Ritual: an act or a series of acts regularly repeated.

Rituals is about more intention, thoughtfulness, and awareness in your year. Rituals is for you if you feel like time has passed so quickly that you’re not sure where it went. You just know you need to make some changes or the rest of the year will pass in another blink. And between blinks, you still wouldn’t have made that art that you feel is in your deepest of deeps.

Rituals is about making that deep art. It’s taking the next level in your art. It’s taking action to focus on your art, be intentional about it, and grounding yourself in time.

Do you want to look back at your time and say, “I was intentional in my days and my art?”

Do you want to feel like you really worked at bringing forth the art that has been waiting to come out?

Do you want an art journal filled with art made with depth that only you can create?

Vanessa is a prolific artist who specialises in creating thought-provoking, deep piece of art, that happen to look great. Vanessa, who we call Queen V around these parts, is an artist who has an almost magical ability to bring out that depth in other artists.

Although, as you know, there is no magic over here. We’re very practical around here.

In Rituals, Vanessa turns her magic into action steps.

These action steps were written for you.

Every month the course explores a theme directly related to that month’s season according to the solar and lunar calendar. Each month you will be lead through an art technique and/or medium that will help you meditate on the theme and to immerse yourself in this place and time to help you slow down the ticking calendar.

When you join Rituals you will receive immediate access to the 12 months of content. You can start at the beginning or you can start in the current month and let your Rituals practice flow through the next 12 months. You can work at your own pace, but we encourage you to work with the group on a lesson each month for accountability and community. You have lifetime access to the course so you can schedule to work through the 12 lessons as best works for you.

“I have gained so much insight to my inner thoughts and been braver than ever with recording them. I particularly like that the lessons are based on seasonal celebrations and events. Even though I am from the southern hemisphere and the seasons are backwards, I have found a way to interpret them.

I have definitely delved deeper into my art practice than ever before, and experimented with new techniques and interpreted them in my own way. The lessons give me the inspiration to explore and play.

I am more excited about working on this class than any other I am currently involved in.

Vanessa’s teaching style is so easy to understand, and gives me the freedom and inspiration to interpret the ideas in my own way. I love her simple processes, and exploration of new mediums.”

Tanyalee Kahler, Graphic designer, artist, and Brush Magazine editor

Your teacher

Vanessa Oliver-Lloyd


Vanessa is an archaeologist and an artist. More and more, she has come to see her art journaling practice as a ritual. The Rituals class came out of a need for her to be more intentional in her art and more present in her art journal. Rituals is a year long project, a chance to set aside time to immerse ourselves into art journaling and to grow our practice while being grounded in the passage of time.

“I often feel overwhelmed that things are moving too fast and before I know it the year has almost finished! The Rituals class is giving me the chance to reflect on what is happening in my life and to plant the seeds for the things I want to create. It feels very empowering to ground the vision I have of my life within the pages of my art journal.

I love how each month we are using different materials and techniques. This has greatly expanded my art practice in terms of the range of possibilities for expressing myself. I tend to get comfortable with my favourite supplies so this is a wonderful challenge and is really expanding my horizons. I also feel that the expressive quality of my art practice is deepening through the exploration of the different themes each month. We are looking at quite deep and personal areas of our lives and the ability to reflect and then translate this into art is more valuable to me than any technique. I love this dual approach of learning new techniques alongside the deeper themes we are exploring each month.

I love the fact that it is a year long because this is like a container for something to happen over time. There was an initial buzz of excitement, which has settled into a rich groove of exploration. Some months it has been easier to make my pages than others. This past month, for example, I have been travelling a lot and I am not sure if I will be able to do my pages before the new month begins. Here too, the fact that it is a year-long journey brings a level of relaxation. I can take my time and catch up over the coming month.

I love the way there are specific steps that we can follow when creating our page and yet at the same time Vanessa is constantly encouraging us to follow what feels good to us and to make the process our own.”

– Divyam Chaya Bernstein, Writer, cartoonist, and art journaler

Lesson Plan

Planning + Reflection

Using a wheel of the year


January - NEW

Technique: Stitching

February - LOVE

Technique: Charcoal Self-Portraits


Technique: Intuitive Painting


Technique: Collage Layers


Technique: Stencils


Technique: Water Soluble Media


Technique: Gold Leaf

August - HARVEST

Technique: Botanical Dyeing

September - RENEWAL

Technique: Peel and Reveal

October - Heritage

Technique: Vintage Photos and Gelatin Plate Prints


Technique: Journaling

December - CLOSURE

Technique: Color Blocking


“The Rituals class has helped me take time each month to center myself and reflect on both the past four weeks and where I want to be in the future. Rather than quickly putting together a page without any thought, I have learned the joy of slowly creating, taking the time to think about each spread and what it means to me. Vanessa’s use of new mediums and techniques each month have also challenged me and introduced me to new art techniques I wouldn’t have thought to use in my art journal before. It’s a practice I look forward to every month and it has helped me stay grounded as I struggle to establish roots in a new country.”

