In the spirit of bullet journaling, I bought several Muji-inspired A5 notebooks online: two (2) dotted and one (1) blank. Truth be told, it was more of a panic buy since each notebook costs only P50 and stocks sell out out really fast. I have a feeling other (re)sellers get notebooks (and maybe other products too?) from them, then resell them at a pretty steep markup. I’ve seen the same notebooks being sold for up to P150 each, imagine? But that is neither here, nor there, nor is it really any of my business. Anywho. I decided to use the blank one as an art journal, seeing as I don’t have a lot of space for my creative pursuits in my Starbucks bullet journal.

Since I have been semi-actively pursuing arts in different forms (watercolor, brush calligraphy) lately, having a dedicated art journal seems but an inevitability. Scatterbrained person that I am, I need one place to keep all of my works intact. Though I have a container for the index cards I used for art practice, it’s not like I can tote it around everyday. So an art journal is the most sensible solution.

Before anything, I did some pen tests. The first I tried were watercolors applied using a waterbrush. Obviously I was in no mood to turn out consistent vibrance of colors. Then the actual pens below the watercolor. Those are the pens I have and use right now.

watercolor and pens testwatercolor and pens test

watercolor and pens test back pagewatercolor and pens test back page

The paper being of standard notebook paper thickness (probably 80 gsm), ghosting was sorta expected. Surprisingly, there wasn’t any bleeding with the watercolors, only a few dots of ink where I shaded the boxes with the pens. All in all, not really bad at all.

Next up, brush pens! Brush calligraphy being a sorta expensive hobby, I only have a handful of brush pens in my arsenal at the moment. One (1) Tombow ABT, five (5) Sakura Koi, six (6) Artline Stix and one (1) each of Platinum dual, Sai, Yoka and Zig Clean Color. Here are the swatches in that order as follows:

brush pens testbrush pens test

brush pens test back pagebrush pens test back page

Again, there was evident ghosting but minimal bleeding. Only the Yoka brush pen really bled onto the other side.

Even using only one side of the paper, this should last me a while anyway sine I don’t draw or write everyday, only when the mood strikes. As it is, aside from these pen tests, the journal is still devoid of any activity, creative or no. Might post some of the work I do from time to time. We’ll see. ☺

coffee siggy

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8 thoughts on “Art Journal

  1. I love everything about art but unfortunately “art” doesn’t love me 🙁 I don’t have the talent in art, not like my sisters and my father. I envy those who could write artistically or someone who could draw images.

    1. For me, art is merely a form of self-expression; thus, there can be nothing ugly or wrong about it as long as it expresses your truth. Just happens your art may be in the for of words instead of drawn images. ☺

  2. Welcome to the art world! (I guess?) Hahaha. Well, when it comes to brush pens, I suggest you try one of each brand and kind and then stick to what your hand is most comfortable at. You’re a leftie, right? I think I saw your comment on my sub-blog. I hope the tips there could help you with calligraphy. And I really wish to meet you!

    1. Hi Maria! Yep, that was me in your blog comment. The one who’s been lurking for some time now. Haha. Your posts about calligraphy are really helpful, plus points because you’re leftie too. ☺ I’ve printed out a coupla worksheets too, for practice drills. We might meet if you’re going to Inks & Colors too. ☺

  3. For that price, I would probably buy more! 😀 You can never have too many notebooks, after all, and it is also a good practice to have one for each of your creative pursuits. I know some mums who have separate journals for their work, mum duties, and for their blogs. This makes retrieving your work easier when the need for them arises. I would love to learn more about watercolor and brush calligraphy, I just wish I had the time to practice often.

  4. I like brush pens! I don’t want to start that hobby because I know I won’t be able to stop once I start hoarding art stuff. Nice calligraphy!

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