I had seen the “Wreck This Journal” books a while ago and brushed it off as something in which I wasn’t interested. I looked down on it thinking it was stupid after having looked at only a handful of the pages… then I started to see what people were doing with them. I fell in love with the idea. I know I could come up with my own prompts, but it’s just so much easier (and uncomfortable) to use the ones in the book. I caved and ordered 2 books off amazon (one each for L and I) and they arrived yesterday. We got to work pretty much as soon as they were out of the box. L has done a lot more with her’s, but I’m getting there. It’s a fun, creative process.
Here are a few of the one’s I’ve done so far.
This first one was done during couple’s therapy yesterday (we met at Starbucks because it was closer for all involved. It was a bit weird, but not too bad). The leaves were inspired by the plant on the property across the street, and the bird was inspired by all the birds flying around… I used chalk to color in the line drawing later on that night.
This next one was also done during couple’s therapy, and inspired by Big Bang Theory. If you watch BBT, this is from a pretty iconic scene. The prompt was to doodle or write on the outside edges of the book.
This prompt was to tear out the page and crumble it up. I remembered seeing a kid’s art project where the students drew and colored sunflowers with crayon. They layered the crayon really heavily, then crumpled up the page to create the creases. The pictures were flattened again and painted over with black paint. The excess paint was wiped off before it dried onto the wax, which created a really cool batik look. I thought this was the perfect place to try it myself. Here is the result. (sorry for the blurry pic. I didn’t realize how bad it was until I saw it on my monitor. I will take a better one tomorrow).
Finally, this page was a white page with dotted lines. The prompt was to tear it into strips. I wanted to color it first, so I did. The following page instructs you to glue, staple, or tape the two pages together. I sprayed the bottom half of that page with adhesive and stuck the strips to it. I had intended to keep them flat, but the unruly strips had other plans… I just went with it.
If you have not seen these books around yet, I suggest looking them up. If you are like I was and hesitant because they seemed “stupid” I suggest taking another look. It give you the chance to be creative, messy, inspiring, social, destructive, and experimental all at once. If you are not quite sure what to do for any one prompt, just set it aside. There is no set order to go through the pages, and you can choose to do what it asks, or ignore it and do something different. Play around, have fun, and try not to judge what you do.
Most people will only publicise the more interesting pages they did, but I will try to keep a balanced log. I think I may also end up creating my own version that has more of a therapeutic spin to it (maybe something along the lines of a journal version of the 100-theme challenge). Wreck This Journals do have maybe 5 more-introspective prompts, but I think the concept leans towards the creative process rather than any introspection. It is pretty much the surface aspects of art therapy in a book, but I would want one that entices me to dig a little deeper about stuff… and maybe something that has paper made for art. The stuff used for this book is pretty porous, which leads to a lot of bleed-though. Being a perfectionist and rather anal about my pages all being useful, this bothers me a bit (though I’m working on accepting the “mess” of it all).