted me off and tucked me under your arm for a while,

or if I haven’t made it into the backpack to come along to the beach, no problem.

It’s okay if my pages get messy or are ugly or disorganized.

If my pages fall out or aren’t in order. Why would that matter?

You belong here.

Of all places, especially here. 

Dance with your pencil across the page, lay the paint on thick and full of wild marks, make some mud, get stuck in the messy middle.

I can hold it all.

I’m strong enough, brave enough, and curious enough. Lay it all in these pages, unafraid, don’t hold back.

Let yourself be free here, in a way where nothing else lets you be this free.

Love, 

Your Art Journal

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Don’t you wish..

You felt less anxious about making art?

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Always there 

Waiting to give you every good thing

6 thoughts on “If Your Art Journal Could Speak

  1. Sabrina says:

    I needed this one! WOW! I can now fully consider my art journal as my safe place. Like a diary (which is nothing for me) safe, free to express yourself, no judgment, no wrongs, no commitment pressure, no fingers pointing at you. Totally free and independent and SAFE.

    • Shay Kent says:

      Sabrina, I couldn’t agree with you more. Safe is what we need to be free with our art. And isn’t it awesome that we can capture that feeling in art-making? I started thinking about my art and journal as being my friend. And what qualities would my friend have when they viewed me. That’s really what art has always felt like to me. A very safe and warm friend.

  2. Robin says:

    This is lovely and very needed. I keep trying to be ‘perfect’. This is a great reminder that I don’t have to be, especially since I don’t have to show anyone.

    • Shay Kent says:

      So true Robin. It’s just for you and is such a nurturing and fun place for us to have in our lives. I’m so glad you enjoyed and remembered there’s no need to be perfect. Especially in your journal.

  3. Gez Butler says:

    So well put Shay. What a lovely poetical way to express a visual journal from it’s own point of view. Very clever! Thank you!

    • Shay Kent says:

      You’re welcome! I think seeing our art practice (or journal) as our friend, thinking of it in the way we would as a person, can help us feel like it’s more approachable and warm. It was something I realized about myself. That art has always been a friend to me and I wanted to share that with others.

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