Art Journal Page: Do or Do Not


I watched ‘Empire Strikes Back’ last night amongst the Star Wars furore that seems to have broken out this week. As Yoda is training the young Luke Skywalker, he comes out with this often quoted adage: ‘Do or do not, there is no try’.

Well, that tied in so nicely with my plans for next month’s art journal session: we’re going to try do some colour theory in a lesson I’m going to call ‘3 + 1’. There are several regulars at my art journaling sessions that say they ‘can’t do colour’, so I will be encouraging them to use a colour wheel to pick two complementary colours and then add the colours either side of one of them to make up the ‘3’. As an added bonus, we’ll also be mixing the colours using the three primary colours of paint by DecoArt.

For this project, I used:
DecoArt Media Primary Yellow, Cyan & Magenta
DecoArt Ultra Matte Varnish
DecoArt Matte Medium
DecoArt Americana Stencils – Alpha Collage 12×12″
Posca Paint Pens

IMG_6752 I chose yellow for my first colour, and the complementary colour purple for my accent colours/text. Cover the pages with a watered down layer of Primary Yellow and dry with a heat tool.

Mix the first colour to the left side of yellow – I used three drops of Primary Yellow to 1 drop of Primary Cyan, to keep the theme going, making a yellow-green colour. I watered this down and painted over the yellow, dabbing off with a tissue as I went to make a mottled glaze.

IMG_6753 Next, I wanted to add the colour to the right of the yellow. For this I mixed three drops of Primary Yellow and one of Primary Magenta. I watered down the mix and applied it as before.

Using a small make up sponge, I dabbed Primary Yellow through the stencil on the bottom half of the page.

IMG_6754 For the complementary colour purple, I mixed three drops each of Primary Cyan and Primary Magenta. Watering down the mix, I dribbled and flicked to start building up texture layers. I used the same mix through the stencil for the top half of the pages.
IMG_6755 I used the left over paint to cover two spare self-adhesive labels. Once dry, I cut these into strips to add to my page.
IMG_6756 I then added the text using the Posca pens, outlining in black and white to add an embossed effect to the main text.

Once that was dry, I covered the whole spread with Ultra Matte Varnish to seal it and allowed it to dry completely before moving on.

Yoda Using a laser printed image, I used the Matte Medium to stick it image side down to the page taking care not to get any medium on the upper side. After allowing to dry thoroughly, I rubbed off the paper leaving the transferred image. Since I’d inadvertently covered over my lettering, I redid that before sealing everything again with the Ultra Matte Medium.

This was an experimental page (after all, what else is an art journal for?), and I was please with some of the elements, particularly the colouring aspects, which was the aim. I think the geometry of the strips and blocks don’t match with the grungy background though, so won’t be trying that again in the same way. I do like the translucency of the image transfer – it helps the enigmatic Yoda belong on the page 🙂


[Disclaimer: as part of the DecoArt Helping Artists Program,
I have been provided with samples of their products to use for projects]