[Note: the below is an excerpt from a feature I did with Canon UK, written by Lorna Dockerill. Please follow the link below to read the full article on their website.]

Author and illustrator Kia Marie Hunt shares how creative journaling can express your creativity and boost your mental health.

Letting your thoughts flow onto the page of a journal can be an inspiring creative release. But creative journaling is also a great way to reflect on how you’re feeling. Spending as little as 20 minutes a day journaling can boost your sense of wellbeing. Especially when you know it will only ever be seen by your eyes. And the really brilliant thing? Anyone can do it. There are no rules, only the paper in front of you ready to convey whatever you’re feeling that day. Whether that’s through words, drawings, collage, or printing out your own photos.

Author, illustrator and journaler Kia Marie Hunt is the creator of a series of kids’ activity journals, My Awesome Year. She also runs her own stationery store, and produces monthly journaling kits for her growing Journal Club community.

For Kia, this has been a lifelong creative outlet. “I used to say that I first got into journaling to record memories while travelling in South America,” she says. “But I’ve recently discovered loads of handmade journals from my childhood. Apparently I’ve always loved creative journaling – I just had to find my way back to it.”

Journaling is also a great way to get to know yourself, says Kia, who has 15.7k Instagram followers for her account @kia.creates and also runs the Instagram page @inspiringjournals. “As well as being a cathartic activity, having a journal as a space for pure expression, without expectations or limitations, is so liberating. You gradually get to know more about yourself every time you create,” she says.

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(Find out more about my work with Canon and working with me on brand collaborations)