Art Journal Page – Martin Luther King Jr.

I’ve been crazy busy lately, but I did want to take the time today to make an art journal page for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. I included one of my favorite quotes: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” Each day the world feels more fragmented and there’s a lot of fighting over what makes us different. With so much focus on the differences it’s hard to remember the humanness that makes us all the same, so I always appreciate these positive messages of love and hope.

Art Journal Page - Martin Luther King Jr.

Art Journal Page – Martin Luther King Jr.
Supplies: watercolor, rubber stamps & ink, gel pen, washi tape, pen, chalk

I’m not usually into the “grungy” backgrounds (I usually make them too dark. I have to work on it!), but I got some new art supplies over the holidays that I wanted to try out. The background was done with watercolor pencil and I used ink pads stamped directly onto the paper. After that, I used a rubber stamp with text. I’ve really just started discovering stamping and I think it’s going to be an interesting technique to explore. The embellishments were done with black pen and gel pen, while the white highlights were done with chalk.

Artfully Megan Signature

 

Do you have a favorite Martin Luther King, Jr. quote? Why is it your favorite?

Art Journal Page – Lifelong Resolution

Since my vision of 2015 is still fresh in my mind, I thought I’d take the time to blog about another goal I have. It’s a lifelong resolution and very personal to me: weight loss. Every year, millions around the globe commit to losing weight and living a healthier lifestyle. I know that I’m not alone in my fight and it’s because of this I want to share my experience, along with my latest art journal page.

Art Journal Page - Believe in Yourself

Art Journal Page – “Lifelong Resolution”
Supplies: watercolor, stencils, colored pencils, marker, gel pen, washi tape, black pen

I’ve been overweight for as long as I can remember. I experienced the teasing, mocking, and name-calling. I must have heard every variation of “If you lost weight, you’d be pretty…” and I’ve been passed over countless times because I don’t look a certain way. Whether meant as humor, “motivation,” or true injury, it became the phantom that haunted my life.

I think some people in this situation channel their hurt into becoming comedians or just plain angry. I became withdrawn. Every person I met was a new opportunity for judgment and pain. Every person I grew close to was another change for betrayal. I was protected as long as I didn’t open up my mouth or my mind.

This was my M.O. for many years until I realized that in the “real world,” shutting myself in wasn’t going to cut it. I had career goals and personal aspirations that I could not achieve if I kept quiet. My insecurity and lack of confidence were becoming increasingly apparent. I spent some time trying to sort it out on my own, but it never felt quite right. Things really didn’t start coming together until 2013, when I finally decided to take control.

Artfully Megan Before and After

Left: 2013 on one of my many adventures!
Right: 2014 after completing the Dirty Girl mud run for breast cancer

Over the next several months I lost more than 60 pounds with the help of talk therapy, exercise routines, and an improved relationship with food. Surprisingly, what started out as something very outwardly focused took a backseat to the internal change. Those months taught me that I was strong and had ideas worth sharing. I started running (sometimes outside!) and going to the gym (while other people were there!).

Though 2013 gave me a glimpse of a promising future, 2014 marked the resurgence of old habits and feelings. My efforts plateaued, my routines felt stale, and my loneliness began to get the better of me. But I think part of life is learning when and how to pick yourself up again. So for 2015 I’ve recommitted to keeping healthy and functionally fit!

Artfully Megan Signature

Have you made any health goals for 2015? How do you keep motivated?