How To Make An Art Journal

Last Updated on August 14, 2020 by Ellen Christian

This post on how to make an art journal was made possible by a review copy provided at no charge. All opinions are mine and mine alone.

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I love being creative.  It’s a great way to express my individual style and also to relax at the end of a busy day. When I craft, I don’t tend to do large craft projects.  Honestly, my attention span is fairly short.  I don’t want a project that I am going to have to work on for a month to finish. I like projects that are small or are broken into small pieces I can easily accomplish it all each day.  In the past, I have made artist trading cards which are basically 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ card that you decorate with images and lettering to match a theme or your own personal style.  Lately, I have been playing with creating an art journal.

How to make an art journal

How To Make An Art Journal

An art journal is basically a notebook or journal.  The cover and each page is decorated with quotes, pictures, sayings, doodles, drawings, or whatever else you are motivated to add to it. Some people choose to use cut outs from magazines or newspapers.  Others create all of the images, doodles and words themselves.  One of the things that I struggled with when I started learning how to make an art journal was learning creative lettering techniques.  My writing is fairly boring.  I don’t have a lot of curly tails on my letters or cute hearts and circles when I dot my “i” and “j” letters.

I found a book called, Creative Lettering: Techniques & Tips From Top Artists by Jenny Doh (check it out on Amazon).   In this book, sixteen different artists offer their thoughts on techniques and tools needed to make a variety of different alphabets.  These alphabets work perfectly no matter what type of crafter you are – journaler, mixed media artist, scrapbooker, etc.  Some of the alphabets begin with hand lettering and then use Photoshop to embellish the letters.  Some are hand-lettered only and some are done online only.  The book begins with an introduction so even if you are a beginner, you will understand the terminology.

Each crafter showcases their own alphabet or a variety of alphabets. you will see the entire alphabet so that it is easy for you to duplicate it in your own art journal.  You will also learn how they were inspired to create the alphabet, their favorite letter, a bit of history about them, and read about their tips and techniques.  I love that you can also see how their alphabet can be used on a variety of different projects.

I’m definitely enjoying learning how to make an art journal now that I can use a variety of creative alphabets. Since each of the crafters has a website reference in the book, I can check out their sites for even more inspiration. This is definitely a creative lettering book I recommend.  You can see how I’m using creative lettering in the artist trading cards I’ve been creating.

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5 thoughts on “How To Make An Art Journal”

  1. I like that you can use mixed media, like magazines and photoshop and whatnot. I have zero talent when it comes to drawing, but I think I have a pretty good eye for what looks nice. Mind you, I can't reproduce it in life half the time, but I try! I also think this is a great idea for kids. My son is constantly doodling and drawing, it would be cool to have a nice journal of art from him!

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