Art Journal Book Cover – Using Stencils and Pastes

It always feels like such an accomplishment when you have a finished art journal. I leave the cover for last because I don’t want to be working in it afterwards. That way, I get to add paste and embellishments to the end result and don’t have to worry to much about it getting ruined.

The Crafter’s Workshop provided me with some of the materials and products used in this tutorial, but the opinions are my own.

I have a video tutorial for you here:

Get your art journal laying flat on a surface, and then proceed to cover the entire front and back of the book in white gesso. Just one thin layer should do the trick. I am using TCW White gesso.

Think of Gesso as a primer, a base to work from. You don’t have to use it, but it is a great base to work from, a clean gritty slate, that your paints will grab onto easily.

Add some paint to your cover. I used a variety of pinks and purple and then used a brayer to spread it around.

Brayers are great for creating flat and random spread of your paint.

Next I will add some interest to the cover, using a stencil. I use TCW 860 Lavender in 6 x 6 size with some purple toned flower, to create some interest.

I start layering some pastes. I use TCW Clear Modeling Paste with stencil TCW 907 – pointelle and spread the paste evenly over the stencil. This will dry clear, and will be a subtle effect, but still adds to the overall look.

Now I am adding more stenciling, flat this time. I use a bit of dark blue paint and a sponge with TCW 905 – Leaf Emblem to create more pattern and contrast.


We are not done yet friends. I want to add even more layers. Texture.

I grab my TCW 9037 – Grecian gold Modeling paste. Perfectly pared with TCW 904 – Petal Burst. I apply the gold modeling paste in various places around the cover. I love the outcome. It’s looking pretty happy and sunny right now.

You can leave this cover as is, because its really pretty right now, or you can add a story to it, like I have.

To do this, I grab some embellishments and stickers to complete the scene. I adhere them using TCW Matte Gel Medium.

Till next time friends 🙂

Don’t forget to follow me on social media to see what I get up to.  You can find all my links here: MY ARTY HEART

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