Little Book of Whispers
A story Behind the pages
I have missed blogging about my creative process these past months, so today I decided to be brave and share a little bit of the story behind my "Little Book of Whispers": how this personal project, which has slowly morphed into a new art class, guided me back home to my truth and my art a few months ago. I hope you'll enjoy it and I'd love to find out about your favorite ways to invite inspiration: please leave a comment at the end of this post!
Moments of stillness... Thoughts, evaporating... Impulses, intuition, randomness...
The path of the artist... The magical chaos of the art table...
Where the whispers always are, if we listen...
Where the soul speaks its own language, sings its own tune, softly, like the wind in the trees.
I often get this feeling that the soul speaks in whispers. That she requires me to stop and pay attention, otherwise she'll just remain unheard. She is like this untamed and delicate bird sometimes. She requires silence, presence and quiet or she'll just retreat deep within. She needs moments of solitude and demands that I stop the endless whirlwind of thoughts: she just can't spread her wings in that kind of weather. If I don't, she usually finds a way to make me. She's not as shy or fragile as she seems. She's a fierce creature too. And that's good, because I know she'll never flutter too far away.
I created my first "Little Book of Whispers" a few months ago, at a time when the world seemed so loud that I just couldn't find those moments of stillness inside of me anymore.
What happens when we get overwhelmed by all the noises? The fears, the judgments and interruptions? When we drown in stories that are not our own? Where do the whispers go? Where do they hide?
At the time the world felt like such an emotional mess. I guess it still does. Inspiration got scared and flew away. The very idea of going into the studio and of being alone, in there, was paralyzing.
So what next? How do you get back on your path at such times? How do you reconnect to your soul and tune in to the whispers all over again? For me, quite unexpectedly, the answer came in the form of a book. More than a book really: an artist book, my "Little Book of Whispers".
This project... it seems like such a small thing. A quiet, fragile little thing. Perfect for catching whispers in its pages.
At the beginning I didn't know what was going to emerge. All I had was this bundle of left-over bits and pieces from previous projects, that I just couldn't throw away. That I cherished... Tiny discarded beauties I was hanging on to.
I kept looking at them, shuffling them... just playing. And at some point they started to feel like pages, and this is how it all began. It felt like there was a book right there in my hands. The possibility of a book.
Sometimes the simplest gesture is enough to get you moving and back on track. Inspiration was tiptoeing its way back to me and I decided to help it in any way I could, no matter the state of the world...
The blank canvas felt intimidating, but the idea of working on something small was reassuring. Trying a format I was not used to, a book, sparked my curiosity... I needed to shake things up, but in a gentle way. There was no blank page because I already had all the materials at the ready: I was not starting from scratch, but instead I was reconnecting with, and honoring, past projects that I loved.
I also created a nurturing environment that would help me show up and actually start creating again. Since the idea of going into the studio felt daunting, I set up a small table in the middle of our home: a little creative corner in our living room, where I wouldn't feel alone. I rediscovered the pleasure of those first years when I used to create at my kitchen table!
I had no idea what this new process would be like, but soon found that I could easily work with collage and journaling in tiny pockets of time. My art space was right there in front of me all day long, I just couldn't pretend it wasn't there, and soon it became familiar and inspiring again.
I had all my supplies at the ready, but above all I deliberately created an inspiring mess! I surrounded myself with all my favorite things: textures, symbols, objects, colors, materials, imagery... I call it my lovely chaos and it is truly the birthplace of my art.
I had no expectations but an intention: to tune back in to the whispers, welcome whatever was going to show up, follow whatever felt good, and just MAKE ART.
I started by building pages from all the gathered scraps of paper and fiber, putting things together intuitively, finding echoes between the materials and not worrying about what the book would actually be about. Then I picked out cut-out words from some favorite books, like tiny paper oracles... Intuitive writing naturally followed... Images met words serendipitously... All I had to do was follow the breadcrumbs...
And soon enough they led me back home.
Little Book of Whispers is a journey, a quiet one, a gentle one, born in little pockets of time amidst the roars of the world. A little bubble of stillness to reconnect with the not-so-loud part of ourselves and create beauty from this sacred and fragile inner place...
I have enjoyed this process so much, it has been so meaningful and delightful, that I've decided to share it and turn it into an online workshop: You can find out all the details and join the journey here:
A lovely group of creatives is gathering as I write: I couldn't be more thrilled and honored to walk this path together and I would love to have you with us!