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page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

Table of Issue Contents... #3: End of Summer, 2008 Features


Words as Letter Art p.08

editor’s letter p.02

Travelin’ Tablet Trepidations p.10


The Great Kira Photo Experiment p.13

a good read... p.04

by Becky New

“how did you get your start in art journaling?”

by Toni Brown

by Samantha Kira Harding

Journaler Profile: Roben-Marie Smith p.17 interviewed by Samantha Kira Harding

The Beauty of Truth p.23 by Bianca Mandity

hot trends with christine drevo p.04 one page tutorial: inkjet transparencies p.05 drops of daily life: start small p.06

what is your journal personality? p.07 the gallery p.24 final word p.32

page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3



page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

“How did you get your start in

Art Journaling?”

We all have to start somewhere, right? Page by Page posed this question to the members of Flickr’s various art/visual journal groups. Here’s a smattering of the answers. Hi! I found a couple of post on flickr that were labeled altered book . I loved the look & the fact it was using recycled items. I have used moleskine, old books & made my own books. The level of creativity is unlimited & no guidelines. Just create & have fun! -Turtlebug I bought Linda Woods’ book Visual Chronicles last spring, thinking it was actually more about writing and something I could use to help my students become better writers. And although it wasn’t what I was expecting, it has taken my life in a whole new direction. - La Dama de Collage I have lots of different “journals”. My problem is dedication, I’m all over the map and will sometimes just write or doodle. In the last few years I’ve done everything on a computer but it doesn’t talk to me the way a piece of paper would...the unexpected textures....running out of room when I need it most; those are things I actually enjoy! Noticing all the wonderful art on Flickr I decided to give art another chance, so I pulled out my aged journals from middle school and started painting over some of my most disastrous pages. - ninanoelan

I used to just write in journals but I started doing art journals when I stumbled across Sabrina Ward Harrison’s books. I was totally inspired by her and even decided to write my Master’s thesis in Art Therapy on my own art journaling in response to growing up with a mother who suffered from depression. I am an art therapist and I just recently started a group called Art Journaling for Wellness at the hospital I work at. They absolutely love the group! I make a journal alongside with them and tell them to “trust the mess” just like Sabrina taught me to. - blisslikethis2008 I started with altering books, dominoes, cigar box purses and other things about 8 or so years ago, and then I stumbled across the visual journals a few years ago (It had to be Teesha Moore’s web site, but I’m not 100% sure) and a light bulb went off. I thought journaling made so much more sense than just altering books. For me it had a little bit more meaning to it and made it more personal. Anyway, I wish I’d started this about 20 years ago, because my memory is so bad. I can’t remember so many things I’ve done in the past, and now I can look back in my journals and remember things like it was yesterday. All I know is I’m hooked now! -purrplekatt page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3

I started keeping a journal on the advice of my Dr. She seemed to think it would help me get through some of my bad days. I have Fibromyalgia and some of the days are really bad. Then I discovered Dawn Sokol’s blog and was in awe of her work. I have been scrapbooking for 14 yrs. and never really thought of art journaling. I got a Moleskine and am learning as I go. It’s really my therapy and makes me happy. There’s a lot to be said about creating something even if it’s just for you, it makes you feel good and takes your mind off of things going on around you. It’s a habit for me now, I have to journal everyday or I miss it. - sande30 Through the jr_nal community (http:// on LiveJournal. - beetlejess I think I was inspired by other art journalers, definately. Wierd how when it’s in a journal, there’s no pressure to make it good, so I loosen up and it really shows. -marinarios


The latest and greatest in the art journal world right now seems to be FABRIC! It’s a pretty simple concept that makes you think, “Why didn’t I think of that?” It seems like everyone is getting into this new “idea”. All you have to do is go to your local fabric store and purchase canvas fabric, machine wash and tumble dry (remember, canvas fabric, like most fabric, shrink). You can iron it on low if you’d like. The canvas fabric comes in all sorts of colors. You just have the hard task of choosing which one you want to use. Next, cut it to your desired size and make as many pages as you’d like. Basically do what you would normally do on paper. I do find that if you dip your paintbrush in water first, then into the paint, you can make a really nice translucent look. Oh, and let’s not forget that you can print on the canvas. Oh, yes, I said print. This tends to work for me because you can print text on it first, and then paint, draw, stamp or collage on top of it. Once your pages are done, you simply sew on the spine and decorate the exterior however you want.

a good read...

