It has been kind of crazy lately and I haven’t had time to post in a while. In a few days it is Christmas Eve, which is the main celebration day here in Sweden. We are working but will have a quiet Christmas dinner in the evening. We will celebrate with family some days later. It feels quite ok. I sleep on call the night to Christmas Eve and will spend the morning on a date with myself, I guess I could call it an Artist Date. I will have breakfast on a café and spend some time art journaling. 

Right now the Get Messy Art Journal Community is in week three of Season of Gifts. Below are my first two weeks. I am using an A6-sized journal this time, made of wrapping supplies, inspired by a tutorial for this season made by The Drawing Board. I love the small size and feel that I can accomplish pages in the midst of the holiday buzz.


This above is Week 1, I had just received the Liquitex Muted Collection Inks, the colours are beautiful and I had to start to try them out. Here they are a little diluted. I am eager to use them more, and would love to have the Soft Body and Heavy Body acrylic sets too.


Week 2, I wanted to journal about one of my favourite Christmas Songs – Gläns över sjö och strand (Betlehems Stjärna), you can hear it in English here. When I listened to it and painted I was reminded of how my mum used to play this on the piano and sing, I thought that it was so beautiful and that she was so great at playing. I became warm inside and was thinking of angels. For me this song sparks joy and feel like I am floating in the air.


A while ago I got exciting mail. I have coveted the Get Messy x Malala Art Journal Magazine for a long time but the postage to Sweden is horrendous. A bunch of us European Get Messians got together and ordered it in bulk which was much cheaper. Anke was kind and coordinated the order and when she sent me my copy she also sent me a poster she has created. It truly made my day, I was bedridden with migraine so happy mail cheered me up. She hasn’t put this one up for sale on Etsy yet, but you’ll find other cool posters there.


Today I made some Batman wrapping paper with black gesso and a cut out stencil. I had to make the glitzy tag too. It will be used to wrap art material for a drawing- and Batman-loving little boy I know.


We had a Christmas Card swap with Get Messy – we each sent one Christmas card and if we wanted, an unfinished art journal page that the recipient will finish and send back. My card for Teresa took some time to finish, some of the elements are inspired mostly from our trip to Britain this year. You can see the inspiration below, for the dove I found reference on the web. This took a lot of sketching and erasing, I did the colouring with watercolour pencils and some Neocolor II’s. I love the process but it takes too long time in order to do it often. A smaller reprinted version became our Christmas Card this year. 

I choose to make a monocrome background for the art journal page collaboration. The drawing is a scanned version of a sketch found amongst an old friend’s estate. I received a lot of his sketches and reference material. He was quite old when he passed away and had a different style but I love to incorporate his stuff in my art journal as a way of remembering him. I can’t wait to see what Teresa will create of this art journal page. Begrundan means by the way to meditate or reflect. The card inspiration from top left – a medieval carved stone in Chester, a fallen tree on Öland, a manhole (not the right word) cover in Shrewsbury and a saucer at Jane’s Enchanted Tea Garden


I’ll end this post with two of my favourite songs right now:

Freddie Wadling was a Swedish, very special singer, that passed away this year. The song Ships from 1987 with the band Blue for Two I listen to over and over again these days.

I think many has forgotten this year’s winner of the Eurovision Song Contest – Jamala – or raged over that it had a somewhat political overtone -here she tells in her own words about the song 1944:

The title of the song is «1944». I wrote it in last year, but the origins of it are in my childhood. It’s inspired by story that my grand grandmother told me when I was small. The song is about the tragedy that happened to our family and all Crimean Tatar in 1944. I mean the deportation of Crimean Tatar people from Crimea to Central Asia, the crime made by Soviet government. They packed all people to the vans like beasts for a few weeks with no food and water. Those who couldn’t survive were thrown out and left lying on the ground. My grand grandmother lost one of her daughters as well. But “1944” concerns all people who had their own horrible tragedies in the past, such as Holocaust. We should always remember and never forget them to avoid like in the future. I want to deliver this message to as many people as possible.

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I love the song and I need it to remind myself that there are terrible things going on in the world and to feel some of the pain. Especially during Christmas when everybody is supposed to be happy.

Still I wish you a peaceful Christmas with lots of love.