art journal

I finally took the plunge on that art journal I’ve been meaning to start. I don’t know why, but I was intimidated by the thought. I wasn’t really sure where to begin. I had a book picked out, was making my own actually. I was following this tutorial, which I think makes such a fun looking journal. But I found it to be very time consuming and knew that if I had to prep the pages before I start creating each time that I wasn’t ever going to get it done.

Then I decided on a simple mixed media journal that I picked up at Micheal’s. It’s nothing fancy, but I thought it would be a much better way for me to start.

I was still a little stuck on exactly where to start until it just kind of came to me one day. I first got the idea for black painted/stamped stripes and how it would look cool to have them peeking through a letter stencil, and the rest just followed from there.

So, here it is. Don’t be too hard on me. It is my first one, after all. 🙂


I used some Market Street Stamps, including my very favorite feather. The diagonal lines were stamped with paint and I also added lots of layers of messy, random paint here and there. Next time I think I will use something that keeps its texture better than paint. The paint ended up becoming more smooth than I wanted it to. Maybe gesso would work better. I’m really just learning here.

I also added some drops of ink, some pieces of  paper, and some staples. Then just a  bit of journaling to describe a little of what this journal is all about. I really wanted this page to portray “me”. So I chose colors, patterns and textures that I really love right now. Did it turn out just the way I wanted? Not quite. But I’m totally fine with that.

You know, the really cool thing is that when I was working on this and when I was finished I felt so…I don’t know. Happy, maybe. Fulfilled. It was freeing to just put things wherever I wanted. It was fantastically fun to get messy and not really worry too much about the end result. It was like a surprise waiting to happen, because I didn’t even know myself how it was all going to turn out. And if I would have had the time I would have begun a second page right then and there.

Sometime over the past year I seemed to lose myself a bit, creatively speaking. I found that I was most often mimicking what I saw others doing and not so much looking within for my inspiration. Not that there is anything wrong with being inspired by others and doing what they’ve done, if you love it. and I’m sure I will continue to do that. But I felt like I just needed to dig deep and bring out what was already there. What do I like? What is my style? Who am I really as an artist? Those are the questions I’m hoping to gain some answers to as I work on my journal. I don’t know where it will take me, but I’m excited to find out what’s really hidden in there.

If you like the look of those lines stamped with paint, I’m sharing a fun tutorial over at the Market Street Stamps blog today on how to use paint with your stamps.


go on over and check it out, and be sure to say hello!

And you know I’d love to hear your thoughts on art journals. Any newbie advice you have for me would be most welcome!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I’ll be back tomorrow to post some winners. I’ve been a slacker! See you then!


4 thoughts on “art journal

  1. karenladd says:

    Off to the MSS blog to check out your tutorial. I always love the look of paint with stamps but never think to do that. Haven’t started an art journal myself but I’ve seen some really fabulous ones. I can imagine that being on design teams can sometimes lead to losing some of your push to experiment, as you are trying to appeal to a wider audience. Having something that is “just for you” would be so freeing!

    By the way, I am really surprised that those stripes are made with paint because I thought they were patterned paper!! Wow!

  2. Mary-Anne V. says:

    Good for you for starting your journal… I like how you made it your own and just did what felt right. Sometimes I also feel I also am influenced by what I see on blogs. I have never done an art journal but I have kept a written journal and I find it is a very good thing for me. Hope you find the same joy.

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