Friendship for Paper Players # 219
Four Feathers - Inspiration

Time Spent Reading....

Hi Everyone.  Happy Sunday.

I have something completely different for you tonight.  A little while ago I spoke about my urge to do some "art journaling".  I really wanted to try using my supplies in a different way.  HOWEVER, "ART"  isn't something that fits into my vocabulary.  I am, by definition, a card maker.   I love making cards.  If you had asked me 7 years ago if I would be blogging and sharing cards that I had spent hours making by hand I would, absolutely, have said NO!!!!  An emphatic NO!   Me.  Paper?  Scissors?  Inks? Pens?  NO! NEVER!  Yet, because of a chance discussion with a colleague, here I am.

I consider myself a card maker.  I am not a paper crafter.  I am a card maker.  I am a clean and simple card maker.  I like straight lines.  I like orderliness.  I like lots of white space on my cards and I love a "focal point".  I don't like getting my fingers inky.  I like a clean and orderly space and I wouldn't change any of that.  Or would I?

A little while ago I discovered the term "art journaling" and decided that it was something that intellecutally... no, artistically....appealed to me.  I really liked the idea of taking all of the things that I had learned in my card making over the years and expanding that out.  Finding other uses for my supplies, and finding new techniques and experimenting with foreign media.... what on earth was gesso?  What was Fiber Paste? What on earth was Gel Medium and what on earth were Gelato's.  

Once, many decades ago, I did a painting of a very bare, almost ghostly, tree and found that it was nominated by my art teacher to be part of a multi-school display in our city art gallery.  Never did I ever imagine that my bleak painting would be selected to be a part of that display.  I was astonished.  I was shocked.  I was thrilled.  I was proud.  I was embarrassed.   Why was I embarrassed?  Simply because my tree was in no way comparable to the amazing art works that were submitted - and selected - for dispay.  My tree did not belong in that gallery.  

Fast forward many decades.  The thought of taking paint and putting it onto ANYTHING scared the living daylights out of me.  My dearest friend Pammie is the artistic one.   My brother was the artistic one.  Both of them have an eye of detail, an amazing capacity to compose a scene.  The ability to draw.  Eyes.  Flowers.  Houses.  Whatever... they could draw and I couldn't.

 So..... what on earth made me want to do something with paint and all sorts of things I knew nothing about?   I'll tell you.  I decided it was time I stopped giving in to those voices in my head.   I wasn't just a CARD MAKER... I CREATED.  We all do!  If we take something and make something totally different out of it... we are creators.  If I could create a card out of nothing, then I shouldn't be afraid to create SOMETHING out of paint and other materials.

I ordered a small Moleskine book and bought a couple of supplies that I didn't have, however, I had NO idea what to do with it.  Then, the Simon Says Stamp card kit for September 2014 arrived and the theme - BOOKS absolutely appealed to me and I realized that I could finally find a reason to create an art journal page.

I am an avid reader.  I was an avid book collector.  Lou will tell you that when I moved in with him I arrived with 47 boxes of books.  That is 47 VERY LARGE boxes of books.  I shipped those boxes from South Africa to Singapore.  I shipped them from Singapore to California.  I shipped them from California to Minnesota.  I LOVED those books.  Art books.  Novels.  Philosophy books. Sociology books.  Psychology books.  Biographies.  Auto-biographies.  Poetry.  Nature.  You name a genre - and I had it.  I lost myself in books.  Looking at all of those books that I had purchased, read, stored and cherished brought me an immense amount of joy. 

My books were arranged by genre, by author, by title.  Leafing through the books even when they had been read and re-read, brought me immense joy.  In the end, I decided to donate my books to our local library.  I kept some, but most of them were donated in the hope that someone else could experience the pleasure that I had from each and every single page.  

I blame my mother for the love of books and reading.  Thank you, Mom!  When I was young books were expensive and, because we didn't have much money, they were very scarce.  Consequently when I grew up and was able to afford to buy books of my own, I cherished and stored every single one of them.  There is still something about reading a physical book as opposed to an e-reader and I was reminded of that in the last couple of weeks when I read two books that Rach had donated to me.  Thank you, Rach.  I so enjoyed them.

