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Summer Art Making: Field Notes

Happy Summer Solstice! A favorite summer art making ritual for me is to create a hand made journal (they are quite simple to make or you can buy a ready made one) and to fill it with my summer observations and sketches, favorite poetry and findings. Sometimes I collect leaves and flowers and tuck them in the summer I squished blackberries between the pages to see what they would look like when they dried (You can find an image if these if you look through the images of my Field journals)! I love having a place to “put” my wild wanderings....even if this summer I only wander my own neighborhood here in Portland, the allies are already filling with lots of amazing natural things to discover, draw and be inspired by!! If I am lucky enough to travel out of the area this year, my journal will hold this also. One of my favorite prompts for writing (see writing prompts) is to use the first line of Mary Oliver’s poem, Gratitude, “What did you notice?”. It works so well for me, I find it brings me into the present to see and smell and touch what is in front of me. Then I can draw or write as inspired by this. I invite you to browse through the images of a couple of my journals for inspiration....I let them unfold and never know how they will begin or end. I add envelopes for collecting (often just cutting down a plain envelope or sometimes using tiny ones I either hand make or find at a crafting store). Use your imagination, let yourself see this as a work in progress....a way to be mindful of this amazing summer of warmth and light that every year we are gifted.

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