Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Prepping a new journal

My current everyday (mostly writing) journal is nearing it's end. Just about 10 more pages to go and it's done. It's been with me since january. I have not shown pictures of it, mostly because it's not interesting at all to look at. It's just writing with a pasted in picture here and there.

I always get a little sentimental when I finish a journal I've been keeping for a long time (eight months now). When you start a fresh one it's strange and new and unfamiliar, but after a few months it becomes like a steady companion. And then when you finish it's a little like having to say goodbye to a dear friend.

But...there's also the excitement of starting a new journal. I always pick a different kind and sometimes I will prepare it for the coming times and sometimes I just leave it blank. It all depends on my mood and the journal itself.
Over the past couple of weeks I have been preparing my next everyday journal and here it is:

I used one of the cats-in-bed-drawings to put on the cover. The journal is a large moleskine cahier. The paper of this journal is really flimsy and when I say really flimsy I mean REALLY FLIMSY. I don't know why the moleskine people who make such beautiful books allow their cahiers to have such silly flimsy paper. But everything can be fixed, so I have covered all spreads with gesso and now at least they have a little bite and don't shine through anymore.

I may still cover the cover (cover the cover?) with plastic to protect it a little more against wear and tear, because believe me, it will be worn and torn ;-)

I have put some backgrounds in some of the spreads as well, but a lot of them are still blank. The above is a mixture of neocolor watersoluble crayons and gesso. I like how this makes such chalky colors.

The above is a result of  a thing that I do with left over paint. I just scrape the excess off the brush onto a spread and see what happens. In this case I also used the lid of a glue stick to make circles into the wet paint. Sometimes I will also close the book and stamp one side of the page to the other or I will use the pages to print left over paint on foam stamps. Another thing I do is put the pages down on the paper palet that I use and so print the palet on the spread. This gives really nice effects.  Most prepped pages are messy like this.

I guess this can be called the first 'official' spread in my new journal. I made it after I finished the two spreads in the previous post. I had cleared up my table and some of these scraps were still left over and instead of throwing them away I made this simple collage on a background of gesso. I kind of like this sort of work better than the more elaborate work in the ALMBH journal, because it's so direct and simple.

The journal is now just about ready for use. I may still add some things like paper scraps or more colors, but at least it can be used. Now all I have to do is finish my current one and I'm ready to go ;-)


  1. i know what you mean about becoming attached to a journal but starting a new one is always mixed with anticipation but it will be fun. I have one of those Moleskine journals and you are right they are quite flimsy but coating with gesso is a great idea! Thanks for your comment.

  2. Yes, I think you are right about the border. It doesn't really need it. I think that was part of the battle. I will pull it up in Photoshop agin and crop the border and take a look see.

  3. I came to your blog after visiting Martha Lever's blog and I was so impressed that you were willing to give a real critique of her art. I want friends to care enough to do that. I love your journal! I use a moleskin journal, and you're right as long as you coat with gesso- you can add anything and many layers of paint. I've added so many at times that the pages will feel like leather when I get through!


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