Journal Prompts

Tomorrow, I will be...

When opportunity knocks, I will...

"Each morning is the open door to a new . . ."

Watching other artist's work in quick time fuels my creative tank! Enjoy some inspiration with three talented art journaling artists.

Roben Marie Smith

I love the music. One thing I learned from her was that you could doodle paint on a magazine page and then incorporate it onto your page. She uses copies of her art from other art journals, too.

Danielle Daniel

Please know that I am not promoting anyone artist or their classes. I just want you to see their process and glean ideas for your own pages. Enjoy!

Below is my attempt at drawing a face. I am not confident with eyes so I used a stamp to make the eye. The little girl in the art is a copy of a photo from my childhood. I was at a petting zoo. I was inside the pen with goats, while my mom, grandmother and baby sister watched me bravely approach the goat. I always wondered who took the photo: was it my dad? (He's not in the picture, so it could have been him.) I like the whimsy of this page and it celebrates my childlike imagination.
Make a photocopy of one of your favorite childhood photos to use on your art journal page. Let it inspire a trip down memory lane or a flight into fanciful imagination. YOU CHOOSE!
Journal Prompts

Today I am...

This is the day that...

Today, I will celebrate...

Diana Trout is one of my favorite art journaling artists, and recently I found her book  Journal Spilling, in which she challenges artists to push through the fears and obstacles that keep us from getting art on the paper.
(Check to see if your library has her book. If not, watch some of her tutorials on You Tube.)

I've included a video link to Diana and a couple other favorite online instructors.

These are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

Diana Trout

Jodi Ohl

Cathy Bluteau

I have arrived at the half way point of my self-appointed challenge of making a collage each day. Today, my empty Kleenex box inspired me, just as I was about to put it in the recyle bin. Simple flower shapes, pleasing colors and the textured background.

Voila! My idea for today's collage was born. First I sprayed the pages with water, then smeared black distress ink on the pages. While that dried, I grabbed a scalloped circle punch. I started punching out some of the flowers with color and then some in gray and white and one blue one.

I glued the circles to the page and left them to dry.

In the meantime, I made a tree stamp with yarn and glue. (Haven't used it yet, maybe for tomorrow's collage.) I also picked up an autumn leaf on my walk, which I want to use as a color palette inspiration. 

Well, the glue finally dried on my original project. I really didn't know what to do next, so I grabbed my box of words that I had been collecting from magazines. I had these action verbs from one magazine, so they gave some uniformity to my page. I glued them down. Sprayed some red ink, used a yellow highlighter, and stamped a phrase on the page. To see how it turned out click here.

Look for ART today, it's everywhere!
Journal Prompts

Yesterday I was...

I know...

I don't know...

In Fall of 2013, I came across an online class called 21 SECRETS, where 21 different art journaling artists offered video instruction and encouragement for creating art journals. It would be difficult to say which one influenced me the most.

One of the classes that surprised me was "Sparkle-arkle" by Dion Dior. In it she taught  various applications of glittery products on the market. She has a subtle way of using them, and I have found that I do enjoy using the glitter paints and metallic paints to add sparkle to my pages!

Here is my sample from her class. (The objective was to use many layers to create an abstract image. To be honest I didn't like the outcome, but it was worth learning the techniques.)

Later, I went back and tried the techniques again without layering over the flower image. It is fun, when you can recreate something and make it your own style!
Neither one of these art pieces would be a typical background for my art journal, but the techniques can be applied to any page. Also this shows me that one word with an image constitutes an art journaling page.

Sometimes one word is all I need to express my soul. Dream is a powerful word for me, and I find it recurring in my art and writing. When I notice things like this, I file them in my mind for future journaling topics.

What recurring words or themes are you noticing on this journaling adventure?
During this self-proposed challenge of creating one collage each day for the month of October, I shouldn't be surprised that some days I would be afraid. Some mornings, I wake up full of ideas. Others I am stumped. Thus the fear of producing nothing creeps in.

A good thing about challenging myself is that I get to exercise my trust muscles. Trust in the PROCESS, in the created order of things and my own creative abilities. I can rely on the these things to lead me, when I approach a blank page or a meet a creative block.

Today, I decided to veer away from the magazine stacks, and I moved towards a pile of ephemera that gathered itself magically together, while I was "straightening" up my art studio yesterday.

a collection of tissue papers, old book page, a starburst monoprint in blue acrylic , peacock feather image and scrapbook paper and leftover letters from an old project.
I limited myself to these papers and some acrylic paints, gesso and gel medium. I thought I might create some layers with white gesso between them. For my first layer, I chose the old book page and the peacock feather printed paper. I tore them into pieces and randomly glued them down.
As I was gluing the pieces down, I noticed words in the text that resonated with my heart: forgive me, changed, accepted, love and confession. I boxed the words off with the vision in my mind of painting white gesso around them and then adding color to just the words. I wish I could explain my next choice, but I think the PROCESS made me do it.

I chose black gesso instead of white.

As I painted around each word, a little of the black would smudge into my boxed off words, so I got mad and just painted over them. But by the time I made it over to the word "confession" I slowed myself down and carefully painted around the word. I went back and tried to wipe off the black gesso on some of the other words, but it just got messier and obscured the words more. I decided the PROCESS wanted me to focus on confession.

I added another layer, using black tissue paper to add more texture. I glued the tissue paper on with matte gel medium. I still had some colorful choices left. To see where the PROCESS led me, click here to see what happened.
Our Creator would never have made such lovely days, and have given us the deep hearts to enjoy them, above and beyond all thought, unless we were meant to be immortal. (Nathaniel Hawthorne)

Journal Prompts
To be immortal means...

