Finding a New Path to Self-Expression by Putting Pen to Paper

February 20, 2024
Alyssa Rossen

Raleigh, North Carolina, United States

Class of 2024

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On Friday, BBYO teens took part in LEADs Day and traveled across Orlando for a variety of activities ranging from sports to guest speakers to food tours. My LEADs day was called Ink Your Thoughts: Art Journaling Workshop. Here’s a recap of this incredible program!

We took a short bus ride to a local congregation and were met by the artist leading our track, Joanne Fink. Joanne is an artist, author, and member of the local Jewish community. She “aims to teach strategies to be mindful and get in the zone.” Joanne says that everyone’s concept of art is different, and art journaling is no exception. Our art could have words, but it didn’t have to. Here are some examples of Joanne’s artwork!

At each seat, there was a packet of practice pages, a journal with different types of paper, and a variety of art supplies. 

The supplies in the page protector are a pipette, a water brush, a colored pencil, metallic paint, and three types of pens. Joanne recommended that we start with the Micron pen as it’s one of her favorites for the first activity, patterning. 

To start patterns, Joanne had us draw a bunch of lines of varying distances from each other to make spaces for each design on the page. We learned 3 different basic patterns: “4 lines and a circle,” triangles, and arches. Each one starts out very basic, but she gave us examples of ways to enhance our patterns, including filling in shapes, adding echoes, or using color. Here are some examples of patterns that teens created!

After a quick lunch break, we returned to our seats, learned some different types of lettering, and practiced putting our patterning to use.

Joanne spoke to us as we created our final pieces of art and gave us some advice on whether we wanted to continue art journaling in the future. Her best advice was this: “One difference between amateur and professional artists is not that professionals don’t make mistakes, but that they can use their mistakes to create something new.” Overall, it was a relaxing and meaningful program that we all enjoyed!

Alyssa is a BBG from Shaina BBG in Raleigh, NC, and she has held a sloth twice!

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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