Art Journaling with the Moon

Work with the healing power of the lunar cycles in a creative way

The Moon and You

You have an ancient relationship with the moon. It pulls on your heart and spirit as much as it pulls on the sea.

The phase and sign the moon is in at any given time can deeply affect your emotional well-being. You can work with the moon phases and moon signs to help you manage your emotions and relationships and to help you understand yourself better. 

The light aspects of the moon represent your intuition, dreams, and turning your ideas into reality.

The dark aspects of the moon represent your shadows or the hidden memories and beliefs you’ve buried in your subconscious mind.

The things you bury in your subconscious mind can include your fears or the emotions you find difficult to deal with like guilt, rage, shame, rejection, grief and loss. They can also include the shadow aspects of humanity and systems of oppression you’ve internalized like white supremacy, ableism, fat bias, sexism and the effects of capitalism and colonialism to name a few.

Working with the moon helps you access those hidden parts of yourself so they don’t pop up and influence you to act in ways you don’t want to act or say things you don’t want to say or make choices from the wounded parts of your past or the wounded parts of your culture’s past.

I started working with lunar cycles because as a highly sensitive person who grew up with trauma around adults who did not know how to emotionally care for themselves or teach me how to manage my own sensitivities I ended up needing a lot more emotional support as an adult than I could afford to access. At the time, I couldn’t afford private sessions with a therapist and there weren’t as many options available to me as there are now so I had to find alternatives. Nature became my spiritual and emotional support system and living aligned with the moon phases and signs helped me feed my heart and spirit in ways it just wasn’t getting fed otherwise.

One of the simplest ways to start working with the healing power of lunar cycles is to start an art journal and create a new art journal entry every time the moon enters a new phase.

Art journals are a perfect moon pairing because they naturally spark your creativity, help you listen to your intuition and help you explore what you are feeling or thinking. Your art journal is a private and personal space where you can dive into those challenging emotions that you don’t necessarily feel safe exploring with anyone else just yet.

You can work out what’s on your heart and mind. You can connect with Spirit and receive insight and messages. You can release heavy energy and emotions instead of burying them inside you. You can dream and plant seeds of intention on your journal pages. You can explore the steps you need to make to move forward in your life without committing to them yet. Not to mention, playing with color automatically shifts your mood and energy. Art journals are a gentle and fun way to heal and explore your spiritual powers.

When you pair all this up with working with the phases of the moon, it becomes a magical experience.

My Journey with the Moon

Seven years ago I thought it might be time to give up on my goals and dreams. My life exploded in a mess of chaos and pain. The book I worked so hard to write wasn’t selling. The business I started with my best friend fell apart – it was the second time a dream I tried to create with a best friend crashed and burned so I was devastated. My close inner circle of friends no longer felt safe. And to top it all off, I became severely and mysteriously ill.

Despite everything, something kept telling me not to give up on myself or my dreams. That inner voice wanted me to hang on and keep going. It wasn’t logical and I was afraid people would judge me or think I was stupid. Who would keep risking so much for dreams and goals that just didn’t seem to be panning out? But I couldn’t give up. It just didn’t feel right. I had to figure out how to be well again. I had to learn how to run a successful business doing what I love while living with a chronic illness. I just couldn’t let my dreams die.

So I kept going.

I had to start all over again.

I started listening to my instincts. I wanted to paint so I did that. I wanted to align myself with the moon more so I let myself be pulled in her direction.

I kept praying and doing moon rituals and setting new goals and intentions. Every new and full moon I spent time digging deeper into my wild creative nature. I used the moon as my mirror. I let it teach me about myself. I used the full moon to release all the emotional and energetic garbage I was carrying.

I’m a healer and an empath with a highly sensitive nervous system. I absorb a lot more information from my environment than most people. The regular full moon cleansings started to help me feel lighter, clearer and more energized.

Next, I would use the new moon to claim my worth and revisit my goals. I had a loud inner critic and after the setbacks I experienced I needed a lot of encouragement and a constant reminder to keep me focused. My new moon rituals gave this to me.

I fell deeper into the natural rhythms that support me. I started to feel vibrant and alive and aligned with the life force surrounding me. I came back to myself. My intuition strengthened and I started to know what steps to follow next.

Working with the phases of the moon in a creative way facilitates this kind of change. Each phase of the moon naturally takes you on an emotional and spiritual journey.

The waxing phases are when energy is building until it reaches its height at the full moon and the waning phases are when energy is slowly diminishing and drawing you inward until it reaches its deepest, darkest point at the balsamic and new moon.

