New Year’s Inspiration


Before I can move forward, I must admit that I ‘gave up’ last year. I finished one painting. Sort of. I think I burned out on it before it was quite finished. So I decided it was time to pick up the pieces of what was working and try something new. Maybe I had the right idea, but the approach was not?

journal mixed media

Mixed Media Journal Front – detail
© 2014 Michelle Hendry

Journal - Front - Click to see larger image. © 2014 Michelle Hendry

Journal – Front – Click to see larger image. © 2014 Michelle Hendry

I have the last painting of the “Echoes” series sitting on the easel in a state of partial completion. It had a strong start and I don’t want my stuckness to ruin it. It’s too important. So I have set it aside to let in some inspiration and new ideas.

So in keeping with taking what works and trying something new with it, I am taking a course on-line in mixed media with Lisa Cyr (author of Art Revolutions) and a live course with international mixed media painter Bert Seabourn.

The journal pictured in this post was the very first project in Lisa’s class. Here was my concept:

For three weeks I kept a window full of photographs of rustic Japanese teacups open on my desktop. They are a part of a concept I have been exploring – Wabi Sabi, or impermanence. But these were taken to the next level. These teacups were all repaired, but instead of attempting to hide the shatter lines, they were enhanced with gold, bronze or painted patterns where entire pieces of pottery were missing. The repair method using precious metals and resin is called Kintsugi.

The idea stuck with me that when something is broken, it is not trash, but can be repaired to look as or more beautiful than the original by NOT hiding the cracks. So that is the theme of my journal. Broken doesn’t mean finished. To take that idea of beginning again further, I added the kanji that means “DREAM”. I carved it out of lino for a fabric project several years ago and when digging up my materials I came across it. It was a perfect fit.

Journal - Back. Collage. © 2014 Michelle Hendry

Journal – Back. Collage. Click to see larger image © 2014 Michelle Hendry

In the spirit of moving forward, here is my list of goals for 2014:

1. Letting go. Of all of it.

That’s it. That my whole list.

Happy 2014!


  1. says

    Good to hear from you again, I was wondering what had happened.

    Keep moving forward :-)

    All the best from snowy Ontario

  2. says

    Love it Michelle!
    I love what you have done with the journal!
    Great post and goal for 2014.

    It makes me think of our Leonard Cohen…

    Ring the bells that still can ring
    Forget your perfect offering
    There is a crack, a crack in everything
    That’s how the light gets in.


  3. says

    Yay! I found your fresh blogpost in my reader last night. Glad you are (continuing to) finding your way through art. Art is an adventure, just keep moving. What a beautiful journal.

  4. says

    Mixed media art is a fascinating realm that spurs on the imagination. What a wonderful ‘divergent’ path you’ve ventured out. These journals are beautiful, and I’m glad to know you’ve taken the concept of Wabi-sabi to create visual beauty. The Kanji attracts me right away as I come to your blog. (I don’t need translation to know what it means 😉 ). All best wishes for a prolific 2014, Michelle!