This summer I taught a class called “Visual Storytelling,” a mixed media class based on a wonderful book about journal writing—Storycatcher: Making Sense of Our Lives through the Power and Practice of Story by Christina Baldwin. Baldwin’s idea is that “story opens up the space between people.” So armed with that thought and the knowledge (as a former writing instructor) that many people find writing intimidating, I designed a class that was visual. The end result was an altered book.
In one class, it is difficult to tell what impact art or the visual process had either on the storytelling or the sharing process, but I think perhaps the art made both more successful and meaningful. Focusing on the visual process seemed to make it easier to reflect on our own personal stories. And sharing what we created had a bit of magic as well; it helped open us to others in the class.
These are pages from a couple students who graciously allowed me to share. None of the books are completely finished, but neither are our stories.