Journal Entry

29 May 2006 ... Paper Journals

For the past year or so, I have been keeping two active paper journals. The Brain Drain journal is usually a spiral notebook with lined pages. I write in the notebook approximately every day, usually in the evening shortly before I go to bed. I write about my day, trying to get that voice in my head to shut up so I can sleep. :)

The Art Journal has blank pages, is either a double spiral or a hard bound that lays flat, with a pretty cover and decent paper. I create in it about once or twice a week, and not regularly. Most of the pages I make are private, but occasionally I like to share.

water colour in journal

This iris painting is my first "acceptable" attempt at watercolours. It's all about the brush. Ordinary paint brushes left me frustrated, but I got a Chinese Brush Painting gift set for xmas, and the brushes come down to a tip. Suddenly, I feel like I have "control"!

Also, I've found the opaque white watercolour is a huge help. I used the white to put down highlights on the flowers and leaves.

Quotes with coloured pencil background

I read an article about lemurs, and some of the information fascinated me. So, I wrote the quotes, and then coloured the background with Prismacolor Art Stix (aka, coloured pencil lead crayons).

The article didn't have any photos of lemurs in the classic Sun Worship pose, so my drawing is a bit warped since I didn't have a model to look at. Anyway, it's a background, so I just needed the impression, and I really like how it turned out!

Writing and then Art Stix-ing is my favorite method of art journaling. A pale picture in the background really jazzes up a page of ordinary writing!

For other backgrounds, I usually paint first and then write over. And these are always abstract. For a watercolour background, I use a one-inch foam brush to add colours. Or, occasionally, I will do some watercolour crayons and then add water, but this is usually too dark to write over. With a watercolour background, I can write over it with any of my pens, they are all compatible.

Doing an acrylic painted background, I use a fake credit card to push several colours around on the page. The paint gives the page some stiffness/support and it's also easy to paint over if the mix gets more muddy than pretty.

Not all pens are compatible with acrylic background, unfortunately... it tends to clog or dry out the tip of many pens. Permanent markers (Sharpies) work okay but the ink will migrate and separate over time. I've found that ordinary, cheap ball point pens work best on acrylic. (Not sure if that ink also migrates?)

Anyway, I just try to have fun and experiment in my art journal. I am not worried about making perfect art and the blank page never intimidates me.

Lovely Links

  A Creative Journal
"Journal writing ideas, prompts, tips, inspiration and more by Heather Goldsmith" New content every day, Heather writes great articles on a wide variety of topics and shares interesting links.

  Flicker Groups: The Art Journal Pool and The journals and letters Pool
I love going through these groups. Lots of inspiration to be found.

  Yahoo Group: Compostition Art Journals
This is one of my favorite art journal email groups. It's pretty active, very accessible to all level of journallers, plenty of ideas thrown around. My own painted and coloured backgrounds originated from this group.

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