On October 15th, I fell off my bike and fell on my right elbow, hurting the tendons around the articulation as well as down my forearm. This is my dominant arm and suddenly I couldn’t use it. It was swollen and painful, I couldn’t keep it straight nor could I bend it more than 90 degrees. Suddenly, I had to stop all my projects and watch Netflix and not do anything.

So, in perfect Vanessa style and thanks to friends who planted the seed in my head, I made an art journal about it. I often claim the Chariot card as a perfect illustration of myself. I ride hard and fast on my chariot but when I fall off, I fall really hard and for a long time.

This journal is the one I found at the Niki de St-Phale exhibit, It is tine and absolutely magical. It was perfect for this project. Because everything hurt, I make one page a day, sometimes using my left hand, sometimes just going very slow with my right.

I used collage and ink. I used all my personal symbols, played with archetypes and images that speak to me and of me.


What I love about this journal is that it has all these tip-ins and flaps. So many possibilities, places to hide secrets. It feels so intimate. The themes that carry through are time, patience, shadow, learning, pride and recovery.

But also rabbit energy (nervous fear), dark thoughts and mental anguish brought on by physical hardship.

Documenting my physiotherapy.

Lots of bones, phases and cycles.

Evolution and transformation.


And yes, the Chariot card. This one is from The tarot of the Vampyre.

I alsolutely loved making this journal. It has inspired me to carry on in another journal. this one will hold more shadow work. this work as initiated during my recovery from this injury but it is long term work, not something that really ends.

Tell me: do you have a journal just for this purpose?