So..... what has ALL of this have to do with my page.  If you are still with me in this blog post... thank you... I promise you that all of this has something to do with my post. :-)  When I found the amazing book related DSPs amongst the Simon Says Stamp card kit, I immediately started to make an "art journal" page.  I was nervous and knew so little about mediums.... but I was determined to give it a go.

I started with sheets of Stampin' Up! DSP that has newspaper text.... can you see it - underneath the coatings of matte medium?

Reading2 (1 of 1)

 I then coated it with distress ink and add other elements.  My main element was cutouts from some of the DSP that had file drawers on it and combined that with file tabs and added to it another element from the kit..... a library card.  Oh.. how I remember those!

Reading (1 of 1)


I covered the file drawers with a glossy medium to add shine - just as the file cabinets in a library were.   Two other elements drew my attention.... coffee and time.  How often do we go into Starbucks and see people reading, drinking coffee and spending time ...... it's a wonderful way to spend time.  So, I added those elements.

Coffee rings made from modeling paste mixed with distress inks and a Tim Holtz stencil.

Reading5 (1 of 1)

A time stencil mixed with more modeling paste and more Ranger's inks.

Reading3 (1 of 1)


Lou was the one who said to me that I needed a way to showcase some of the talented writers whose books had graced my shelves.  I wasn't sure how to do that.  Then, I thought about the library cards and decided that I could write the names of some of those authors on those.  Thank you, Lou!

  Reading8 (1 of 1)

Then, I added some more.

Reading9 (1 of 1)

All that was left was to create a central sentiment and that was a no-brainer for me.  I pulled out some Kelly Purkey alphabet stickers from prior Simon Says Stamp card kits and adhered them to my page.

Reading10 (1 of 1)


Here is the entire double page:

Reading6 (1 of 1)

I know that my Mother would have hearitly approved of that sentiment!  Books transport us.  They take us into realms of fantasy of lives so far removed from our own.  I love to read.  I love to make cards.  Making this art journal page, I realized I love to create.  Is it perfect?  NO!  Could I have done better?  Of course!  BUT.... this art piece reflects me.  It reflects my feelings.  It reflects an integral part of me.  It was hard.  It was exhilerating. It was satisfying.  Even with all of its flaws, I am happy with it.  

I got my fingers inky.  Nothing is straight.  My writing isn't beautiful - but it's mine!  I am so happy that a chance discussion over dinner with Lauren, 8 years ago, led me to card making.  I am so glad that I gave into the urge to try something different and open an art book and create something.  

I really hope that sharing this blog post with you will encourage you to try something different.  Even if you think you can't.  Even if you don't consider yourself an artist, a creator.... the fact that we look at a blank piece of card stock and create a card  - that is creating.  We are, intrinsically, artists.  What is an artist?  Here is the definition from the Oxford English Dictionary:

"The expression or application of human creative skilland imagination, typically in a visual form such aspainting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power."

My art page might be considered naive.  It might be considered to be lacking in depth and artistic expression.  However, it is mine.  It came from my mind.  I had an image in my head and I pushed aside all the negativity about my abilities - or lack thereof, and gave into the sheer joy of creating.  It was wonderful!  It was amazingly freeing and seeing that page gave me the encouragement to go onto the next page!

If you have been thinking about journaling but have been unsure where to begin.  Find something that inspires you.  Flowers.  Birds.  Your children.  A flower.  A memory.  A film.  A book.  A car.  Anything. Use the techniques that have become familiar to you and open that book and begin an extension of your creative journey. :-)

I'll be back on Tuesday with another creation:-)

As always, thank you so much for your support.  Your comments.  Your emails.  They are much appreciated.  Warm hugs and prayers for those of you who need a little lift tonight.



Art journal page components:

  • Library cards, library drawers, book genre tags - Simon Says Stamp September Card kit
  • Alphabet stickers:  Kelly Purkey - Simon Says stamp card kits
  • DSP:  newsprint - Stampin' Up!
  • Stencils:  Tim Holtz
  • Inks:  Ranger 
  • Tools:  Modeling Paste, Gesso, Matte Medium, Gel Medium.  Faber Castell pens



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Sandy M

Your art journal page is amazing, Jaydee! Their is a scrapbook store near me that teaches classes in this sort of thing and I'm with you, I don't know a gelato from a gel medium. Would have no clue what to do with this stuff. What a wonderful creation you have made though, and how wonderful it reflects your joy of reading. Such gorgeous work it seems worthy to be framed!


