All artists experience the unbridgeable gap which lies between the work of their hands, however successful it may be, and the dazzling perfection of the beauty glimpsed in the ardour of the creative moment: what they manage to express in their painting, their sculpting, their creating is no more than a glimmer of the splendour which flared for a moment before the eyes of their spirit.

Believers find nothing strange in this: they know that they have had a momentary glimpse of the abyss of light which has its original wellspring in God. Is it in any way surprising that this leaves the spirit overwhelmed as it were, so that it can only stammer in reply?

- Pope St. John Paul II, Letter to Artists

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

My Beginning

None can sense more deeply than you artists, ingenious creators of beauty that you are, something of the pathos with which God at the dawn of creation looked upon the work of his hands. A glimmer of that feeling has shone so often in your eyes when—like the artists of every age—captivated by the hidden power of sounds and words, colours and shapes, you have admired the work of your inspiration, sensing in it some echo of the mystery of creation with which God, the sole creator of all things, has wished in some way to associate you.

More of Pope St John Paul II's letter to artists. 

I've been mildly obsessed with art journals and artist trading cards for a while, rather out of proportion to my artistic ability and training (none, really, in that second count). But in obedience to the creative need that is in everyone, I slowly began to indulge in an art journal. 

Still learning. 

But I wanted to share, because that's what you do with art: you feel some impulse of beauty, you attempt to make it manifest, and then you communicate the attempt. 

Many, but not all, of my early pages are from a calendar plan I had for my journal, inspired by this series of art journal prompts and by the liturgical year. Thus, this page was started in January, the month devoted to the Holy Name of Jesus:

And this page was a spinoff of a craft project with the kids from February—something I saw on The Crafty Crow?

These are the first few pages I will call "done"—several others are started, and though they never seem to be realized beyond that "glimmer" of what's in my head, I'm looking forward to "finishing" and sharing them. 

Have you used the journal prompts linked above? Or maybe some other seasonal inspiration? What did you make? Do tell, or leave a link if you like.