As I completed another month of lists I was moved once again at what a lovely opportunity this has been to create a little bit of personal history in a simple format. I thought about the different ways I have seen each prompt interpreted and the depth and simplicity of design from the different participants.
Your story matters.
They are simple doodles really. Nothing fancy and yet they are who I am and part of my every day life. I had not expected this project (listersgottalist.com) to be as meaningful as it has become. I had not anticipated that it would become another little bit of personal history to leave behind. They are things I wouldn't normally write about, consider documenting in any way and yet as I do it makes me wonder how the lists will change in 5 or 10 years. What will be meaningful today will not be the same then.
Even my illustrations will change and evolve. Hopefully my skill level will improve as I learn and grow. My eyes are seeing things differently with each sketch and I am understanding a little more and more each day about form and light.
With each creative exercise I think of new ways I want to use this growing skill and I want to shout from the roof tops that our personal legacy does not fit in a single mold. We are not constricted by paper and pencil with what and how we leave our stories.
This is something I found most interesting as I worked on this simple project. Not one of us is alike and thus not one of us should feel the need to follow exactly along. Find a pattern and make it your own. Find a format and add your personality, your personal touches.
I have been surprised at how much depth creating a list can bring. As I contemplated each day's list new stories would come to mind. Memories and experiences would flood my heart and I had far more to say than my little 1/2 sheet would hold.
Usually I had time for in the day is a simple sketch and list, but now I have a resource of thoughts and ideas that I can use later in blog posts or someday a formal personal history.
Another thing I loved about these lists this month was the personal reflection they afforded. For instance on the dream jobs or dream house what is it that I really wanted in life? I found that I am living my dream job for I couldn't think of anything else I would rather be doing. It was satisfying to know that I receive such great fulfillment from my daily life.
A few of the how to questions I get:
1. the notebook is a moleskine classic blank notebook. The paper is lovely, but very thin and crinkles with the watercolors. I only add one sketch per page, but I didn't want to commit to a nice, more expensive notebook with good heavy paper if the project went terribly wrong. I doubt myself like that. I have however found that I like the crinkled imperfection of how this has gone. It has also allowed me to test different types of pens and their water soluble natures. Not all pens are created equal no matter what their labels say.
2. I still love my favorite pen: signo uniball micro, but it has some flaws when I erase the pencil lines and slight bleeding with water, but overall it's still my favorite. I am trying to love the micron, but I push too hard and ruin the tips, but it's amazing with erasers and water.
3. I am currently using this Koi watercolor set and brush. They are portable and the colors are nice and rich. I found that I would sketch a few days worth of lists and then watercolor them all at once. The portability of this project was nice. I could toss my book and my pencil and pen into my purse and draw a little at swimming lessons etc.
So not matter how you document your life please remember that your story is important. Who you are and what you do matter!