Did you know that Dick Blick is offering a discount up to 80% on select items! This includes some of my favorite art supplies for journaling. Strathmore Drawing Pads are 48-58% off. Daler-Rowney Sketchbooks are 40% off.
I have several art journals. My journals can be purchased, altered books, junque journals, or hand-made start to finish. I use them all.
Here is how I break down and decide what art goes in what book. It's totally my approach but here you go:
Purchased sketch books like Strathmore's I use for nature sketching or mixed media art that I plan to collage. These works usually don't stay in the sketchbook because I don't like the floppy cover to be all that protects the art long term. Once my pages are created I usually pull them out and either add them into my portfolio or cut them out for collage.
For purchased sketchbooks, like Daler-Rowney, I can trust the cover a little more. The paper is a little stronger and the cover is my first playing area. I goop it up with gesso and create a cover design that speaks to me. Seal it up for longevity and shine and I'm ready to go. One trick I use in one of these journals is to trace out atc blanks onto my page. I can create several works of art on one page this way. Then I trace my sketches in black copic marker (yes it usually bleeds a little, but that is a job for gesso). This gives me a great black and white illustration like my own clip art that I can copy and cut and play with in multiple pieces of future art. It's like my atc treasure trove. Once an image is printed I cut it out and paste it to cool backgrounds and art it up so it doesn't look like a lame copy. Sometimes I paint over and use it as a guide. Those original outlined images are safe and protected if I don't like how my art play turns out. I just make another copy and start again.
My altered books are a new thing for me. I think I enjoy creating them more than creating in them. I try to follow the theme of the cover with these. I have one with a freda like lady who has inspired me to follow Freda's style through out the book. It will be an exercises in imitation and flattery. Another altered journal has houses on the cover and I plan to sketch and paint images that speak to me and say home. Maybe a lilac bush or a favorite chair, or the people who live inside. I don't know, I have to think some more.
My junque journal is where I try out my messy techniques and play with papers I love. I collect everything there from hospital bands to movie stubbs and everything in between. It's so huge you'd have to sit on it to get it to close and even then I'm not sure it would completely. This book is about nostalgia and play.
My hand-made journals are wild and very artsy to me. They are messy and extreme. They are made of junk mail in varying sizes sewn together and covered in layers of paints, papers or anything else that inspires. I'll try anything here. If I don't like something it takes a few trips to the mailbox to make another book and I've lost nothing. I'm completely uninhibited here.
Next time I post I'll load you up on pictures of my crazy journals so you can get the visual.
Here is my affiliate link for Dick Blick:
May 18th, 2011!
Now, for a question . . .what are your favorite art journals or journaling supplies? Do you take any art journaling classes online that you recommend? If so, please share.