For some reason, I’ve hit a DRY spell and haven’t written a personal post in MONTHS. I’m not sure why this is. I LOVE to write. Maybe it’s been a bit of the “busy year” syndrome … with lots of changes, things to do and, sadly, not enough hours in the day. Maybe it was feeling like there wasn’t anything I had to say that wasn’t already being expressed well by someone else. Some years are like that. Whatever it is … Jana, you’ve helped me to find my writing voice today. THANK you!

I’ve been thinking about this post for a while. And … there are so many ideas rolling around in my head it’s hard to tame them all. So … this ONE time … I give myself permission to write about it all. I can’t promise that it will leave you with ONE concise thought, as you walk away, but I can promise that you’ll walk away knowing me … just a LITTLE more! For better OR for worse. I JUST needed a LITTLE push, a conversation with @stevewclark about his NEW 53 Pencil, a little sharing of our “creations” with these cool tools and some JOYful INSPIRATION from my twitter friend @janaslindsay this morning! PHEW … thank GOODNESS for my AMAZING PLN.

Near the start of summer I FINALLY decided to give “sketchnoting” a try. Inspired by the AMAZING sketchnotes created by @langwitches and @Braddo over the past few years, and after doing some intensive research on my beloved Macbook Pro, I “borrowed” my husband’s iPad while he was at work one day. It was sitting there BEGGING me to “give it a go”! Now, to be fair, BEFORE you groan, I DID ask permission before I added the app!

Together, my husband and I spent that AWESOME Friday night just “mucking” around doodling side by side on the couch … with a Bamboo stylus we’d raced out and picked up, MINUTES before Best Buy was to close, after quickly deciding that if we were SERIOUS about giving it our BEST shot, fingers just WOULDN’T cut it!

Honestly, my goal was NOT to use this app as a drawing tool. My HOPE was to use it as a way to “tame” some of the professional reading I planned to do while off for the summer. My FIRST goal was to “master” printing as BEAUTIFULLY as @langwitches as I documented my learning and processed my thoughts.

This was playing with Bamboo Paper ... setting my goals! Not good ... but ... FUN!

This was playing with Bamboo Paper … setting my goals! Not good … but … FUN!

And THEN it happened. Oh oh. SO much for my “professional reading” and expanding my neuron connections while exploring the latest research in spelling and meta-cognition. Gulp. My need to “create” and “explore” and actually DRAW kicked in. I LOST myself in my art. THANKS, Grandma!

My mentor. My teacher. My inspiration. I miss her SO much. And … EVERY time I sit down and feel a WAVE of creativity hit me I can feel her WITH me even though it’s been TWELVE years since she passed. Spending my summers with her EVERY year from the time I could barely walk until I hit eighteen, I learned SO much from my amazing Grandma … right down to her LOVE of artistic creation.

Almost Done!

My first real attempt at using 53 Paper. It’s not finished … I see lots of things that still require some work. Playing with this app brought me JOY.

Never, in a MILLION years, did I EVER think “I want my OWN iPad” would come out of my mouth. There. I said it. I LOVE my Mac laptop. I’m on it EVERY day. 53 Paper changed that for me. Not only can I use it to document my learning … I can blend my love of sketching and drawing in with it as well. I have MILES to go before I become proficient. But, I can DEFINITELY tell you that they will be JOYful miles!

This is the start of a sketchnote documenting my learning around some reading I'm doing on the brain. I've used 53 Paper with an actual 53 Pencil ... and ... ALREADY I can see growth in my printing skills!

This is the start of a sketchnote documenting my learning around some reading I’m doing on the brain. I’ve used 53 Paper with an actual 53 Pencil … and … ALREADY I can see growth in my printing skills!

I have a LONG way to go. I DO know that 53 Paper, and its little friend Pencil, and I are going to have a LONG love affair. SORRY, Roger! THANK you for SHARING your iPad!

And, Grandma … I KNOW you’re there. You are there in EVERYTHING that I do. THANK you for being such a HUGE part of who I am and always WILL be. Thank you for your guidance, your LOVE and for being the AMAZING woman you were. (P.S. Your Great-Grandson has your passion for drawing TOO!)

2 thoughts on “Mentors

  1. You have me sitting here in awe… not only from your kind words, but the gorgeous images you have shared. You are not only passionate but talented. In words & actions. I am so fortunate to call you a friend.

    Thank you for sharing… I am excited to see where the technology & tools take you. I am but one mere individual on the sidelines cheering you on. Dry spells happen, but it is nice to know that you can always come back & your supports are there.

    Please continue to open up your talents for the world… to share so that I can learn alongside you. I have been exploring my skills as an artist as of late… the one area I always felt deficient. It is slow to come , but I feel my skills are really growing.

    I have added your blog to my must reads… keep on keeping on my friend. I am in your corner:)

    • Hi Jana!

      Thank you SO much … for your inspiration this morning, for being a “cheerleader” in my corner and for inspiring me past my dry spell! I thoroughly enjoy the conversations we have whenever we have the opportunity to connect and I, too, LOVE that you are a part of this awesome connected learning environment!

      You make me blush! Thanks SO much for your kinds words. I’ve always loved to draw although, sadly, I don’t make the time for it as often as I would like. Like blogging … the creative spirit needs to hit. What I absolutely LOVED about this 53 Paper app is that it is forgiving! There’s a “rewind” button that you don’t have the luxury of using when the oil or watercolours are spread across the dining room table! I love the “mess” of painting for “real” but it is TRULY rare for me to drag it all out.

      Do you have the 53 Paper app? I think you would LOVE it if you don’t already have it. If you are interested, I have a link my husband found of an AMAZING artist using it. He is UNbelievably talented! Isn’t it a BEAUTIFUL feeling to see the growth in your skills? I look forward to seeing your art some day too!

      Thank you SO much for adding my blog to your must reads … I hope not to disappoint with “dry spells”!!! 😉

      Cheers, Jana! I am blessed to know you and learn along side you! It has TRULY been a JOYful day because of you!

      Laurie 🙂

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