Sprout creation: behind the scenes

Sprout magazine is my heart on the page. Lub-dub. Lub-dub. Feel the beat?

My contributors and I pour out our vulnerability and strength through word and image (which I believe must co-exist: vulnerability and strength. We are tough & tender, timid & true, a gorgeous blending of messy miracle. And so are you!).

One of my favorite tasks on my get-to-do list each month is creating Sprout backgrounds. Did you know I paint them before digitizing? Yep, Sprout backgrounds are based on real juicy painted pages, dripping with color and soul. We may be a digital publication, but we are anything but cold and distant. I've always wanted Sprout to be a living, breathing, perfectly imperfect creation--a vibrant collection of color and image, including my literally painted-by-hand pages and handwritten notes (then photographed or otherwise transformed into the final product).

Why is this handcrafted element important to me? Beyond mirroring my original dream (many moons ago, when Sprout first came to me as a pen-and-ink vision in my preteens, long before the idea drifted back to me with fresh digital possibility) . . . creative expression has always been a lifesaver for me. A respite. A release.

After creative spilling, I am always buoyed. Lifted. Carried. Emptied. Filled. Creative expression cracks me open and lets Grace in.

This is why creative encouragement will always be at the heart of Sprout magazine. It saves me. And I believe it can save you, too.

When did you last speak through colorsplash or inkscratch? When did you last let yourself play, swirling paints or tearing paper? Bring your heart and soul to the page (or canvas or camera or notebook--where or how doesn't matter; it's the doing that counts, the process that brings healing). I dare you to let your creativity out today . . . no matter how small, timid, or uncertain it may be. What do you have to lose? What peace or joy might you gain? (And while you're at it, friend, post your creative play on Instagram and join our #sproutmag pool! Your capture may appear in an upcoming issue. Find more details here.)

with love & splatters of paint,
Amanda {Sprout creator, editor,
& chief gatherer of good}

PS: The colorful backgrounds you see in process here, in the collage above? You're peeking at Sprout: Savor in the making. We release on October 15 . . . a vibrant, life-affirming celebration of every blessed breath we take. Your life is worth savoring. Subscribe today and your first issue will arrive October 15!