We had so much fun at Camp Spark yesterday! There were plot twists, french pastries, watercolors, and giveaways!
I hinted beforehand that we’d be working out of our comfort zone and I meant it! After years of holding art journaling camps I’d seen many people-myself included-spend too much time on trying to perfect a page that they lose sight of their imagination and ability to release and let go. So after doing our mandatory brain dumping session, I revealed our first prompt: Filling a page with rectangle shapes of any kind of paper, style and size–but you’re not filling your book–you’re filling everyone else’s! It’s like muscial journals: you paste one rectangle in a book and pass it on to the person next to you. I had asked that everyone bring a fresh journal to the retreat. This first exercise allowed them to meet their neighbors and automatically start with a journal that may not be the way they intended it, but there will always be the memory of how that page was made!
The next set of prompts I threw out all at once and gave one hour to complete all three tasks. Again, if it was just one prompt, we would end up spending too much time on trying to make it into a grand piece without actually enjoying the process. Multitasking in art journaling does indeed stretch your brain, but I have found that flipping back and forth between pages feels like a good mind workout! Our prompts were: Black Background (do a two-page spread with black cardstock cut to fit the background. The colors you paste on top really pop when the background is black); Horizon (aka Analog Collage: create a collage scene where land meets sky then paste down people and things); and Blob and Trace (use watercolor or watercolor/gel crayons to create blobs, then trace around them in a darker pen and give them faces-people, animals, made up creatures, and give them dialogue and a world of their own).
I think all these prompts, especially Blob and Trace gave us the opportunity to use the part of the imagination that we don’t seldom use as adults. Remember as a kid when you would create a new world by drawing or playing make believe with friends? I don’t think we do that enough as adults, but I think tapping into childlike imagination gives us a renewed sense of wondrous creation.
After a brief break featuring a mini french bistro (lemonade, no coffee–it’s too hot!) we resumed our last two hours with an Open Studio but first: Dice Destiny! I had everyone help me come up with six art journaling ideas that I numbered on the whiteboard. Each person had to roll the dice and do the corresponding prompt for that number.
The best part for me was just being around other people and seeing their creations come to life. Oh the life of an ENFJ! I also enjoyed just setting up the tables and supplies, I wish I could just keep them there forever! Perhaps one day I will have my own space where I can host big workshops, we shall see!
Here are a couple things projects made during Camp Spark: