Art Journaling & Placemats

Art Journal | Sept 10 2016 | Sand Salt Moon.jpg
Leaves, flowers, waves, ducks – what do you see?

Art Journal | Sand Salt Moon | With dip pen | Sept 10 2016.jpgDip Pen - where it started | Sand Salt Moon.jpg

Art journaling is, for me, about expressing myself in a sketchbook or journal, using art. That could be anything from painting, drawing, collage, doodles, and any combination thereof. Many art journalists do “spreads” (two facing pages in a book) and even alter pages in existing books, whereas I am more a one pager/one side of the sheet art journalist. They also add writing, clippings, photos or images. At the moment, I’m strictly what I produce on the page, although I may branch out in time to come. I like to fill the page without a plan and see where it takes me. This is a page I did last night while listening to music on the radio. It started with my glass dip pen making wave like marks, which I filled in with diluted blue Bombay India ink. I also used markers, watercolor, and chalk paint for this page.

I like art journaling because it opens up the flow of creativity. There are no rules, even though I seem to have mentioned a few (what others do, what I do). Want to glue string on the page? Go ahead! Make it messy? Ok! Use kid’s crayons? Sure! Ugly? No problem. Maybe I am feeling depressed or angry and I’ve got to get that out on the page. If it’s a diary type of art journal, no one has to even see it! What appeals to me, however, is that the emotional part of it, but more the curiosity and surprise of it all. For me, it’s about freedom to experiment.

Here’s a little experiment I added to my journal last week, using a paper cutting inspired by those done by Hans Christian Andersen in the 1800’s (what that man could do with a scissor was amazing!) …


While I was drawing and painting my art journal page last night, I was thinking about the change of seasons here in Florida and how I am watching the native flowers and plants wax and wane like the moon, as it will in a few month be my first year here. If you recall, I did a little drawing of my first year garden, and then a family member wanted me to turn the sketch into placemats (which I ordered from Bed, Bath & Beyond) …

Placemats with my garden sketch.jpg
Placemats with my garden sketch, excuse the fold – this was just out of the package when they arrived and we were so excited, we wanted to see how they’d look on a table. We plan to use them out in the lanai. They’re a nice quality. My garden has already “changed” since this drawing. Next year, I’d love to make a 2nd year sketch of the garden and add to this set.

1st year garden placemat.jpg



18 thoughts on “Art Journaling & Placemats

    1. Hi, Laura! I too never really dabbled much in art journaling, but I understand now how it can help lead to breakthroughs with one’s art or simply be therapeutic, sort of like a coloring book without any forms already drawn in. Glad you see the sea in the my journal page! 🙂 Happy Valentine’s Day to you.

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      1. I am trying
        but today has not been
        Great physically
        It is beautiful though
        Went to the farmers market
        I love there roasted chicken
        With those potatoes and carrots


  1. Those placemats are beautiful!
    Surprise is one of the delights of art.
    And Anderson’s papercuttings are amazing…I saw a few in the Met last year. Yours definitely does the inspiration justice. (K)

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