Three ways I’m tracking my creative development

This year I’m being more deliberate about tracking my learnings as I work. Here’s the little system I’m using. Three books:

1.) The “Gathering book” is for hashing out ideas for colour palettes, for recording things I’m curious about, capturing stuff I’m learning and the results of experiments, trying out new drawing materials and marks on a small format, making notes about ideas, and more. Sort of a no-judgement and doesn’t-need-to-be-successful brainstorm spot.

2.) The “artwork reviews” book is helping me to ring-fence my critiquing and keep it out of my art-making. Play/ create first, critique later! I print a photo of a painting that feels almost finished and I go through a template of review questions I’ve created for myself, and keep notes of my answers. This guides me as I make final edits and complete the painting.

3.) The “what I love” book is a spot for capturing peak moments in a painting that I love, as well as recording general things I’m realizing I really love. This is so I can be more conscious about bringing more of that into my work process or the resulting paintings. A lovely side effect is that it tends to result in more of this in my life in general!

I type most of my notes in a large font because my vision is too poor for easily reading my own handwriting. I could just keep these as digital books I guess, but I much prefer actual physical books I can hold and flip through afterwards.