Art Journal ~ Experiment (Tutorial)

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal

Do you ever take a break in your journal, when you really should be doing something else? I have quite a few things I should be doing today, but my journal was calling… and not even one of my small journals, this great big 9X 12 one… AND I decided to do a 2-page spread, to boot!  Talk about real estate.  So this spread measures 18″ wide by 12″ high… I should’ve done a canvas!

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 2

This one started out very pink. I gessoed the pages, added some paint, and some modeling paste with stencils.

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 3

Next I added some images I’d stamped on tissue paper. I learned a good trick from Dina Wakley years ago… instead of cutting the images out with scissors, you run a skinny wet paint brush around them and tear them out.  This eliminates the straight ‘cut lines’ scissors would leave you with and the image sinks a little better into the background.

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 4

It’s kind of addictive and easy to do while watching the TV at night.  Please don’t blame me if you end up like me… trying it once and then ending up with a whole box of stamped/torn images waiting for their day in the sun.

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I used distress ink over the stamped images.  The page color is different now because I toned down the pinks with a glaze I made using Quinacridone Gold + Glazing Liquid.

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 7

I love these big letters.  I softened the lines on the stamped image above with the ink blending tool, but didn’t do much with the stamped images on the right hand page.

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 8

The face stencil is from Andrea Matus DeMeng (StencilGirl Products) and the large letters are DecoArt Americana.

Marjie Kemper "experiment" mixed media art journal 6

NOTE: Craftsy is having a huge sale through Wed., 9/9.  Click here to see loads of online classes including my Inventive Ink: Colorful Mixed Media Effects class. Lifetime access to all – watch whenever, wherever, and as many times as you like.

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PS – linking today to Art Journal Every Day and Creative Every Day.


Your comments are very much appreciated!


  1. I think your pages are great and I love the tissue paper hint. What a great idea.

  2. Beautiful journal pages Marjie, lovely colours and images! Deb xo

  3. This is so striking, she looks amazing set against that background.
    Lynne x

  4. Beautiful journal pages. I love the idea of stamping on tissue paper and then tearing the dampened edges.

  5. Very cool! And I like the idea of having a box of stamped images at the ready. And it just so happens I have the perfect box ready to go…

  6. Wow and double wow! Very glad you took time out from what you were supposed to be doing – I’m in love with your experimental pages. The colour is amazing – the wash of Quin Gold makes the whole thing glow – and I love the butterfly image in the forehead of the stencilled woman (who is also amazing). Fabulous – a new favourite for me.
    Alison xx

  7. What a lovely project Marjie. Heheheh – loved seeing all your stamped tissues. They look so great on these journal pages. Your background is just perfect for the girl you chose and love seeing the butterfly on her forehead! Your creation is peaceful but intriguing. j

  8. This is gorgeous! LOVING the face and the colors!!!!!!!

  9. Like that box of tissue stamps torn and tattered. Time to make a bunch. Nice spread. xox

  10. Ok Marjie, I am at work and I have several things I should be doing. But I decided to take a moment and look at the journal entry that you made (when you had several other things you should be doing) 🙂 I LOVE this!! I love the scale of it and the luminescence the glaze gave the gessoed stenciling. Really fantastic with the bold black graphic letters and stenciled face. Wow!!! Oh … and thanks for the passing along the tip about tearing edges around stamped images on tissue paper. Gotta try that !! But for now … I need to get back to work. — Mary Elizabeth