Illustrator and “Draw Your Day” author Samantha Dion Baker on a new way to express ourselves and how we see the world.
– KEYS SOULCARE
A lot of our favorite conversations revolve around ways to acknowledge, explore, and feed your inner worlds. And while journaling comes up often — both on our team and in conversation with our community — Samantha Dion Baker has us approaching it from a whole new perspective. As an illustrator, graphic designer, Draw Your Dayauthor, and sketchbook journaling aficionado, Baker proves that doodling can be a powerful thing.
Here’s our chat about journaling through the eyes of an artist — and why it might be just the thing for you.
How do you view journaling as a way for us to tune into our minds and our spirits?
Journaling in whatever form — whether it’s writing, drawing, or a combination — helps us to go inward and reflect. It helps us form stories about our lives and the world around us. I find it especially important when things seem so unstable and unknown. It’s a way to tune everything out and just center and focus ourselves. I like the idea of going inward, and then seeing what comes out.
What was the inspiration behind your book, Draw Your Day, and forthcoming Draw Your World?
It happened organically. I think I realized that when we only write, we’re sort of digging inwards to write words and they come out. But when we think about how we’re going to draw something, we see the world through a new lens. We don’t just look “at” — we look all around.
I would add that visual art is my preference because for me, words don’t come as easily. Drawing is how I more comfortably express my thoughts and feelings. I’ve sometimes wondered [if] a simple drawing isn’t as profound as written words, but it’s amazing how much the practice says in the long run about patience, observation, our choices, and growth — both as artists and as noticers of life.
That sounds freeing — but also a bit intimidating! How might someone who’s not a trained artist approach that?
You don’t have to draw things literally. Drawing can be doodles, squiggles, and lines. It can be playing with how you draw your words, making splashes of color or stick figures.
What are a few prompts that we can all use to get journaling, especially as we continue through a new year?
Sometimes, it’s easier to think of lists. Lists spark ideas! What stood out from a past season or time? What do you want to do differently? Things like that. Focus on the present moment, on what’s happening right now in your immediate environment. For example, what do you see every day as you work at home? What scenes [do] you notice from a certain window? Draw and write about that.
What materials do you think or would you recommend that people have on hand to support times they’re struck with inspiration to sketch?
This is such a good question! I think that when you stick something in your bag or in your pocket, there’s like an intention that you’ll use it. I’d suggest something light and easy — a pencil is my favorite tool. One of the best things about them is, obviously, that you can erase them. A big eraser, a pen, and any book that you like. Some like lines, so that it’s easier to write alongside what you draw.
What’s your highest vision for what your work does for people?
I feel very strongly that we’re all artists, and that anything is art. And so I hope that even though my drawings are practiced, and I’ve been making art for literally my entire life, that doesn’t mean that you and everyone else aren’t artists as well. I hope that my work inspires people to hone into their inner artist and [back] to their childhood, when many of us were absolutely free-feeling about attempting to make art of all kinds.
When do you feel most inspired to journal about your day?