I am a self-confessed art supply junkie, so I thought I would share some of my favourite supplies that I use for art journaling, mixed media projects and clay creations. I normally get my art materials from Amazon, although I do go to local shops where I live.
Paper & Art Journals
I love different textures, colours, and grain of paper. It is good to have a diverse range of papers to work with. Here in the UK Paperchase have a great selection of papers, but many art shops have good quality. I also like using wrapping papers, magazines and tissue paper.
For art journaling I’ve found that the best book is Dylusions art journal. The paper is strong enough to take loads of different materials and disintegrate, plus it has a sturdy cover and a pocket for lose bits.
Until I began experimenting with different mediums, I didn’t know the benefits and the different kinds of pages I could create. If you are new to art journaling, there is one I would suggest you use is Claudine Hellmuth Studio Medium in Matte. It is great quality and can be used for collage, sealing art working, gluing papers, image transfers and is easy to paint and draw over once dried because it is matte. You can also get gloss ones such a Mod Podge Gloss Finish Coat, although this is more difficult to work over due to the shiny surface.
Sprays & Powders
I like the Ranger Dylusion Sprays. They give great coverage, are vibrant and react with water. One down side is that they come in one size bottle and I do get through them quickly. At £5 each that is a little expensive. For a shimmery colour I really like some of the Cosmic Shimmer sprays, although these are more subtle and can be used with the Dylusions sprays.
I’ve recently tried Perfect Pearls powder and love how versatile it is. I have used it with polymer clay and in my art journal, adding water to make it easy to paint onto a page.
Punches & Stencils
Punches add dimension to your work, whether you are using smaller shapes in collage or punching out the corners of a page. I think my current favourite is the maple leaf, its so cute but adds a lot to different art journal pages.
I’m building up a good collection of stencils that are quite varied and are great for creating backgrounds. I love using them with sprays and paints, as well as mediums like modelling paste. They add variety and interest to lots of projects, especially art journaling.
I’ve built up a pretty good collection of stamps and I use a lot of black ink in my journal pages. It is a good idea to get a variety of stamps so you don’t get sick of the same image! I really love flowers, birds and nature motifs and find these work well for building up a piece and on their own as an outline using pens to thicken up the edges.
Pens & Pencils
No joke, I have about 6 pencil cases! My favourite pencils right now are Derwant Inktense which, went painted over with water turn into vibrant ink. They build up well when adding depth with different colours.
I’ve been obsessed with Posva Paint Pens for a few years now and still think they are amazing for art journaling. They glide over the page and work easily with papers, inks, sprays and mediums. I also like using Gelly Roll Pens which come in so many fun, sparkly and metallic colours.
I like finding different kinds of pens, so I would also suggest testing a whole bunch of them out in your projects and getting a feel for different thickness, colour, transparency. I find this to be one of the really fun things about art journaling.
Paints & Brushes
I have been using Dylusions paints in my art journal and love them. They dry quickly with a smooth finish to write on, add embellishments, collage, etc. They blend well and work well with the Dylusions sprays. I also love these shimmer paints by Cosmic Shimmer, which are quite translucent. I’ve used them to paint my sculptures and give a nice effect. Other paints I like to use are Acrylic and recently, watercolours.
I tend to go for low end branded paintbrushes just because I am quite harsh with them and end up ruining them somehow – whoops! I like a mixture of sizes and shapes and ProArte Polar are good for all my projects.
I find it hard to resist embellishments, if its shiny I usually want it! I like to add sequins, gems, glitter, metal pieces to my art projects, making them truly mixed media. I also like finding small items, being inspired by interesting pieces and thinking about how they work together. I love scouring art and bead shops for findings, but find things anywhere; a broken earring, buttons, a zip from an old purse, bottle caps. Once you start noticing these items the world seems completely different and anything can be used to make a unique work of art.
Some items I have come to reply on when making my projects are there to clean up or apply my materials. These include:
- Baby wipes
- Kitchen towel
- Tim Holtz mat
- Bulldog clips
- Pen pots
- Clear spray bottles for water
- Cake stand for sculpting (includes a lid to keep off dust)