You *Can* Take It with You

Well, OK, maybe not all of it; but if you listened to my podcast with Tammy Garcia of Daisy Yellow, you heard her tell about the art journaling supplies she takes on vacation with her, and yowza: this woman does not do without. Yay! I love it; I am not a fan of Traveling Lite. Oh, no: I like to have my stuff with me when I’m on the road, and that includes everything from my favorite pens to my full-length sleeping pillow.

So I was thinking what a cool thing this is, talking about what people take on the road, and I found a couple other cool posts. I love Carin’s list on her blog, Caatje’s Artsy Stuff. She lives on the island of Vlieland in the Dutch Wadden Sea, and she recently took a trip to visit her sister and did this cool post with great photos about what supplies she packed. I asked her for some Travel Art Journal Tips, and she generously sent this:

“I guess what to take on the road is as personal as your art. I think the key for me is to keep it simple and to keep it small. Usually all I take is a small sketchbook, a watercolor box with a waterbrush and a drawing pen. I think that’s even more than you really need. I think to make art all you really need is a substrate (some pieces of paper for instance) and something to make a mark with (like a pen or pencil).

Caatje's travel art supplies

“But I’ve gotten spoiled over the years and as you can see by the stuff I took on my vacation last week I take a lot more than necessary, haha, but even then it must be within reason. It’s important to stay practical. You have to be able to carry it with you for instance and if you fly you have to make certain to adhere to security rules.

“For me the use of bigger or small toiletry bags with many compartments has been a true revelation. They are cheap and you can sort your supplies in a simple way.

“Also don’t underestimate the stuff you can find wherever you go. When on vacation there’s often flyers, postcards, local magazines and newspapers etc, not to mention the stuff you accumulate just by traveling like tickets and receipts. You don’t need to bring any collage stuff. You can use what’s available there. It makes your vacation art all the more authentic. And if you don’t have scissors, tearing images gives a wonderful look too!

“I guess for me personally the one thing I could not travel without (or go anywhere without) is my camera. This doesn’t have to be a top notch kind. On my last vacation I only brought my smart phone and that worked splendidly. It was actually a challenge not being able to zoom in for instance. And with all the apps availabe these days you can make really cool pictures without any effort but clicking a button.

“I see images everywhere and I just don’t have the time or patience to go sketching it all. It’s just too much. For me vacations and trips are all about taking in as many impressions as I can and a camera helps me to remember what I saw. Snapping those images yourself is better than using a guidebook or a catalogue or postcards, because it indeed helps me remember what I saw instead of what other people thought I should see, if you know what I mean.”


Here’s another inspiring-with-photos post from Natalie Malik on her blog, Awkward & Beautiful.

For the serious traveling journaler, there’s this video by ColfaxStudio, where you can find other inspiring journal-related videos, as well. Wow–that’s a lot of supplies, all very carefully organized. Love it.

For the Pinterest fan, there’s this board, Art on The Go, from Nancy Wolf. Lots of eye candy there.

Then there’s this, the results of a Google image search. Oooooh!

Look around, follow the links, do your own Google search. There’s a lot of inspiration out there to help you figure out how to take it with you when you hit the road. Happy trails!


Ricë also blogs at The Voodoo Cafe.


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