Interviews

Junk Journal July: A Creativity Challenge

Journaler Meg Journals invites you to participate in this creativity activity

Without a doubt, sketchbooks are one of the most useful and rewarding tools any creative can have. Being alone with your pages lets you pour your ideas, experiences, plans for future projects, and many things more.

Meg Journals is an illustrator based in the UK whose love for journals goes way beyond the paper. We talked to her about her passion and Junk Journal July, a creative challenge you can participate throughout July.

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Meg Journals

When did you start journaling?

I was always a lover of words and art growing up, and kept piles of notebooks filled with doodles and thoughts. I discovered art journaling around 2010 whilst scrolling through blog feeds and Tumblr - it combined the two things I loved to do and allowed me to express myself creatively.

I went through many styles and types of journaling, and it wasn’t until late 2016 that I began to explore more and keep one consistently.

What do you find so appealing about journaling?

Keeping memories and documenting my life whilst having a creative outlet is what makes journaling so special to me. I can express myself without judgement, as there are no rules with art journaling.

I find it calming and a great way to de-stress after a long day. Sometimes when I’m feeling overwhelmed, I know I’m due an evening at my art desk with my journal and my favourite supplies whilst watching a TV show!

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Meg Journals
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Meg Journals

We really like your mix of collage, lettering and illustration. Would you like to tell us more about your personal style?

Thank you! Well, my personal style has been on quite the journey in the years I’ve been journaling. I think I’ve tried pretty much everything out there, from watercolour and acrylic paint to collage and plain ball point pen. For the past few years, I’ve really fallen in love with the junk journaling style. I use vintage papers and recycled papers from everyday life to make journals, and fill them with everyday ephemera and musings. Ultimately, my pages are filled with the things I love.

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Meg Journals

How many journals do you complete per year?

I’m often working in multiple journals at once, so I complete maybe 2 or 3 journals a year. I keep them on my bookshelves and love to look back on them.

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Meg Journals

Please tell us about the Junk Journal July challenge. When did it start? What we need to do to participate?

The Junk Journal July challenge is part of a biannual junk journaling challenge I started back in January 2019 (#JunkJournalJanuary), so this is the fourth time hosting! I’m a big advocate for people using what they have, so as long as you have a basic junk journal bound from papers you find at home, you’re good to go!

I upload tutorials to my YouTube channel to show people how to create their own and what they can do with their Junk journals. I really try to make sure it’s accessible for all, especially beginners. Each month I’ve run this, we always get such a supportive, enthusiastic community sharing what they’ve created each day. The challenge has 31 prompts to spark creativity in you each day, and posts are shared in the #junkjournaljuly hashtag on Instagram.

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Meg Journals

How did you come up with the prompts?

I try to think about what I can share with people through the prompts - perhaps they’ve never used a certain supply or considered a particular theme in their journal. It’s all about having fun and providing inspiration for creating something every day, no matter how small.

The prompts this year go beyond creative kickstarts. Each week, the prompts focus on a different area of junk journaling, like layouts or the basics elements of journaling.

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Meg Journals

Do you have any experiences or stories about the challenge you’d like to share?

The best part of this challenge is the community. Whether it’s people joining in who are new to journaling, or connecting with other junk journalers, being able to use my platform to foster this kind of connectivity is amazing, especially at a time like this!

Follow Meg on Instagram and check out her website to learn more about journaling.

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Meg Journals
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