Monday, 31 July 2017

Can't see the wood for the trees?

When you can't see the wood for the trees, climb up to the light.

This page came about when the turquoise lines on the right called out for leaves. Once they were there, I needed another tree. Where the leaves met overhead, it had me thinking about rainforests and the different levels of growth. A few low plants appeared, making up the undergrowth, and I could only think about wanting to see the light if I was down on the forest floor. How do you do that? Climb up a tree. And that's what inspired the journalling.

I find it is good advice whenever things are dark or shadowy - look for the light, whatever it might take.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

The heart is fragile

Reflections on the heart #6 - the heart is fragile.

The heart is a fragile thing, easily broken. It doesn't take much of a weapon - just a breath, really. A breath used to hurl a word.

Words can wound the heart deeply, even break it.

Those who have been wounded before tend to shield their hearts, building walls and keeping others out, missing out on relationship and community.

All because of words. Words we wish we could un-hear. Words we may say and wish we could call back.

So watch what you say and don't wield your words like a weapon - they are extremely powerful.

Tuesday, 25 July 2017


Ripples in the water mean you don't always see things clearly.

What we see reflected back to us about ourselves is distorted. Others cannot see us as we really are because they don't fully know us. Even our own minds, our negative thoughts, can lie to  us. So ask yourself how disturbed the water is when people reflect you back to yourself.

Saturday, 22 July 2017


This page started up in the right hand corner with a piece of National Geographic paper that had been treated with Citra-solv (part of a swap package I received a couple of years ago). I loved the icy look of it and followed through with the blues and greys, just having fun making marks, adding gelli-printed greaseproof paper.

I kept thinking about icebergs and how so much of them is hidden below the surface of the water. It is much the same with life. What we can see is only a little of what is actually going on.

If I see a parent losing it when a child throws a tantrum, I haven't seen that they've been up all night with a sick baby.

When I see someone drunk at 9 in the morning, I don't know that they've lost someone they love and don't know any other way to dull the pain.

Even when I talk with someone, I only see a small amount of what is happening in their life. I see and hear what they choose to share.

There are hidden depths in lives, including our own, so let's not judge. Let's think about he hidden possibilities and show compassion.

Thursday, 20 July 2017


50 reflections on the heart number 5 - Half-hearted.

It can be easy for us not to be whole-hearted about things, not to invest our whole selves. Sometimes it is because we have been hurt and shy away from committing fully. Sometimes we fear failure and so pull ourselves back from giving our all.

But if you don't go in whole-heartedly, how can you ever know what you're capable of?

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

My head is full!

Do you ever have that feeling where your head is full? This page was pretty much depicting how things were in my head - so many places I could focus that there was way too much input! I could have blanked out some of the pattern and continued with the page, but it showed my state of mind. Besides, it's an art journal, and I can just turn the page and start again.

Sunday, 16 July 2017


As with most of my journal pages, I didn't have any idea where this was going. I just had fun with drips and colour, giving in to any whims that popped into my head about what to do next.

It sat for a little while before the plants arrived. The page felt like it needed something growing on it. Once the little plants were there, they looked a bit unstable, so I added tendrils like you find on climbers. There was no end result I was looking for, just the whim to draw them in.

Then I stood back. What was this page saying to me?

Things are a little up in the air for me at the moment as I look for a new direction. Home-schooling is done and I'm putting out feelers to see what might be next. Half a year has gone by and I'm still waiting. I'm just like those little plants - a few leaves have grown, but I'm a bit wobbly. I've been in similar places before and trust that I'll get through again, because the framework I'm holding on to is faith and trust that He sees and knows and has it all in hand.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Not all hearts and flowers

Reflections on the heart #4 - Love is not all hearts and flowers.

Romantic love is all very well, but it doesn't last on its own. It doesn't carry you through hard times. It may be how love starts, but it's not how it endures. Love that endures is not based on feelings but on deliberate and wilful choice to act in a loving way towards someone.

Love is not all hearts and flowers. It is also pain, mundane, and hard work.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Ties that bind

It's not always easy to live on the other side of the world from your family. Obviously, I have my husband and daughter here with me and that makes it home. But extended family and the majority of our friends are many time zones away. When people we love are going through hard things, waiting for test results, losing family members, it's really hard to be so far away. We can't turn up on the doorstep with a meal, a hug, an offer of help. We do what we can - we pray, we reach out by phone, text, email, send a card - to let them know that they are in our thoughts.

Just feeling a long way away today.

Sunday, 9 July 2017

High-rise worries

It's been a little while since I pulled out my Brinno time-lapse camera. It's fun to watch your own process sometimes. One of the things I find challenging about doing these vids is that all the time-lapse work is done in-camera, so I have to do the page in one hit. This means that I can't wait for things to dry, wander off and take the washing out of the machine, or anything like that. I don't usually have a plan for a page unless there's something specific I want to get down, so I have to make decisions more quickly when I make a video. I don't have time to ponder or weigh things up over a couple of days as I would usually do. 

That said, a challenge is always an opportunity for growth. I learn things - like not trying to write over wet paint, not to put my hand down on a piece I have just applied wet media to, and to remember that colours will mix more when they're wet!

I had meant to do more of these little vids this year. Maybe I'll do better from now to December :) 

And some close-ups. In this first one you can see where I was trying to write and the paint was still wet. Never mind.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Love is patient

50 reflections on the heart #3 

Love is patient.

Love takes a breath.

Love pauses before speaking or acting.

Love is forbearing.

Sunday, 2 July 2017


Whose opinion matters to you? Who do you want to make proud?

We all like to receive approbation, but its value differs depending on who is giving it. Words of encouragement from someone you respect or admire mean more than the same words from someone you don't hold in high esteem. As an artist, to be praised by another artist means more because they know what they're talking about; they have their own skills in the same area.

So whose opinion matters?