The Vine Of Exploration

A Journey through Life The Vine of Exploration Looking for the Light


Journals, Journals, Journals

The thought for this article came from a Creative Workshop that I missed attending yesterday, which was being held by the Wollondilly Arts Group Inc, of which I am a member. I was unable to attend due to a family commitment.

The Creative Workshops always have a theme and apart from the main theme, this time members were asked to bring in the various types of Journals that they had used.

I am at a kind of a crossroads in Journal-use. I started off with a sketchbook for drawing, then I started to write poetry, then became interested in painting so I had different books for different mediums. A couple of years back, I decided to have it all contained in one, purchased, Ivory coloured-page A4 Journal.

I must say that I have been very happy using the ‘one-journal-contains-all’ for quite a while now.

With my increased interested in Watercolour/Pen & Wash, on 26 January this year, I decided to embark on a Watercolour Sketch a Day project and have been using an A5 Watercolour sketchbook and thus have partially moved away from the A4 Journal as far as Watercolour goes. I still do the odd, small Watercolour sketch in it and have been mulling over what to do?

It would have been very interesting yesterday to see what other people were doing with regards to Journal usage.

Something else I have been thinking about over time is to create my own Journal with various types of pages for various mediums.

I would be interested in anyone’s thoughts on types of Journals and how they use them, please?

Written by David Johnson
10 February 2019

Walking Isn’t ‘Just Walking’…

During Summer in Sydney, Australia, it is always best to walk early. We are expecting another day of 38C/100F temperatures.

Today, I set off a bit later than usual, at 7.00am. It was 17C/63F when I commenced.

As mentioned in previous blogs, I really enjoy walking, not only from the fitness perspective, but also because I get a lot of ideas whilst walking e.g. today, in a 42 minute walk, I came up 8 ideas for articles for this blog, all jotted down via the Google Keep app. Sometimes I get business ideas, or ideas for images, poems and paintings. If they are not recorded by some means, they will be lost…

Sometimes on a walk, I will listen to the sounds of nature, other times a playlist or a podcast, depending on how I feel.

Today, I chose to listen to a podcast by Charlie O’Shields called ’Sketching Stuff.’ I have been following Charlie’s site, ‘Doodlewash’ for some time but only recently started listening to his podcast.

I would encourage you to listen to the podcast if you are in any way interested in getting into Art or indeed, have already started.

Today, I listened to episode #10 and it was informative, inspirational and entertaining. I will be listening to it again over the weekend. (See link below.)

To finish off the walk, I chose a Classical music playlist as it suited my mood.

Sometimes, I will snap some images with my iPhone on my rounds. I took some today but they will come to light in a different article as I seemed to be shooting a theme today. I also have a DSLR, however, if I took that with me, the walk would double or triple in time!

So you see, walking for me isn’t ‘just walking’… it’s also a way of feeding my creativity!

Written by David Johnson
12 January 2019

Creating New Habits, Not Resolutions…

I stopped making ‘New Years Resolutions’ many years ago.

Instead, I set goals and they cover all different areas of my life. The challenge though (as I have found before) is that in the Christmas/New Year period, when life is good, breezy and we are relaxed, we tend to create these awesome theoretical goals for the New Year.

They sound great, however, when life ‘starts happening and reality moves in’ those goals (and good intentions) tend to get consigned to history and a couple of weeks, months and beyond, we look back thinking, ‘what happened?’

So, what can we do about it?

This year, I’ve decided to do something different.

Firstly, I’ve worked out ‘why these goals/habits are important to me?’

Secondly, I’ve set up a spreadsheet with various headings for the goals/new habits that I would to introduce/reintroduce into my life.

Some examples are ‘reading from a professional development book, walking and meditation.’ Each have a heading and I’ve put in (in the case of walking) how far I’ve walked and in the case of reading & meditation, I put in the amount of time.

You might be thinking that’ it’s easy to find the time to read or meditate…’but when you are running a business, am involved in BNI (breakfast business group) and have a heavy involvement in Toastmasters as member with additional roles, family commitments and all the hobbies/interests I have, then it’s easy for it to get forgotten or become erratic.

I’m not trying to start 10 new habits at once though, I’m bringing them in gradually.

I’m 9 days in and the spreadsheet system is working well. I can access it via Google Sheets on my phone as well so I can check up at any time to see how I am progressing.

The thought is, that once I’ve created the new habits and they become part of my life, I won’t need the spreadsheet.

In a couple of months time I’ll report on how this going. Till then, have an awesome New Year!

Written by David Johnson
9 January 2019