So many of us keep sketchbooks to make quick drawings, work
through compositional possibilities, and just practice mark-making. An art
journal is exactly what it sounds like, a bound book of artistry that can take
all of your exploration to the next level. Many mixed media artists create art
journals that are stunning works of art in and of themselves. They can build around
a single theme or vary throughout the book, with each page taking on a new
concept or idea.
|Art journals can combine several media including watercolor,
collage, text, and drawing. Works by Jacqueline Newbold.
For me, the empty expanse of a canvas still gives me a bit
of stage fright, so an art journal is right up my alley. There's less of an
intimidation factor because I am working in a small format, but can still fully
execute and complete an artwork. And if I want to experiment I can, because an
art journal allows me to work a page at a time. So if I want to try a mixed
media painting with elements of collage or ink wash or embroidered text--I can
do it all in an art journal and not feel like I've committed to a really drawn
And what's more, working in this pressure-free yet still
highly creative format means you can really transform and broaden your fine art
with the ideas you come up with in your art journal. Instead of just painting a
landscape, an art journal can allow you to encapsulate your sensory impressions
of a place--a leaf from a tree collaged with paint washes that represent the
color of the light, and then a line from a proverb or poem that comes to mind
when you think about the place--and all of a sudden you've bridged art with
memory and experience.
Maybe because I love to dabble and
learn new things, an art journal is the perfect way for me to focus my energy
and bring a small work to completion, which I find really rewarding. If you
want to know where all this inspiration came from, it was one source--Cloth Paper Scissors--which is our sister
magazine devoted to mixed-media artistry. Covering fiber arts, collage,
assemblage, creative embroidery, stamping, and art journals, it is a magazine
that is for all levels of artistic practice and features so many new techniques
that a fine artist can embrace. Have you worked this way already? Do you have an art
journal you can share? Add the work to our Member Gallery so I can see. And if
you want more mixed media painting inspiration, Cloth Paper Scissors might be just what you've been looking for.
||A single page in an art journal can be an opportunity
to sharpen your expertise, in watercolor for example.