Episode 382 of the CMP, a Creativity Matters Podcast — a few days doing a quadrant journal, a la Lynda Barry, and the story of a billboard
In this episode of the CMP, a billboard spotted on a recent drive, and the dominoes sequence of events that happened before that. When thinking about keeping a Quadrant Diary, all of these details filter into either the “saw” or “did” lists. And, ultimately, one of the moments gets either a small illustration (a la Syllabus) or a larger illustration (a la Making Comics). Some thoughts on the Quadrant Diary process, the challenge of putting oneself into the drawing and getting out from behind your eyeballs and seeing yourself instead as part of the scene.
Keeping this kind of journal can be rewarding, inspiring, and fulfilling. Every time I use this format, I feel a sense of reawakening. I come out of the stupor that often finds me shifting from non-stop work into a ten-minute drive in which I don’t notice anything at all. With the Quadrant Diary in mind, I look, I see, I try to lock the details in my memory for later in the day, and I appreciate the simple things I see. I always find I am especially attuned to color and pattern in this process.
Near the end of this show, you’ll hear me talk about the importance of finding your own footing with the process. It is okay to adapt the format and to make it work for you. Unless you are taking a class and/or getting a grade, it’s really okay to use Lynda Barry’s directions in the way that works best for you.
(By the way — I mention problems with my phone. I have replaced the phone. The issues that week were so bad that there was no alternative. The fact that I had such trouble finding the phone that day in the car had a lot to do though with what I decided about color!)
Mentioned in this Episode (or Related)
- Making Comics
- Episode 264: Quadrant Diary (an older show and lots of links to Lynda Barry info/articles/etc.)
- 4-Panel Diary (some tips and perspective from me)
A note on materials: you can, of course, use any pen or your favorite pen to do your Quadrant Diary pages. But if you’re doing a Lynda Barry deep-dive, you might want to feel really official and use some of the tools she recommends or requires in her books. You’ll find a few other tools listed, but these options will get you started: composition books, Paper Mate Flair pens (black), and uni-ball Vision Rollerball Pens (black).
- Guitar music: Nicholai Heidlas on SoundCloud
- Creativity Matters Group at Facebook
- Patreon page
- oamyoamy at Instagram
- Try Creative Bug with the Living a More Creative Life: 30 Ways in 30 Days class
- Try Trello
A note about Trello: I’m feeling really productive with my reading and my “To Read” list this year using Trello. I use Trello for other things, including tracking my 50 Before 50 list, but I am finding new book lover’s peace this year with Trello boards set up to help me keep track of books I want to read, Kindle books I snag on a deal, books I hear about in groups or on other podcasts, and then the books I actually am reading or listening to. If you haven’t tried Trello, you should! (It’s free!)