Art Retreat Day 2: Art Journaling

By 4/18/2014

Today I worked on my art journal. I was gifted this Dylusions journal for Christmas.
...and what better way to break into it than at an art retreat? I was really breaking out of my comfort zone with this one, as I am not one to experiment, and get my fingers inked up. I like being clean and neat. I like neat lines and smooth paint. However once I got the hang of it, I got really into it, and I LOVE it!
Art Journaling is a great way to express yourself, to expand your horizons, to have fun and to simply create! It is a great way to try out new techniques. Below, I'll post the first few pages I did and explain what I used and how I did it. I am fortunate to have a mother that loves crafting/paper crafting/scrapbooking/card making/etc., so most of the materials used are from her collection. 

 This is my first page (above image). I used Dylusions ink sprays (there are many other brands out there).
Then I took a paper doily and used it as a stencil. I pressed a foam pad inked up with  Tim Holtz Distress Inks into it to create the impression.
No, I am not paid to do this or anything, you're welcome Tim Holtz and Dylusions for the free advertising. 
Lastly, I took a detail brush, dipped it in water to remove some of the ink to write the words "the beginning" along the top of the lace pattern.

On this page I used a napkin with an old timey world map print. I Mod Podged it on and ripped sections of it with an x-acto knife (gently), and pressed more Mod Podge along the edges to seal it. 

I then used ink sprays, and shimmer sprays to create an aged and grungy effect. I hand lettered some words in an Old English font and journaled some thoughts about how I love to travel. 

This page was sprayed lightly with water and then doused with green and yellow ink sprays for the background. I used pieces of a floral napkin, Mod Podged it on and hand drew a few little birdies and wording. I added in smaller pieces of napkin on the birds and dry brushed orange paint to tie it all in.

 This page was started off with a wash of yellow ink spray. Then I used a circle stencil and pressed with an inked up foam pad in random spots around the spread. I Mod Podged pieces of old dictionary paper, spritzed them with a wash of color. 

For the cheesecloth, I pressed it into an ink pad to color it and then Mod Podged it on. The tag with the bird stamped on and the "D" note paper were a gift from one of the crafters which helped inspire this page. 

Edit: I have since gone back in and journaled on this page. 

 For this page I went back to my illustrator roots. I used a simple wash of blue ink for the background (spread and blended with a piece of paper towel) and let dry. I then took a black ink pen (micron) and drew the mermaid and lettering. 

I then used a navy blue in Faded Jeans a Tim Holtz Distress Marker to draw the fish. I used a white paint pen for all the highlights.

This page was quite simple to make. I took a piece of wire mesh and used it as a stencil and placed it on the page randomly. I took an old gift card and spread white gesso (paint primer) in random areas through the stencil.

 I used the Tim Holtz Distress Stain in "Broken China". The stains come in a little bottle with a foam dauber at the top. I just spread the stain over the dried gesso to bring out the diamond shapes.

Now this page. THIS page was made with a paper print made with a "Gelli" plate, or Gel Printing Plate. I will have to do a tutorial on this in the future (I'm sure there are a million already out there), but it is so much fun, and is great for all ages. 
Gelli Plate is basically this silicone gel mat that you spread paint on and place paper on top and peel off. We used deli paper for most of our Gelli prints (some cardstock too). I ripped up the prints and glued them to the spread. I then placed some washi tape in similar colors on top. I have since then journaled on it with a white paint pen. 
I've always had a sketchbook nearby me since I was little, but I usually just sketched with pens, pencils, and markers. Art journaling is different, I can draw if I want, but I can also paint, spray inks, use stamps, stencils, tags, washi tape, pieces of anything that I want, write whatever I want. I write about things I like, or don't like, things that make me happy, or sad, favorite song lyrics, whatever comes to my mind. This is not something to worry about if it is pretty or perfect. I can do this without any planning or anything in my mind. I simply just go for it and see what happens! Don't worry about what it looks like or try to make it "look good".  If you have a journal or sketchbook you can start doing this! Although I do recommend the Dylusions journal because the paper is a very thick cardstock that holds up well to all the abuse.
Happy Journaling,
This post was from March 2014, uploaded from our old site.

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