Not sure how else to title this. 😊
I’ve been extremely into art journaling lately, and have just 4 pages left in my current journal before it’s full! A few months back I made my own hard bound journal. I’m usually pretty bad about not filling up my journals. Most of the journals I have are only half full or mostly empty, so this alone is quite an accomplishment! It’s really cool to be able to see my improvement and evolution over time.
The current journal thus far is gigantic… It doesn’t close properly anymore, which to a certain degree is just how art journals tend to be, but it still irks me a bit. Here’s how it looks currently.
I think if I make again I will put much fewer pages and build a much wider spine… also I’d make sure to secure the sewn up pages to the spine using e6000 or some other intense binding agent. A glue stick and glue gun didn’t cut it (and I shouldn’t have expected it to). 😌 That being said, despite all my handling, it had withstood majestically! 😊 In case you’re curious, here’s a link to the instructions I used to make my journal. It’s a surprisingly attainable hobby and I had a lot of fun making it.
I used a brocade fabric for the cover and some scrap booking paper inside.
Below are some of my favorite pages (that I have not showed in past posts).
- Although many of my favorites are fairly recent, my absolute favorite is actually this really simple one that i did early on with gouache paint and embroidery thread.
2. This one’s a bit more somber. that black thing in the middle is actually a torn up dryer sheet painted with india ink.
3. I was experimenting with some new paper that I had gotten. I found a great art supply store in Houston that had so much paper! It was really hard to choose! Here you can see 3 of the ones I selected – a gold one with circle cutouts, a lilac shade sheet with flower and leaves pressed into them, and a really unique fibrous white sheet. I love the textures that they bring.
4. This one was a lot of fun. most of it’s magazine cutouts. I used cut doilies for the clouds and used washi tape on some of the edges.
5. There’s that fibrous paper again! This was done with india ink, and the text was actually from a really cool Barnes and Noble plastic shopping bag bag. That weird accordion looking paper below the signature was folded tracing paper. Edgar Allen Poe’s “signature” was copied from Wikipedia.
6. This is a really simple one. I took an Anthropologie catalog and tore it up a bit, added some scrapbooking paper, and arranged it all. I didn’t feel like anything more needed to be done. I love the color combinations.
7. This was a fun one! Most of the background paper and images I got from a Lush catalog. I borrowed some text from an old Katie Daisy calendar for the quote… For the background, I glued down some of the catalog items, and then painted thickly over them with yellow and white paint in thick brush strokes.
8. For the one below, I took a page from an old book and cut it into a snowflake pattern by folding it up… I then used it as a stamp against a feather printed black and white scrapbook paper and painted it so that it made a negative. I applied the same technique again at the top, but tried using more pastel colors. After that, I glued down the painted up “snowflake” in the middle of the page, and used a white gel pen to add embellishments.
9. I got this amazing new paper by papers studio that incorporates a lot of floral patterns. I used that in this image against a background of yellow. I used a honeycomb stamp with an “antiquing” ink. I tore up strips of an old book and used those, and then used my white gel pen to add some more detail.
10. Perhaps by now you’re noticing a trend… I’ve been really enjoying using yellow. Below I placed a black and white photo against a painted background. I glued on some flowers, added white hearts, and then painted a shimmery pink-purple shift nail polish on parts of the girls dress. I added some glitter nail polish as well. The color shift on her dress is so nice! Here’s a video!
Anyway, I have already prepared a new art journal for future use. I used an old library book that I bought when the town library was selling some old books. The book I bought was an Agatha Christie novel called Murder on the Orient Express. I actually read the book before I started ripping it up and gluing pages together. The book was just okay, but that’s good since it was a lot easier to start pulling pages out of. 😊
What really drew me to buying the book was the cover. It’s a hard bound black book with attractive marbling on the inside covers.
In order to prepare the book, i removed every 3rd and 4th pages. This will hopeful keep it from looking so overstuffed, although I fully anticipate that it will look ridiculously overstuffed by the time I’m done. Every 1st and 2nd page have been mod podged together to make the pages thicker and make it easier to withstand the media that will be used on them. The book is now around 50 individual pages long.
I will need to buy some white gesso to cover the pages with since they are not white to begin with, although I’m also looking forward to using many of the pages as is.
I’ve been really itching to hit up antique shops and garage/estate sales to see if I can find vintage ephemera that I can use in my journals. Using magazines and stuff like that is cool, but I’ve found that my favorite pages involve decorations that I have a personal connection with – for example, restaurant menus, flyers I find at places I visit, etc. I like the idea of a piece of potential artwork having a history outside of a magazine or outside of hobby lobby… Here’s an example of a page I made using a restaurant menu. If you’re ever in Houston, you guys need to check out Barnabys Cafe! It’s the best!
Aside from art journaling, I’ve additionally gotten really into gemstones (again). It’s been an off-and-on passion of mine since I was a kid… I used to go down the rock covered driveway at my parents house looking for rocks that caught my eye. I remember distinctly finding a pretty large shiny pitch black rock and after some research discovered that it was obsidian. I also found an ammonite fossil at the top of a concrete pile behind a shed at my parents old house soon after they had moved in. I still have no idea how it got there.
It seems like an interest in geology runs in my family. My mom says that when she was younger, she would sleep with rocks under her pillow. My grandpa owns a fossil house on his farm and has a bunch of specimens. He used to find arrow heads all the time when they were plowing cotton, and has gone fossil hunting. When he discovered my love for rocks as a kid, he gave me a few for my personal collection. My mom has then in her attic right now. I should go over there and check then out… I remember my favorite was a mastodon tooth. My grandpa actually has a number of those… I have always wanted to go fossil hunting with him.
I just recently discovered the yearly mineral show that happens in Tucson and now it’s on my bucket list to attend it – along with getting to do some mining for gemstones myself, which has already been on my bucket list for a little while.
Also, (completely unrelated) I have plans to get my hair cut and colored. I have naturally blond hair, which I had dyed a very dark rich reddish brown. It was beautiful while it lasted, but it’s since faded to a cinnamon brown, and my roots are extremely grown out. It requires way more upkeep than I’m happy with, so I’ve been considering going back to blond. I think the auburn color only held for 2-3 weeks, despite the fact that I only washed my hair 3 times a week with shampoo specifically made for color treated hair.
I was on Pinterest yesterday searching for how I wanted to get my hair done, and found what I thought was the most beautiful hair cut/color combo that I think I’ve ever seen. See below!!!
It incorporates blond and rose gold. I love the idea of rose gold in my hair. It’s edgy, but just conservative enough to pass in the corporate world. I expect that the rose gold will not last very long, but that’s okay. It’ll likely just go back to blond. I can’t wait to see how it turns out, and I hope to be sharing pictures really soon.
I feel like this was a very dense blog entry! That’s what happens when I don’t do it for a while.
Anyway, let me know if any of this resonated with you. Do you have a favorite art journal page? Any techniques that you use that you particularly enjoy? I hope to hear from you all!