Art Journal Challenges & Techniques

I’ve begun using my new art journal that I had made using different types of paper. If you’d like to see how I made it, here’s a link to the journal entry.

Now that I’ve started using it, here’s a slightly fatter picture of my art journal. 🙂


I’ve been having a really good time using this journal. When I made it, I bound multiple colors and textures of paper in it. I’ve had the added challenge of making the pages complement each other and tying different patterned pages together. I have been focusing on not covering the page up fully, but finding images and media that compliment the background. It keeps me on my toes!

Below are a couple of my favorite pages:

  1. This is the very first page that I made. The page was a calligraphy background. I used acrylic paints and india ink to make some simple brushstrokes, and used some scrapbook paper and textured paper from hobby lobby to complete the image. I also used india ink to make the simple border.



2. The below image had a calligraphy and flower print on the paper. For this one, I painted over one of the flowers using acrylic paint  to make it stand out. I used misc. paper media to add details, then added a paint swatch in the middle, which I bordered with a hand-drawn design using india ink. I love using paint swatches in my art journals because they’re free, come in a million different colors, and add some visual interest (at least in my opinion).



3. I didn’t actually do this one in April. 🙂 The paper on these pages are just your plain old white sheets. I wanted to make this page mainly about the colors. For the bottom half, I used a raindrop background. I used some pearlescent paint on random raindrops to add some texture. I used the same pearlescent paint to add raindrops to the top of the page. The words were hand done using acrylic paint, and the yellow strip in the middle was also acrylic paint.



4. The page on the left was a ledger print, and the right page was a calligraphy and flower print. These pages are particular challenging to work around, because it’s sometimes hard to get them to tie together. For this one, I focused on the antique feel that both of the pages had in common. I used catalog prints, and a metal key as well as an antiquing stamp which I rubbed along the edges of the pages to give them an antique look. I tried to use the same prints in some cases on both sides. Adding the column in the middle also seemed to help. In the end, I think that the pages tied together nicely.



5. On this spread, the left page was plain white and the right page was a music print. I also went for an antique look on this spread… I literally used antique wrapping paper (the gold splatter looking paper) to add details. The photo and stamps are actually from a really nice scrapbook paper pad from Tuesday Morning. I love scrapbook pads that include random things like that. You’ll notice that I used gold acrylic paint at the top and bottom border… I had to add this after I’d finished this page. Unfortunately, some of the glue seeped over the border of the next page, and glued the previous pages together. when I tried to separate them, the top of the paper got damaged. I added the gold to cover it up.



6. This page was a focus on texture. I really wanted to use the flamingo print, and it made this page kind of whimsical. 🙂 I added snakeskin textured wrapping paper, and some coarse gray and silver paper… In the middle of each page, I used pages from an old book, and tore/folded them in a ladder type pattern. I didn’t glue down the flaps, because I wanted to keep that raised look.



7. This was also a case where the left page was plain white and the right page had a pattern on it (in this case a calligraphy print). I added a bit of calligraphy printed paper on the right side, and used a doily, paint swatch, handmade paper, etc. to tie everything together.img_20160916_100807-01


8. This is one of my favorite pages, It’s hard to read, but the quote is one by Conor Oberst. It says “I’ve cried, and you’d think I’d be better for it, but the sadness just sleeps, and it stays in my spine the rest of my life.”

I was a bit down when I made this page, but I feel like  putting emotion into your pages really pays off.

For this page, I used a few different catalogs for the images, some gold leaf, and my own handwriting.



So, those are some of my favorite pages so far! I hope you enjoyed them! I’m in the process of making another art journal. This one will have only black pages in it. Here’s a sneek peek!


It doesn’t look like much now, but I have high hopes for it. I think that being able to work with black paper will be a nice change and will give me a nice opportunity to use my white and gold sakura gel pens, which I love! I generally like to work in one notepad at a time, but when it comes to art journals, I like having multiple sizes and colors going at once.

Anyway, feel free to subscribe if you’d like to see the end result of my black art journal! I think it’ll be my best one yet since I’ve made my mistakes on the previous ones I’ve made.