Sandy, thank you so much. Your words are most encouraging and help me feel a little more confident in sharing more pages!


Your creation is wonderful. Good for you for starting completely new things. I too am a reader and would be interested in what are some of your favorite books. I hope to see more of your journal as well as your great cards. You inspire me.

Wow Jaydee! Thank you for sharing yourself with us, we are blessed. Hugs to you & Lou



Thanks so much for taking the time to write all those beautiful things for all of us. I do not understand too much the word "journaling" but the page is beautiful . . . it makes me imagine you reading a good book, by a fire with a good cup of coffee.

Thanks, I am not an artist, but I enjoy so much making cards for charity.


Marina . . . from not too far Peru


Amazing journal and gives us a reflection of what you enjoy doing which tells us a bit more of who you are personally.
If you hadn't already, maybe you can put the date on it and put Journal 1 as I know you will probably be making more of these beautiful art work.
Great job my friend.
Have a wonderful Halloween along with a fantastic and enjoyable week end.

Jodi McKinney

Oh Jaydee! I ADORE EVERYthing about this post! Your writing, your thought process, your creation! I am totally inspired. I LOVE your art journal page. I came over to comment on your PP card, and was thrilled to get wrapped up in this story and post. Keep it up. AWESOMENESS!


Ah, Jeanne. What are my favorite books? Through the years I think I have read just about every genre except Horror. Just doesn't do anything for me. I like books that take me on a journey to a different time, a different place, a different world. I like books that transport me and allow me to get lost inside them. Needless to say the Harry Potter series did just that. Pat Conroy does that, too and I find myself reaching for my dictionary. I loved Donna Leon's earlier Inspector Brunetti books as they really captured the feel of Venice, although I have not enjoyed her more recent books. I also love my classics.. the Bronte Sisters, Lawrence, Austen, etc. I tend to armchair murder-mysteries, biographies and auto-biographies these days. The Lord of the Rings trilogy will always be one of my favorites as will Gone with the Wind. I love historical novels and dramas. Poetry - Wilfred Owen, Browning, Byron, Wordsworth, Rilker. In fact, one of my favorite CD's is a is this one Ron Perlman has an amazing voice (and I loved the TV series, too) and he reads poetry as though honey is dripping off his tongue!
Hopefully that gives you a little insight :-)
Big hugs,


Thank you, Cherie! Long time no hear. Hope you are all well. Big hugs, Jaydee


Marina... thank you so much, I am so glad that the page evoked the feeling for you:-) Ah..... you might not think you are an artist.... but creation is art and creating cards is, in essence a form of art :-) the fact that you enjoy making them for charity is very meaningful.
Big hugs


Colleen, funny you should recommend dating it. After I had taken the photographs I realized that I had no done so and immediately went to do that. I forgot to take a photograph of it afterwards! It is so important to date them.
Thank you for your kind words, they really help to make me confident enough to do more pages and share them with you.
Big hugs


Jodi, thank you so much! I am so pleased that the post inspired you. I hope you share your pages with us... you will create some, won't you? Your encouragement really does help to me make feel more confident about creating more pages and sharing them with you all.


I'm absolutely in love with your art journal page! I mean it. IN. LOVE. Oh, there's so much wonderfulness there, so much to draw the eye. But, my favorite is the card catalog cards with the authors. Brilliant! :o)

Take pride in your work even if it is any of those things you think it might be (it's not, btw. It's wonderful!), because you worked hard on something and moved WAY outside your comfort zone, something that's uncomfortable for all of us. YOU did it, how many of us have? Hm. I know I don't, not really. I'm a creature of comfort and habit.

It's a brilliant piece of art worth displaying proudly!


Stef Perry

I was catching up on your blog, Jaydee, when I saw this amazing, lengthy, thoughtful, inspiring post of yours! Congrats on breaking through to a different level of creativity! I love your journal pages, they are such a fabulous creative expression! All the elements are wonderful and communicate so clearly your love of reading. I was a voracious reader since my youth but have to admit I have let other things occupy much of my spare time in the last few years(card making, reading blogs ;-) but have my fav books I love to reread periodically. Thank you for bravely sharing your new adventure in art!

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