I will ...

I will not...
I found The Journal Fodder Junkies through an internet search for books on Art Journaling. The authors, Eric M. Scott and David R. Modler are self-proclaimed art addicts. They refer to their pursuit as visual journaling. They take every day items, such as ticket stubs, receipts and other paper sundries to document their daily lives.

I found one of their books, The Journal Fodder Junkies Workshop: Visual Ammunition for the Art Addict at our local library. I did buy Journal Fodder 365: Daily Doses of Inspiration for the Art Addict for my personal library. It's built around a twelve month format.  One of my future goals is to follow their prompts and techniques in one of my journal journeys for an entire year.

In the meantime, I glean tidbits here and there from their book to incorporate into my journals.
This is an example of one of my early attempts. I wanted to document everyday life, but somehow this became a reflection on my past experiences with art teachers and art class in school. The springboard item on this page was an old library card from a used book. The stamped dates included April 28 1970 and Oct 18 without a year. I added my birth date with a date stamp that I have. April 1970, would have been the spring of my kindergarten year, which is where I remember vividly making art out of tongue depressors, paste and colored construction paper to learn my colors. Oct 18th is my wedding anniversary.

So you can see that these "random" dates in an old library book were quite significant to me. I wasn't really liking my art, so I scribbled over it. I remember my art teacher in elementary school basically painting for me, and also one of my high school art teachers helping me finish a barn landscape that I didn't feel confident about.

While I was struggling with the process on this page, I realized I could recreate a tree and flowers on my own. I wondered in words on the page: "Why did I let others paint for me?" My epiphany on the opposite page was: "I did not trust myself..." The process of making these pages became a breakthrough moment. I could trust myself NOW!

What experiences have hindered your courageous, bold expression of yourself? Which ones have given you courage to move forward and be your created self?
Call it fodder or ephemera, collage artists are always looking for FREE sources of interesting images and paper items to add to their work. I love magazines for my quick collages, like the one's I have been posting over at Nourishhment for the Soul this past week. (In a future post, I will share some of the various uses of a magazine outside of image and word harvesting.)

Our library sells outdated magazines for 25 cents each. Plus I have generous friends who know I like to collage, so I often get donations from them. Another source for cheap magazines or old books are the thrift stores, like Goodwill or Salvation Army.

On occasion, I will splurge and buy antique ephemera at an antique mall. And once a year St. Louis has a vintage postcard show. But I digress, I was talking about FREE fodder.

Besides the library, you don't have to go any further than your mailbox. There are some great and unexpected treasures in there. I love the patterns found in security envelopes. Advertisements and catalogs have interesting images and plenty of words.

I used junk mail and a quote from a friend for yesterday's collage.

Click here to see the process of how I chose and arranged the junk mail fodder.

Other fun sources for fodder includes the paint department at a hardware store. I found fun swatches and a stencil. (See the ad card below.) It's made out of plasticized material, so it will even be reusable.)

Here's my color swatch haul!
If it's FREE, I will take it. I also gather inspiration from brochures and free magazines around town. One fun place to pick up items is at one of our local art supply stores. Here are some examples of what I found there the other day. Again, I don't use these in anything except my own personal journals, so I don't have to worry about copyright issues.

Happy Treasure Hunting!
As I challenge myself to write and collage for 31 days straight at my other blog, I have been sharing my collage process here.

So today, I started with writing a Scripture (you could also do this with a quote or by free writing whatever comes to mind). I  covered the page with various versions of the same thought. Since I was using a Wash and Sketch pencil, I washed over it with a wet brush to blur the words.

My self-appointed constraint for today was to use junk mail to find my collage images. After writing, I tore up a security envelope to glue down as a second layer, before choosing images from ads and a Cutco catalog.
After pasting them down, I washed over the pages with red and violet watercolor paint.
Once this dried, I added the collage images and then stenciled over the images with gesso.
To see the completed collage, click over here.
I am continuing to play around with magazine collage. I found an article on creativity and the illustrations were colorful collages. I decided to take one of the pages and rip it into pieces to glue down on the page as my first layer.
this was a page from the article, I used the other side of the bird's colorful speech bubble to tear into random pieces
random scraps waiting to be glued down
glued in place
I found my oak leaf, so I traced around it in several spots with a dark purple neocolor II watercolor crayon
I colored the inside of the leaves with white crayon and then used a baby wipe to blend in some of the color.
After finishing this layer, I returned to the practice of choosing several more random images from my stash. I had fun coloring in some of the elements with my neocolor II crayons and releasing the color with baby wipes. I outlined some images and words with a black Stabilo water soluble pencil.
I was very happy with the finished page today. To read more about the "meaning" that I gleaned from it click here.
It may seem cliche, but I love picking up leaves on an autumn day to study their shape, color and texture. As I walked this morning, I gathered a few, thinking I might make them into a stamp.

The first one was a simple oval leaf with veins.
I traced the leaf onto a small leftover piece of Speedball Speedy-Cut Easy Block. Then I used a number 3 blade to carve the outline, a number 1 blade to carve the veins. And lastly, I trimmed the outside of the stamp with an exacto knife.
Speedball Speedy-Cut Easy Block and Speedball Lino Cutter
I was going to carve an oak leaf, but the leaf disappeared, so I decided to make a different kind of simple stamp using a ballpoint pen and a piece of craft foam. I drew the leaf shape on the foam, added veins and then cut aroung the image before stamping it onto an index card with black Stazon ink.
Simple, but dramatic effect. I will use these stamps in my mutli-media art journaling adventures this month. (Click here to see how I used the above leaf.)