Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Irreverent And Un Frou-Frou? Meet Art Journalling Artist Leslie Herger

Excited today to introduce Leslie Herger.  

Everybody meet Leslie, Leslie meet Everybody ...

I've cut back on my social media a lot since starting school.  You'll notice I haven't loaded up a new video since last year.  

I'm a lot quieter on Twitter and Facebook than before.  I also update my blog less.  I used to update 5 days a week but lately it's been 2 or 3.  

More when I'm on school break.

I've been blogging for a long long time.  

I think I started back in 1999 on a now defunct and gone "diary" website.  I map my ideas out in a Field Notes notebook I take everywhere with me.  

Usually I scrawl out an outline while I'm on the go.  Once I have an idea down I am able to type it out pretty quickly.  One of the many positive things about doing this for so long is that I type very fast.

As for the blog being content crammed, I lose interest in stuff if it lacks content.  I decided that was going to be content crammed with the stuff I like and find relevant.  

So the content of my blog is very personal to me.

I review the pens, pencils, brushes, paper, stuff I am using right now.  I know that it doesn't appeal to everyone, but I figure that if it appeals to me, it will appeal to at least one other person out there.

  • I started Art Journalling after watching your videos.  You say things like "Here's the deal. The Secret.  All you need to art journal is a pen and a journal."  You don't do B.S. Video's Without Too Much Bullshit.  Why not?

Ugh.  B.S. is the bane of the art journalling world.  It waters down the actual usefulness of what an art journal is and can be.  When we interject a lot of B.S. laced jargon into the conversation it obscures the very usefulness of the tool which we proclaim to hold on high.  And frankly, I don't worship my art journal.

My art journal is a tool for me to explore myself and engage my brain.  Yes, I like all the pretty things.  I think they can add to an established practice, but they can also allow the user to avoid doing the important work in a journal.

If we're always creating cathartically we're not exploring why we're creating.
I think we have to put out there that first and foremost, art journalling is only as complicated as the user makes it, and it really doesn't have to be complicated.

It's a tool and we need to use it see Art Habit.

  • People like your videos.  I have watched most of yours.  Some of my favourites are -

Art Journalling Technique Preparing a Junk Journal:

How I Use Shiny Duct Tape In My Art Journal:

Art Bull Sheet Validation I Am An Artist Because I Say So:

Art Journal Idea: Personal Ephemera And Other Stuff:

  • Are you sometimes surprised which one's are most popular? 

Honestly, I don't pay attention to how popular my videos are.  

I answer questions as they come up but I stopped tracking their popularity after a year or so.  

I enjoy that people enjoy them.  I enjoy answering art questions for people.  I like to demystify art. The actual popularity or lack of isn't something I worry about.

I think your style is content-driven, honest, irreverent and un-Frou Frou.  Which makes you stand out from the crowd.  Have I got you sussed or have I had too much coffee?

That's pretty much it.  I came to art journalling as a former art teacher stuck in a corporate job.  I'm not in this to make a buck.  If people buy my zines or my handmade books that's great.  It helps me pay for school.

I have no interest in creating a mixed media art journalling mega class empire.

I run a class every now and then at an affordable rate because I enjoy doing it not so I can take a month long vacation or move to Central America.

  • Highlights

I've met (Online and Off) some really amazing people.  Men and women who have used the power of their art journal in general to heal and take their lives to the next level.  People really amaze me.

  • Lowlights?

I've gotten a little harassment on my blog and YT for being out, my weight, having short hair, and crooked teeth.

The comment on my teeth actually got me to go and see an Orthodontist.  I've been putting it off for years because the last time I saw one I was told I needed surgery on my jaw.  

However dental tech. has come so far I've been able to get the work done with retainers and braces.  That isn't to suggest it didn't suck, because it did.

  • Plug for current projects:

Buy my zines!  I have a third issue coming out soon here and here

I put up a lot of art on my etsy shop as well Etsy Shop here

If you haven't seen my art journalling site check it out art journaling ning

As always people can find my blog at comfortable shoes studio 

Or find me on Facebook Comfortable Shoes Studio Facebook

If you are interested in gardening, coffee, EDC and other non-art journalling related stuff, you can check out my other blog "The Other Stuff" about all that other stuff here

artshecried thanks Leslie Herger for answering the best questions I could come up with.  

Thanks also for providing the international 
halo-effect for people writing a blog at their kitchen table in Johnsonville Wellington New Zealand.

artshecried is a big fan.  Check out Leslie's sites. 
You will want to quit your job and make journals every day.  Or at least ring in sick a bit more often..


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Daisy, I appreciate that. I had good material to work with :P

  2. Stunning interview. Really good. And a good interviewee as well. Less inspired me from when I first started journaling.

    1. Thanks Natasha :-D I was rapt when she agreed to the interview. There is everything about the way she teaches and communicates that makes art journalling accessible to everyone.

  3. Love your whole down-to-earth, to the bones, way of approaching art journaling. Thanks Less!

    1. Agree. Thanks for commenting Kristina W :-> She is awesome.

  4. Wonderful interview! I have the privilege of calling Leslie a friend and she is a generous and supportive person with not only her time and energy but knowledge.

    1. Jazmin A, could not agree more :-) She is all that, for sure. I have sent her a few questions over the years (to CSS and her Ning site) and was amazed that not only did she answer my questions but she was pretty quick too.

  5. Good interview and you started me journaling 2years ago and it has helped me along the way. Thanks again Less for that and for I hope counting me as a friend?....

    1. Love that Leslie started your art journalling adventure :->> Thanks for taking the time to read the interview Sheryl Pond.