Nature and the Art of WRECKING!

What IS the art of wrecking, you might be asking yourself? Well, let me tell you…I have been asking myself that very same question over the last couple of months–after stumbling upon Keri Smith’s “Wreck This Journal.” After browsing the pages at a bookstore, and later returning to purchase Smith’s “How to be an Explorer of the World” (another highly recommended buy!), I decided that the “wrecking” activities in Smith’s journals could be PERFECTLY applied to artful explorations in nature (and the art classroom in general)!


Many, if not most art teachers have some sort of sketchbook for their students. These are often used for practice sketches, free draw activities, and notes. What if, instead (or along WITH) these sketchbooks, students had a Wreckbook for explorations? Once a week (or more) students would be given a prompt for one or two pages in their Wreckbook. This could be used for artful explorations in nature, or to just get creative juices flowing–maybe as a warm-up activity!

Here are a few pages from Smith’s book, complete with the prompts and one interpretation:

Some of her pages also provide more active prompts, such as taking your journal for a walk:

For the month of September, I will post about my attempts at creating and using “Wreckbooks” with my incredibly talented bunch of art students! Although I will be posting at random throughout the “Wreckbook” experience, September’s Nature Art Challenge (first week of September) will focus on exploring the natural environment through the art of journaling!

‘Til later…happy explorations!

*Note: No LIVING plants or animals will be harmed in the prompts for the “Wreckbook” experience 🙂

4 thoughts on “Nature and the Art of WRECKING!

  1. I’ve contemplated purchasing the Wreck This Journal book after I read another review of it. I realize that sometimes we need permission to discover new avenues of creativity in doing something that might normally be considered destructive like spilling coffee on a book. And it can be those seemingly unexpected and random acts that liberate us or give us a glimmer of an idea that can actually blossom into something really amazing! I look forward to hearing more about your sketchbook journaling!

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