Drawing Simple Shapes in Your Art Journal

(This tutorial was previously published in Art Journal Courage by Dina Wakley, copyright 2014. It is republished here courtesy of CreateMixedMedia.com and North Light Books.)

simple shape art journal page 500

It’s time to freehand draw some simple shapes. Start with a circle or two. Then draw a few petals on the circles. Voilá, you have a flower. Draw a curvy line and add leaves. Look, a climbing vine. Draw hearts. Draw stars. Get your hand in the habit of moving and making marks on your page. You’re not making a masterpiece here, you’re practicing your drawing on a journal page.

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Simple shapes are the foundation of drawing. Everything can be broken down to basic shapes like circles, rectangles and triangles. A daisy is a circular center with oval or triangular petals. A human face is an oval, with oval eyes, a triangle nose and a rectangular neck. So it’s worthwhile to practice drawing simple shapes and to get used to making your own mark on paper.

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One thing to remember when you’re drawing is that your goal is not necessarily accuracy. It’s line, energy and suggestion. So don’t get caught up on accuracy. The vines I draw don’t look like a real vine. But they’re flowing and free, and I like them. That’s what matters.

Materials
acrylic paint (Green Gold, Light Blue Permanent, Titanium White, Magenta, black)
baby wipes
black pen
cardboard circle
gesso
old gift card
paintbrush
Stabilo All pencil
stencils
White Linen ink spray
(Dylusions by Ranger)
your journal

simple shape art journal step 1

1. Gesso a page in your journal and let it dry. Use an old gift card to scrape some Green Gold acrylic paint onto part of the page.

simple shape art journal step 2

2. Place a stencil over the paint and rub through it with a baby wipe.

Blot Your Wet Wipe
If the wipe is too wet, moisture will seep under the stencil and muddy your design. I often dry out my wipe a bit by blotting it onto my apron.

simple shape art journal step 3

3. Use the gift card to scrape some Light Blue Permanent acrylic paint onto the page.

simple shapes art journal step 4

4. Place a stencil over the blue paint and rub through it with a baby wipe.

simple shapes art journal step 5

5. Use White Linen ink spray and a stencil to add some white stenciling to a few areas of the background.

simple shapes art journal step 6

6. Draw a simple shape onto your background with the Stabilo All pencil.

simple shapes art journal step 7

7. Paint inside the shape with Titanium White paint.

simple shapes art journal step 8

8. Before the white paint dries, add some Magenta paint to the area inside the shape. The pink is complementary to the green so it provides contrast and pop.

simple shapes art journal step 9

9. Allow the paint to dry, then write around your shape with a black pen. Spill your soul!

simple shapes art journal step 10

10. Use a dry brush, a stencil and Titanium White paint to add some top stenciling to your page.

simple shapes art journal step 11

11. Dip a cardboard circle in black paint and add paint circles to your page. I always do an odd number—three, five, seven.

Extra Inspiration

Growth art journal page

Growth
81⁄2″ × 11″ (22cm × 28cm)

(This tutorial was previously published in Art Journal Courage by Dina Wakley, copyright 2014. It is republished here courtesy of CreateMixedMedia.com and North Light Books.)

U8285_ArtJournalCorage_CRV.inddFind out more or order a copy of Art Journal Courage by Dina Wakley here.

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