– Moriah Costa, Financial journalist and artist

In the class


year-long workshop

one theme per month to focus on in your art journal

themes are based on the the festivals celebrated that month

one technique or medium tutorial per month

two art journal spread tutorials per month

one spread explores the solar aspects of the theme (light, positive)

one spread explores the lunar aspects of the theme (shadows, challenges)

unlimited access to the private classroom forever

email reminders when new lessons are live each month

By the end of 2019 you will have:

one completed Rituals art journal with 24 spreads, two for each month

two bonus spreads which are the Wheel of the Year introductory lesson

explored new techniques and mediums

been intentional in your work and art

documented your year

created connections with like-minded artists

Community + direct access to the teacher

A private club in our forums for community and sharing of work done in the class, as well as a private Facebook group.

A supportive community and the chance to grow your art journaling practice.

“If I take my time and really put thought and effort into the pages, my art is so much better than I thought it was. It’s still a long way from where I want to be someday, but I think often the answer is just to be more patient and allow for the process to take time! Also, that I can express myself well with all sorts of media but some come more easily to me than others.

I have found that the pages sometimes take time and it’s important to go deeper to really express what I want to say. I never did this in art journaling, at least not to this extent. A part of me was always saying “hey but this is just for you and there are six more prompts this week and like a hundred from previous seasons that you never did, so who cares?”. So I would put the work down when it got uncomfortable or I didn’t feel an immediate connection to the prompt. With only two spreads per month, I have been going a lot deeper and pushing past uncomfortable and that has helped me tremendously.

People keep asking me about motivation recently for some reason and my answer is always the same – I may not be motivated in that bubbly excited way, because that takes a lot of energy I don’t feel I have. It’s more that if I really connect to a task or a plan, or in this case a class, I have a sort of quiet determination that I will keep up and make it a priority whenever that is possible among the other priority issues (work, university, boyfriend, etc.). So, I’m still absolutely into the class! I’m a month behind – just finishing up April’s spreads and it’s the end of May, but knowing that it’s only two spreads per month also doesn’t make falling behind seem as scary or daunting.”

– Judith H, University student and artist 

“The biggest thing I have taken away from Rituals so far this year is that when I make the time to really connect with myself and my creativity, and have courage to delve a little into the unknown, I feel stronger and more whole. I love what I have created so far and it is unique to me. You know when there is something you really want to do, but it is a bit scary, like walking in the dark when you worry what you might walk into? Well for me, taking the Rituals class, is about being brave, following my heart, but with the support and guidance of someone who I admire and trust and alongside other students who share the journey. For me, Rituals class is about creating from the core of me.

A year of having Vanessa as my teacher was never daunting for me, I knew that she had created the class to be manageable and I wanted to make that commitment to myself. Six months in, and I am still as enthusiastic. I’m actually a month behind, and that’s totally ok too. I am a university student, a mother, an employee and an art journaler and I’m human. I’ll be having my catch up in the semester break and I can hardly wait !!! Plus I have lifetime access so I can do it all again next year if I choose.”

– Emily Doddrell, University student and artist

Student art

Pssst: You could be making art like this…

Do Get Messy members receive a discount?

YES. If you’re a Messian you can find your $20 off coupon on the Dashboard.

If you’d like to join Get Messy before enrolling in Rituals in order to snag that coupon, you can join over here.

What format do I receive the class in?

Upon purchase, you will be redirected to create a login for the private site. You can choose your own username and password. If you already have a login for this site, please use that so all of your content is accessible to you under one username.

Do I have to start on a specific date?

No, this is a self-paced class.

This class revolves around the months of the year but just like a diet, you don’t need to wait to January to start. 

You start when you are ready and work according to your own rhythm. You can binge the entire year. You can join on the corresponding month. It’s all up to you and your creative habits.

Each month you will receive an email at the beginning of the month to remind you to log into the course and watch the tutorials.

What do I need for this class?

Each lesson or technique will recommend supplies, but generally the most important part of this class is to be intentional in your art journal each month. Using the supplies you currently have is all you need to get started.

Why is this class not part of Get Messy?

This class is a deep dive into art making. Where Get Messy is all about nurturing your art habit, Rituals is about deepening your skills.

This class is aimed at those who already have an art habit and would like to make art that stretches them. 

How long do I have access to this class?

As this is a premium class, class access does not expire and is not linked to your Get Messy membership.

Can I contact the teacher if I have questions?

Vanessa is an incredibly open, sharing, and helpful mentor. She hosts a Facebook group for students and regularly engages in discussions. You are welcome to ask her questions at any stage of your journey and pick her brain to help your art practise improve.

Can I share my work and what I learn in this class?

Yes! Please share your work and your responses to the class on your social media sites of choice. We love Instagram, so share your pages using the course hashtag #gmrituals and you may see your work shared on the Get Messy account. We also have Galleries with student work within Get Messy for very specific inspiration.