True Vision: Authentic Art Journaling LK Ludwig ISBN: 978-1-59253-426-5 $24.99 US 4

I’ve read more than my fair share of art journaling books; it seems a new one comes out every few months these days, all trying to present a new point of view on the topic. And most, unfortunatly, fall a bit short. As an experianced journaler, I’m searching for more than just the same techniques or sample projects – I need a way of thinking, prompts, and perhaps something more. Thankfully, LK Ludwig’s True Vision: Authentic Art Journaling delivers on every front. The book, somehow, presents journaling that intrepid artists of all levels can follow and learn from. Seperated into chapters, such as relationships and current events, Ludwig covers all the reasons why we journal – either to chronicle ourselves or our lives – all the while presenting exercises or tutorials applicable to the material being discussed. In addition to deep, wonderful chapters, every page – every page! -- has either a prompt along the side or a question along the bottom to get you thinking about your journal and process. Awesome, creative questions and prompts that get you looking at things differently. This rich resource is a real workshop, a book you can refer back to again and again and you’ll always discover something new. Ludwig’s fresh perspective, passion, and talent, combined with journal pages and asides from a diverse community of artists, create a wonderful art journal book I’m sure to keep close whenever I sit down to create.

page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

I love inkjet transparencies! I’ve done image transfers from all sorts of stuff using various mediums, and transparencies stick out in my mind as the best and easiest way to get that cool, printed-on effect.

1.Manipulate your image. Transparencies don’t transfer backwards like many other methods, so there’s no need to leave out the text!

2.Follow the instructions on your transparencies for printing.

4.Press the printed side of the transparency down, not the smooth side. Burnish and leave it for about a minute and a half. This helps to transfer a clearer image.

5.Pull up the transparency slowly. Voila!

TIP: Don’t touch the freshlyprinted transparencies, it’ll smear!

3.Coat the area on your page where you want the image with a generous amount of gel medium. Smooth it out with your fingers because brushstrokes will show.

TIP: Keep the used transparencies. It will have a muted version of your image left that you can use elsewhere.

page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3


Start small. So many people see daily journaling as hard. A woman being interviewed on “The View” suggested, when introducing ways to raise your child “green,” to keep a daily journal of what your child eats, how they’re feeling, and so on. Her reasoning was that when your child isn’t feeling well, or perhaps an allergy develops, you have a written record, a way to look back and see where things went astray. While the woman tried to explain this, the panel spoke over her, chiming in that it was too much, excessive, or just plain hard. But, as the woman said, “it takes 5 minutes.” And it does. But what do you do with those five minutes? We don’t need prompts or lists or a topic assigned by a teacher – these are external forces, that, when you really get down to it, don’t have any control or influence over you or your soul. Inspiration is an external force sparking something that already exists within you. Prompts are like scent memories, those waves of peppermint or cookie dough that pull up the image of baking with your mother – the memory is yours, just brought up from the depths of your mind. Our lives are created and we never question the validity of our lives. In fact, aside from wondering about the source of happiness and where we’re going, we never really think about our lives as we do our art. So how do you uncover these hidden gems inside you? By starting small. Try this for a week: every day, set aside 10 minutes to write in your journal – yes, write – and don’t look at the previous day’s work. No art sup6

