Do we delay gratification out of a hope that we might be able to “have our cake and eat it too?” That rarely works out but hope springs eternal.
I think of myself as very much an “in the moment” type of person. I don’t over-plan much but I realize that I almost always have a plan for my journal page, even if it is vague or changes along the way. I really didn’t like how it made me feel to not think ahead and just do what felt good at the time. I made a bunch of mistakes. I’m happy enough with this page now but it’s not one of my favs
This was a thought-provoking prompt this week that has really led me to think about concepts of maturity and authenticity particularly in relationship to art and art journalling. However my first thought was that “fake it until you make it” involved the use of pre-made materials. I pulled out a gel print that I particularly liked from my stash. I didn’t rip it up or create any mash up with other papers, I just literally and figuratively “cut corners” by trimming off the white borders (which will be a thing of the past with my new 12″ x 14″ gel press)
I got out my markers and pens to do a little highlighting and scribbled words. This allowed me to think about my discomfort a bit more. I realized there was a bit of a balancing act between maturity/learning, authenticity and ego. Perhaps it isn’t an accident that more women are drawn to mixed media because it is, when you think about it, a collaborative art form. We are creating mash-ups often drawing on the art of others. Women are socialized to be more collaborative. Like the butterflies in our group (and on my page) the art we incorporate carries the page forward in combination with our own. Authenticity is a great value but sometimes we get it confused with egotism (or at least I do) when we feel like our own voice has to speak the loudest. Maturity is being able to step back and let another voice speak sometimes and I think the Dina Wakely message of “I spill make my mark” is hilariously apt to these thoughts.
There she is! I have a lot of sympathy and caring for my child. She was crazy tall for her age (the tallest kid in her class until half way through high school), skinny and serious looking. People always thought she was much older than she was. That’s why her mother kept her in ringlets and hair ribbons to try to signal to people “She’s 8 not 12” but it didn’t work. I just looked weird and old-fashioned. The only child of an older mother who was surprised to become pregnant after she’d given up hope, I lived in an adult world in the city with a working mother. My refuge was books (fantasy) and my grandmother’s garden which was tiny but seemed like a vast jungle to me. For a multitude of reasons my childhood was mostly stolen from me but “Imagination” speaks to the odd young/old/tall in body/very young in spirit child that I was.