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Layered Mixed Media Jane Davenport Journal Cover (in 10 steps)


Looking to create yourself an amazing and custom canvas journal cover, but not sure where to start?  Don't worry I've got you!  Let me show you 10 simple steps to create a luminous, transparent, stunning piece of art that you can use and admire!  While I have created my piece on a canvas journal cover, you can use these same 10 steps to create a card, canvas art or even decorate a tote bag, once you know the process there is so much you can do with it.  So let me show you how I made this Layered Mixed Media Journal Cover (in 10 easy steps).


OK so I used a whole bunch of stuff, but you can substitute most items with a different brand (or a different product) and get similar results.  I can't wait to show you exactly how I have created this fabulously transparent, 10 layered mixed media journal cover - using these amazing art supplies.  


*Affiliate links in use where possible

  • Jane Davenport Mixed Media Journal (small), Paint Over Pens: Unicorn, Starfish and Beach, Glitz Sea Marker - Mediterranean Sea and Coral Sea, Gesso, Matt-Med-i-yum and Light Purple Acrylic Paint
  • Lindy's Sprays: Cowabunga Copper, Teapot Purple, Grab a guy Gold, TiffanyLou Blue, Tibetian Poppy Teal and French Lilac Violet
  • Lindy's Magical Shakers: Polka Purple, Magnolia Magenta Gold, Time Travel Teal, Octoberfest Orange and Alpine Ice Rose
  • Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint: Irridescent Bright Gold and Permanent Violet Dark
  • Golden High Flow Acrylic Paint: Dioxazine Purple, Pthalo Green (Blue shade) and Quinacridone Nickel Azo Gold
  • Finnabair Art Alchemy Metallique Paint: Mermaid Teal, Crocus Fields and Light Patina
  • Ecoline Brush Pen: 507, 548 and 502
  • Stencils: Tim Holtz: THS034, Memory Box: diamond, TCW: Mini Specimens TCW454S and 
  • Dina Wakley Heavy Body Acrylic Paint - Turquoise
  • Art Alchemy Impasto Paint: Jade
  • Daniel Smith: Duo Hibiscus Watercolor

I have filmed the whole process in this video so you can watch and see step by step how this art piece comes together...


Layer 1: Tinted Gesso

Paint background with white gesso and mix in Lindy's Magicals - then splatter with starbursts.  This layer creates a base colour and adds some pattern.  Once dry spray with workable fixative.

Layer 2: Add Abstract Patterns

Drip on Golden Paints and Spritz with water to create drips and colour blooms - add a little gold and move it around with a sponge for a little hint of metallic.

  JD MM cover 1

Layer 3: Collage

Glue on those pretty papers, paper napkins or collage papers.  I've used some watercolour spots from Jane Davenport's collection - (don't glue down your main image yet, there is a bit more to do to the background).  Make sure not to cover up everything completely.

JD MM cover 2 

Layer 4: Add Pattern with Stamps

Add some pattern using rubber stamps, try and stick to ink colours that are already in your colour palette - don't add in new colours!  Try stamping using a stamp block and without one (ie: just holding the stamp in your fingers) for both perfect and imperfect stamped images.


Layer 5: Add Pattern using Stencils

Using the same colours of paint as you have already used (though perhaps in darker colours) add extra pattern using stencils.  Make sure to vary the size of the images you use - big and small in different colours.


Now that the background is REALLY interesting, glue down the main image using matt medium.


Layer 6: Add Colour with Matt Paint Pens

Colour over any areas that you would like to make stand out (like the face) using matt paint pens, this contrast can make images or patterns stand out more clearly against the busy background. 
This might need two coats depending on your background.


Layer 7: Enhance the Edges with Metallic Paints

Add a metallic watercolour (I love Daniel Smith Duo Hibiscus for this) around the edges of patterns or an image to make it more interesting to look at, you can add the whole way around or only on some parts.  Also, try a metallic paint applied with a water brush to create interesting transparent layers - the Art Alchemy paints are wonderful for this.


Layer 8: Create Sections with Fluid Acrylic Paint

Time to add some drama - find a part of your image with a natural line or separation (like the hair in my image) and make this more prominent by adding darker colour of fluid acrylic paint to make the line stand out.  This creates a section and can make your image more interesting and add a line for the viewers eye to follow. 


Layer 9: Doodle with Metallic Pens and Paint

Trace the edges of any interesting patterns or shapes with a metallic paint pen, add doodling or dots and for bright bold lines add gold paint using a fine liner bottle for a 'gutta' like effect.



Layer 10: Splatter with White Paint

Splatter white paint over the cover to finish, the little speckles of white make the cover seem less 'constructed' and make the colours pop!


I gave the cover a good spray with gloss varnish to protect it, I want this to be used and not get too dirty.

I hope you've loved this because I sure had a fabulous time creating it - who wouldn't be happy surrounded by colour and sparkle!  Now take these 10 steps and go and see what you can create using the same process, but perhaps different products oxoxo