plies to get in the way and clutter your mind (not to mention your workspace!). With only a pen and paper, there’s no pressure to make something “good” or “right.” We all can write. And since you won’t be showing this to anyone, it doesn’t have to make sense or even have complete sentences! Take those ten minutes and write your day. All the boring stuff. What you ate. Where you went. Who you saw. Add in all those little observations that fly through your mind – how your reflection looked in the deli case glass. That tree that grabbed your attention or how the sun caught in your child’s hair. Write them. No need to be poetic – just get them from your head onto the paper. We all have so many thoughts running through our heads, words and sentences that have meaning but never mature. They need to be brought out into the world, manifested into existence in the outer, material world. That is how they grow, develop, and transform into awesome displays of creativity and expression. And while, at the moment, this might seem overwhelming or bigger than you, it isn’t. It is only a point on your personal creative journey. So, for now, take your week and let it out. On the last of the seven days, take a little extra time to reflect on the process – did you enjoy it or hate every minute? Did it get easier as the days passed? Are you now remembering more of the day that might have passed you by before? Give yourself a break, if needed. Look over all the entries as

a collective timeline – are there any things that repeat or are related? Symbols that you keep seeing are often clues as to issues dwelling in your subconscious or are messages the Divine is trying to tell you. Paths through the woods often remind me of my path in life and what may happen – where I’m going. Birds are freedom or maturing past childhood. Places have the same importance. Your favorite haunt or way home may have meaning past the surface. Simple journaling can begin to clue you into pieces of your life you may never have noticed before, as well as give you a wealth of symbols and images to bring into your collages and paintings. By deepening your awareness of daily life, you gain both insight and inspiration. You can take this exercise further by bringing along a camera and snapping anything that draws your attention. If you’re pulled by something, even for a second, there’s usually a reason for it. Snap! No contests or sharing. Here, so take really bad, quick snapshots. At the end of the day, print out a few and write a bit about why you noticed it or what it means to you. Have you noticed how we’re slowly building a journal page? It kinda sneaks up on you, doesn’t it? Begin to bring your art supplies, using your short 5 – 10 minute entries as a base. Draw ideas and inspiration from the daily, the simple. Life is not boring or mundane – far from it! Each day is a gift brimming with possibility - -- you just need to open your eyes to find it.

page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

what is your

Journal Personality? If you’re anything like me, you’ve gone through many, many journals, probably of different papers, sizes, and bindings. Is there any way to navigate through the crowded “journal jungle?” Or will we all continue to forage on, always so close to our perfect journals, but oh-so-far?

1. My pages are usually: a. cross-spreads. b. in a flow from page to page. c. individual pages. 2. When journaling, I: a. am hard on the paper; many layers, brads, sanding. b. like to be inspired by the surface. c. do moderate work, like paint layers and collage elements 3. My favorite pens are: a. Sharpies! b. any after a layer of gesso/paint. c. Sakura gel pens/Microns. 4. I like working: a. in a compact journal/space. b. in a book. c. with something less “perfect.” 5. My favorite elements are: a. flat images, like from magazines. b. old papers, vintage images. c. textured, fabric, or other finds. 6. When it comes to pages, I: a. don’t mind them being bound. b. work on a theme, or until I finish it. c. like flexability when it comes to pages.

Mostly A’s: You’re a bound, smaller-sized journaler, who’d probably be comfortable in a Moleskine sketchbook or something of the sort. You like the compact size and tough paper, and may do more drawing than others. Comfortable with the size and paper, you may be intimidated by larger sizes; that’s okay, because some awesome journalers work in half-letter formats. Mostly B’s: Altered books are for you! This includes composition books, found books, and those notebooks you’d find on sale somewhere. This gives you great flexability in size, but requires a bit more care when prepping and working on pages. Covering existing pages with gesso gives them texture while allowing you to experiment and use a variety of different media. Glueing several pages together keeps things from leaking through, but limits the number of pages in your journal. Mostly C’s: Wire bound works for you! Since you prefer to work on individual spreads, the allure of a bound book & spreads doesn’t really apply. Wire bound journals allow you to use more three-dimentional elements and dimention to your pages. And since you’re probably going to be carting it around, the wires aren’t going to stay perfect, so big chunky books, ribbons, buttons, and so on are probably going to be in your arsinal.

