Visual Journal and Journaling

Once the background on the journal page is completed and your artwork in interspersed on the page, perhaps it is time to do some journaling. Whether it’s only a few words or a full entry, there are many techniques to use besides the “write it down in the blank space.” Here are a few I’ve used in my current visual journal.

1. Attach a small envelope on the page. Paint, collage, draw, write, whatever, on the front of the envelope. Write your journaling on lined notebook paper or an unusual bit of paper (perhaps handmade?) and slip it into the envelope. Don’t seal unless the message is a private one.

2. Affix a pocket (from old shirts, jeans, specialty paper, or new fabric) to the page. Slip a paragraph of journaling inside.

3. Journal using a bullet list. Make it an elaborate to-do list for the future (week, month, year?) if you wish.

4. Journal a dialogue, using opposite points of view.

5. Journal on vellum that is placed on printed paper, vintage papers, or photographs.

6. Write a letter, extolling the virtues of a friend or family member.

7. Attach an image from a photo to the page by the top edge only. If you have sewing skills, you can stitch the top with bright embroidery thread. Hide journaling under the flap.

8. Journal on a piece of vellum. Then place bits of colored paper on its backside to highlight important words.

9. You can always add the familiar quote or poem, perhaps using different colors or unusual mark makers, (perhaps crayon or conte pencils.

10. Use your computer to journal on a separate piece of paper using an old ‘typewriter’ font. (Or if you have access to an old typewriter, type it.) Print the journaling on an ink-jet transparency, vellum or a light shade of paper and use eyelets to fasten to page.

11. Choose a word that most describes the page you’re working on. Copy or cut-out a definition from an old dictionary or a list of synonyms from an old thesaurus and adhere to a chalked tag.

12. Draw lines (can be wiggly, at an angle, or freestyle) horizontally covering the page. Use a single color (or more) depending on your mood. Print journaling on some or all of the lines in black pen or other complementary color. Add doodles in between some of the words or on the edges.

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