Art Journal Page – Testing Tools

May 2, 2013

Filed in: Uncategorized

Juliana Coles, art journal and teacher extraordinaire, teaches an online class called “Field Notes” and I am loving it!One of our exercises was to test out our sketch/journaling tools that we would carry around with us and use, so I dove right in making marks, making notes, and trying out some new combinations. 

Because I am using my newest altered book as one of my journals for this class, I opted for two pages that had pretty basic images of African masks, and then coated both with white and phtalo blue Golden fluid acrylics. I wanted a base of acrylic because I knew I would primarily be writing, drawing, painting over acrylic on most pages. 

After all was said and done, I learned a bit of unexpected insight in to the materials I thought I would love the most, but didn’t. My Copics, Micron, and Uniball Vision Needle were great, waterproof, smooth lines, just loved them for pens. My Molotow white paint pen worked the best, but I was also surprised to find the Elmer’s Painters Pens (found at Walmart no less) way better than I expected, for half the price and tons of colors. Graphite was a huge disappointment for me, but most likely due to the acrylic paint. I HATE F and H graphite, they are just too hard for me, but I love the B’s, especially the 6B and 8B. What that tells me is that I am drawn to dark lines and really love lines that will blend at times. 

I also just got three water soluble graphite sticks in 2,4, and 6B, and when wet the create a wonderful flow of black pigment….totally yummy. My Pentel Gold and Silver pens wrote smoothly, and even a Bic pen didn’t disappoint either. My Neocolor II sticks were the best ‘crayon’ like product, went on creamy, but when wet they took a while to dry and were very runny, so I know they will be better suited for paper, but as a crayon, they were great. Derwent Inktense were about the same, loved the crayon like feel when dry, but when wet they were almost too runny and require a matte medium to coat them or they will lift easily. 

I glued a flap onto the left of this page so that I could write my impression of each tool. 

The most unexpected product I loved was my Crayola marker (to the right of the larger figures face three orange horizontal lines). Went on smoothly, totally transparent, and next to my ChartPak markers which were way more expensive, they worked just as well. Glad to make that comparison. Overall, I know I will use most of these tools in my sketchbook, but I wont be using my F or H pencils anytime soon. 

Tomorrow I shall try a few products on a dry page, no acrylic, and compare and contrast the difference. If you are looking for an online art journal class that pushes you toward creating edgy, messy, fantastic life sketches I strongly recommend her classes. I am just in week two and have about 10 videos left to watch, amazing PDF’s, and the fact that she, as the instructor is so involved in our class makes thrilled. I have taken many online classes, some really expensive ones from well known instructors, only to be really disappointed at the ‘lack’ of personal presence from them. Juliana makes herself part of the class, and I value that in a teacher. 

Looking forward to what the next lessons bring…..on to make marks. 

comments +

  1. Belinda Watson says:

    Excellent! I'm impressed with your project. I have made one 'trash' Sampler page and it's a total mess! I love it.

  2. Ardith Goodwin says:

    Thank you Belinda for taking the time to visit my blog! I do love making messes, especially in the quest to master the tools of the craft!

  3. Louise says:

    I love your page and thank you for sharing so much information and your process.

  4. Ardith Goodwin says:

    Thank you so much Louise! That means the world to me!

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