art journals, smashbooks, making art journals, this stuff is golden, art therapy,

Visiting My Old Self In Art Journals

I have many notebooks but nothing like my old SMASH book.

I was one of those who dived deep into the craze of ‘SMASH booking’ – a type of art journalling/ commonplacing in pretty notebooks called ‘SMASH books’.

smash-booking|smaʃ-bʊkeng| Verb
“Instead of buying a scrapbook album and page protectors, a SMASH book is a journal in which you can write, draw, paint and glue in embellishments and memorabilia as you’re on-the-move. No planning is involved – you simply decorate as you feel in the moment.” – Create and Craft

As I flick through the pages, I can see my old self.

I put my first SMASH book together when I was about 22 years old. I was hungry for a creative career, though I wasn’t sure what that was going to be (and I’m still not).

Sitting on my bedroom floor with all of my art and craft supplies surrounding me was how I used to spend most of my evenings (and many of my evenings now). I loved getting into the flow of it – focusing only on making another spread or recreating a design from something I had seen on Pinterest.

Each double-page spread is full of creative ideas and positive quotes. There are pages of words to live by, doodles, paintings, stories, collages, lists, designs, brainstorms and general good feelings.

What happened to that girl?

I might have been like many other confused twenty-somethings, not knowing what I wanted to do with my career, but I was really positive about it.

My art journalling has changed a lot since then. I am nowhere near as positive as I once was, not really trying to motivate or inspire me, just to express myself.

I allow myself to be sad, happy, angry, frustrated, excited – anything that I need to be.

It’s my at-home therapy

Going through the pages of this 5 year old SMASH Book is bitter-sweet. I feel at a loss of this past-version of me. I miss that girl.

But, I have come a long way since then. My art is better. I am smarter and wiser about the world. I am stronger. I have been through a lot and survived it all. I have made a beautiful human being and am caring for her the best I can.

Holy crap a video

Yep. Sorry for my non-existent YouTube skills, but I really wanted to show the contents of my old art journal without having to post a dozen photos, so here is a flip-through:

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