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Visual Journals:  Questions and Answers

Q: But I'm taking a sculpture class, why do I have to draw?


A:  Visual Journals are an important part of the creative process, a place where students can express creative thinking, experiment with ideas and materials, keep a record of how an artistic project began, was developed, and was created.


Q:  But I still can't draw!


A:  The sculpture visual journal is not about your ability to draw, only your ability to think more deeply about what you do.  think of it as a journal of artistic "practice".  You do NOT have to draw.  You can create in other ways - collage, assemblage, stitch - to name a few.


Q:  I'm afraid to show what I did - I feel like it will never be good enough.


A:  Your work in the visual journal is personal, meant for you to feel safe about trying things you are not sure will work.  I will, on occasion, ask if I can show something you've created so others can see your great, new, interesting direction.


Q:  You keep talking about this thing called DECONSTRUCTION.  What is it and why is it so important to you?


A:  Deconstruction is what I refer to as "altering the surface of the paper".  Often I find students (and adults!) have a difficult time starting an assignment when they're staring at a blank white paper.  Doing something to alter the surface BEFORE you start can often generate ideas.

The Assignments:

Visual Journal Prompts:
1.  Enormous
2.  Yesterday
3.  Close Up to Abstraction
4.  Inner Workings of a Machine
5.  Vintage
6.  Euphoria
7.  Metamorphosis
8.  Silence
9.  A Chair as a Self Portrait
10.  Connected
11.  Jim Dine Tools
12.  Spontaneous
13.  Outside VS Inside
14.  Lonely - Object
15. Non-traditional Interior
16.  Letter
17.  Home
18.  Less Than an Inch
19.  Moment
20.  Suspended 
21.  Pattern in Nature
22.  Mundane

Each student will be given a visual journal and a list of prompts. The prompts (to the left) are intentionally vague - what does "Inside vs. Outside LOOK like to you?  How would you show your idea on paper?  Perhaps you might divide a room in half, showing interior furniture on one side and exterior furniture on the other.  Perhaps you might cut a "window" in one page (inside) and collage the next page with an outdoor scene (outside).  There is no right or wrong, only the effort of thought you put into each prompt.