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
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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

Happy New Year!!!

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I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who have visited, liked, commented or followed my blog this past year and prior.

In Sydney, Australia, we saw in the New Year last night. The above is a still taken off our TV with my iPhone. We had a 12 minute Fireworks display over Sydney Harbour.

Last year, I wrote 50 poems, 13 Haiku poems and 11 articles on this blog and am looking forward to what 2019 will bring!

Thank you for being part of my journey! I am also looking forward to following your creative journey.

I would like to wish all of your Families and Friends a wonderful, joyous, creative and safe 2019!

Written by David Johnson
1 January 2019

Cacti and Succulents – A Love That Blossomed!

It suddenly occurred to me this weekend whilst visiting the Succulent Garden at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens again, that I had never written any articles on this Blog in relation to my interests in Succulents.

My interest in Succulents blossomed out of a gift from my Aunt Beryl when I was 14, back in 1977. It was a Euphorbia, which sadly passed on some time ago, not being as hardy as Aunt Beryl who is still going at 92 years of age.

From then on, Succulents were around in one form or another at home. I started to group them together in large, flat pots when I was in my late teens and imagined one day of having a sprawling Cacti and Succulent Garden.

It would be a good time to point out that Cacti are Succulents, but not all Succulents are Cacti – but that is another article for another time. I particular favour Cacti but love all Succulents.

When I married in 1997, we bought a property that was 5,609 square metres (1 1/4 acres) about 100km (62 miles)  South West of Sydney, Australia.

I ended up with a 35 square metre (42 square yard) Cacti & Succulent Garden with up to 120 plants in it. It was a labour of love to construct and I tinkered with it over the 16 years we lived there.

Currently, I have approx. 80-100 plants which are currently in pots, where we currently reside. When we buy our next place, I feel sure that David’s Cacti and Succulent Garden 2.0 will become a reality and I am surely looking forward to that!

Written by David Johnson
16 September 2018

Sydney Pen Show – The First Ever!

Last week, I attended the very First, Sydney Pen Show and indeed it was my First ever Pen Show as well.

I have owned a Calligraphy Pen set since the 1980s which I use from time-to-time and I had purchased a Lamy Safari Fountain Pen in July 2017.

I use the Fountain Pen to write Poetry and do my daily journaling, mainly, though I can see that list growing as, in my opinion, there is no better feeling than writing with a Fountain Pen (as far as writing is concerned).

Having put up with the humorous comments from friends in the lead up to the Show, i.e. ‘ You’re going to a what, Show’, ‘Are you serious?’ ’They have them’, I was indeed hoping that it would live up to my expectations.

It was held at the Australian Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour on a sparkling, beautiful Winter’s day in Sydney.

In terms of Show’s that I have attended before, it wasn’t a huge Show. They were just over 30 tables, consisting of Pens, Journals, Ink, Watercolour and other assorted accessories.

In speaking with those presenting their tables, I admired the passion with which they spoke about their trade. Some were second generation owners.

There were also Calligraphy, Writing and Drawing workshops, some inside, some outside.

I didn’t attend any of the workshops this year, but will certainly think about doing them next time. No new pen purchases but I did buy a set of Sennelier 12 Half-Pan Watercolour paints (which are being delivered).

Am I a pen collector? No, I don’t see myself as one, however, I would like in time, to pick up a couple of more pens. In particular, I would like to buy a more stylish-looking Fountain Pen.

I have already marked the date, 17 August 2019 in my calendar for next year and am looking forward to a bigger and better Show!

Written by David Johnson
26 August 2018