Thoughts and Theories Journal

Thoughts and Theories Journal

Posted by DecoArt on Aug 9th 2017

I was excited to be asked to contribute to the release of a brand new journal die by Eileen Hull and I got hooked on them. I have always enjoyed making albums, altered books and my own handmade versions and I ended up making several of these journals in quick succession and all using DecoArt products. This one is definitely an Andy Skinner style version where I have used lots of his techniques and given you links to find them on the internet.

Items Needed:


Cut and make two cover panels using Andy's mega crackle technique (link to Andy's tutorial here) using DecoArt media fluid paints and mediums. Just look at the MEGA crackles that appeared.

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Take a piece of card big enough to take the skull stamp and dip it in watery washes of Sap Green, Titan Buff and Burnt Umber drying between each layer.

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Stamp the skull and I just had enough room for the specimen plate as well.

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Take a piece of greyboard cut to size to fit the journal panels and draw where the cut out skull and specimen plate will go. With a palette knife add some texture sand paste around the edges and across the middle. Let it dry although it can be helped along with a heat gun.

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Then paint over the whole piece with black gesso.

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Now take a stiff bristled brush and dry brush with white gesso - you can see here where the stamped pieces will go.

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Repeat with yellow iron oxide but keeping it to one edge all the way round.

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Repeat with sap green and phthalo blue...

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....and lastly some quinacridone gold.

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Now for some random watery washes, the first is Sap Green mixed with Transparent Yellow Iron Oxide...

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...the second is Burnt Umber mixed with straight Yellow Oxide.

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Go back to the stamped pieces and add some watery quinacridone edges and paint a little inside the skull to help it blend in with the plaque you have just made.

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When the stamped pieces are dry glue them to the plaque and give it all a coat of ultra matte varnish.

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Back to the mega crackle panels, dabble watery washes of the same three colours used on the stamped pieces and spritz the areas with water before drying each colour separately.

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Make a dirty glaze to seal the surfaces using one of Andy's recipes - find it about 3/4 of the way through this video here.

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At the same time edge a quote chip with quinacridone gold and seal it with the glaze.

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Make some rusty bolts using the pieces from the bolts and washers sheet and apply the technique shown by Andy in his video here. Also paint some card in the rusty colours and die-cut a decorative element for embellishing.

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Go back to the journal covers overlap and stick the spines together with strong double sided tape and give them a coat of white gesso. When dry stamp the crackles using black archival ink and then repeat the steps of dabbled washes and dirty glaze (see above).

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Sand the edges of the panels, ink them with ground espresso distress ink and adhere them to the covers and assemble the elements on the front cover of the journal.

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Cut papers to create inside panels and also cut and score a thin one to cover the inside of the spine. Add elastic to hold page inserts.

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Make up three little ’booklets’ of papers and pockets to tuck under the elastic.

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Insert some elastic to create a closure and you’re done.

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Thanks for stopping by and if you are interested in seeing the other versions of this journal I made you can find them here and here.

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