The Awe of Strangers and Inspiration


Spent Saturday morning out journaling in public with Becca. 

One of the most magical things about creating where others can see is when someone who has never seen an art journal before stops and asks to page through your journal.

A girl was walking by our table and stopped when she saw our spread-out mess of art supplies and drying journal pages. Amazed by our art, she asked if she could look through my journal. 

I’ve journaled in public long enough to be comfortable with strangers looking through my pages. This doesn’t come from a place of ego, or wanting to impress others. Instead, I want people to look through my journals because I want to inspire them with something they may have never seen before. There’s magic in that moment, a burst of possibility as they turn the pages and run their fingers over the texture and color they find. I love the smiles, the awe, the surprise that something like this exists. 

When I started playing in my journals, I was scared to share my work in public. Seeing disappointment or a lack of acceptance of my work in person would crush me, so I posted online and stayed in my art space, creating for myself. And since then, I pushed myself to work outside my comfort zone, outside the safety of my home.

I can’t tell you how many people have stopped to see what we’re doing when they spy our table full of art supplies. We live in a society where art is for Artists, and many believe they can’t do any, that they lack what is needed to express themselves visually. To see people creating for fun and out in public intrigues people long enough for them to believe, if only for a minute or two, that they might be able to do something artistic. 

It’s this environment -- creating with a friend at my side, constantly inspiring me, giggling, playing; being where people can see our art, how it’s made, and perhaps spark something in them -- that is brilliant and nourishing, and refills my well for the coming week, excited all over again to be journaling. 

So bring your favorite supplies, spread out, make a mess (just be sure to clean up after yourself!) and journal your heart out.