Why I Like Art Journaling

Just a few months ago, I began getting interested in art journaling. I noticed that although I love to paint and draw, I am hesitant about doing it sometimes. The reason being that I am very self-critical and tend to get discouraged when something doesn’t turn out quite the way that I’d imagined.

I still want to be creative, though, and I had collected a bunch of paper at that point.

I am a bit of a hoarder when it comes to pretty pictures, paper, and other small things and the things I collect have a tendency of getting lost in giant overwhelming piles. By starting art journaling, I’ve been able to take those pretty scraps of paper, and poetry, and notes and turn them into something cohesive.

So, there were multiple reasons why I started. It’s nice to be able to put pretty collages together from random scraps, and in a way it’s pretty therapeutic. It’s not as technical as painting of drawing, and I can allow my mind to wander more while I do it. I also feel like it’s a much better way for me to express my personality and express more abstract concepts.

It also allows me to use what I have and to reduce some of the clutter that I tend to build up… And what clutter is still there has more of a purpose because I may be using it later!

Art journaling has been a way to force myself to organize my pretty paper. I have a binder that is full of laminate pockets that contain my paper, which I generally have organized by color and/or theme.

I’m good at painting and drawing “pretty” things, but have a much harder time painting what I’m feeling – if that makes any sense. Creating an art journal page allows me to express myself more freely, without the added burden of needing to get it just perfect..

My weapons of choice when I’m working on my art journaling are basically whatever I have on hand. I use mod podge as my binder. You could use Elmer’s glue if you don’t have anything else. I also use acrylic paint, glitter, goache, ribbons, magazine cutouts, old calendars, greeting cards & birthday cards, and scrapbook paper. I also have bought and get a lot of use out of stencils and an ex acto knife, and a pair of scissors.

There are a bunch of videos on YouTube that show peoples art journaling processes, and they’re calming to watch, and can give you good ideas if you’re interested in starting it.

Anyway, below are a few of the pages that I made. I hope you enjoy looking at them! Sorry if the photo quality is bad on some of these. I tend to work on these pages in the evening, and photograph them at night when all I have is my crappy ceiling light.

1. For this one, I used the February month of the Papaya Bloom calendar for the purple florally bits on this page. šŸ™‚ also, glitter, magazine cutouts, and some scrapbook paper.

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2. For this one, I used a 2015 Katie daisy calendar for the lettering, a page from an Anthropologie catalog, a birthday card, scrapbook paper, stencils, and scrapbook paper. Stencils were added with acrylic paint that I dabbed on with a paper towel… Someday I’ll buy some fancy stamping equipment, but this process works temporarily. šŸ™‚

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3. I found a photo on Pinterest that I liked, cut out the general shapes in appropriate colors out of a gardening catalog, and then glued them down to copy the picture. This was a really fun process. The road is a combination of colored pencils and gouache paint. The quote was done on regular paper with a cheap calligraphy pen.

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4. For this I almost exclusively used a Nordstrom catalog. Just some black Indian ink as the background other than that.

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And lastly, here’s a picture of me at work in my craft room. I have a desk, but for some reason I prefer working off my yoga mat. šŸ™‚

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I hope that these pictures have encouraged you to try out art journaling. It’s very rewarding and fun to do. šŸ™‚

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