Friday, February 8

31 Days of Scripture Art Journaling::Day 14: Using Stencils in Your Art Journal

Day 14: Using Stencils in Your Journal

Stencils are really really fun. With a capital F.
If I had a million dollars I might just spend it all on stencils.
I don't have that many stencils, 
because I don't have a million dollars,
but even with the few I have and by using 
found objects as stencils, I have plenty.

                                     This is a very brief introduction to a huge topic.
I've wasted so much money on art supplies I've never used, or used only once or twice.
So, my personal theory on spending money on art supplies 
is to start with what I already have & use every free thing I can get my hands on
to try it on and see if it is something I want to invest in. 
If it is, I'm more than happy to spend precious art dollars on it,
I just want it to be worth while.

I'm also MORE than happy to pay artists to take classes.
My experience, in the few classes I've taken, 
is that it is a complete bargain for the time, knowledge, 
and experience gained from the teacher.

So, my whole point is:
try this free stuff and if you love it,
by all means... invest! 

Stencil Videos
First of all...have you seen Exit Through the Gift Shop?
If not, stop now and get on Netflix streaming and watch it.
When you are finished...

Christy Tomlinson has GREAT You Tube Videos and stencils for sale.
I just love her.
Diane Marra has this great video.
Journal Artista has this video.
And here's how to make a coffee stencil. (Brilliant!)

Stencil Classes 

You can take classes on just stencils & masks.
Julie Balzer has this free stencil class!!! (free!)
Mary Ann Moss has this class
Melanie Testa has a class called Stencil Magic.

You can buy stencils at craft stores.
Martha Stewart & Tim Holtz have great ones.
And there are a ton available online.
You can also use found objects as stencils.
And tomorrow I'll show you how to cut your own.

So let's get started...

I use the same paint, 
paper, paint, etc. 
layering technique.

1. Start with a journal page prepped with gesso and 
 a couple of colors scraped across the page.
(For directions on how to prep your mixed media art journal see Day 9)

2. Here are some standard *well-loved* stencils I bought at the craft store.

This is one of my favorites.

I found this huge pack on sale at the craft store.

Ribbon and these adhesives make good stencils.

I love using doilies as stencils.

Remember these?
I found this in a pile of teacher give away stuff. Score!

3. Just put the stencil on the page and paint over it.
Don't over think! Allow yourself to play and experiment.
You really can't go wrong.

I started with the doily...

and added some letters...

and some leaves...

and a circle stencil...

and a ribbon at the top...

and at the bottom.

4. Doodle words and pictures with black Sharpie.

5. Add paper cut outs and paint.

6. Finish your page off by adding details in marker.
(Here is the completed spread.)

 (And a close up)



  1. Oh, this is such a fun way to wake up, Erin!! Coffee and your art...step by step. Aaaaah

  2. I just ordered some stencils yesterday - wish I'd seen your post first - would have ordered some of those.
    I am loving your whole series. What a wonderful gift to us!

  3. Wow what a beautiful page. I think we both have the same well loved stencils. :-) I hope you have a wonderful week.

  4. Question: how long would this normally take? Because I don't see how it works to use a marker over wet paint and glue. Is there glue? Or do you just stick paper to paint? Thx