I’m still on a mission to journal in my Bible(s) at least once a day. And I’m still missing my own goalposts 50% of the time… Here are a few more examples from the times I did manage to sit down do some bible journaling. I’ve tried a few more ways of putting down backgrounds, experimenting with text styles and even allowing stamps and a bit of illustration to creep in.
I have been trying to get into the habit of illustrating a bible verse each day since the start of the New Year. On average I think I am hitting a 40-50% hit rate, which isn’t too bad with everything else that’s happening. Here are the results of some of those bible journaling episodes. I think a typography style is developing nicely, but I’m also very fond of the illustrated ‘Immanuel’ page spread.
It’s still busy at The Studio, as there’s a That’s Crafty! One Day Special on Hochanda on 8th/9th December. That means I have six hours of live TV to prepare for – samples, show prep and lots of mental rehearsal! There are moments, though, where drying time gives me the chance to have a bit of ‘me’ time – and I’ve done a couple more Bible journal pieces. I have a couple of favourite verses from the psalms – Psalm 139:14 is one. The opposite side is the refrain in Psalm 136, used for page balance.
I experimented with a different medium for this double spread. By using Derwent Inktense pencils on clear gesso/matte medium mix, you can direct the concentrated colour and use a dilute wash to create the background. For those unfamiliar with Inktense pencils/blocks, they are a richly pigmented colour pencil, which when wetted on or off the page become more vividly saturated and easy to blend. Once wetted and then dried they become waterproof – so much so they can be used to dye fabric too.
I topped off the text with some Stickles glitter glue to add a little glitz.
I’ve taken a break from spring cleaning the studio… how come when ‘tidying up’ things look even worse than when I started? I merely whisked a cobweb away with a damp cloth, inadvertently cleaned a section of paintwork, wiped a little harder, and it ended up with me repainting that section later that morning. I think I will get the feather duster out next time.
As I say, I’ve taken a break and used the opportunity to do more bible journaling in my NLT Refections bible. This time I’ve broken away from the main margin and added typography to the white space on the page proper. Not sure this one works too well with the colours I chose, or the grey background – but then that’s what practice and experimentation is for! I think the use of white space works better – and that’s probably more obvious when the passages have the short poetry style formatting. It’s not going to be as easy to use white space when there isn’t any… and that’s where the next artistic bravery step comes in – illustrating over the text itself.
I’m developing my bible journaling techniques – this time, I’ve worked in my NIV Journaling Bible. This has cream pages, with wide unruled margins. The paper is as thin, and has a little more bleed-through that the NLT bible I reviewed at the beginning of the week. That aside, the performance is just as good in all other aspects. I chose the same passage as before to illustrate, but this time have read around the main verse to add to the drawing. Initially it was just black and white, and I hemmed and hawed about adding colour before taking the plunge.
I’ve recently bought a new Bible specifically to journal in – actually I’ve purchased two (NIV & NLT). There are probably some people who think that drawing in a Bible is sacrilegious, but I see it as creative worship, and an extension of my sermon sketchnotes. As a pastime, it seems to have become very popular and perhaps a spin off from the adult colouring trend. Some journaling bibles even have illustrations waiting to be coloured. I christened my new NLT bible this evening:
Today, I went on retreat to Launde Abbey – a space to reflect, be out of contact with the outside world and to re-establish communication with God. The theme for the days reflection centred around Martha preparing the meal for Jesus, and the story of Brother Lawrence finding ways to worship God as he washed dishes for his entire monastic life. I took my iPad, so I could respond in creative worship, and as I reflected on things happening in my life at the moment, I drew on this quote from Brother Lawrence:
Lift your heart to Him during your meals and in company, the least little remembrance will always be most pleasing to Him.
And from this quote from Edmund Morgan, a Welsh Anglican bishop:
… to overcome the temptation to love the praise of men more than the glory of God, your life must be a continual sursum corda; you must ever be groping, fighting, leaping Godwards…
‘Lift up your hearts’ – Latin: sursum corda – is the opening dialogue to the Preface of the Eucharistic Prayer. Rarely featured in Baptist tradition, it was a perfect illustration of what I took away with me from the retreat.[created in Procreate and Inkpad Pro apps on iPad Pro with Apple Pencil]