Journals, Sketchbooks, Workbooks


Workbooks 2014 007

I’ve been making sketchbooks, or what I call workbooks, from leftover papers I’ve had sitting around for years.  I’m not very good at coptic binding, but I like how this binding method allows the book to lay flat when open.  There is room for improvement in my technique!

I’ve started to play with paint in the first one with the painted cover. The cover is heavy watercolor paper that I happened to have some leftover scraps. It’s about 8×12 inches. That’s as big as I like to go with journals. It has about 64 pages, counting both sides. I’m calling it “Abstractions” because I am just playing around with color and shapes.  I don’t like to use more than about 64 pages  per book – I seem to get overwhelmed artwise when there  too many blank pages!  That’s why its nice to make your own, you can choose size, paper, etc.

Workbooks 2014 003

This is the one in the middle – about 6 x 10 inches.  I used brown paper called “bogus rough” and gray tone paper.  It has about 64 pages counting both sides of each page.  The cover is 140# watercolor paper, which I will paint when I decide what I’ll use the journal for.

Workbooks 2014 006

This is the one on the right.  Its tall and narrow – due to leftover paper sizes.  You can see how nice and flat they stay open!  It has a cover made from the back of a used purchased sketch pad.

Abstractions 2014 004

Here’s what’s happening inside the first book.  I’m using acrylics on gesso coated brown pages.

Abstractions 2014 010

Abstractions 2014 027

Abstractions 2014 003

I wish acrylics were’nt so shiny, but they’re great for journals because they dry fast.  Sometimes the pages do stick together a little bit.  But for now, I’m just painting!











11 responses »

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed this post. It is lovely to see your journals and the beginnings of creativity. Look forward to seeing what else comes.

  2. Love this post (+ all your art : ) I too make my own journals and use the coptic stitch most of the time for the same reason, how it lays flat when you open any page : ) wanted to mention in case you haven’t tried the Dick Blick Matte acrylics – I bought a set of ? 6 ? very inexpensive, and I like them for that very reason, they’re not shiny and they go on smooth !!! check them out : )
    Thank you as always, for sharing your wonderful art and process(es) : )
    Blessings, Sandra in AZ : )

  3. Thank you, Sandra. I haven’t tried Dick Blick matte acrylics – what a great idea – thanks for letting me know. I will definitely try them, probably order today!

  4. You have so many creative ideas! These are wonderful! I especially love the double page florals. It is so good to see you being creative and sharing it with us! I appreciate you showing us the process as much as the finished products. Happy painting!

  5. Thanks Judee, it feels so good to be painting again and not worrying about product, but just enjoying the process!

  6. First time here. Beautiful work. I agree with you about acrylics being shiny. Maybe putting a flat matte coat varnish could help.

  7. Thanks for visiting, Marie Helena. I found some lovely flat acrylics made by Dick Blick which I really like – especially for journal work! The pages don’t stick together after they dry!

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