So, I have had some questions about how I work in my art journal and what I use. So I figured I'd try to answer those questions here for you. Remember I am NOT an expert at all but this is what works for me.
This is what I work in -
Mixed Media Visual Journal — This
medium-weight paper is great for wet and dry media, including watercolor, acrylic, pen and ink, pencil, crayon, charcoal, marker, and collage. Each journal contains 34 sheets of 90 lb (190 gsm), acid-free paper.
I have loved the papers in it and they do not curl up or soak through. My only complaint is that the ring binding is too small (for me) but that was an easy fix, I just changed out the rings for a bigger set I had here at the house and used my Cinch to put it back together!
Just a side note the ugly top page is removable and you are left with a nice brown textured hard cover for your journal. You can easily alter this cover to make it more personal. The covers are the same on front and back too.
This is what I start with -
Liquitex Basics Acrylic Gesso is formulated to produce a smooth, absorbent, finely textured ground for painting on most porous surfaces, including canvas, paper, fabric, wood, or plaster.
This gesso does not require thinning for proper consistency. It dries in minutes to a non-yellowing, brilliant white. It's suitable for use with Liquitex Basics and other student-grade acrylic paints.
This is what I put it all together with -
Liquitex Matte Medium — Mix medium viscosity Matte Medium with acrylic colors for completely matte, dull and flat effects and a non-reflecting finish. When mixed with acrylic paint, it extends color, increases transparency, matte and film integrity, eases paint flow, and adds to the flexibility and adhesion of paint film. It is opaque when wet and translucent when dry. Use it as an extender, a fixative, or a ground. Mix with Gloss Medium for a semi-gloss or satin medium. Use both Gloss and Matte Mediums as an extender and fixative for Liquitex Acrylic Paints. They can be mixed together, in any proportion, for a semi-gloss or satin medium.
This is my glue and my sealant as well as a great thing to mix with my paints to thin them down and make them more transparent etc. It is a must have and I suggest buying at least the 32oz bottle. You will use this alot! I prefer the matte finish but it comes in a gloss too for you shinny people out there.
This is where I get my images and my text -
I am a HUGE fan of the library! You can get wonderful books there from .50 - $2! The library is so much cheaper than goodwill. There is also a great used bookstore on Bell road called Thrifty Joes - good prices and great selection!
So look for old paper backs, Bibles, Dictionaries, newspapers for background text. Look for art books, medical books, architecture books, cook books, gardening books and soon for images. Or you can scan in your favorite images or photos you have taken and print them out! Don't forget to check the Internet for more images
Old sewing patterns are great for texture as wll as text!!! And one pattern will go a l o n g way for you! So dig out some old ones you don't use anymore, check garage sales for .25 patterns or buy them new at Hobby Lobby for .99 when they are on sale!
This is what I print my images on -
Just plain ol' printer paper from my computer! Nothing fancy here at all. I like all of my layers to meld together and I find the thin paper helps that happen and I am never out of printer paper and it's cheap!
Here's some more must haves for me -
Waxed Paper for lots of things - separating pages, for brayering wet images & papers, crumpled up for adding texture with paint. Tim Holtz Tissue - not a must have but a fun purchase! Paper Towels - this is definitely a messy art form! Also great for adding texture to your paint by smoothing it over a painted surface and then pulling it up. Baby Wipes - because its messy and also they are great for blending paints! Spray Bottle w/ Water - to help paint and inks run and to thin out paints and clean up messes! Cheap Paint Brushes - I like the wooden handled ones with the stiff bristles for glue, gesso and even for paint. Drywall Tape - cheap and great texture and is already slightly adhesive.
For Fun & Texture -
Metal Screening (from Garys job site. If your hubby is a construction worker have them keep an eye out for fun/free textures and embellishments!) Vinyl Sign Letters to use as masks - they are reusable! Bubble Wrap, Punchenella, Shelf Liner - all great for adding texture with your paint! Cigar Labels - great images and backgrounds (my SIL smokes them and saves them for me)
This is what I paint with -
Just cheap-o craft acrylics. My favorite brand is American. It is a little heavier bodied than some of the others and the colors are great. Of course there are some Ranger Daubers in there too that are fun and easy to use.
More junque' that I use -
I love the multi dish pallet from Mike's for $2! I just got it and I love it. But before that I used the butter tub lids and they work great too - the best part is if your too tired to wash them you can throw them away! Really cheap watercolors (.50 at Walmart right now for back to school) They are not good quality artist watercolors but they make a great easy wash of color over something. Old gift cards are great for applying paint and smoothing things out. Staz-on stamp pads - you need a permanent ink when you are stamping in your journal! Misc. Lids from bottles etc make great stamps and texture with paint. White out - cheap opaque white paint! (Get it now for .50 for back to school) A Bar of Ivory soap for resist with paints - it have to be Ivory or Dove though.
Charcoal Pencils for shading and a blending stump for blending (duh) Microm 08 pen for outlining and a faber-castell pen for the same thing (I like the micron better) and a Uniball Signo white pen cuz its the best white pen on the market!
This is how I finish stuff -
Low Oder Clear Finish - I spray this on to seal everything once I am done. I also use it in between layers when I use something that is not permanent (ie watercolors, distress inks, charcoal pencils) so that it stays where I put it and how I put it there! They make a gloss too but I am a matte kinda gal!
Till we meet again. . .