Easy art journal page – tutorial for beginners
Hello my friends! Today I will show you how to make another easy art journal page. You may have seen the one I made as a guest blogger for Tonic Studios! And I’m so much in love with all the Nuvo and Tonic Studios products I have that I decided to create some more with them. And as there has been a special occasion, I created a special page.
An easy art journal Page for beginners – with Nuvo and Tonic Studios Products (Episode 2)
I really enjoy all the products from Nuvo and Tonic I have had a chance to try. In this art journal page I have used a few products for the first time and I am so much loving them! But I don’t want to spoil the fun, let me show you what I am talking about…
Also, this is a special art journal page. I made it as a tribute to my special friend and I used words from a poem written by her. So stay with me and enjoy the process video. And when you feel inspired – grab your favourite Nuvo and Tonic Studios craft supplies and join me.
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An easy art journal page for beginners – video
Here’s the video showing how I made this easy art journal page:
Step by step instructions
Now that you’ve seen it, you can follow the whole process described in steps. The whole process took just about ninety minutes, excluding breaks for drying. Funny thing, the hardest and the longest part was the last one – where to put the embellishments! But I am thrilled with the outcome. And it was really very pleasant ninety minutes spent on creating this easy art journal page.
The basic preparations
First thing to do with your blank art journal page is to prime it – using white acrylic gesso. It is also a good practice to stick it to some kind of mat – the edges will not warp and there will be a nice frame left. Gesso is necessary to protect the paper from bleeding through and to make it stronger. We are going to use quite a few of water-based products and mist some water here. However, it’s OK to speed up the drying with a heat gun. Once the gesso is dry (not shiny anymore) we can get to work on the design.
Making the background
I wanted this page to be an easy art journal page but also a special one. So first I fixed the page to a plastic mat with washi tape. You can use masking tape for that as well. I covered the page with white acrylic gesso.
Then I used Nuvo Aqua Flow Pens from the Summer Holiday set but I used only the Aqua Splash and Lemon Zest for this project (left out the Red Apple this time). I wasn’t doing any particular moves here, just playing with the colours – it is amazing how nice and juicy they are! And how lovely they react with each other. When I was happy with the amount of paint I dried it with my heat gun.
In the next stage I sprinkled Nuvo Shimmer powders – Atlantis Burst and Solar Flare. I sprayed some water and was truly amazed how gorgeous these looked! I couldn’t resist having a little scribble with a brush – it’s a bit like telling the paint where I want it to go, haha. But the powders do a great job when left on their own as well 😉 And I wasn’t going to wait patiently until it dried, I put the heat gun in action again.
Who doesn’t love texture, right? Well, this is an easy art journal page so I’ll keep it simple. There are many ways of adding texture to art journal pages. Stencils are among the easiest ones. So I used a stencil I got from a friend. I fixed it with washi tape and applied Nuvo Embellishment Mousse – a mix of Aquamarine and Citrus Green. IMPORTANT thing to remember when playing with stencils and mousses on non-watercolour paper! Be careful not to let the mousse get under the stencil and start drying, as it will stick to the stencil and may tear the paper. Lesson learned for me… But no worries…
What to do when this happens? Well, don’t panic, it’s not the end of the world, it’s only another way to get interesting texture! Accidental, I admit, but still can be turned around into something positive. So to fix it I sprinkled a bit of Atlantis Burst shimmer powder over this little mishap, then misted it with water and voila!
Gilding flakes – a touch of gold
For some reason (that’s not clear to me) I wanted to add some gold accents to this project, so I thought Nuvo Gilding Flakes are excellent for that. I watched a few tutorials to make sure I know how to do it – you know, this was the first time for me. So I put a thin layer of tacky glue over the sides where I wanted to add a touch of gold. I used a large hard brush for that hoping for some brush stroke effects maybe. And there are some brush strokes visible on the right side of the page. I put the flakes over the glued parts and let it dry for a moment. Then I brushed away the excess gilding flakes with another brush (making sure it’s dry and clean).
Warning! Do not use gilding flakes when you have a fan on or a window open – they will fly around with the tiniest movement of air! Not that it doesn’t look pretty and interesting, but it can be a bit frustrating to catch and put all that golden mess back in the pot. And make sure your hands are clean and dry unless you want to decorate yourself with gold 😉
A little distress oxide (optional)
I used Mermaid Lagoon Distress Oxide on the areas that were still white. I dabbed the ink in and sprinkled it with water for that lovely oxide effect. Hint: distress oxide didn’t cover the shiny parts – neither the ones from the shimmer powders nor the ones covered with golden flakes. So no need to worry about changing the colours of the flakes or the shimmer powders.
