Samantha Kira Harding is an artist by accident, a writer by schooling, and an explorer by birth.
I'm interested in exploring the link between artistic expression and spiritual insight, using my journal as a place of experimentation and discovery.
I'm an artist and writer enjoying the warm sun of the Phoenix valley in Arizona. She holds a B.A. in Television production & writing from Columbia College Chicago, and works as a freelance video editor in-between paintings and tea.
I teach classes on journaling, the artful experiences of daily life, & video production both in-person and online.
I have no artistic training – no fancy art degree or art classes or even workshops. All I’ve learned has been through books, magazines, YouTube, & my own experimentation with new mediums and products. My journey to artistic expression starts during my junior year of college. For that, you need a bit of back story.
In 1999, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia Syndrome and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome while still in my teens, the result of a horribly embarrassing accident involving heels and a Medieval Times and being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Ever since then, life has been a constant lesson in slowing down, finding my limits, and living an altered, calm life.
In 2004, I had a health scare that required surgery and a biopsy. It was then that I began journaling and searching for books and blogs on the topic. I stumbled upon the works of Danny Gregory, Keri Smith, and Dan Price. As one who’d gone down the writing path for so long, I was afraid but intrigued by the idea of an illustrated or visual journal, and began to draw one thing every day. This practice, one I kept to for 2 years, slowly taught me to draw. The city of Chicago, my journal, and a pen became my classroom, and dedicated study took me from a girl who could only draw stick figures to one who could maybe, possibly, illustrate her life.
I soon began experimenting with paint and collage in my journals, and made the transition from causal journaler to journal artist. I decided to chronicle my journey in 2007, working to create the blog I’d been searching for when I started down this path. That mission has influenced my blogging ever since, and whenever I wonder what/if I should post, I remember that simple mission.
2007 was my coming-out party if there ever was one. Wishing for a magazine devoted to art journaling, I began publishing Page by Page, a short-run ‘zine designed, edited, and printed by me. It gave me my first taste of page design and printing, a hobby that I am still exploring through dynamic PDFs for classes and a collage book featuring bits from my journal pages.
2007 was also the year I closed my eyes and hit send on an email to Altered Couture featuring my journaled bags. To my amazement, they asked for three more and my first article was published!
2008 saw a larger transition into a more professional life as an artist. I published 2 more issues of Page by Page and began painting.
In 2009, I once again went on faith and sent my journals to the new magazine Art Journaling, and in the beginning of 2010, was honored and amazed to be the Featured Artist in Art Journaling, with an 8 page spread of kind words and journal pages.
Since then, I have launched several successful online classes, including True to You, a workshop focusing on the every day as fuel for your journaling adventures.
2011 is already turning out to be an amazing year, with articles coming out in Somerset Studio, Artful Blogging, Art Journaling, and several more bits in the works. I have been featured and interviewed on several blogs.
I continue to create and evolve, now expanding my creativity to include not only video production consulting for artists & creatives looking to improve their video skills and create content for online classes, but video editing for those wanting a professional touch.
Cloth, Paper, Scissors - May/June 2011
Art Journaling - Summer 2011
Somerset Studio - March/April 2011
Artful Blogging – Winter 2011
Somerset Studio – Sept/Oct 2010
Art Journaling – Winter 2010
Crescendoh – Art Saves
Altered Couture – Autumn 2008
Page by Page #3 – Autumn 2008
Belle Armoire – Sept/Oct 2008
Page by Page #2 – Summer 2008
Page by Page #1 – Fall 2007