My friend Mary Ann showed her visual journals on her blog this weekend and it made me not only want to get to work in my art journals immediately, but to share them here as well. I haven't shared art journal pages forever, but I'm always playing in them off and on. I keep all the creative projects in my life ongoing, I'm not a one thing at a time creative.
I made these, my current art journals back in September. They are huge and delicious! The left one is sized 12x16" with a 1 1/2 inch spine and the one on the right is 11x14" and has just under 1 1/2" spine. I covered the left one with a poster from Ikea, but didn't love it, so I've been collaging on the top every now and then. The one on the right is made from an old oil painting bought at a flea market. I didn't realized it was signed until I'd cut into it. I sure hope I didn't ruin a painting by a registered artist. It looks like the name is Merle Wheeler, but it's hard to tell.
Here are their backs. Again, the Ikea alphabet poster on the left, and a brown painted cover on the right. Man, there is nothing like a handmade journal made to your own specifications and desires. These are a bit heavy and on the too big to bring with end of the spectrum, so I have been using a couple teaching demo journals when on the go:
These are 9 3/4 x 13" and true demo books- you'll see what I mean in the photos below, a lot of experimentation.
The backs- stickers from boxes, found washi tape and notes on color chart while taking an oil painting class.
and as always, doodles and mark making, drawing and playing.
My art journals are my favorite place to play and experiment.
Testing pens, writing down quotes, lettering experiments, doodles, collage...
...line quality, different paints, color explorations...
Good old fashioned mess making! these books are not precious to anyone other than me. And to me, they are precious not because of the finished artwork (because rarely is there any finished artwork in them, but instead, special to me because of all the ideas tested and tried. Even the bad ones teach me things about my own art making and creativity.
Anything goes on these pages. As a matter of fact, it's encouraged.
Mmm...early in the development for my Painting Petals class.
I love that these are documents of some of that class development process.
Some quick sketches, pattern making, color palette selecting...
More quotes and more flowers, pens and paints.
...trying different papers and loving the experiments in paper and color they bring.
Found papers and colors, long time loves of mine.
That candy box was too great to not cut out and keep!
Mess making freedom! Just seeing these pages makes me want to take it to my son's baseball game and doodle in the color patches.
Although I love the absence of color (white) so much, I don't leave many pages with much white.
...and still some vintage wallpaper ends up in there somewhere. When I love something it's usually a lifetime commitment ;).
Ahhhh, art journals, absolutely love them! Do you keep an art journal? A place to experiment and explore; to play and also to escape and unwind? I highly recommend it.
If you'd like to come create journals with me and be guided in scientific art experiments, 2 of my live teaching engagements in 2016 are just the thing:
Online I have a variation on art journaling available; my Creative Sketchbooking class on Creativebug with some guided page play too.
But you don't need to take a class to art journal, just get some papers and art supplies and get playing!!! It's done me wonders over the years, like I said before I highly recommend it!