page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3


Words as

L etter A rt

by Becky New

I’ve always had a fascination with letters. I love how they look in their various combinations to form words, sentences and then paragraphs. I love watching the letters appear on the blank page as I type or write. I love blurring my eyes at the written pages and seeing the personality of the lines turn into something magical. They turn into their very own art form! I also delight in experimenting with various fonts. The availability of very cool free fonts on the internet is astounding. You can select the different fonts and download them to your own computer. My computer is set up to install the fonts in both my Word program as well as my Photoshop CS2, both of which enable me to drop-down samples. (see BeXhibit Fontaholics List) My favorite thing to do with fonts is to make my own art paper. In Word, I simply start typing in a streamof-consciousness manner in one of my cool fonts. It does not matter what I type. I just type about the day, or the grocery store, or the crazy neighbor...I just TYPE something! I watch the screen as the page takes on its own character. Then, I pick out either a piece of patterned scrapbook paper (see BeXhibit A) or plain printer paper (see BeXhibit B). I run it through the printer and end up with a custom made font paper to use in my own art journal! I also use this same idea of *fontified* words on scrapbook paper to create various *verbage* of my own. I take a phrase or just a couple of words, print them out, then tear or cut the *verbage* out to use on a particular art journal page. (see BeXhibit C) The obvious advantage of this method over using pre-designed words purchased at the store is, simply, I get to say exactly what I want! (see BeXhibit D)


Another way I use letters as art is with paint and foam stamps. I use a 140 lb, piece of cardstock. I wash a background to the paper with cheap acrylics. I prefer the cheap ones for this because they do not leave me with the

page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

BeXhibits Fontaholics List

polymer resistance of the paint later when I use pens. After the background is done, I randomly take different foam alphabets, dip them in different color acrylics, and stamp them onto the background paper. The key to getting the multi-layered look is to let the paint completely dry before foam stamping another layer of letters. (see BeXhibit E) It can be rather time consuming, but it is well worth the end result. This same method of layering random letters can also be made using rubber \alpha-numeric stamps and inks. I recommend the Stazon inks for random lettering because they dry quickly and don’t bleed. These are just a couple of ways I use lettering and words in my art journals. While I do enjoy the purchased phrases and words on occasion, I typically find I am much more satisfied with making the *verbage* my own. page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3


Travelin’ Tablet

? s n o i t a d i p Tre By: Toni Brown


Tell me: do all your best ideas seem to come to you when you’re without pen and paper? At the grocery store, say, with only half your list of items already in the cart? Or in the doctor’s office, watching the laser hair removal video for the sixteenth time? Maybe as you emerge from the dry cleaner’s with an armload of the Mister’s starched button-downs? The solution? Carry a journal – everywhere! I know, it’s a big step, letting that journal out of the studio or off the bedside table! And it can truly feel as intimidating, desperate or neurotic as dining solo. One thing you can believe, though is your journal will be just as self-conscious and nerve-wracked as you are. So – baby steps! Start simple: pen and paper! I know if you frisk the bottom of your purse, you’ll find writing implements (I just counted 11 in my bag). Now, all you need is a journal – how about you break the ice by choosing a small journal - a memo pad, a wire-bound book of index cards, even a special section in your day planner? For a long time, I used a stack of 3x3 post-it notes held together with a binder clip. I was too shy to pull out “An Official Journal”. I felt conspicuous, sometimes pretentious – the post-its took the edge off and made me feel like I might be fooling people into believing I was jotting down my to-do list. Of course, this meant I was under the paranoid belief that people were even noticing - this happens far FAR less often than we initially timid public journalers realize. Do what you need to, though, until it’s as normal to write anywhere you are as it is to tuck your hair behind your ear or adjust your bra strap. Capture ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ is for you – that idea, the fragment of a juicy conversation, the pattern on that ridiculously expensive but heavenly fabric, a quick sketch of a child in a bright red hoodie chasing a bug.

