Monday, 27 March 2017

Bible Journaling Colossians 3v12-14 with Free Traceable Template!

So this week I've been inspired by my quiet times to do an entry for Colossians 3v12-13. 

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselveswith compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 

 If I have a verse that stands out during my quiet time I write in my diary the verse and any images that come to mind.

I've already got an image in my head for the Armour of God like this but on a soldier, so I thought I'd adapt it and make it for me instead. (Yes the character is supposed to look a little bit like me!). To make the character like me I chose hair and clothes that reflect me (I'm rarely seen out of jeans and a hoodie!) and set about creating something.

My first step in the process was to google some images, and I wanted to find some simple faceless characters. Looking down through Google images I spotted one I liked the look of and I saved it for later. -As an aside, looking for images on Google is like looking for something in TKMaxx, you know there is bound to be something there that you're looking for, but it takes a bit of perseverance to find it!

Next I wanted some help in getting the proportions of a person right, so I Googled that too.

Next was how to draw a hoodie and jeans.
Just to be clear, I have no intrinsic ability to see something and then just put it down on paper. If I have an idea I Google it and then copy elements of lots of different things down until I get something I like. I trace things sometimes too. 

Once I'd got the things I needed I started to sketch out onto my grid paper the size of my margin so I knew the size I was working in. A simple HB pencil and a decent rubber are all you need. I fiddled with it until I was happy with it and then went over the design with a fine liner to make it easier to trace in my Bible. At this stage I decided I didn't like the feet and had to google cartoon trainers!

Deciding what to use to colour the image was my next dilemma. Would I use watercolours, or my newly discovered Caran Dache Neoart crayons, or maybe even some Promarkers. Had I been doing this on card I think I would have gone straight for the Promarkers, but I haven't tested my pro markers extensively yet. I've discovered they don't bleed if applied in a single layer over Matt Gel Medium, but to colour properly with them they need layering, and I'm not 100% sure if the Bible Paper can take that yet. The alternative is to trace onto some thin cardstock or paper and stick it in the margin instead. 
I decided to do a test sheet to check which of my fineliners and pens would smudge when I used alcohol markers or water colours and water based markers.
This is what I found

For the alcohol based pens (Promarkers for me) the best choice was the cheapest pen I own (you can get 5 fineliners for 79p at Home Bargains) followed by a sharpie, but for the water colours and water based pens (Mozart brush pens here) the best choice was either Sharpies or Tombow Calligraphy pen. As I'd decided to do watercolour I chose the Tombow to use in my bible.
I used my white Sakura gelly pen to add highlights and some interest to the background.

I decided when I was doing this that it would make a good template to use at my upcoming Bible Journaling event, so did a neat version to scan and print off. I thought you might like the option to use it too, so here's the Free Download!
Download Image

And once I'd done this I tried out my Promarkers too and made a bookmark!

I hope you like it, please leave a comment if you use it and link in a picture :)

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Testing Supplies in My Journaling Bible

As I said in my last post I've been Bible Journaling every Sunday night since January, and wanted to start blogging about it too. I've given up Facebook for Lent, so have found myself with a little bit more time and am hoping to get some of my pages up on here soon, along with the process I used to create them. I'm hoping I can show people that it really isn't that daunting to get started, and point people in the direction of my favourite supplies, youtube channels, and top tips!

I'm also in the process of helping plan an Introduction to Bible Journaling event over at 10ofthose in Leyland, which will give people a chance to look at the journaling bibles in the flesh and also have some work stations for people to give it a go. It's exciting, but a little intimidating too as I've only been doing this a short time myself!

Back to my first steps into Bible Journaling!

I'm a control freak. There, I said it. I am an information junkie too. When I start a new project I like to get AS MUCH information as I possibly can. Whether its planning a holiday and trawling Trip Advisor for ideas on where to stay, and what 'must see' attractions there are, or planning a lesson and googling the life out of the topic, I just like knowing stuff.
So when it came to starting Bible Journaling I wanted to get clued up as much as possible. I read as many Bible Journaling 101s as I could, watched Youtube Bible flip throughs, and decided the first essential thing I wanted to do was test out all my craft supplies. Over the years I've accumulated a wide variety of craft supplies relating to card making and paper crafting, and just general craftiness, so I wanted to see what would be okay to use in my Bible.

