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Hi Get Messians! Vanessa here. I am thrilled to announce that I have a new course with Get Messy that will be a year long course focusing on the calendar year. This month is a season of reflection and preparation for so many people and I hope that this lesson will help you do just that, to see the year from a bird’s eye view and help you as begin to prepare for 2018. My course will help walk you through grounding yourself in time, instead of watching the calendar pages fly by, next year. 

For this free lesson, we will make a Wheel of the Year. The wheel of the year is an eight-segment pie chart which represents the seasons and festivals that people in the past used to mark the passing of time. These festivals have been integrated into our daily lives and we now know them as Christmas, Easter, Halloween and even Valentine’s Day. Watch the video below as we will discuss how this evolution of time and the calendar came about.

The goal with this course will be to help you focus and be grounded in time each month during 2018. Today, we are going to prepare for the year by creating two wheels to represent our year. Our wheels will have 12 segments instead of eight, one segment for each month. Watch me create the basic template for the wheel in the video below and I will explain what we will do next.

Let’s get started on your wheel. The basic technique is to draw a circle and imagine it to be a clock face. Divide the clock by drawing a line from 12 to 6 and then a second line from 9 to 3. Add two lines to each quarter and the result will be a 12 segment wheel.

Now take out your art journals and repeat this wheel shape on two pages. You can choose to make the wheel any colour you want and with any medium.

For the first wheel

The segments of the wheel will be filled with what you would like to invite in for each month. Much like those who choose a word for their year, the idea here is to mediate on the year to come and to focus on one word per month. You can use other sources to help you find your words like quotes, psalms, music lyrics, oracle or tarot cards or even poetry books.

The idea is to be intentional and spend time thinking about the year ahead. You can write down your intentions, as I did, or you can doodle them, collage them, illustrate them. It’s really up to you. You can even use colours adapted to the different seasons.

For the second wheel

The sections of this second wheel are filled once the month is over. They are a record of what the month was like in reality. At the end of each month, spend a few minutes pondering the month that has passed and write a word, a quote or even illustrate what the month actually felt like for you.

It will be so interesting, at the end of the year, to compare both wheels and see what the differences are.

For both of these, the segments are filled according to your favorite medium and approach. For example it can be lettering or watercolour or collage. The point is to have two references: one with what we invite and hope for, the other depicting how our month played out in reality. To inspire you, here are some Wheels of the Year.

* The photos are examples of the pagan wheel of the year with the 8 festivals. Our wheels will have 12 segments.

Rituals is open for pre-sale starting today and is available for purchase until January 14th.  The first lesson of the course opens on January 1st and each monthly lesson will be released the 1st of each month. There will be a small, closed group of artists who walk through the year together in a private Facebook group. I hope you will join us as we art journal our year together in Rituals.

action steps

  • Meditate on the year to come and think of some of your intentions, one for each month.
  • Use any resource that calls to you: religious texts, tarot cards, poetry, music, quotes
  • Decide which medium you want to document these intentions with: writing them out, collage, watercolours, etc.
  • Create your wheels
  • Fill in one of them with your intentions
  • Be as creative as you would like and incorporate the colours of the seasons for example
  • Link this free lesson with your One Little Word if you participate in that with Ali Edwards
I hope you enjoyed taking the time to slow down this busy month and really meditate on what you hope 2018 brings. You can even do this exercise backwards and create a wheel for 2017 and see how each month played out for you and use that to create your 2018 wheel, for what you would like to grow more of and what you would like to change or eliminate.

Vanessa and rituals

Vanessa is an archaeologist and an artist. More and more, she has come to see her art journaling practice as a ritual. The Rituals class came out of a need for her to be more intentional in her art and more present in her art journal. Rituals is a year long project, a chance to set aside time to immerse ourselves into art journaling and to grow our practice while being grounded in the passage of time