28 ARTISTS & JOURNALISTS
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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A new book from North Light...Artist's Journal Workshop

I've been filling illustrated journals for 40 years or so..."illuminated journals," as my friend Hannah Hinchman calls them, as so they are.  As an artist and writer, I enlist both sides of my brain to pay attention to my life, to work out problems, to celebrate the passing moments, to encourage creativity, to learn about nature...to love.

I've written on the subject in many magazines, from Sports Afield to Country Living, from Personal Journaling to The Artist's Magazine, over the years.

Last year, I decided the time was right to share my passion for journaling again, and offered a new online class.  The response--and the level of commitment and enthusiasm among the students--was astounding.  It was the best and most exhausting class I've ever taught, a whole different animal from covering techniques and materials.  Keeping an artist's journal touches something primal, something deep inside...and these wonderful students obviously felt it.

Shortly after, I turned the class material into a CD, for those who weren't able to take the class...as intensive as my classes are, I can only teach 1-2 a year.  (You can see the link at right.)  And then...as I tend to do, I approached North Light Books, my longtime publisher.  Again, the enthusiasm was immediate.  I signed a contract in January of 2010 and began contacting some of the best artist/journalists I know.  This subject is far too important to be the work of one person...

So in the book you'll see some very familiar names, and some who deserve to be moreso.  There are sketchers, writers, and some who do complete paintings in their journal sketchbooks.  Some write as much as they sketch, some barely use words at all.  Some plan more formal paintings, some simply explore this moment in time.  Some explore family history, some learn about nature, some are spiritual, some are everyday...and all are inspiring. There is joy and delight and challenge there, and even pain.

The journal gives us an immediate and invaluable tool to deal with life's ups and downs--both deserve our attention.

Sooo...my new North Light book will be out in June of 2011, and I've had a marvelous time with this one...my editor, Holly Davis, absolutely GETS it.  (The title now is Artist's Journal Workshop; Creating Your Life in Words and Pictures.)  Holly and I worked together very well, with lots of give and take, and her suggestions and questions have made it a better book by far.  She was a blast to work with.

So were the 26 terrific artists that shared their work and words.  I found a wide range of some of the very best artist journal keepers out there, from Hannah Hinchman to Danny Gregory, from Laura Frankstone to Enrique Flores...you can see most of them listed in the sidebar at right, though I still need to add those who don't have websites or blogs yet.

I interviewed all of them, and we mined the interviews for quotes to explain and expand on the concepts in keeping an artist's journal. 

But there was FAR too much wonderful material to fit in the 144 pages of the book, so I started this blog just for these in-depth interviews and additional art.  There was too much of that to fit in the book too, and it needs to be seen and shared.

That was the beginning concept...

Again, it will grow beyond these boundaries.  Journaling is organic; it goes where it will.  There will be ongoing tips on journal keeping, recommended books, art, links to favorite books or websites, and much, more more, from me and from others involved in the project. 

We don't have the official book cover yet, just a working cover--a place marker, if you will, but it'll be along soon...hence the mystery cover in the banner above!  (I don't design the covers or pick the titles of my own books, something that always amazes my readers and students!)  I'm as anxious to see what the final cover is as anyone.

I'm looking forward to seeing where this journey takes us, as well...I hope it encourages you, the reader, to take up that journal book and begin your OWN journey...

So welcome aboard, and I hope you enjoy the interviews, journal pages, tips and hints...

36 comments:

  1. I'm starting on my own artist journey too. So I'm going to follow you and learn more. Thanks. I originally found you on Urban Sketchers.

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  2. Glad you found us! Wait till you see what this blog's going to offer...interviews, art, and tips from a lot of different contributors to the book.

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  3. Glad to be a part of this, Kate! Journaling, art making, and words intwined are so very fun, and I think, important to someone who has that creative urge in their lives.
    Your hard work on this project is much appreciated. Thanks for including me!

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  4. Thank you for responding, Miss Laure! I've learned a lot from you, and I'm delighted to have you involved in the book and the blog.

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  5. So we need a countdown clock for this much anticipated book, Cathy. :-)

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  6. So happy you are doing this blog, Kate... I am sharing this with our Watercolor Journaling Group.... such fun to see what comes next!

    Elizabeth

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  7. LOL! I need to let the class blog know, too...and the alumni group...

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  8. So happy to be aboard, Kate! Many thanks for your hard work and dedication. I love sharing the joy of journaling!