If you’re interested in working with the moon in a creative way, I highly encourage you to find an art journal that inspires you and start creating a new journal entry every time the moon moves into a new phase.

If you don’t want to do it all your own  and you would prefer to join a community of fellow moon lovers and receive tips, tricks and journal prompts for each phase of the moon, I invite you to join my private Facebook community called ART JOURNALING WITH THE MOON FOR INTUITIVE HEALING

You are welcome to come and make creative moon magic with us. Whether you prefer to go it alone or join us, these are my suggestions on how to best use align with the moon in this creative way.

I work with eight moon phases. Each phase of the moon motivates you to explore different emotional and spiritual themes. I’ve created a summary of some of these themes here. Use this summary to help get started and remember; there are no rules – only suggestions!

The New Moon

The new moon is the darkest of the moon phases. I like to think of this phase as an empty garden plot filled with rich black dirt just waiting for me to plant a seed in. It is a time to go inward, be still and dream up what you next want to create in your life. You can help yourself get unstuck by using this time to get clear on what it is you really want, look forward, plan and think about what success means to you in all the different areas of your life.

During the New Moon, I like to create art journal pages around manifesting, getting clear on what it is I really want, looking forward, planning and thinking about what I want the next Moon Cycle to look like.

The New Moon is a perfect time to stretch your imagination so you can better conceptualize what is possible in your life. We have a tendency to not see our value or our worth and feel as if we don’t deserve all the love and abundance available to us and consequently we dream and/or think small.  I like to spend some time creating pages that explore themes of receiving and worthiness.

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the new moon phase include, setting new intentions, manifestation, planning, dreaming, imagination, receiving and worthiness.

The Waxing Crescent Moon

This moon phase is when a silver sliver of the moon begins to appear in the night sky. The moon is moving from being still and invisible to growing and coming into full power. I like to think of this phase as the time when the dream seeds I planted during the New Moon are just starting to form shoots or tiny roots. I might not be able to see my prayers being answered or my dreams manifesting but I can have faith that despite the limited capabilities of what my physical senses can pick up, Spirit is conspiring in my favor and there are invisible forces at work in my life helping me to grow, heal, evolve and create.

In my art rituals, this is the time when I’m meditating on the intentions I set during the New Moon. I’m revisiting my intentions and trying to call them up in my imagination again and trying to tap into the emotions those intentions evoke within me. I’m feeding my dreams with the power of my imagination and my emotions.

The waxing crescent is also a great time to explore themes around inner child healing in your art journal.

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the waxing crescent moon include meditation, imagination, creativity, joy, play, attachment wounds, trauma healing and healing inner child wounds.

The First Quarter Moon

Only half the moon seems to be lit up in the night sky during this moon phase. This is the phase in the creation cycle where there is a tendency to give up or doubt the process. Challenges or obstacles may come between you and your goals and your job is to remain committed despite whatever gets in the way. This is the time to observe your self-talk and heal whatever shadows surface. Make sure you are taking actions and making decisions from your Spirit and your inner wisdom rather than listening to your insecurities and doubt.

Emotional and spiritual themes you can explore in your art journal for the first quarter moon include themes around commitment, doubt, insecurities, body image, self-esteem, your inner critic, your passion, purpose and bigger reasons for being.

The Gibbous Moon

This moon phase is when the moon seems almost full. In the creation process, it’s a great time to clear any trapped emotions or energy so that all parts of you, even the hidden wounded subconscious parts, are on board with your goals. Some of those blocks include ancestral memories stored in your body, past life memories or energy and emotions you unconsciously absorbed from other people. You are most likely carrying subconscious beliefs or stories that are working against you so it is helpful to spend time in your art journal tending to those.

In my art rituals, this is the time when I’m thinking about whether or not my everyday life supports my New Moon intentions. What about my everyday life can be shifted or changed to better support the direction I hope I’m heading? Are there routines or habits I can begin that will better support my dreams and goals?

Themes you can explore in your art journal for the gibbous moon include, clearing ancestral memories, your family tree, past life memories, co-dependency, the heart chakra and daily habits and routines.

The Full Moon

This phase is when the moon is full and bright and round. This is a time of letting go and releasing. You might want to let go and release your goals to a higher power or you might want to work on releasing things in your life that are no longer helpful. The full moon can be like a nice big energetic cleansing where you forgive yourself and others, let go of grievances or surrender and trust. It’s also a great time to connect to Spirit and ask if there are any messages you need to receive regarding your goals or the direction you want your life to move in. Take a few sacred moments to find out if Spirit has any wisdom or advice to offer.

