I know 2022 is behind us and that it’s all new-year-resolutions-that-you-won’t-actually-follow-through-on right now, but I have to plug a series of YouTube videos from December. Crafters Luise Heinzl (Junk Journal Art) and Barbara (49dragonflies) did a daily series for twenty-five days in December 2022 called Dephemerember in which they made “ephemera” for their junk/art journals.

According to my American Heritage dictionary (5th ed.), ephemera is “printed matter of passing interest.” Tickets, receipts, junk mail, theater programs, and newspapers are all examples. Those who make junk journals consider most paper items as ephemera, so postage stamps, envelopes, paper bags, and gift tags all qualify, too.

This owl that folds into an envelope is one of Luise’s many creative ideas.

While Dephemerember was a December challenge, it was not holiday-themed, so you can watch these videos any time. Each day they had three prompts: two from a written list of techniques and structures they wanted to make (see below), and the third from a card showing the animal to focus on for the day. You can get free copies of the list and the cards here.

While I do some junk journaling myself, I mostly watch these videos for entertainment. The amount of work Luise puts into her journal ephemera is astonishing. I can’t believe how many layers she includes, but it does explain why her journals look so rich. Barbara is fearless, experimenting with new techniques and materials on a piece that already has lots of time invested in it. They both carefully explain how they are achieving their effects so viewers can try their techniques themselves and their inventive and creative projects are guaranteed to spark new ideas.

Barbara makes a journaling card to tuck into an envelope. The bird on the card peeks out of the junk mail envelope’s window.

2022 was the second year these two artists did this challenge. I watched their videos in 2021 as well, and they were just as good. I was particularly inspired when they made ephemera, like designing their own playing cards or making tickets by hand. The main difference between 2021 and 2022 is the amount of structure they added to the challenge, having a theme as well as prompts, and adding international snacks.

To honor their world-wide audience in 2022, Barbara and Luise tasted various treats from the different countries their viewers live in. They had one snack a day from one of fifteen countries. They described and rated the foods they were trying, and it was particularly entertaining to watch them try new and unusual foods. Luise’s reaction to Pop Rocks was quite funny.

You can find all of Barbara and Luise’s Dephemerember videos in the following playlists:
Dephemerember 2022: Barbara (49dragonflies) playlist
Dephemerember 2022: Luise Heinzl (Junk Journal Art) playlist
Dephemerember 2021: Barbara (49dragonflies) playlist
Dephemerember 2021: Luise Heinzl (Junk Journal Art) playlist

Who do you watch for entertainment and inspiration?

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