Live a Creative Life: 40 Lessons on How to Embrace Creativity in Your Life

There is no right or wrong way to live a Creative Life, but there are many lessons to learn on the way no matter what kind of creativity you want to infuse your life with. I’m walking that road most every day, and since I recently became 40 (gasp!) I thought I’d share a few lessons on how I have embraced creativity in the last 12 years or so.

I’m hoping that my list will help you embrace creativity in what ever form it may come, and to live a more creative life in some way or other. Maybe it will give you ideas on art or craft projects to try? Maybe you will jump up and start a blog of your own? I credit my blog for a lot of the creativity in my life. I had a lot of fun writing this list for you guys, so I hope you’ll find it useful.

Live a Creative Life - 40 LESSONS on living a Creative Life written by blogger, artist and awesome iHanna

Continue reading

Posted in A Creative Life, My Philosophy | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

Big Magic – Creative Living Beyond Fear

I’ve finally read the book I longed so much for last year. I read about it long before it was published, and started seeing quotes from it a few months before I could source it out in a local book shop here in Sweden and bring it with me home.

Big magic Creative Living Beyond Fear Of course I’m talking about the book Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, written by my favorite author Elizabeth Gilbert. I love reading about the creative process and how our brain works in mysterious ways. But really, what is creativity? Gilbert says:

Creativity is a crushing chore and a glorious mystery. The work wants to be made, and it wants to be made through you.

She encourages us to embrace it, when it comes easy to us and when it’s hard. But she doesn’t really explain it because she is okay with creativity being a mystery. I found many nuggets of wisdom in this book, as is evident by the many quotes I’ve shared. There is plenty of encouragement and good advice for creatives in this book, like a crash course to embracing your urge to create, but maybe it wasn’t the masterpiece I’d expected. I’m not sure it was because I wasn’t in the right moood, or if my huge expectations for this book stood in the way.

But I’m not saying it’s not worth reading, it absolutely is a must-read, at least if you’re aspiring to do anything creative with your life… I’m just saying I had too many preconceived ideas of what it would be about, and how it would have the power to change my life… But it didn’t, probably because I already am living a very creative life. The permission slip that this book is wasn’t what I longed for…

Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Art Journal Peek: Being An Artist on the Page

My idea of feminism is self-determination, and it’s very open-ended: every woman has the right to become herself, and do whatever she needs to do.
Ani DiFranco

Art Journal Peek: an artist on the page

As an artist on the page you’re like a human on the job. You show up. You do your stuff. You work on becoming yourself, in what ever way you can. You mix your paints, wash your brushes, do your duty as an artist. You show up. Right?

Or you slack of. Watch too much TV, sleep in late, doze of in front of the news.

It’s a choice you get to make every day, as they say…
Continue reading

Posted in Art journaling | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

I Love Transparent Pen Pouches

What’s on my Pink Polka Dot Desk these days I guess you’re asking right now? Well, I am delighted you asked because that’s just what I wanted to share today! But most of all, I want to talk about pen storage a bit, and show you the kind of transparent pen pouches I prefer. Come on over, wanna sit with me at my work desk for a while and have a coffee?

on my polka dot table

I’ve always got at least two notebooks and a few pens out on my desk, but most of the time the surface is covered with paper piles and not as pretty and styled as it is here. I don’t have a good system for sorting papers yet, but I’ve got my pens under control. Most of the time. Well, sometimes.

Those of you who’ve been around for a while might remember the revamp of the desk? I am still a fan of the desk and keep adding polka dots to my environment…

Polka dots can’t stay alone. When we obliterate nature and our bodies with polka dots, we become part of the unity of our environments. Yayoi Kusama

Isn’t pens a bit like polka dots? You don’t really feel good with just one. You need at least a dosen to make it through the day. Or at least I do.

Continue reading

Posted in A Creative Life, Home Comforts, Pretty things | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Art Journal Peek: Love Mandala

The treasures I find within are magic. And they do come out in art, so that they can be shared more easily. And there are endless treasures to be found, when we take the time to look… Each peek into my own art journal, here or in real life as I browse through an older volume, reveals so much about me. Can you see it? My tender heart, my fear, and my love.

Art journal spread by iHanna: a love mandala and me

The joy I feel when I paint…

Continue reading

Posted in A Creative Life, Art journaling | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

A miniature blank book in a tiny box

I love making miniature blank books to use as journals, give as gifts and to play in. I have made these little books for several years. I add in a lot of pages, so it is hard to share all of them in photos, and that’s why I haven’t always shared them. I should make a video flipping through a finished miniature blank book or one that I’ve already filled with art, don’t you agree?

But first let’s start today with a look at a blank book that fits in a tiny paper box…

A miniature blank book for my mom - stored in a tiny box by iHanna - Copyright Hanna Andersson

I thought I’d start with this cute mini notebook that I made to fit in a tiny palm-sized box that I already had on hand. I made it as a gift for my mom last year, so a lot of the pages are blue (her favorite color)… Continue reading

Posted in Notebooks, Paper Crafting | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

Make Handmade Postcards and join the Spring Swap

It is really fun to make handmade postcards, don’t you agree?

