Wednesday, May 5, 2010

New Art Journal From a Recycled Notebook

I had decided that I wanted to begin another art journal; my last one had been finished sometime in January.  However, I did not want to spend any money on a new notebook, or on supplies to bind a book myself.

So I found an old dollar-store notebook that had been used for various purposes in the past, such as writing down poems and quotes that had appealed to me when I was 13 years old but no longer did so, doing practice exercises for my economics and math classes, etc.  Nearly all of the pages had been written on and I no longer had any use for this notebook.

To turn it into my new art journal, I cut out every other page (so that the book would not bulge open after I added paint and collage items to the pages), prepared many of the pages by painting them in different colours of dollar-store acrylic paint (of which I have somehow accumulated a great amount), and decorated the cover (the original cover was green with silver shooting stars on it, and is still partially visible).  I don't think that I'm quite finished with the cover yet, but I like how it is turning out.  The title of the book is "Palimpsest: An Art Journal", which refers to the previous use of this notebook.  (A palimpsest is basically any kind of manuscript, etc. that has been re-used.)

I think that recycling notebooks in this way is excellent for both those people who have limited funds for purchasing expensive new notebooks, and those who are trying to be more environmentally conscious.  My very first art journal was made from a similar, previously-used notebook (which was all I had available at that time).  I have begun working on the first page spread in the book, and hopefully I will post a page or two here in the next few weeks.


  1. Hi Heather, I really love your blog. Everytime I visit it, I always find myself inspired and motivated to journal once again. =) I have a question, hope you can help me out with it. What do you do with your journals after you are done with them, since each journal is like a masterpiece of its own; do you put it up on display or keep it as a memorabilia? Secondly, how do you organize your journals? What I mean is, do you have journals catered for different purpose? =) Thank you.

    1. Thank you very much, Shia! As for your questions, I store my journals after I am done with them. I would like to do more with them, though, since once they are completed I usually don't look at them again. It would be nice to be able to display them in some way, but I'm not sure how I would do that.

      I do have different journals for different purposes. Right now I have my one main journal (which also doubles as my planner), a second journal that I use for writing poetry (though I haven't written in it for ages), a commonplace book (to collect favourite poems and quotes), as well as my sketchbook and an art journal. I am trying to cut down on the number of notebooks and journals that I'm using at any one time, but obviously I still have far to go!

    2. Hi Heather! thank you for coming back to me. =) Ah indeed, i know how that feels too; and like you I have more than one journal. I can never seem to have just 1 or 2. can't help with my love for pen and paper, and everytime i see a notebook, i just want to fill it up with lots and lots words, drawings, etc. =D I love your blog so much btw, it is very helpful especially about journalling.


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