Artist Journal, Volume 1

I need to explain some complexities of my personality to properly tell you where I’m going lately.

The first is that I spend a lot of time in introspection – in my head. I think A LOT. I stare a blank walls and papers, A LOT. I am not easily bored. All of that thinking leads to little discoveries that excite me and I love to experience those little excitements and surprises. And then, I condense those thoughts down to bite-size chunks, which I share in blurbs on social media.

As a result, you see the squished up version of my brain on a regular basis, if you watch my posts. But the implication of that is multi-tiered.

One – I come off as being very heady and connected to my deepest emotions at all times. I’m not.

Two – I don’t show you my…fun?…personality a lot. Fun is definitely the wrong word. I’ve literally never described myself that way. So…maybe…free-spirited? or restless? or disjointed? or laid-back? or…

In any case, three – Sharing those little blurbs means that I’m not sharing the works-in-progress – the thoughts that jumble up and make less sense and feel more and desire condensation but aren’t ready for that.

So, here I am. Journaling. Letting anyone who wants to be here into my brain in a less curated way. The result: voice memos, journal-style vlogging where I’ll share all the different types of creativity I’m up to, and more laid-back sharing of content no matter the genre.

I’ll share updates about my novel-writing process, the new photo series I’m working on (both of them!), my sculpture projects, and more.

What does more include? Well…hiking (where I location scout and find inspiration), reading (where I imaginary location scout and find inspiration), traveling ( where I dream location scout and find inspiration)…speaking of dreams, I’d love to tell you about mine. They’re terrifying. Nights are exciting in my house.

So, here we are in journal one.

Created in 2009. but exactly how it feels to journal for me.

And here’s what I’m feeling.

Anxious. Because, well…I want to be more vulnerable. But even that is a lesson and a chore, because it doesn’t always come easy. I’m a really private person and will remain that way in my personal life. So sometimes it’s hard to separate creativity from personal stuff. And sometimes that makes vulnerability hard. But it can work, and here I am, trying.

Fulfilled. Because I know that detailing my adventures in creativity and inspiration will bring me even more depth and inspiration.

Silly. Because…who wants to read this? Or rather, and more importantly, because I don’t care who reads it and I’m doing it anyway.

I’ve never journaled before. Never. Never had a written notebook of my thoughts (except for that summer I tried to impersonate Harriet the Spy). Never had an interest in remembering my days. Never had an interest in parsing through my thoughts that way.

To be honest, I think quick, I process easily, and I don’t lament the past.

But I want to push myself into new ways of exploring and connecting.

For context, here are some projects I’m working on:

  • I have a new body of work that will be displayed in New York in June. I’m knee-deep in preparations for that, but the snow has been keeping me from shooting a lot. I’m aiming for the first week of March when the snow is meant to be melted to dive in big time. I’ve been sourcing props from my local antique store and I’ve got very in-depth images planned. It’s a series about rebuilding humanity. I kind of love it. (a lot).
  • I’m working on a very personal series about grief and death that I’ve talked about a lot in these parts. No news of where it will debut or when. It’s constantly changing. But it’s so, so fun to shoot. Think paint and syrup and clay and dirt and everything wonderful in the world. And decay. Obviously.
  • Novel! Novel novel novel! Is that word starting to lose its meaning to you? ME TOO. I wrote my novel for four years, realized how bad it was, threw it away, and became a student of the craft of writing. I’ve read 70 books in the past 1.5 years and started from scratch writing a detailed outline. That’s getting edited RIGHT NOW, ya’ll!!!!
  • Art book, whaaaaat! That’s a long time coming. My first fine art coffee table book is coming out later this year. It’ll be a 256 page beauty of my work from the past decade that I can’t tell you any more about, yet. YET!
  • Promoting Passion Roadshow! For four years I’ve hosted the Promoting Passion Convention, and I decided this year to do mini Promoting Passion events in more cities so that more people could join in. I’m working hard on it right now, confirming cities/venues/guest speakers. It’s hard work, no kidding. I’ll tell you more about that next month.
  • I’ve had to put ceramics on the back burner lately because it is the least developed of my artforms and personal things have taken a front seat in that time slot. Maybe MAYBE more on that later.

In the spirit of this journal, let me tell you how I felt this past weekend:

My attempt to SHOOT EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE.

Anxious beyond reason, because I haven’t been able to work on my new series much between travel, snow, and just plain indecision. I rarely suffer from indecision. WHAT EVEN IS THAT? So I was freaked out and frantically trying to find a solution. My solution: GO SHOOT EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE RIGHT NOW. So I did. And it was terrible. Obviously. So my husband sat with me for 2 hours as we re-hashed the images and figured out a creation plan. Whew.

I also recognized my need to be in complete control. It’s a constant battle over here. First, because my sister was in the hospital having gallbladder surgery, I was desperate to go be with her. But, in all honesty, she didn’t want me hanging around her room while she was trying to sleep. So I had to take a step back. And that reminded me that I tend to be a bulldozer. I think I know what’s best and I trudge forward no matter the cost. So I took a step back and recognized that art often imitates life, and that I need to chill out and let things flow.

