Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Guest Blogger - PaperWishArt - Art Journal Page for Beginners - Easy Mixed Media Art Journalling

Hello lovelies! I'm really thrilled and excited to be a guest blogger for Tonic Studios It's such a distinction! Thank you, Tonic Team for having me and I hope you'll all enjoy what I'm about to show you J- let's make an art journal page for beginners.

Art Journal Page for beginners - with Nuvo and Tonic Studios Products

I have a new set of gorgeous Tonic Studios and Nuvo by Tonic goodies and I am going to make an easy but so AWESOME art journal page with Nuvo and Tonic. So inspired by Jenifer Kray's Facebook Live on Nuvo mousses I am finally able to see them in action. And not only the mousses, but a whole lot of products that are new to me. And see why this page makes me feel so happy ;)

Art Journal Page for Beginners - Video

Here's the video of the process - in high speed to keep you all awake.
Here is the whole process described in steps, if you find it more helpful than the video. It took me nearly three hours to make this page, which may seem like a long process. But I wasn't rushing, I took breaks and altogether it could have been much quicker. But it wouldn't be that much fun ;)

The Basic Preparations

First thing to do with your blank art journal page is to prime it - using white acrylic gesso. It will protect the paper from bleeding through and strengthen it. We are going to use quite a bit of water here so it's necessary. But good news is we can use a heat gun to speed up the drying. Once the gesso is dry (it's matte - no shiny spots) we can get to work on the design.
For this project I used Delicate Detail - Floral Flourish Stamp from Tonic Studios Essentials - the larger stamp. And to make it more durable, I'm stamping it with clear embossing ink and using black embossing powder. That's when it is very important to dry the gesso well, so that the embossing powder doesn't stick to the page. You can easily remove any excess with a brush before heat-setting the embossing powder. I stamp the flower twice - one on each side - but that's my choice - you can do however you feel about it :)

Colouring flowers with Nuvo Aqua Flows

This is not an advanced level, it's an art journal page for beginners - no complicated colouring techniques. You can play the way you want. I used Nuvo Aqua Flow Pens from the Summer Holiday set that comes in three colours - Red Apple, Lemon Zest and Aqua Splash. I used all three pens to colour the flowers - gently brushing the red on the edges and then blending it with yellow. The pens are very strongly pigmented, so you can use a waterbrush for the background. And the brush tip is absolutely awesome to colour the details. Also mixing the Water Splash with Lemon Zest gives a lovely bright green shade :)

Colouring the Flowers with Nuvo Watercolour Pencils
Colouring the flowers with watercolour pencils is really easy. No need to be super precise as a waterbrush will make the job for you. And the colours become very vivid when activated with water.

Colouring the Background with Nuvo Aqua Flows

I coloured the background with Aqua Splash and Lemon Zest. Letting it dry between layers is a good way to get quite interesting blend of these colours. And you can use any colours you want. They will behave like watercolours, you can even use a waterbrush to make the paint mix or spread smoothly.

Colouring the Background with Nuvo Watercolour Pencils

This is a child's play really! No need to pay attention to detail when you draw the pencils on your page. Using a waterbrush you can smear the colours nicely and blend the colours however you wish them to appear. And a little tip here - you can apply the pencils on a dry page and blend with waterbrush or you can apply the pencil on a wet page for more intense look. Once it dries, you can add more or different colour in the same way and watch the layers overlap.


I found that some black paint splatters will get my page the interest I liked. You can use black acrylic paint, which dries permanent, or permanent ink for splatters - it's all up to you. You may want to make masks to protect the stamped images from the paint. To make this all you need is a sticky note. You stamp the image on a sticky note, cut it out, place it on the image you want to protect, do the splashing and remove the sticky note. I like this little trick as it saves a lot of frustration when something goes not entirely according to plan ;)

But that's not all. You can do some splashes with Nuvo Embellishment Mousses too! I used Just take a bit of the mousse on the side, add a little water and mix it. Once the mouse is mixed you can splash it with a brush. Or you can use a brush to paint with it - and this is also a very interesting technique, it keeps the beautiful shine of the mousse and allows you to get to the smallest areas.
You can also use a stencil to apply the mousse to your page - I used a flourish stencil for this project. And you can apply the mousse with a spatula or with your fingers - I used my fingers mostly as I wanted to make sure the mousse goes over some parts of the stencil only. And I don't mind my hands getting dirty ;)

The Final Touches

When making an art journal page I like my pages to have a lot of interest, a lot to look at. So I drew a frame - just a line with scribbles - around the pages. And I added some stamps - bubbles in the corners and script on the sides. For some reason I find these stamps very useful for this kind of project. And you can draw some shapes (I drew circles) with Nuvo pencils and run your waterbrush over them - this also looks nice (and bubbly, hehe). Nuvo mousses work well too for this - the circles are nice and shiny.


Adding words is not obligatory in art journalling, but I like to give my pages a message. For this one I was inspired by a quote I found a while ago. 

So I wrote on a piece of white card: begin with an idea. This is what I believe expresses the whole idea of art journalling - all you need is an idea to start off. The way the page transforms in front of your eyes is the whole fun. And the end result may not be exactly what you intended it to be, but as long as the process gives you joy, you're doing it right. Nobody says you can't come back to the page you made a bit later and add or change anything. That's absolutely your choice. Just enjoy the process and don't hesitate to try new techniques, experiment and play.

Products used:

As this is meant to be an art journal page for beginners, there are not so many products that you are going to need. Here is what I used:

     White Acrylic gesso (from The Works)
     Tonic Studios - Stamps - Delicate Detail - Floral Flourish Stamp (available at CraftStash)
     Nuvo - Watercolour Pencils - Brilliantly Vibrant (available at CraftStash)
     Nuvo - Embellishment Mousse - Citrus Green
     Nuvo - Embellishment Mousse - Aquamarine
     Nuvo - Embellishment Mousse - Pink Flame
     Nuvo - Aqua Flow Pens - Summer Holiday
     Nuvo - Mica Mist - Antique Gold
     Nuvo - Ink Pad - Black Shadow
     Mixed Media stamps
Thanks for joining me :) I hope you enjoyed reading and watching. And I also hope you will give this a try - it's a truly simple technique that will make you feel so relaxed! If you try it, please do let me know how it went. You can do so by leaving a comment on this post or on the YouTube channel under this video. Visit my blog for more ideas:

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