Friday, May 2, 2014

Bring Back Our Daughters Art journal Page

It's been a week since we returned from our great adventure, and I'm beginning to catch up - though I still have a ton of blogs to visit and emails to return.

Here's the Do-Re-Mi clip from the movie, "The Sound of Music," so you can see where these different locations figured in the musical!

As I was creating this collage, and thinking about how special this time was with my daughters, I was also listening to the news about the more than 200 Nigerian high school girls kidnapped this week, and how their government is doing next to nothing to find them. 

I can only imagine the anguish of their mothers, sisters, aunts, and friends.  Why is the world so quiet about this?  I was always taught to take a stand against injustice.  Being a quiet bystander is antithetical to all I have been brought up to believe.  But what to do....

I had one of the circle journals open on my work-table (alas - it is the last one I get to work on.  I have loved this collaboration so much!).  I started painting - drawing a line up and down the page - remembering some of what I learned in Jane Davies' workshop - and letting the line take on a life of its own - thinking of the path of these girls - how they were off to take high school exams when their lives abruptly turned course - thinking of how the paths of their families have abruptly changed too.  I thought about the places they might be hidden, the mystery of the forest, which had become the landscape of fear and dread.  I stamped lots of circles with different caps - could they be here?  Could they be there?  My page evolved.  
I opened up my April stencils from Stencil Club, which had arrived while we were away on our trip and which I hadn't used yet.  This month, they are designed by Carolyn Dube - who created gorgeous images for us to work from.  The large clock seemed perfect to symbolize the time ticking away for these girls, and the agonizing minutes their loved ones are enduring.  I used the letters to represent their names - I don't know them, will never know them, but they each have a name and I wanted to acknowledge that somehow.
I created a silhouette from a picture in a magazine ad of an African woman in profile, and line her up along the page.   I had the windows stenciled already on some tags (using the Doors & Windows Stencil), and cut them out and adhered them.  I imagine the anxious parents looking out of the windows for their children.
I punched some circles from a gelli print - I loved the way the purple worked with the warm colors already on the page.  And finally, this beautiful quote from Herbert Hoover:  "Freedom is the open window through which pours the sunlight of the human spirit."

May these girls be freed.  May all people all over the world be free to pursue their education, to live lives without fear.  Please sign this petition if you are so moved.

Here is a video of my process:

For my daughters - for all daughters everywhere. Linking to Art Journal Every Day, Paint Party Friday, and Art Journal Journey (Circles).

Your comments make me so happy and let me know you were here. I read and treasure every comment and will happily answer any questions as soon as I can.

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  1. love the photos Jessica, such a special time. The news is terrible re the kidnapped girls, am sure this has happened before if my memory serves me right. Love your new journal page. Happy PPF and have a great weekend, Annette x

  2. So sad about the girls in Nigeria, I had not heard, but it doesn't surprise me with all that goes on in Africa and how devalued women seem to be, sad, sad, sad. I love your journal page, but I loved it as a painting before you did anything else to it.....would make a great huge canvas. xox

  3. Your colorful journal pages are super.
    Thank you for sharing the happy photos of your daughters...
    it is beyond imagining what the Nigerian families are going through...
    Peace * Love and Light to all

  4. My favourite song featured here from The Sound of Music. Fun photos! Fortunate you! I think you have taken more trips in 2013-2014, than I ever have in my whole life!

    I enjoyed seeing your process and the thought and symbolism behind it! I especially liked the piece when it was a free line drawing/painting, before the collaging. That looked like a lot of fun. Gorgeous layers and colours!

    The world is fortunate to have an ethical person like you in it!

  5. Wonderful pages dear Jessica...
    I love your open heart to this sad, horrible ongoing in Africa!
    I am shure with your art you can help them.
    Gorgeous impressions of your daughters!

    In my heart the african girls have you as a kind of mother as well...

    Thank you for sharing all this with us at AJJ - thank you for the video!
    Thank you that YOU are YOU!

  6. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and making this beautiful peace. We will never know the girls that disappeared, the only thing we can do is hope for them and there mothers.
    I just pinned your page and made a new board for it, called Important. This will be a board to remind us of all the people that suffer in our world.

  7. This is one of the most poignant posts I've read in a long time, as well as the touching artwork that you made for it. I really believe it's important as artists to give meaning to our work and use it for the betterment of the society. Blessings!

    PS - I love your daughters' shots and am so glad you shared the lovely experience you had with them.

  8. Jessica,
    How fun and heartwarming are your photo memories of your daughters- so happy that you share them with us!
    Your pages are such a beautiful spread and I agree that this would be a lovely canvas- a beautiful piece to come out of such a sad story. My hopes and prayers go out to the families as well as the girls. blessings to you Jessica ")

  9. Great post. It is important to spread the word about the girls. I like it when you weave these stories together.

  10. What a beautiful way to bring attention to the plight of these poor girls. I really hope the petitions will cause some kind of action to be taken to find and free these girls. Loved seeing you at work in your video ♥

  11. All I can say is thank you for being you. Activist, artist. Great way to spread this word. I keep trying to sign this petition but seem to run in to errors. I shall keep trying.

  12. Thank you, Jessica, for this most informative and meaningful post. The news of the Nigerian girls had not reached me. My TV is blank, awaiting a new lamp, and I subscribe digitally to the newspaper. If it was in our paper I missed it. My heart aches for all the young women whose lives have been sabotaged. Your art is beautiful.

  13. So sad about the things going on with the Nigerian young women...hope they can stop those horrible situiations soon! I so enjoy watching your page come to life! Your art is so wonderful <3 and such a touching theme this time <3 ♥ Conny
    Piaroms Art Journaling

  14. This is so beautiful and moving, and the procession of heads gives it such a haunting look.

  15. Exquisite art work, love it. It's interesting and strong in colours and message.

  16. Beautiful pages with wonderful colors. Thank you for sharing the story. :)

  17. LOVE your artwork and photos dealing with such a horrible sad. The sentiment and windows are perfect! Beautiful girls too!

  18. Thank you for this stunning art on a terrifying current event. I really enjoyed the youtube video documenting the process. I just loved it.

  19. Those silhouettes are wonderful. Thank you for sharing your process. Sometimes we can do something such as physically help someone, or send money and sometimes we need to create something that shows how we feel. Lovely work

  20. Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting this. I am more of a lurker on your blog but this is such an important issue, and I really, really appreciate you shedding light. Not to mention, it's a GREAT page.
    In solidarity,

  21. Thank you for creating artwork with such meaning behind it and bringing attention to this story! Beautiful artwork!

  22. Beautiful work, and for a good cause - there is a petition running over here, too. Valerie

  23. Touching sentiment Jessica...I have signed the petition. Your artwork is absolutely gorgeous and the message too.

  24. Jessica my Best friend posted the same question with an article on her facebook we have all been wondering why so much frivolous news when something this horrific has happened!! Your are is a powerful creative force with depth..... We can only pray more attention is brought to such a serious issue...

    Hugs and Prayers!

  25. Wonderful piece on a terrible event. Thank you for bringing more attention to this atrocity.

  26. the whole world has gone crazy. I guess it always has been we just hear it more now. What is WRONG with people?
    Your art shows your feelings

  27. Jessica, this is so beautiful and I've liked and shared it so many times on FB but today's the first day I'm getting the full process you had. Hugs to you, my friend. I am so glad you have put out A Call to Art and so many of us are getting involved... what a great way to do SOMETHING.


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