This past week I took Marilyn Reaves’ 2-day workshop, Big Words for Big Ideas In Your Journal. We played with pointed brush and flat brush alphabets for headings for our journal pages.
Journal page by Marilyn Reaves.
After we all drooled over Marilyn’s beautiful journals, we started by working with the pointed brush and watercolors. Then we switched to the flat brush and gouache. Marilyn likes to use watercolors with the pointed brush, but thinks the flat brush needs the consistency of gouache to make the best letters.
Vicci’s sample sheet of the various alphabets we worked with.
We practiced pointed brush lower case and upper case letters, then switched to the Zebra alphabet which is made with multiple strokes with a pointed brush. We shifted to the flat brush for Uplift and two variations of Neuland, one of which we renamed Chinky Neuland rather than New Neuland.
Marilyn demonstrating the Uplift alphabet.
From top to bottom: Chinky Neuland, Zebra, Uplift, Neuland and pointed brush all done by Trisha.
Day two of the workshop started with flat brush script, Jovial (lower case) and Bluebird Brush Caps. These are loose and casual and made with one stroke when possible.
Marilyn Reaves demonstrating Bluebird Brush Caps.
After playing with all those different alphabets, it was time to incorporate them with sketches and a bit of writing in our journals. Marilyn demonstrated various ways to sketch images in our journals.
Marilyn demonstrating multiple ways to sketch pears.
Now it was our turn to sketch in our journals. Our homework had been to take a 30″ by 40″ piece of Arches text wove and tear it into pages for our journal. We could choose whatever size of page we wanted for our journals.
Vicci’s sketch of a perfume bottle. Note the information on the right of the page showing the colors she used.
One of our exercises was to create a focal point with a single work or phrase and from there build a lively journal page. We looked at ways to combine elements and fine a means to integrate the whole journal page.
Bugs journal page done by Cynthia.
Marilyn emphasized that we can make our journal be a reflection of our life in emphatic or quiet words and simple images. We looked at playing with colored pencils, pens (both waterproof and not) and other materials to use to make our journal pages.
Eleanor hung little pen and watercolor dangles from her Chinky Neuland letters.
We looked at how to carry tools for creating journal pages while we travel. Marilyn gave all of us a tiny metal case for us to put our watercolors in while traveling.
Cynthia’s moon journal page.
Marilyn demonstrated the difference between Intense pencils and watercolor pencils. Intense pencils (once dry) glaze over and don’t pick up the color that’s underneath. Watercolor pencils will pick up the color underneath.
Pear journal page (in progress) by Chris. Note the color pallet on the right that she will be able to refer to at a later date.
Marilyn did a marvelous job. We covered a lot of information in just two days. There’s so much more I want to explore using these techniques. Thanks, Marilyn!
Happy Creating, Candy