Stunning And Creative Art Journal Ideas For Beginners To Start With

Art is a term that surrounds the various artistic ways a person spills out his feelings. Many people use art journaling as a way to put out their thoughts and to describe their mood at a particular time using words and images. From writing to scribbling, sketching to painting or even just a collage, there are numerous art journal ideas to be creative. There is no hard and fast rule on how an art journaling for beginners should be. The beauty of an art journal is that anything is fine; your art journal is yours and no one can have an opinion over it. Some art journals have a lot of writing, while others are purely filled with images or doodles. Don’t worry too much about how it’s going to look; at the end of the day, it’s a healthy expressive outlet.

Why Keeping An Art Journal is Good for You

  •         Art journaling is therapeutic as it lets you flow out your emotions with ease.
  •         As there are no rules, you can never go wrong. It gives you a feeling of doing things right.
  •         The process is beneficial for dealing with stress and makes you happy.
  •         It gives you artistic freedom and allows you to be an artist every day.
  •         As it is a very personal thing you can pour your thoughts without holding back.
  •         Expressing yourself creatively Improves your brain and art skills at the same time. 
  •         It gives your thoughts an expression and it almost feels like meditation.
art journal ideas for beginners
Art journal ideas for beginners

Art Journaling For Beginners Tips

You don’t have to be an artist to start an art journal; it is your space and do whatever makes you happy! There’s no fuss, no deadlines or any pressure to make it perfect. All that you need is a little time for yourself. Looking back at what you’ve written or drawn can gain valuable insight into the challenges that you have faced in your life. It’s so easy to pick up a journal and start creating; notebooks and a pencil is all that you need to start an art journal. You can make it as fancy as you can by using art materials and a little bit of your creativity. Just keep these few points in mind before you get started:

  •         Decide on the art journal ideas you’re going to use.
  •         Keep some art supplies handy, like – paper, pen, colors etc.
  •         Just write some appropriate quotes if you are not able to put down your feelings.
  •         Don’t get caught up in too many details, just go with the flow!
  •         If you are not good at drawing, cut out images from a magazine and draw over them.
  •         Covering it is not 100% necessary, but remember to let everything dry before you close.
  •         This is purely for you to explore more about yourself.
  •         Do it every day and enjoy what you do!
  •         It’s 100% OK to leave your art journal unfinished.

Art Journaling For Beginners Tool Kit

Art journaling for beginners doesn’t take much to start; a paper and a pencil is all that you need. But once you have experimented and want to try new styles, the below listed art journal supplies will help you bring a spark in your creativity!

Journal – The place where you put all your awesome work is called a “journal”. Your art journal could be anything from a sketch book to a dairy. There are no hard and fast rules, you can use anything. Just keep in mind to use thick pages if you are working with colors and any normal A4 size paper if you are just drawing or sketching.

Gesso – It is important to prepare your page for different media, especially for watery paints. Main purpose of gesso is to prime your pages so none of your paints seep through the paper. It’s a thick and much pigmented white acrylic paint used as a base layer. You can also mix it with other paints to lighten them. Another great thing about gesso is that it dries quickly and makes the page strong so that it doesn’t tear. You can even cover up your mistakes with it. An absolute must have tool for art journaling for beginners!

Paint – It’s best to start with acrylic paints as they are versatile and easy to use. Acrylic paints come in different colors, sizes and brands. Choices of colors are endless but start by picking colors that complement one another. You can also use watercolors as they are soft and elegant that can give a dreamy effect to your work. Make sure to use thicker paper or watercolor paper for great results.

Brushes – If you are planning to work with paints, you are going to need some brushes to apply them. Art journaling for beginners can pick a few brushes of different sizes and tips from your local art store. Try out these new brush pens which are filled with watercolor. They’re super fun and great to paint with as one side is like a watercolor brush with the other side like a pen tip.

Pencil And Pens – To add details to your page, it’s a must to have a black waterproof pen and white gel pen. Black and white pens go a long way in creating contrast on your page and it also helps to make details stand out. Colored pencils can be used for plain journaling, outlining, drawing, doodling etc.

Stamps And Stencils – Stamp kits are versatile and can be used on every page. A stamp kit consists of letter stamps, flower and geometry shape stamps which can be used to make borders. Alphabet stencils or geometrical stencils also offer plenty of possibilities to create a page. It can be used with acrylic paint, watercolors, gesso, spray bottle paints, and much more.

