A place for stories

Book of Days

A place for stories


Sometimes we hold stories in our heart that beg for a place to be told. Sometimes they don’t seem to make much sense at all… and who says they should? Can't we just let them out and tell them in our own unique way?

Today I'm opening my journal at a very special page, one that has offered me some unexpected gifts and has led me on a journey of courage and new beginnings. I created it last year just before having surgery: nothing to worry about, it all went really well, but still, the days leading up to it were stressful and I'm glad I had my journal as an outlet.

"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page - Laly Mille

I wasn't in a place where I could really focus for more than a few minutes at a time or relax very much. What dominated were thoughts about life, its fragility and the fierceness of my love for it. Gratitude and respect for my body, wishes for healing and comfort. Fear, of course. And resistance. Change and transformation. Wholeness. Vulnerability. The need to let go and count on others to take care of me and watch over me.

Courage. Trust. Love

"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page - Laly Mille

I needed a starting point, as I was really not in a mood to face the blank page. So I found a spread that already had a layer of leftover paint from one of my local live classes. I didn't "choose" these colors as they were from the palette of one of my students, but the red attracted me. The truth is that red is the color I am least comfortable with, and one that I rarely ever use.

But it suddenly felt right.

"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page - Laly Mille

So I went through my stash of collage materials and gathered whatever I could find in this color. Needless to say, I didn't find much to work with, but that was actually a good thing because in my experience, having limited options is one of the best ways to keep moving and not get stuck. I added a layer of collage over the paint, then added the few images I had found, wondering what would emerge from there. At least it was enough to get me started and dive into the fun part of adding paint, inks and words to bring all these seemingly mismatched elements together.


Eventually, a story did emerge, like a mysterious, ancient tale that doesn't need to be interpreted or explained, but simply is. And I'm ok with that. What emerged on the page was, as usual, exactly what needed to be expressed and what I needed to receive, in a strange, imperfect yet perfect way.

"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page by Laly Mille

This page that was created at a rather chaotic time, eventually held more wisdom and possibility than I could have imagined, because it sparked the desire to explore red and challenge my fear of it at a larger scale and create a painting on canvas!

And this desire led me to another, even more fearless idea... why not do it on camera as part of a class? Why not record this personal challenge and share it? What if it inspired others to rise to their own creative challenges too? Art journaling has been such a gift in my practice as an artist, such an endless source of inspiration, and I suddenly felt ready to share it: this is how my online class The Artist & the Journal came to be...

"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page - Laly Mille. From page to canvas
"The Whole Story" Mixed media painting - Laly Mille
I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable, beautiful and afraid of nothing, as though I had wings.
— Mary Oliver
"The Whole Story" Art Journal Page - Laly Mille


What is the bravest step you've taken to grow your art lately?

Let me know in a comment below!

And if you are longing to open your wings in brave, beautiful ways, embrace your art and joyfully flutter into new territory, then I would love to be your guide in

the artist & the journal


Light & Love,


The Artist & the Journal online class with Laly Mille - https://www.lalymille.com/artistjournal


A unique art journaling and mixed media painting journey to grow your artist wings and take the leap from page to canvas...

More pages from my journal