page by page: inspiration for visual journals |

Sooner than you think, your comfort level will arrive, and your desire to Come Out will override shyness and hesitancy. When that happens, you get to go shopping! Find the journal that speaks to who you are now - the size, the color(s), the weight and appearance of the paper (lined? colored? blank?). I use composition notebooks for several reasons: A) they’re cheap - when school starts every year, Wal-Mart sells funky, bright, playful comp books for 50-cents each! B) They’re lined and wide-ruled, two elements that I require to accommodate my huge hands and give my handwriting the smallest prayer of being legible; C) comp books stand up to all the abuse I have ever thrown at them, from merely knocking around in my Big A** Purse along with my wallet, pens, glue stick, keys, cell phone, roll of masking tape & lip gloss, to the way I tape, glue, paint, spill coffee, drop on the ground, bend, smash, smear, cut and embellish the things; D) they’re large enough for the majority of the images I rip and tear out of magazines, or the ephemera I might find as I mosey along. Have you found your journal? Isn’t it exciting to rustle that bag as you pull it out? What a rush! Now what? I name all my journals. You don’t have to go that far, but consider: your journal is your intimate other, and, as for me, I like to be on a first-name basis with anyone and anything I spend this much time with. The covers of my journals always evolve, just like the contents - an image here, a phrase there, a dollop of glitter paint or a particularly evocative sticker. You can leave your cover alone, if you prefer to be discreet a little longer, or maybe your journal cover is already oozing personality. That’s the point: it’s YOUR journal! Let it express YOU - out loud, or with subtlety. A poem or meaningful quote always finds its way to me, like a message from the Universe and my soul. I don’t seek them out, but I know them when they arrive, and these I tape or glue on the inside front cover, along with some kind of envelope to hold items I can’t immediately tack down on a page. Sometimes my quote or poem will set page by page: inspiration for visual journals | issue # 3

the tone, or create a theme, but more often than not it will just remind me to SPEAK, to NOTICE, to LAUGH, to SEE, and especially TO RECORD: minutiae or Nobelprize contending thought flows! Your journal is you - of course it cares that you just sloshed Starbucks Mocha Latte on your white linen skirt, or that you saw the sun rise just when your favorite song came on the radio, or that the faucet still leaks after you handed over your Michael’s stash to the plumber! THIS IS YOUR LIFE!! The journal holds it all for you – big small up down back forth in out – without judgment. I date my entries, but you don’t have to. I sometimes even ask my journal, “What do you want me to write about?” Usually I’m requested to write about today’s sky, or the antics of toddlers and animals. There are only two things I don’t do, ever: 1) I never write while I’m driving, not even at stop signs or in traffic jams, and 2) See number one. This is the relationship you develop every time you reach in your purse or tote bag or glove compartment for your journal. You become focused on the exchange between the two of you, which is to say self-to-self, and you’ll find that even the idea of onlookers fades away. And you won’t feel conspicuous if someone actually does work up the courage to approach you with that question (you know the one): “What are you writing?” You’ll find yourself grinning, hugging or petting your journal affectionately, and answering, “I’m writing in my journal.” Nine times out of ten, your questioner will respond with, “Oohhhh, I’ve always wanted to keep a journal.” And now you can make suggestions as to how he or she might begin, because – admit it – you’ve got ‘tablet’, and you are travelin’!  


Pge by Page: Inspiration for Visual Journals #3  

A quarterly magazine devoted to visual/art journaling. Includes interviews, articles, book reviews, quizes, and oodles of eye-candy.

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