This visual journal page is a nice reflection of creativity and procrastination, which are qualities of many of my high school art students.
This visual journal page began its start during a particularly difficult AP art day. One of my talented and wonderful students, Annastasia, was beginning to start down the slippery slope of not being able to focus anymore. I couldn’t blame her, we were on block schedule, which meant hour and a half classes, and she had me for two classes in a row, which meant 3 hours straight of art.
This may seem like a dream for many, and the norm for college level art courses, but some days and some moods don’t lend themselves to such a long dedication of focus and continuous flow of creative ideas.
Annastastia is one of the students who wows you. She is the type to create beautiful artwork not only well executed but with incredibly deep meaning and thoughtfulness. However, she is also the type to not realize her ability and doesn’t believe she is as good as I know she is.
This day started to become one of those days where she was tripping over her own feet, getting in her own way, unable to see past small imperfections in her art. The small things began to get to her until she laid down her work and walked away, requiring a much needed, and deserved, break.
As is typical with teenagers her break ran over and head straight for procrastination and goofing off with her fellow AP Arters who also had two art classes in a row. They began to gather around the pottery wheel, not doing what they were supposed to be doing, discussing this and that, not getting any work done.
Right as I was about to “redirect” their attention to their artwork something began to happen. Suddenly sheets of paper came out, paint and paintbrushes appeared, and pottery wheel spin art was invented. They played, made a mess, and continued to not work on their portfolio, but they were having fun and they were begin creative.
After allowing the spin art to possibly go on for to long, I got everyone back to work, and things began to settle down. As Annastasia refocused there was a change. She was starting back fresh after a much needed break and a release of frustration through splattered paint and pottery wheels. She suddenly was able to look at the big picture, brush away some of her self critique, and create beautiful things once again.
As I flipped through the many pages of spin art I discovered this little gem by Annastasia. It looked so loose, so carefree, and yet so perfect. It represented her return to her nice creative flow. It taught me a lesson that day, not all procrastination is bad procrastination. Sometimes it is simply a much needed break, making us more successful in the end.
- Visual journal
- Rubber cement
- Book page from my book
- Annastasia’s spin art
To create this visual journal page I simply glued Annastasia’s spin art to the left page and layered a page from my book on top to make it look like it was actually settled in the page.
To create this effect I ripped a page from my visual journal in order to make sure it was the exact same size as the original page and ensure the color blended with the right side page. I then ripped the middle of the page out, leaving only the boarder. I glued the spin art down with rubber cement, allowed it to dry to make sure it was well stuck, then glued the book page boarder on top, making sure the edge of the cut out page lined up with the original page.
I considered adding words to the page, but in the end I decided I liked it nice, clean, and simple.
Today is the day for procrastination. Take a break from what you should be doing and procrastinate. Put it all off, do something fun instead, find a new way to express your creativity. Splatter paint, make spin art, have fun. Incorporate your finished product in your visual journal.
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