Friday, April 29, 2016

Art Journals/Sketch Books - and Decorating the Cover

I've had a sketch book for as long as I can remember. It isn't an art journal as in today's definition but my books are a type of journal in that it shows a  timeline of my life. My drawings depict how I was feeling and thinking at that particular period. Looking at the pictures always sends me down memory lane.

art journals/ sketch books
So a couple of years ago I bought an art journal/sketch book for my granddaughter and I love flipping through it with her and talking about her pictures. I can see an evolution in her work as her ability and techniques change.

I only wish I had it sooner and had a few of her earlier works. Unfortunately those are no where to be found. That's one of the great things about her art journal.

For the most part  Faith's drawings are neatly contained in one compact place - not loose papers all over the house getting wrinkled, torn or lost. Not that she only draws in her book. She normally reserves her art journal for times she wants to put extra effort into making a masterpiece.

I like to try to date each page not only in her book but in mine too. It definitely helps put an order to it all.

Depending on how creative we are feeling, we can go through a sketch book in a few weeks or a few months. Either way it can get costly. 

I looked around and found the Pro-Art Canson 9-Inch by 12-Inch Universal Sketch Book, 100-Sheet. You can get this for under twenty dollars. The only difference between this one and my sketch books are the covers. This sketch book has a cardboard back and paper front. Otherwise it is exactly the same.

If you don't mind spending more you could get the Alpha Wirebound Sketchbook 9X12.

Art JournalsThis sketch book is fantastic. The back and front are hard cover which is really handy. You can put it on your lap to sketch on the go and not be tied down to a table.

They have a spiral binding making it easy to open right up and lay flat. 

I like the 65 lb paper. It's acid free and each page is microperforated so it's easy to take a page out and not rip up your masterpiece.

The cover is plain black which can be both a blessing and a flaw. Trying to tell the difference between books is nearly impossible without picking each one up and looking inside.Then I had a light bulb moment . Dah! decorate the covers. Brilliant!

So that's what my granddaughter and I did. We gathered a few supplies that we had around the house like stickers, foam cutouts, markers, gel pens, washi tape, and nail polish.

Art Journals/Sketch BooksThis first book is mine. I used a permanent paint marker to draw these tangled inspired designs which flows well with the general style of the drawings in the book.

I used the same marker for this second book. I adore the flowers. 

Art Journals/Sketch BooksWe used several different media for this third book.

We have vinyl cutout lettering stickers, butterfly foam stickers, markers and nail polish. 

Art Journals/Sketch BooksWe actually love using nail polish to craft with. We have all kinds of colors and some with glitter. Glitter makes everything special. It also sticks pretty darn good to many different surfaces. Besides who uses up the whole bottle of nail polish anyway.

We first put the lettering down then colored on top. Once Faith and I had enough color on the cover I peeled the letters off revealing the black background and giving it a bit of punch. We added the butterflies and glitter nail polish. I think it turned out pretty awesome.

Art Journals/Sketch Books
This fourth book is so cute. We used two foam heart shaped cutouts, foam stickers (some with glitter), and permanent markers. 

I helped a little. I added the stitching lines around the hearts and the outlines around the stickers.

Art Journals/Sketch BooksMy last art journal/sketch book is decorated with glitter tape forming a frame around the flowers. I used a gold glitter gel pen. The gel pen didn't adhere well so I sprayed it with a clear coat to prevent it from scratching off.

This last book's pages are all blank and the cover is decorated- all ready for me to be creative. And the great thing is we can tell who the owner is of the book and which one is current.

Art Journals/Sketch Books

We had so much fun now we are looking for more books to decorate like my gratitude journal, address book ....

Do you have any plain old books around your home just screaming to be beautified?

Darlene NemethI love to read your opinions and comments. It makes my day.
Bye for now.
Wishing you the best, Darlene

My apologies, all anonymous comments are deleted due to an excessive amount of spam.

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  1. I love that you've passed this beautiful journaling tradition along. What a precious memory for you both. Have a wonderful weekend, Darlene.

  2. This is such a great idea Darlene, smart and oh so practical. Not like me who has a whole lifetimes worth of art from four kids scattered all over the I love what you have done with them, no one would guess that they were from the dollar store. I hope youhave a chance to drop by my blog and add this lovely post to our link party. Have a great weekend!

  3. You have passed the creative gene on to your granddaughter, how lovely. Your cover is exciting and happy.

  4. how fun and how creative! I want like a dozen books just to have fun with decorating them! Love your drawings, always beautiful!

  5. I love the idea of a art sketchbook for the kids instead of all those loose papers. The covers are marvelous! I don't have a lot of doodling talent, but wow, love your tangle inspired designs! Your granddaughter's book are adorable. What a fun thing to do and share together!

  6. It's so great that you and your granddaughter share a love of art. The journals looks wonderful.

  7. Darlene, these art journals are such a great way to organize artwork! What a fun way to spend time with your granddaughter; she'll remember that forever. The art journal covers look beautiful! Thanks for sharing at Sweet Inspiration!

  8. What a creative way of bonding with your granddaughter through artwork journals. And Faith will have lasting memories of the special times with her grandmother, too! The journals look beautiful and the idea is so cool, Darlene!

  9. How fun Darlene to be decorating these books with your granddaughter!
    Thanks for sharing this at Cooking and Crafting with J&J! :)
    Enjoy the week and Happy Mothers Day!

  10. I love that you have nail polish as a medium. Thanks for sharing your post with You've been pinned to our Link party board too!

  11. This turned out very cute! :)

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  12. This covers are super cool! I know the kids will love them.

  13. Your covers are so pretty! This would be a great sleepover-party craft, too. Thanks for sharing at the Creatively Crafty Link Party!