Blog: Art Journal

Kind Heart – Fierce Mind – Brave Spirit

Pretty much how I want to feel right now with everything!

This spread started out as a demo page at my workshops in San Jose in January . I actually showed how to use spray paints with stencils and we used some Montana water based spray which I really fell in love with. They have a matte finish – and the look is so different from the look of the more shiny glossy finish of my Liquitex Spray paints. Plus…they come in those mini spray cans! I am still debating if I should buy those…because I do have…enough …spray paint…but ….you know ;)

I used the Versailles Stencil on the left and the Buenos Aires Stencil on the right. I added some of the background color and added it with my finger to the middle top, smoothing it out and bringing both sides together by journaling over that part.

This page makes me happy – happy memory from the process of making it and my awesome students , happy colors and good message :)

Here are some of the supplies I used for this spread – some links are affiliate links



Wishing you a wonderful day!

Comments (2)

  • Sue Clarke

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    You can never have enough paint as it gets used up…just saying. Enjoy your day Nat.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Hehehe- I know ;) I bought it …ahem ;) Enjoy your day too Sue and have a wonderful weekend!

      Reply

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Creative Ice Breaker – Morning Art Journal Play Video #7

In the mornings I play in my art journal to get myself into the creative groove and break the ice – so to speak- and get ready to paint. I recorded and fast forwarded my morning ritual for this video – and hope you enjoy it. Take it as what it is – a morning art journal play- not a tutorial.

Here are the supplies I have used in my Creative Ice Breaker video above – some links are affiliate links.



I hope you enjoyed the little glimpse into my morning warm up play! Have a wonderful and creative day!

Comments (4)

  • stephanie

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    Great video! A good way to get warmed up

    Reply

  • Sherry Canino

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    What a great video I loved watching you create in your art journal and I love those stamps !!!

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Golden Gate – Art Journal Page

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me:
I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

Emma Lazarus

Lady Liberty is right at my front door …well I used to see her until last year from my studio window- but now a tall new building is blocking the way. I love to take the bike in the summer and go out to Liberty State Park and enjoy a view of her. What a wonderful symbol she is.

It was freeing and good to create this page springing from a crazy mash up of added paints, patterns, texture and colors. I thought that was fitting for this page.

Here are some of the supplies I used – some are affiliate links:


Comments (2)

  • Torsa Saha

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    Wow!! Stunningly beautiful!!

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Look for Stars – Art Journal Spread

“When it rains, look for rainbows, when it’s dark, look for stars.”

The color scheme I used for this spread was actually inspired by a student using it in one of my classes at The InkPad a couple months ago. I so loved the mixture of ochre, blue and purple that I made a mental note to play with this some time. And there it is :)

I painted the background blue and then layered the Santiago 9×12 Stencil on top using yellow oxide spray paint . I layered the Stencil again on some of the areas – some on the previous stenciled areas, some slightly off and used some light purple paint which I stippled with cosmetic brush through the stencil here and there.

I used the Santiago Tile Foam Stamp which has the same pattern but in a smaller scale with purple acrylic paint and stamped on top of some tags. I love how the different scales of the same pattern- but also the different quality and texture of applications play with each other and tie the design together. I love Foam Stamps also for the texture the stamped image reveals when using a smaller amount of paint.

Here are the supplies I used for this spread – some links are affiliate links


I hope your day is filled with rainbows and stars today!

Comments (2)

  • Torsa Saha

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    Brilliant!! Love this page 💕💕

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Do Things Different – Art Journal Spread

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you will always get what you’ve always got” attributed to many- including Albert Einstein. Regardless who said this…smart ! A good reminder to change things up once in a while!

I saturated the background with different colors of acrylic spray paints and used the back of a brush to scratch some marks into it. I layered the Santa Fe 9×12 Stencil on top and sprayed over it with black spray paint. As you can see some of the areas – on the right bottom – are a little bit blurred- that is because I did not wait until the background was totally dried …- I am so impatient sometimes. But, I am ok with this. This page was a 10 minute affair and it made me happy to just do something creative that morning that was followed by loads of paper- and computerwork. 