Things I wanted to test:




Stamping inks

So I set about systematically testing these at the back of my new journaling bible in the Bible Reading Plan pages. I would be looking for ghosting, or bleeding through the pages.

Now bibles are not your everyday book pages. They are very thin, mainly to reduce the thickness of the bibles we carry around. The paper used in Bibles weighs around 40-50 gsm, compared to photocopier paper which is 80gsm, or lightweight card being 160gsm, so you can see its very thin! This does mean that the bible text, or indeed anything your put on the paper, may show through to the other side. I'll refer to this as ghosting, where you can see a faint image through the page.
This is inevitable when the paper is so thin, and is accepted throughout the world for Bibles. As long as it does not distract from the words being read it is fine.
So we will consider ghosting an acceptable outcome of Bible Journaling.

What I consider to be unacceptable is bleeding. This is when the ink/paint actually soaks through the paper to the other side, and is unsightly and distracting. I wanted to whittle out any of my supplies which would bleed through, as this was a definite no-no for me.

This is what I found.

This is the front of the page I was testing on

And this is what you can see on the back of the same page.

Letraset Promarkers - These bleed straight through the page, do not use unless page prepared
Letraset Aqua Markers - With a single layer they ghost, but a second or third layer will bleed
Mozart Brush Pens - These bleed through
CalliCreative Italic Pens - These bleed through
Sharpies- Fine Line and standard - These bleed through
Calli Metalic Pens - Ghost through
Derwent Graphic Fine Line pens 0.05-0.8 - Finer points ghost through, thicker tips bleed in places
Tombow Brush Pen - Ghost through
White Calli Italic - Not visible
Highlighters - Bleed through on the edges

So does that mean I have to throw out all my lovely pens??? NO! You just need to spend a little time (and money!) preparing your pages if you're going to use them. I've been using Windsor & Newton Acrylic Matt Gel Medium, but a lot of people like to use Clear Gesso (I already had the matt gel medium, so I thought I'd try that first!).
Here's what the back of the page looks like when you prep it first!!

When Acrylic Matt Gel Medium is used all the pens that bled through (including the pro markers!) didn't bleed through at all, although they do still ghost. One thing to consider though is that any ink you place on top of the medium will not soak into the page (which is good!) but that means they sit on the surface and take longer to dry, meaning if you're not careful you might smudge them (which is bad!). The colours are also a little less vibrant too.

Stabilo Chalk Pastel Colouring Pencils - Light ghosting, more obvious if activated with water
Derwent Studio Pencils - Not visible unless activated with water, and then they ghost through
Standard Childrens Pencils - Not visible
What you might notice is the difference in pigmentation between the cheap basic children colouring pencils and the Derwent Studio artists pencils. The Stabile CarbOthello chalk pastel water soluble pencils are even more strongly pigmented. So although you can use any pencils in your bible, you do in some respects get what you pay for.

Watercolour paints - Ghost through
Acrylic Paints - Ghost through

The acrylics go on really well with a credit card or old store card, and if you put it on in this way you can still read through the paint. However, the green and blue colours I have were a bit grainy, and too dark for my liking, as they make it quite hard to read the text, so personally I would definitely limit the use of these colours to the margins. What is brilliant though is how vibrant the colours are, and they don't bleed through, although as you can see they do ghost through. Also if you write or stamp over the acrylic it doesn't show through either!

Memento Inks - Tuxedo black, Lady Bug red, - Bleed through
Tim Holtz Distress inks - Cracked Sapphire, Barn Door, Bundled Sage, Peacock Feathers
If stamped they bleed, if used on a sponge then they are a thin enough layer to just ghost
Archival Ink - Jet Black - Bleeds
Whispers Archival - Starry Night - Bleeds
Adirondack - Denim - Bleeds

This is the back and front of the same page when I was testing out the stamps.

Most of these inks do not bleed if you stamp off excess ink before then doing your second stamp on the page, but ideally prep your page. They also won't bleed through if you use a medium to prepare your page first or stamp over acrylic paint, but they will still ghost.

This is what I've found so far, I'll update when I try new supplies or new techniques!

Next time I want to talk about Faux-ligraphy and fonts!