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the full moon include; surrender, trust, intuition, communicating with Spirit or your angels, the third eye chakra, the crown chakra, forgiveness, release and the energetic cleanse.

The Disseminating Moon

This phase is when the moon is just starting to become smaller.  It is a time to rest, relax and rejuvenate and move inward and focus on self.  This isn’t a time to start anything new. It’s a time to reflect. It’s a great time for expressing your devotion to Spirit and for presenting offerings to Spirit, your ancestors or the Earth. I like to use this phase to perform random acts of kindness or give back to my community in some way as a way of saying, “Thank you.” to Spirit.  It’s also a great time to show my gratitude to Mother Earth and all the ways She nurtures and supports you.

This is the time when I’m thinking about self-care as well as emotional and spiritual nourishment. Which emotional needs have gone unmet? Did I feed my Spirit what it needed or is it hungry for nature, stillness, play, creativity, passion, magic, wonder, depth, devotion, freedom or love?

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the disseminating moon include; spirit offerings, gratitude, giving back, ancestors, self-care, nature and acceptance.

The TheThird Quarter Moon

This phase is when the moon once again is half in light and half in shadow. To me, this symbolizes choices and decisions. Take time to consider the choices you make in your everyday life and how they impact you and your community. It also symbolizes seeing both sides of a story so finding ways to put yourself in the shoes of someone you disagree with at this time can help you gain wisdom or a perspective you had not considered before. It also a time to celebrate how far you’ve come, how much you do and how much you’ve grown.

In my art rituals, this is the time when I’m considering how I can deepen my relationship with myself. How can I better value what is important to me? How can I honor my feelings? How can I better trust my intuition? How can I mother my own heart? How can I better support my own dreams? Where do I need support and how can I reach out and ensure I am receiving it?

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the third quarter moon phase include looking inward, trusting your own path, inner compass, celebrating your emotional and spiritual growth, asking for help, choices, decisions and openness.

The Balsamic Moon

This phase is when the moon is once again a silver sliver in the sky. She is retreating and preparing to hide away in the darkness of the New Moon. This again is a time to move inward; to grow still and quiet and change the direction of your looking and to look within and trust your own wisdom and truth. Communing with Spirit and your deepest self is helpful during this phase.

I use this phase to make time to communicate with the angels and my Highest Self. I try to tune into the wisdom and support I carry within me. The veil between Spirit and my conscious mind is thinner at this time of the moon cycle so it eases communication and intuition. It’s also when I’m focusing on my intuition, paying attention to Spirit Signs, making notes of my sleeping dreams and communicating with Spirit.

It is a good time to address the shadow aspects of my personality and to get curious about what I have buried in my subconscious. Sometimes, when life is busy, I don’t have time to process the emotions and triggers that arise in my everyday life and in my relationships. This phase of the Moon is a good time to deal with whatever I didn’t have time to deal with earlier on in the moon cycle. Taking this time to make friends with my shadow before a new moon cycle begins helps me to be clearer and less influenced by my wounded parts as I make my New Moon intentions.

In my art rituals, this is also the time when I’m thinking about the strength and wisdom I find in my shadow side. There are so many parts of myself that I have suppressed in order to fit in and be loved. By pulling up the parts within me that have been repressed, I heal my wounds and learn to embrace and accept every precious part of my being. I pull up the places in me where I feel shame, guilt or fear and I ask Spirit to help me bring unconditional Love to these aspects of my being. Without my mistakes or shameful qualities, I am incomplete therefore I must embrace and love ALL parts of me – even the parts others could not show compassion or acceptance for. It’s also a good time to explore the shadow side of humanity as a whole.

Themes you can explore in your art journal during the balsamic moon phase include; intuition, spirit signs, dreams, synchronicity, subconscious healing, unconditional love, self-love, inner mother, shadow work, guilt, shame, fear, loss, grief, rage, dark mother, facing your own internalized oppression, racism, white supremacy, ableism, sexism, homophobia and the effects of colonialism and capitalism to name a few.

If you don’t want to explore these phases on your own, come join a community of creative magic makers and receive tips, tricks and journal prompts for each phase of the moon. To apply, click on this link and be directed to my private Facebook community called ART JOURNALING WITH THE MOON FOR INTUITIVE HEALING. You’ll be asked three simple questions and if you’re a good fit, you can join our circle of artists, healers, empaths and highly sensitive spirits.

Dana da Ponte




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