Ain't No Ninny

Where Creativity and Everyday Life Collide

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O Tannenbaum…

This afternoon I was supposed to decorate our tree.  It is a tall narrow artificial tree that fits into our small living room. I’ve used the same decorations for years and I like how it looks when it is done.  A little commercial and neat; a little sloppy; a little fun; maybe a little under-done.

Xmas Tree

But today I just wasn’t feeling like decorating that tree!  (The photo is from 2013).  I wanted to work in my holiday art journal so, for the third day in a row, I procrastinated and headed to my craft room instead.

I had a narrow piece of green scrapbook paper bound into my handmade journal, so I decided to work on that.  The prompt for my weekly art journal group,,  was ‘Doodle’.  Now, I’m not into formal doodle techniques like Zentangle although I do mindless doodling that is similar if I have a lot of time and/or large areas in which to doodle.  Most of the time, for me, doodle means to goof around and scribble and draw and make marks.  My doodling is pretty messy . . . as is my lettering.

Hmmm, what to doodle?  Since my bare Christmas tree has been on my mind, I decided to ‘doodle’ a tree.  I drew a very loosey-goosey tree on the paper with a Micron pen and ‘doodled’ ornaments for it.  The tree made me think of the German song “O, Tannenbaum” (“Oh, Christmas Tree”, to us) so I wrote the first line of the song in German and the next line in English over the top of the Christmas tree with its ornaments.  The tree looked very wimpy at that time and the letters got lost.  To correct that, I filled the block letters in with an 08 black Micron pen and then colored the ornaments with various colored souffle & glaze pens.  I then went over the circular pattern in the paper in green and added white accents, cranberry garland, and dangles at the top of the page.  Done!


The tree is narrow, like mine.  It is a little messy; a little neat; a little fun; a little under-done.  Just like mine.  Do I wish I had the time, patience, and hand-control to doodle something spectacular on the page?  Sure.  But I don’t . . . and I refuse to fuss about it.  I’m okay with my page just as it is.   And I still decorated a tree, didn’t I?

I enjoyed playing in my holiday art journal today.  I hope you found the time to play creatively today, too!


Art Doodle Love in the Afternoon

Okay, this morning was busy.  No time for ‘morning pages’.  So I spent  a little more than 30 minutes this afternoon doodling in my Art Doodle Love journal.  What I love about this journal is that there are ready-made backgrounds and prompts, if you care to follow them, on each double-page spread.  That really helps when you just wish to play and not spend time creating a background on which to doodle or create.

Here are pages 26 and 27 as I opened to them in the journal.  There were a bunch of pink streaks and yellow and pink splotches.  The prompt on the top of page 26 says “What do you see within these ink splotches and drips?  Doodle from them and around them.”  Since I had limited time available, that’s just what I did.

(Double click on the photos to see them better.)


What I saw in the streaks and drips were trees and flowers and little woodland creatures.  So, using a Micron .05 pen, some water-soluble colored pencils, and Tombow dual end markers, I doodled quickly and intuitively.


When I had done most of the doodling, I created lines on the right side of page 27 because I knew I wanted some kind of lettering there.  I googled ‘trees quote’ and came up with this one from Minnie Aumonier: “There is music in the trees in our garden but we must quiet our hearts to hear it.”  I used some whimsical lettering to write out the quote and painted in the cirlces with various color of Tombow markers.  I did this all within the 43 minutes of one episode of True Blood that I streamed from Amazon and that included actually watching most of the show.

This won’t win any art awards but it certainly was an act of Art Doodle Love in the afternoon!  It got my creative juices flowing. I hope you do something creative today too.

p.s. I actually liked the trees better before I colored them in with Tombow markers.  I started with tiny little individual leaves in various colors of colored pencils.  I should have left them that way.  My inner critic speaks. 🙂

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Doodle Do

Sometimes I really want to journal in my art journal, not just create art.  Maybe just speak my thoughts in writing.  Doodle them.  Scribble them.  Therein comes a new art journal called “Art Doodle Love: A Journal of Self-Discovery” by Dawn Sokol. (Find it here on Amazon: )

This journal contains journaling prompts and many already colored/designed pages so all you have to do is write, doodle, paint, or scribble in them using any type of art media you wish.   I got this for those times when I want to do something easy while watching TV or spending a few moments outside or in a coffee shop but I don’t want to take my whole arsenal of art supplies with me.  It’s a perfect size to fit in a purse or a tote.  The provided prompts (which you don’t have to use if you choose not to) give you inspiration on where to start if your Muse has left you for a cabana boy at the Jersey Shore.

I received this journal just two days ago and read the introductory pages.  On pages 20-21 it said to write out your intentions for the journal.  I did that in gel pen, then I over-journaled them and doodled across what I wrote.  These are my very first artsy pages in the journal and were based around two items that were sitting on my desk at the time:  1) a label from a piece of fruit I had just eaten and 2) my young kitty Misty (as opposed to my older kitty Cookie).  I used a black Fude pen, a white Signo Broad pen, an 05 Micro pen in black, and several colors of Tombow pens (to color the doodles).

ArtDoodleLove - Intention 21 ArtDoodleLove - Intentions 20-21

What creative thing have you done today?