I tore a manilla shipping tag and added the journaling with my fountain pen. Anyone else still loves to write with a fountain pen, besides me? I just love the feel of a fountain pen.

I like how the black pops the pattern off the colorful background. This spread makes me long for some traveling in the South West, yummie food and summer :)

Here are the supplies I used for this super quick art journal spread- some links are affiliate links:


Wishing you a fantastic day!

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Courage and Love – playing with Watercolor in my Art Journal

“Courage, like love, circles back around and finds us again. Love, like courage, only blooms there exists so many reasons to be afraid.” Tyler Knott Gregson

I had such a wonderful time creating the page and playing and trying new things. I tested the Daniel Smith Gold Iridescent Gesso, which the wonderful people at Daniel Smith gave me for that purpose at Creativation and applied it loosely to the art journal pages. The gesso was thinner then I expected but oh my oh my once it dried the load of gold pigment fully revealed itself. And I was in Love.

Next I used my Chicago 9×12 Stencil here and there dabbed some white watercolor ground through it – and then painted the bottom of the page also loosely with the ground. Watercolor ground is a primer like Gesso which creates a porous surface on which you can later apply watercolor. I am totally intrigued by this medium and also bought a clear version to further play later and mix up watercolor and acrylics more in my work. I let everything dry overnight as it was stated on the jar.

Then I stamped with my Stroll Through the Hood set 1 and Stroll Through the Hood Set 2  and archival ink and created a city scene. I used the cling stamps and layered them up, using only parts of buildings- and just had a fun time with them.

And then I played with watercolor and just had a good time. I love how the watercolors pop off the background and how the white watercolor ground and gold elements are making it sparkly. I also love the texture created with the watercolor ground.

I added the journaling with one of the ArtGraf Graphite and went over it with a wet brush again. I guess I have a new crush …on watercolors …oh brother ;)

Here are the supplies I worked with  – some links are affiliate links:


Do you have a new art supply /medium crush this year?

Comments (1)

  • Julie B

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    This is absolutely STUNNING! Just stunning! Thank you for sharing your process……love the watercolors with your stencils and stamps; love the gold throughout. Hmmm…..you have me very curious about this medium. Thank you!

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Let’s Go Somewhere – Cheiron Brandon

Happy Valentine’s Day Everyone! Today is Tuesday and time for a post by my Creative Squad . Cheiron Brandon is sharing a beautiful Art Journal spread using the Batik 1 and Batik 2 Foam Stamps as well as the Embroidery and Stroll Through the Hood #1 Stamp Sets and this month’s theme: Let’s Go Somewhere. We’re in the depths of winter here in the Northern Hemisphere and looking for an escape! This month let’s reminisce about past vacations and plan future adventures to help us get through these gray days.


Hi there! Cheiron here with my monthly post. This month’s theme is Let’s Go Somewhere! I always love warm weather, but I am not opposed to snow an winter either. As we are approaching Valentine’s day my thoughts for my journal page drifted to Paris and the romantic pinks and blacks. I wouldn’t mind wandering through Paris in the snow and stopping to warm up every so often with some warm food and wine…

I created this page by laying down a foundation of gesso, then stamping with paint  to create lots of layers using the Batik Pattern 1 and 2 ArtFoamies and stenciled using the Beacon Stencil. I partially applied paint to the shapes I wanted by using a foam blending tool. I used lots of stamps from the new Mixed Media Stamps Embroidery Set and the awesome graffiti style love from the Stroll Through The Hood #1 Set.

To finish off the page, I added some splatter in coordinating colors. I can tell that these new stamps are going to be a staple in my art journal. I hope you are having a great day, whether its warm or cold where you are, and if you are planning a vacation or just dreaming of one!


Thank you so much Cheiron! I love how she used bits and pieces of the Foam Stamps instead of using them as a whole image and I also love the grungy feel of this page and the wonderful colors. Now I want to go to Paris too :)

Here are the supplies Cheiron used in her post- some links are affiliate links:


Play along with us! I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Comments (3)

  • Michelle Rydell

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    Cheiron your page is beautiful! I love how you used the stamps, and those colors are yummy!

