Palimpsest: L palimpsestus fr. GK palimpsestos: scraped again, fr. palin + psen to rub or scrape: writing material (as a parchment or tablet) used one or more times after earlier writing has been erased.

I am obsessed with the journey and chronicling the journey. Everything we do is documented in some form or another; by ourselves, or the data trail we leave behind as we live our lives. We also tend to take notes and keep lists. I use small notebooks to keep tabs on the info flying at me each and every day, especially with a new situation or project. I create my to-do lists as the project develops, kept in the same notebook for a frame of reference. Then I finish my to-dos and what? I have a notebook with a massive amount of information of all kinds of interest interspersed with crossed-off to-do items.

It’s a mess, visually. But the information is too valuable to toss the notebook. So what are the options? Tear out pages­ – that only creates too large a spine and the possibility that one could lose all the incredible information/thoughts/ideas that might be on the backside of that specific page.

So to keep my eyes on the important data, I obliterate the annoying lists. And I have found that drawing and painting over those lists creates a wonderful space for smallish creative expression. A private, intimate, sketchbook or a secret note to oneself, not intended for exhibition or public display. They become filled with pages of whimsy with no editor or censor questioning why I am drawing that specific object or idea. These palimpsest notebooks become playgrounds with no rules or regulations.

In some I gesso the pages to better obliterate the tedious list or notes about deadlines or meetings. Others have a direct approach with ink and stick or water-soluble crayons, allowing for a looser style and the introduction of wet media. When the pigments bleed through the spine to other pages, great possibilities occur. In all cases, I keep myself loose and work fast, just wanting to cover those done items, in a sense, washing the slate of my brain clean to take on the next batch of tasks.

And yes, I am obsessed with Hagstones as well.

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