Old Magazines Or Books – One of the easiest ways to start art journaling for beginners is with collage. Thousands of photos in magazines or books can be used to create a killer art journal page.  Cut out some images that catch your eye to use in your art journal.

Stunning And Creative Ideas For Art Journaling For Beginners

Each page on your art journal tells its own story, but someone who is new to an art journal might not even know how and where to start. Here are a few DIY ideas for art journal pages to get you inspired and fuel you up to start journaling.

All About You

To start with, dedicate the first page to yourself. Paste a photo or draw a picture of yourself if you are good at it. Add your favorite colors, paste pictures or drawings of your favorite places, favorite foods, anything that’s your favorite. Put up some pictures of your family and friends. This art journal idea for beginners is a great one to start with as this page or page is all about you.

ideas for art journal pages
ideas for art journal pages Source:

Botanical Page

Flowers, plants, and gardening are great ideas for art journal pages. Create your own botanical prints with dried flowers, leaves, seed packets in your art journal. These things can be from places you visited or flowers you were given by someone special. You can even create your own designs by combining sketches or watercolours of flowers and plants or even with doodles.

creative art journal ideas
creative art journal ideas Source:

Use Inspirational Quotes

These are great art journal ideas when you don’t know where to start or when you fall short of words! Write your favorite quotes or song lyrics all over the page. Use colored pens, markers, highlighters or even calligraphy to cover the page beautifully. Clip snippets from magazines or print off pretty quotes and add them to your art journal.

art journal drawing ideas
art journal drawing ideas Source:

Dream Journaling

If you are a person who dreams often, you can consider keeping a dream journal. Dream journaling is the practice of recording your dreams each morning while they are still fresh in your mind. You could write down all about what you dreamt. You can even sketch them out, like what’s in your mind or how it made you feel. This will be a great way to process your thoughts and discover new patterns in your dreams.

diy art journal ideas
diy art journal ideas Source:

Vision Board

You can use these vision board art journal ideas to represent goals or projects that you have in mind. These art journal ideas for beginners are a powerful way of influencing your mind and creating your own reality. Practically, it’s a board where you write or glue things to visually present your goals. Visual images tend to stick in our minds and the mind is what we want to influence here.

vision board art journal
vision board art journal Source:
Click here for a session with Cece streams for more ideas on art journaling!


Create your own mandalas with geometric shapes and patterns in your art journal. Mandalas have deep meaning and are thought to be relaxing and even if life feels chaotic, mandalas may help to focus your mind. This mandala journal is designed to support your diary journaling, and reflective thoughts. Your mandala art will become a visual response to the moment, feelings and ideas, and they speak for themselves without words.

mandala drawings
mandala drawings Source:

Make a Collage

Collage is easy and fun to do. Collect some old magazines, favourite photos, different kinds of paper, greeting cards, cut them out into different shapes and stick them to make a perfect collage. The options are endless, you may cut out people, places, trees, flowers, birds, animals, or words and phrases from paper etc. Collage can be funny, colourful, beautiful, imperfect, peaceful, energizing, and absorbing. You can mess with it and even pull it off if you don’t like it.

do it yourself collage
do it yourself collage Source:

With so many great options, I hope these art journal ideas will help you fill those empty pages. Use it in whatever way you want to as there are no boundaries. Don’t worry if you are not at it, because if you enjoy the process, it most definitely 100% perfect. Welcome to the world of art journaling for beginners! If you have come across some unique or creative art journal ideas, please share them in the comment box below.

FAQS On Art Journaling For Beginners:

Q: What’s the difference between a diary and a journal?

A: A diary is mainly used to record events as they happen but a journal is used to explore ideas and record significant experiences. Journal is much more personal than a diary.

Q: What is the best paper for an art journal?

A: Watercolor paper is the best paper for art journaling.

Q: How can journaling help your art practice?

A: Art journaling gives us space to experiment and explore and helps us to get to know our style.

Q: What types of journals can you have?

A: Travel, dream, gratitude, hobbies, personal, relationships, food, lyrics, motherhood, bucket lists etc.

Q: What is the point of art journaling?                                                                                        A: It’s a visual diary to record your thoughts, memories, and emotions through art and creativity.

Q: What are bullet journal ideas?

A: A bullet journal idea for beginners helps to track short and long term goals quickly. Here you set up your journal into sections by month, week, and year.

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