    Reply

  • Sherri Scott

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    Hey Nat! Of course you would have a Creative Squad. I’m glad Cheiron is a member. I have always enjoyed her work, it’s light, colorful and nice to look at.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Sherri – so good to see you here :) Yes- I love Cheiron and her work! I hope I see you soon again my friend!!!! have a great rest of the week, Nat

      Reply

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Don’t Stand Still – Art Journal

“It’s only cold if you are standing still!” – Let’s keep on moving :)

I painted the background with acrylic paint and then layered the New Orleans 9×12 Stencil onto it and moved it around using different colored spray paints. The New Orleans stencils were inspired by the beautiful wrought iron balconies, gates, and fences known as “Iron Lace” in and around the city of New Orleans. New Orleans was one of the cities I visited on my very first trip to the U.S. in 1994 – and I really have to go back – I loved it a lot.

I pushed back the background by scraping some gesso using an old gift card over certain areas of the spread and stenciled over those gesso-ed areas using the New Orleans 4×4 Stencil.

For the catalogue image that I pasted onto the spread I used markers and acrylic paints.

Which city have you been to once and really want to go back to?

Here are some of the supplies I used for the spread – some links are affiliate links


have a wonderful day!

Comments (4)

  • Julie

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    What lovely layers and great quote! thank you for the process….I have a page with too much gesso on it to push back the color. Laying down stencils over it is the perfect solution (I’m slapping my forehead as I can’t believe I did not think to do this LOL!) I love how the white marker makes the page & image pop (another “why didn’t I think of this). Thank you for the inspiration, as always.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Thank you Julie! Yeah- got and stencil over that spread- hope you share what you did!!! hugs, nat

      Reply

  • Sandi Miaskoff

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    This piece is beautiful. And the way you integrate pictures from different publications is awesome.
    I have a question about that, when you use a marker or paint on an image, does the paper warp?
    Keep ’em comin’. Sandi

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Thank you so much Sandi! As for the wrapping – When I use an acrylic marker, I don’t have any problems at all as the flow of paint is pretty low. As for using paint – I make sure to dry brush the paint on and use not super fluid paint. So with all that I so far never had a problem with the paper warp. It can wrap more likely when I apply it to the background – so I try to do that slow and make sure I apply the gel medium evenly. Hope that helps Sandi! have a wonderful weekend, nat

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A Stroll Through the Hood – Art Journaling Page

Strolling through my hood really makes me happy – I love my city and I love the inspiration I get from it. I wrote a little about these warm feelings towards my home city in this journaling spread. For the page I painted with white gesso over a spread which I had used before to clean off some paint during painting on a canvas. I applied the gesso in areas more like a wash, as I like to have the underlaying background showing through for visual interest, but it does look way better knocked back a lot.

I had used the Beacon 9×12 Stencil on a different art journal spread with spray paint and cleaned off the access paint on the stencil with a deli paper sheet, resulting in the negative imagery of the Beacon Stencil- I love it- I love both versions. I ripped out an area of the printed deli paper and applied it with Gel Medium to the Background.

I also used the Granada 9×12 Stencil after using it on a different spread to clean it off on this page. Since it has the same colored red spray paint those marks here and there add some nice marks.

I stamped  using black archival ink with the stamps included in the Stroll Through the Hood 1 and Stroll Through the Hood 2 and applied them around the page- I love how the black ink makes the images really pop off the page

I also used a red ink pad to stamp with the Love Knots Stamp here and there and to repeat the read color used yet again.

I like this spread a lot- it is a bit different from my usual very paint filled page – but I think you can still see me :)

Here are the supplies I used in this spread- note that some links are affiliate links:


Comments (4)

  • Gerrie

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    Had to wipe my keyboard off…..I drooled on it staring at this print you made! Really, really love your work GF!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      LOL- Gerrie that made me laugh! Thank you so much for your sweet words! have a fantastic weekend!!!

      Reply

  • Joi@RR

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    Oh yes… even though it’s different – definitely can see YOU all over these pages Nat. And… this is SPECTACULAR. Love the openess but with so much dimension and hidden treasures to discover. One of my favorites now!! Xj.

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