30 Journals 30 Days: LIS HOFMANN


How long have you been Art Journaling?

I began my first journal a little over a year ago. My then 4 year old daughter & I signed up for the e-course Mermaid Warrior Art Camp with McCabe Russell, the Dancing Mermaid and we made journals for that class. Shortly after that, I dove into Emily Falconbridge’s 52Q tag project which meant catching up on 6 months worth of weekly journaling prompts!

How has Art Journaling impacted, changed, or enhanced your life?

Art journaling has become a major tool in my daily practice or attempt to live my life wide awake and present. Sometimes I turn to it to unwind after a hard day and even when I feel like I am just playing around, it helps me tap into deep truths or insights that might otherwise go unnoticed. It is a way I interpret and experience my life. Playful, fun, joy filled experiences inform my art journaling but I also turn to my journal to process more painful and difficult feelings.

What are a few of your favorite Art Journaling materials to use?

I love gesso! I never seem to have the proper paper for the materials I am using so the gesso helps provide a solid surface for my paints. My Caran d’ache watercolor crayons are a favorite material for their rich color and juicyness. I also paint with the cheap craft paints from Michaels or Hobby Lobby because they have such fun colors and are super inexpensive. I try to incorporate photographs I’ve taken into my work as a way to bridge two of passions: journaling and photography. In addition to my journals (I have 3 going at any given time) I have been taking old postcards from gallery exhibits, gessoing over them and painting little postcard paintings. They are the perfect size for a quick painting fix.

Who are some of your favorite Art Journalers?

I tend to gather my inspiration from all over, not just art journalers. You, Connie, have been a HUGE inspiration because of your painterly approach to journaling. I guess I had always thought of art journalers as more as mixed media/collage artists or pen and ink which isn’t the case as I peruse more websites. But I am still discovering new art journalers who excite me.

Artists that inspire me include:
Emily Falconbridge

McCabe Russell
Diana Trout
Shona Cole
Marisa Haedike
Sarah Ahearn
Bernie Berlin

I steal shameless from the children’s illustrators and have to sneak books out of my daughter’s room to use in my studio space!

I also love the art of Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Frida Kahlo and my old art history textbooks are a great source for inspiration and materials.

What kind words of encouragement would you say to an Art Journal newbie?

Embrace your newness! I am grateful I did not have a preconceived notion of what art journaling was meant to be so I just did what I wanted to do. Experiment with techniques and mediums; consider your journal as a place to play and learn and embrace the process rather than worrying about creating a fantastically artistic page. When I approach my journal with an attitude of experimentally play, I discover so much more in the process. Let yourself make mistakes: that is how you learn about your materials and how you discover your voice. I tend to stop short, fearful of ruining a page. I’ve learned from you Connie to keep pushing it, to squeeze even more out of a page and in the process come to a new place of understanding or awareness. Embracing mistakes, welcoming mess – that is hard for me but I have learned more from those experiences than by playing it safe and tidy.

Where can we contact you…give us some link LOVE!

You can see all of my mistakes and masterpieces on my blog http://dandelionseedsanddreams.blogspot.com. My blog is where I let it all hang out and where I examine the path of being a creative explorer.

Short Bio:

I am a part time yoga teacher and a full time mom to a 5 year daughter who has been my creative inspiration and muse. I was an art major in college and have a master’s degree in art history. A recovering Perfectionist, I made my way back to art-making via my daughter who re-awoke the child within me who had loved art and worried she wasn’t good enough. I am happy to say, I make art every day and I embrace the notion that I am a thriving artist living in suburbia, weaving magic into my everyday world. In addition to art journaling, I love photography, writing, knitting, conversing with the fairies and walking my dog.

For the month of July my daughter and I are participating in an art marathon to raise money and awareness benefitting Half the Sky Foundation. The mission of Half the Sky is to provide individual care and stimulation for children living in welfare centers in China. Their stated goal is “to ensure every one of China’s orphans has a caring adult in her life.”

We are calling our campaign “Painting with a Purpose” and each week we will be collaborating on a painting. Each Friday in July I will feature our painting on my blog and anyone who makes a donation and leaves a comment will be entered into a drawing to win that week’s painting. For more information and how you can donate, go HERE.


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