And in the coming week…

I’ve got a Sony Alpha Female retreat to attend (YAY and HORRIFYING). I am such a socially anxious person that even typing this made me breath really shallow and feel a shaking in my stomach. I kind of want to throw up. The thought of being in a group of women, no matter how inspiring, where I don’t get to be the unequivocal leader…is NOT my jam.

I am only comfortable in a group if I am the leader of it. It’s something I recognize about myself as a character flaw and as an asset. Right now, it is what it is. But I’m committing and showing up so that I can help the women there as much as possible…and even open myself to being helped, too.

See, I struggle with that immensely. I don’t like to be helped. I like to be in control, as I mentioned. So in any case, that’s the big issue of the week that I’m working through, and I’ll let you know how it goes next week.

What have been the highs and lows of the past week for you? What are you excited about this week?

Do you think this journaling thing is going to work for me? Do you like the voice memo?

Until then, creative warriors,
Brooke

  • February 18, 2019 - 12:12 pm

    Anna - I think the voice memo was a nice touch. I always gobble up anything you put out there so no matter what it is, you know I will watch, listen, feel, read. There are so many things I would love to comment on but I have forgotten already what to say. For the roadshow, you know you have a home – if you chose to accept my help and happen to be road showing in Denver. That will be a couple hundred bucks saved on hotel that could go towards something else πŸ˜‰ plus I am not a bad cook. Secondly, these past two weeks I have felt more anxiety than I have in a long time. The pressure of selling to survive at this point is just eating me alive. I feel overwhelmed by business tasks and trying to figure out what’s truly an important task. Trying to creat content that showcases more of my process and work in hopes to build value is also overwhelming. Every day I go to bed feeling like a failure because I just haven;t done enough. More, more, more. I feel like a fraud right now. But I am not all miss downer over here. I seized an opportunity to put together a solo art show along with opening reception at a local coffee shop. Kind of a big deal for me but it’s still in the works. Sigh. Back to my hole.ReplyCancel

  • February 18, 2019 - 12:27 pm

    Daniel Serva - Well, you should not feel silly. I read all this and I think it’s awesome you made the desicion to share more aspects of your art/life. I feel very connected with your words as I also suffer social anxiety. I find beautiful the fact that even with those feelings you push forward and expose to meet ups outhe of your confort zone. And makes me want to try that more often πŸ™‚ as we all, you have an unique voice and I’m glad i’ll can hear more of yours from now on. Big hug πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

  • February 18, 2019 - 3:09 pm

    sheryl - i’m so glad you are open to be vulnerable and share your inner thought process. it’s quite enlightening. this on a day that i really just want o curl up and isolate. thanks, Brooke.ReplyCancel

  • February 19, 2019 - 10:32 am

    Gallagher Green - I LOVE the voice memo! And if it lets you blog without taking up so much of your time then it is a win-win!
    I remember that movie Harriet the Spy it was really good, but that has been a long time ago. I think there were a LOT of kids running around that summer spying on people! LOL
    Can’t wait for the PPCRS (RS=Roadshow) location release, I plan on catching one in Europe since I will be living there by then!
    Great blog post, and voice thingy. I can’t wait until the next one.
    P.S.
    Those photos of how you felt of the weekend, no offense. But I nearly fell out of my chair laughing! You should have those printed on shirts! ReplyCancel

  • February 19, 2019 - 10:57 am

    Janice - I admire that you don’t lament the past. I am a slave to it. Literally. I will probably always be. I’ve come to a place where I don’t feel as much of a victim of it, but now and again I feel the full impact of it in my heart and in my head.

    I come from a feeling place I would have to say 100 percent of the time. I imagine myself creating images around my lamenting of the past and everything that is in my head. I am a full time nurse and I haven’t found a way to dedicate myself to anything else, as desperately as my soul seems to need it. I am working toward moving out of my condo into a new one and maybe a new space will lend to that experience. I pray that is what happens.

    I hope you bring your road show to Boston, or Portsmouth, or somewhere in this area. I came to your page looking for details about this years promoting passion convention, thinking that this year I would try hard to make it there. But maybe you are coming to me…. πŸ™‚

    As always, thank you for being so approachable and so relatable. To me it seems like connection. I spent 12 weeks doing a photography intensive a couple of years ago, which turned out to be more about discovering myself than making photographs. Connection was a large part of it, especially with myself. It doesn’t come easy to me, and I think that is what draws me to your work.

    Anyway, thank you for every single thing that you do.ReplyCancel

  • February 19, 2019 - 6:26 pm

    Tom Hakett - A: Knock, Knock!
    B: Who’s there?
    A: Control freak
    B: Control fre…
    A: Now you say “Control freak who?”ReplyCancel

  • February 19, 2019 - 10:24 pm

    Andy g williams - A random question.

    When do you get boring stuff done like cleaning, gardening, paying bills etc. I just find that real life gets in the way of creating. Are there enough hours in the day!?ReplyCancel

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