art journaling 101: everything but the kitchen sink

Last fall I participated as an instructor in an online multi-faceted art journaling workshop called "21 Secrets" hosted by Dirty Footprints Studio and the fabulous Connie Hozvicka. There were 21 artists who each completed a mini-session for the workshop and participants had several months to work their way through each lesson at their own speed alongside a supportive online community, forums, chats/discussions, and room to post photos of their own art journals on ning. It was a wonderful experience...there were over 300 students, and I enjoyed interacting with like-minded creative people while sharing techniques and art journal goodness. You can see my pre-class interview with Connie here.

There is a NEW "21 Secrets" workshop open NOW, with all-new instructors, ideas, and mini-lessons, so I'd encourage anyone interested in art journaling, whether you've kept a visual journal for years or whether you're a beginner, to go and check it out. There's a wonderful list of teachers this time, many of whom I've had the pleasure of knowing in a supportive and encouraging online art community.

Since the workshop I was part of has now closed, I've decided to share my lesson here on the old blog.

My workshop was about helping beginners to relax about their journals...get messy, and find new ways to use things found around the house in their artwork. Many people I've heard from here on the blog or youtube have e-mailed asking about various materials, what to use, what's the best art supply for this or that...or have indicated they feel intimidated by the plethora of supplies available.

Don't get me wrong, I am a certified art supply addict, and I love trying new materials and have plenty of my own to prove it. :) BUT...worrying about your supplies, choosing the "right" materials, or letting yourself become intimidated by what other artists are doing is going to keep you from starting an art journal. You don't need fancy supplies...you don't even need more than a pen and paper if that's your preference...there are endless possibilities of how to keep your journal, and the only thing you have to remember is this: it's YOUR journal. You can do whatever you want with it!

It's always interesting to me when grown men and women who make huge, important decisions on a daily basis and have productive, confident lives will e-mail me with a timid comment about their own artwork/journal. When we were all in kindergarten, and the teachers gave us crayons and paper, gluesticks and magazines...I'd bet a thousand bucks that 99% of us grabbed at the supplies & went to town as confidently as picasso without a second thought, and nobody could tell us we didn't have a right to make artwork! What happens? As we get older, so many lose that childlike confidence & sense of freedom, maybe when a teacher criticizes us for going "outside of the lines" or when a parent tells us that our drawing of the mountains doesn't look right, or when we start learning about "art" by going to museums and the elite art community makes us feel like art is something that could not possibly be grasped by little old us.

Whatever it is, I really love seeing people let all of that nonsense go & leave it behind. A visual journal can be anything you want it to be, can be shared with others or kept locked away, it can be featured front & center in your home or burned when you're done with it. It's a place to let it all hang out, try things, experiment, who cares if it doesn't turn out the way it looked in your head? You can always cover over it or move on to a new page. Nobody has to know, there are no mistakes in art journaling.

Enough words, let's dig in.

Everything but the Kitchen Sink, Part 1/4: Bleach!

Everything but the Kitchen Sink, Part 2/4: Alcohol!

Everything but the Kitchen Sink, Part 3/4: Shaving Cream!

Everything but the Kitchen Sink, Part 4/4: Other items!

I hope you enjoy, thanks for spending some time at my little blog!


TopazPearleGirl said...

I love using this technique!

judipatootie said...

found you thru Connie Barefoot Studios.. ..bleach does interesting things on poster paint and opaque wc, qouache ,, your video was so clear and easy to follow,, thanks for sharing

laurie said...

very cool! thanks for sharing. i was signed up for 21 secrets last fall but didn't get to all the workshops. i blame that on having a job and not enough time. :-)

Carrie said...

I LOVE THIS!! thx for the inspration girl.

Sung-Hee (Regina) Hong said...

Thank you very much for this precious videos !!

Leith said...

Much artsy LOVE for your videos!
Have you upcycled your dryer sheets yet? Very nice as a transparent layer on top of other things. And they tear with nice whispy edges too.

Heidi said...

Yes, thanks for the idea Leith...love using them & then my whole journal is scented w/fresh laundry! Those also make a great anti-static pre-treatment for other papers before embossing an image, too.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing these videos. I am part of the new 21 secrets and wish I had learned about it during the last session. I'm having so much fun. I love your techniques. I have used olive oil with food dye the same way you use the shaving cream. I pour olive oil in a VERY this layer and drop food dye in and move it around with a fork. I use paperclips on two sides of the paper for easier lifting. This fits with your waste not philosophy. You can cook with the olive oil afterwards because it's just food dye.

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