You can paint, collage, do textile art, mixed media, embroider them, sew on paper, draw or doodle. The possibilities are endless. If you haven’t tried yet and don’t want to take my word for it, I suggest you make a few and see for yourself… You’ll see how easy and fun it is to create your own handmade postcards.

Working on a small little piece of paper and then sending it out into the world… It is super rewarding, and something totally different than painting in an sketchbook or art journal. Especially when you get handmade postcards back in the mail – oh the joy! But if your family and friends don’t send you handmade postcards back, that’s no fun! Then I think you should join my swap right now. Then you’ll get a bunch of postcards back for sure!

DIY Postcard Swap Spring 2016

I’ve been making handmade postcards for years now, and each year I host an international Do it Yourself Postcard Swap here on the blog. If you feel like expanding your art practice a bit I think you should join us for the Spring Swap 2016!

Sign up for the DIY Postcard Swap today

How to Make Postcards for the Swap

You can create postcards in any theme and size, it’s all up to you how you chose to DIY them – just make something that makes you happy! Some are beginners at this mixed media thing, others are working artists. You make 10 postcards and they should be finished by the end of April, so you’ge to plenty of time to work on them.

You can Sign Up until the 1st of May 2016, but the sooner you start creating postcards the more relaxed you’ll be making them. You will receive your 10 international or national addresses shortly after that date, and then please try to have them in the mail shortly after that. If you sign up and haven’t gotten an e-mailfrom me by the 3d of May – please first check your spam folder, your paypal e-mail address – and then contact me. Here are the important dates, write them down in your calendar:

Sing up before 1 May 2016
Your Postcards Should be read to send 3 May 2016
Send your postcards no later than 6 May 2016

If you don’t want to join today you can join anytime during April. Bookmark or add an image from this post to Pinterest so you’ll remember to come back. Or join later in the fall when I will host another swap just like this one.

If you want to join today just read the rules and find loads of inspiration on the Information Page All About the iHanna DIY Postcard Swap and sign up from there. See you there! #diypostcardswap #mailart4thewin

Continue reading

Posted in A Creative Life, Mail bliss | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Repurposing an Old Embroidery

I am working on a fun Easter Project right now. I started it a bit late but I wanted to share it with you because it is so vibrant and eastery! This project is all about repurposing an Old Embroidery that someone else made – one that I found on a table of second hand free stuff at The Embroidery Guild Annual Meeting last year. It was left by everyone else – so I thought I should take it home and do something with it, and now I am!

I think it would’ve been sad to see it thrown away…

Easter Embroidery: Before I cut it Up (detail)

The reason I wanted to do something new with it because I didn’t like all the brown that was the background of the original cross stitch embroidery…

Continue reading

Posted in Embroidery, Fabric & Sewing, Fabric Art, Recycle and reuse | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Art Journal | A Visual Feast for the Eyes

An art journal should be a visual feast for the eyes. When you open it up, it should bring you happiness and a few surprises, even when it’s your own journal!

When I look through my old art journals it’s like going to a great exhibition. They often make my heart flutter a bit. They make me happy because I’ve included things that really make my heart sing. The more I create the more I recognize what things and techniques makes me most happy and I add more of that…

A Visual Feast for the Eyes - created by iHanna

To get that visual fest, for myself, I need to work with collage, doodles, patterns, bright and happy colors. I need to mix things up a lot, so I don’t get bored with one color or one technique. I love adding a bit too much. I love exaggerations and colors that pop. I love when the pages feel like they’ve got something to say. That’s when I find myself on the page.

It’s been a while since I shared one of my regular art journal peeks, so I’ve got a lot to share. Let’s start with this doodely watercolor spread today…

Continue reading

Posted in Art journaling | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

DIY Fabric Scarf for Spring

Imagination is more important than knowledge.
Albert Einstein

Sewing a fabric scarf is such a simple project that I hadn’t thought of making one myself… They’re so cheap and availible in every cloth store so why would one bother, right? But then I found this super happy and bright fabric in the fabric store that gave me cravings. I really wanted it, but didn’t know how I could justify buying it without a purpose. I’ve done that many times before, and some of those pretty fabrics are still in my stash – untouched and sad. But then my mom suggested I could sew a scarf from the fabric – and I was all like:

– What what what?

You can do that? Why didn’t I think of that before? What a fab idea, I’m gonna do it.

DIY Sewing project for beginners: FABRIC SCARF for spring

The first fabric is a sunshine yellow fabric with really a really light pink flamingo print. To brighten it up even more I bought a pom-pom ribbon in fluorescent orange, and added that to the bottom of the scarf in two rows.

DIY Sewing project for beginners: fabric shawl for spring made by @ihanna

Continue reading

Posted in Fabric & Sewing | Tagged , , | 7 Comments