Words, verses, sentiments
In my special project I wanted to use words from a poem written by a dear friend of mine. I picked two verses from her book of poems and wrote them down on a piece of cardstock. The poem is in Polish and so are the verses I chose. In English this would be:
To make sure there are no smudges I used my favourite fine liners for that. I cut the paper so that the verses would go on two separate stripes. Then I coloured the stripes using Nuvo Shimmer Powders diluted with water. I used Solar Flare, Atlantis Burst and Cherry Bomb.
The last one was a great idea to add vibrancy to the project so I thought some little splashes of Cherry Bomb on the background would look awesome too. And I was right! So I dipped the brush in the diluted Shimmer Powder and made some splashes by tapping the brush over the page.
Making the verses stand out
As the verses on the coloured stripes of card were in the same colours as the background I thought they needed something more in order not to blend with it. And here the Nuvo Iced Americano Glitter Marker came in handy. I drew a thin border around each stripe (and the little cut out squares) so that the stripes would pop out.
Adding vibrancy to the background
With the Cherry Bomb splashes the background got a nice contrasting vibrancy. However, it seemed a bit too little of it. So I took a DIY stencil (circles cut out from a piece of card) and used it to make some circles with Nuvo Embellishment Mousse (Pink Flame fits the shade of Cherry Bomb Shimmer Powder perfectly). I put the mousse on the page with my fingers (yup, I do like getting a bit dirty, lol, but you can use a spatula or a brush if you don’t).
Probably I’m not the only one, but I like using my fingers to apply mousse because I can make a thin, slightly transparent layer with a thicker outline this way, which seemed just the thing for this project. I dried it with my heat gun and decided to add some more pink accents with another DIY stencil (this one was made with a cutting die). The dots on this one are smaller and thus it’s harder to apply mousse with my fingers. I tried but the spatula turned out to be a better idea ;P
I always find this part the most challenging. I usually have a few bits that I know I want to use. This time I did too. I knew I wanted some fabric and I had just the right kind of organza for that. I used a few small bits of silver organza with tiny sequins (or large glitter particles) on it to put under the stripes with verses and a larger piece of organza with foiled silver butterflies (so adorable!). So I tore the organza for a shabby look and glued it to the page. Then I glued some red chipboard hearts on top of the butterfly organza.
I added some small colourful chipboard butterflies. And I also added some strips of adhesive pearls along the sides of the hearts. I glued the verses on top of glittery organza. And my special easy art journal page was finished. It turned out really gorgeous with all the sparkle and shine from the gold flakes, shimmer powders, mousse and glittery organza.
For this easy art journal page I used (with links to shops below):
- White Acrylic gesso (available from The Works)
- Aqua Flow Pens from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Summer Holiday (Aqua Splash and Lemon Zest) (available form Craft Stash)
- Shimmer Powder from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Atlantis Burst (available from CraftStash)
- Shimmer Powder from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Solar Flare (available from CraftStash)
- Embellishment Mousse from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Aquamarine (available from CraftStash)
- Embellishment Mousse from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Citrus Green (available from CraftStash)
- Gilding Flakes from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Gold (available from CraftStash)
- Shimmer Powder from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Cherry Bomb (available from CraftStash)
- Embellishment Mousse from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Pink Flame (available from CraftStash)
- Glitter Marker from Tonic Studios Nuvo – Iced Americano (available from CraftStash)
- Silver organza with foiled butterflies
- Silver organza with glitter (available from Amazon UK and Amazon.com)
- Self adhesive pearls (available from Amazon UK and Amazon.com)
- UniPIN Fine Line pens (available from Amazon UK and Amazon.com)
- Distress Oxide (reinker) – Mermaid Lagoon (available from Craft Stash, Amazon UK and Amazon.com)
- Chipboard hearts and butterflies
Thank you so much for joining me 🙂 I hope you enjoyed this easy art journal page tutorial. I would love to see your creations if you decide to try this technique – for any of your creations, you can do art journal pages or cards with it.
For more ideas on art journal pages for beginners see these posts:
Or if you are looking for some art journal page prompts, have a look at this post:
See you soon and happy crafting 🙂