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On Journaling

Keeping a journal/sketchbook has always been important to me.


From the moment I began AyC, I decided to keep a notebook with me at all times. I've now filled about ten notebooks and they all document my designs and thoughts over the years. I've looked back at them many times and find them to be quite useful, some more than others.


I was deliberate about the type of notebook I used. At the beginning, everything had to be a red floppy Moleskin. Now I use anything that inspires me.


I was particular about my writing utensil. I started with a pencil, moved on to a black fountain pen, and now I'm back to a mechanical pencil but this time with an ultra-thin lead (0.3mm). Using such a thin lead allows me to draw with more accuracy and detail.


I was mindful of the content that I put into my sketchbooks. Most often, anything I wrote was strictly about jewelry and jewelry business. After reading some of those thoughts, I decided to assign a separate notebook to recording my thoughts and keeping another notebook strictly for designs. This separation allows me to fully explore my feelings in one place and then have another notebook that will always inspire me.


I am careful to record my progress. Having these notebooks is a constant reminder of where it all began and where I was a year from now. I can see my successes and failures in my own writing and better evaluate my next moves. But it also serves as a reminder, we all start somewhere.


I wanted something to cherish. Have you ever read a journal from your grandparent and thought, "wow, this is an extension of me and it feels incredibly special to have this." Maybe my notebooks will get lost, but maybe some of them will fall into the hands of future family members. When I came upon my grandparents' journals, they directly shaped how I wanted to create and I was inspired to grow in my own way.


In a world where everything is digital, doing the designing and writing by hand is rewarding and satisfying.


To finding your own methods,

Caitlin