Sketchbook Archives // 1 by Kellyn Bowler

Clearing up old dusty books and files reminds me that a lot has happened between now and then, even when it feels like it was only yesterday that I painted those pages or snapped that picture, found my closest friends or moved away from home. Finding old gems take you back to worlds that once were and show you how far you've come. I hope to upload an ongoing series of posts giving little insights to my sketchbooks which are my process in my work and life. 

I have journaled all through school but only started filling personal sketchbooks to the brim with drawings and paintings in university. They are messy and if you looked through them, you can usually find my grocery list or a song lyric along with a sketch. They're my life books, just filled with thoughts and the beginnings of ideas. I will forever be the one to pair my macbook with real pen and paper. I'm a paper hoarder and will always want to bring ideas to some sort of physicality, out of my head and onto a page that I can hold. Under my bed are boxes filled with books, journals, old photos and cards, magazines and scraps of paper that I just can't let go of- the physical foundations of new worlds of that are right now just ideas with potential. 

Perceive // 1 by Kellyn Bowler

To perceive is to 'become aware or conscious of [something]; come to realise or understand' or 'interpret or regard [something or someone] in a particular way.' I think it's important to understand how you perceive the world and also, why. How you perceive yourself will be the root of your life.  

A series I've wanted to create ever since I bought my own camera is to document the people I meet and share a little of what I've come to realise through them. We're all taught by those around us and I'm thankful for the people I have in my life. They are what ground me and inspire me all at once. 

I owe these great people in this post my apologies and my thanks, I took these photos way back before Christmas for a project at work (think Humans of New York, but for Queen's University) which never aired but I have always wanted to capture shots like these for my own work.

Meet Jeremy and Mathilde! On fridays during term, we volunteered together at a Belfast cafe run by the Presbyterian chaplaincy called Cafe Grace. Both international students, Jeremy is from Banff, Canada and Mathilde is from Bordeaux, France. On fridays, I felt cultured. Courage and a joy for life's opportunities were evident in every conversation with them. You would never see Mathilde without a smile. I found out quickly that she loves an adventure.


I was lucky enough to have a day off placement this year and I loved spending it making coffee (with a lot of help) and meeting people for a few hours. It doesn't seem like much, but it was a valuable day for me. Somehow, I didn't know of Tim Keller before Jeremy. Spiritual gold. I have a pretty big reading to do list now. Jeremy has soaked up a lot of wisdom; he's one of those types of people who has open ears and helps you know yourself a little bit better. What is even more evident is Jeremy's seeking to know God more and more, a journey he shares in all sincerity with those around him. Seek and you will find.

I loved wrapping up each week in service, reflection and fellowship and I'm glad to carry forward how I've learned from my time at the cafe.  


"The more you take, the less you have
'Cause it's you in the mirror that's starin' back
Quick to let go, slow to react
Be more heart and less attack

Ever growing, steadfast
And if need be, the one that's in the gap
Be the never turning back
Twice the heart any man could have

Be the wheels not the track
Be the wanderer that's coming back
Leave the past right where it's at
Be more heart and less attack"


M O R E  H E A R T ,  L E S S  A T T A C K


Tiga-Mures by Kellyn Bowler

I love how change is so inevitable. It's also something I hate sometimes... but ultimately change is the only way to growth. It's so daunting but exciting all at the same time. I am in a eternal state of change and so is the world. Change is the only true constant. 

Last year I got an opportunity that completely altered my perceptions. After months of team meetings and a lot of prayer, 12 of us went on a two week mission trip to Romania. Honestly not somewhere I was planning to go, but the unexpected opportunities often bring the greatest things.

We took each day as it came, and without much provoking we were led to more and more opportunities. I met people from all walks of life, living in situations I could never imagine. I met people who slept on dirt floors and had nothing to call their own. I don't think I really knew what having nothing really meant. It made me feel like the smallest person in the world. You know about these situations and you hear of the countless people that live in them but until you experience it you never really know. I have several faces forever engraved in my mind. It completely grounded my heart. 

My team. They carried me closer to Christ. Eight of our team stayed with a Pastor and his family and we were so loved by them. Their new church had a faith and connection with us that brought each of us on the team to a new level in faith.   

My whole experience sparked a new perspective in my life. We can learn and know anything, but until we experience it, we remain the same. 


Horizons - 1.8.14 by Kellyn Bowler

It's the middle of the summer and I have a week to breathe a little. So much has happened and I'm so looking forward to the opportunities coming up soon. The future is wide open and I want to focus, and grab it with everything I've got. 

I am going to make the commitment to post regular blogs about my projects, developments and travels. Instagram is such a great outlet for quick updates, and I am addicted. This space will hopefully help me go deeper. 

You may have to bare with me for a while as I get the hang of it. This is new and scary but so exciting.

Let's go!