I’m on an art journal roll lately. In the last two days I finished two pages in my hand-made holiday art journal and started on another.
The photo below shows a page in my journal that I drew and doodled using a black Micron 05 pen. My objective was to capture a small close-up section of a Christmas tree. This particular page is half of a 11×15″ piece of Bristol paper. A few days ago I placed a stencil that had been covered in yellow iRESISTable paint face-down onto the page to use up leftover paint from the journal cover. Nothing goes to waste in this re-cycled journal! When I started drawing on the page, I noticed the yellow texture in the background but forgot that it was a ‘resist’ product. Yesterday I decided to use watercolors to color the page instead of using markers or gel pens or acrylic paints. And whoa! The yellow iRESISTable paint spray surely did resist the watercolor! That made for some interesting texture. Because there was a significant amount of yellow on the top-right side of the page I went ahead and used a yellow watercolor wash for the rest of the background. I’ve never seen a yellow Christmas tree but, then again, this is MY fantasy world and in MY fantasy world Christmas trees can be any color in the rainbow.
I really liked the page when it was just a black drawing on the white paper with yellow peeking up through the decorations. But I’m not unhappy with the watercolor page. It gave me the opportunity to practice painting with watercolors since I am still a little uncomfortable with that medium.
The next page was done on the outside portion of a Toasted O’s cereal box in my journal. First I covered it with white gesso, using a catalyst tool. I left a lot of scratches and lines in the gesso for texture and let it dry over night. I decided to use Dawn DeVries Sokol’s 12.31 Holiday Art Journal Workshop video prompt for 12/09. The prompt was to doodle picture frames on the page and then fill the frames with people/pets signifying who I would like to spent Christmas with). I combined the video prompt with her prompt of the day: To write out all that I am grateful for this season. First and foremost, I am grateful for my family so they take center stage on the page. (You can find Dawn’s free workshop prompts here: http://www.dawnsokol.com/1231/ )
As you can see, I decided to make this a grunge page. The texture I left in the gesso was a good start. Then I used complementary colors of Dina Wakely heavy body acrylic paints spread on top of the gesso with a palette knife, making it even more textured. I scribbled into the wet paint to allow the white gesso to show through. I resized three photos of loved ones (including my pets) and copied them out, collaging them to the page with matte medium. I found it interesting that the complementary blues and reddish-oranges could be found in the photos I chose (completely unplanned!). I drew picture frames around the photos with black and white Posca paint pens and journaled my gratitudes around the page using a black Fude ball pen and a white Signo Broad pen. I do not often use grunge techniques in my art journals but I really enjoyed doing this one and I like how it turned out. I will try this again in the future.
Making time in my day to be creative relieves the stress of the holidays and allows me to focus on my own needs. I hope you can find time in your own busy schedules this season to be creative too!