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  9. Congratulations on this new book! I'm so anxious to get a copy and sit down with a cup of coffee and open it.... This will be a fun thing to do in the new year.

    I'm also excited about this blog and I will be following it.

    Lastly... THANK YOU for setting up this new blog to continue the discussion and sharing about journaling!

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  10. Congratulations on the new book and best wishes for the coming year. Quite surprised to learn that you do not get to the design the book cover and pick the title.

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  11. thanks for the book and for the blog, Kate! :)

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  12. Thanks for the enthusiasm, all!

    B2-kun, that surprises a LOT of people...it works fine though, most generally. I usually have some input if there's a problem with the preliminary design!

    Claire, lovely to hear from another journaler!

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  13. I'm looking forward to this blog and your new book. How Wonderful. I've been reading and enjoying your work for years. Thank you for sharing with us Kate, Diana

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  14. Thank you, Diana, I KNOW you'll enjoy this blog...such terrific people involved!

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  15. I can't wait to get the book. I know it will be great. I will also look forward to reading this blog. It is amazing to me that you don't help with picking the title and cover for your books. I would never have guessed that.

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  16. Your wonderful books and encouragement during the 2009 online Journaling class are forever appreciated! I am looking forward to learning and sharing more through this Blog! Thank you for your continued generosity!

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  17. Congratulations on bring these artists together and creating a book. Can't wait for my copy and it'll be fun getting to know the artists on this blog.

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  18. Thank you, and yes, it was one of the best parts of doing the book, getting to know these people better. I feel very blessed by their sharing.

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  19. I am sooooo excited for this book!! I agree...we need a countdown bar!
    I haven't painted for almost a year and I have been so hungry to get back to it, so this blog is perfect to keep me motivated to get back to journaling. You are so generous and such an inspiration! Thank you in advance for all that you will be sharing with us! Happy Holidays!

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  20. It's such an honor to be part of this work, Kate. And I love how organic the project has become! Here we go!!

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  21. Thank you...and Laura, thank you SO much for letting us include your work and the wonderful interview.

    I like how it's just grown naturally, as well...I'm just holding tight for the ride!

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  22. Looking forward to this book - so few people I know here in S.Africa do art journalling - I'll spread the word about this one as much as I can!

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  23. I am keen to see how this all goes and to buy a copy when it's out. Lovely to see Liz involved. Ruth

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  24. Thank you, Cathy and Ruth! The information is goo good not to share...

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  25. Thank you for posting this awesome blog! I read your other blog--Sketching in Nature daily! Can't wait to hear your interviews! The list of artists I admire greatly...especially YOU!! Thank you Kate! Looking forward as usual to buying your book as soon as it comes out! Congrats!

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  26. You're very welcome, Nancy, I think this is going to be a good one...

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  27. You just heap generosity upon generosity. Now this blog with a list of artists whose work I admire. I don't know of another artist who can claim her/his willingness to share to the degree that you do. I have several of your books which continue to be an inspiration.

    Can't wait for the book, but 6 months? Egad! That's 26 weeks, 1/2 a year. Torture! HA!

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  28. I think I'm just a tad hyper, Joan! And yes, I agree about the time...I thought it was February, NO idea where I got that...

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  29. You are an amazing person Kate. Thank you for all you do. I feel very lucky to be a part of both the blog and the book.

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  30. I am also honored (and a little blown away) to be part of the book and the blog. Still getting used to it. Thank you so much and I promise to try to be worthy. I have been inactive for several months due to a few problems but I'm ready to go again.

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  31. Thank you both! Ellen, you don't need to TRY to be worthy, you already are or I wouldn't have asked you to be part of the project!

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  32. Bless your heart, Cathy! Thank you!

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  33. i did SOOOO love your interview with mr. gregory. his sincerity comes through my screen as purely as does the sincerity in his journal entries. i'm putting an RSS feed on this little honey of a site kate. don't want to miss a morsel.!! congratulations on your grand start-up.!!!

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  34. Cathy -
    Thank you for the blog & the new book - I can't wait to get it - right now with snow & more coming June seems quite far away-
    I love this blog -
    thanks again for book,blog & your wonderful classes!-
    kathleen

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  35. I am looking forward to the release of this new book - sketching is something that I am making a priority to get better and more consistent at this year.

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  36. Thanks all, I know you'll enjoy it. I was SO fortunate with the people involved. The only bad part was that I just kept finding MORE I wanted to ask and we ran out of time!

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