Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Review: Typo brand Drawing Journal

I do a lot of creative projects including  'serious art' using water colours,pencils or oil paints in the more conservative manner. However I love the freedom of art journalling, where the rules of art, what is good what isn't, how mediums are supposed to be used, and perfection are ignored. The process of creating the art is as, or even more, important than the finished product. I can freely experiment with mixed media and ideas without feeling constrained about the finished product or how I am using the materials. I have many sketch books and doodle pads to use for art journalling but I am always on the look out for a book that really works for me. I want one that is bound like a traditional old style book, has good quality paper that can take all manner of materials, is hard cover to protect the contents, and light enough to take with me wherever I go.

We were in DFO Brisbane a while ago, at the Typo store, and I saw a selection of journals there for $19.99 (AUD) each, from their Activity Journal range. I kept going back to the shelf, opening the 'demo' books, feeling the paper and flicking through the pages. There were several different types there, but the one I really liked was the one that had 'Drawing Journal' on it in gold metallic embossing and featured water colour style decoration on the cover. The pages inside are thick, have a matte texture, and include an area for title and date. The pages have different decoration from grids, to cream coloured to pages with decorative corners.

I like the concept of an art journal that comes with different designs on its pages.  There is a well known phenomenon of blank page syndrome that afflicts artists and writers alike, and having an art journal with some colour already on the page helps to alleviate that issue!

How do the pages hold up to use

I have tried the pages using graphite and colour pencils, water colour paint, felt pen, waterproof felt tipped pens (such as Sharpies), glue, gesso, and waterbased varnish. I am pleased to share with you that the pages can handle all of this, the slight buckling of the pages after using glue, varnish, gesso, or paint is alleviated after the pages are dried and the book is shut for a few hours. 

How does the book hold up to being carted around

Small and light enough to cart around but large enough to draw in, the book is shoved in my work bag, used on the train, dumped on my desk at home, carted in the car, it handles this well, you do not have to be overly kind to this book!

Some of the art journalling I have done in this book

gesso, paper, glue , watercolour, fetl pen,

gesso, colour pencil,watercolours, felt pen

watercolour, feltpen, colour pencil, varnish
collaged photo, watercolour, felt pen, pencil satin water based varnish

You can by the Typo activity journals online  from their website here.

If you are interested in reading another review on Typo products  please have a look at this post where I  reviewed a Typo satchel.