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Guest Blog: “A Guide to Art Journaling” by Julia Thomas

Introducing ‘moon child‘ guest blogger: Julia Thomas!

My name is Julia and I am a British designer, explorer and lover of colour, animals and travel.

My weaknesses include greyhounds, elderly people, bright colours and vintage finds.

You can keep up to date with my life and art journaling adventures on my blog, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

Outside the lines

“A Guide to Art Journaling” by Julia Thomas

Art Journaling is still a fairly new world, and word, to me. I started last year after seeing posts about a community of creatives on Pinterest called get messy art journal. This was a group of enthusiastic, like minded people who came together through the internet weekly to share their art. I was hooked.


The community aspect of sharing your artwork online is addictive and enlightening. I have a degree in surface design and I am lucky enough to work in that field for my career but making art for myself was something I had lost touch with since graduating.

There is something freeing and soothing about creating from your own being and then to find encouragement and support from friends, all over the world. It’s just the best thing and I think it’s actually changed my life. It has gotten me into blogging, introduced me to a whole wealth of amazing people I never knew existed and also given me an outlet that I craved.

I have found the ‘journal’ part of art journaling the most difficult. I am quite a private person and I don’t often get emotional (unless elderly people or greyhounds are involved) so to document feelings and events in a journal was alien to me. The practise of it has pushed me to think deeply and freshly about my life; past, future, family, friends, ambitions, dreams and goals. Prompts from get messy often push me outside of my comfort zone and I have found that through confronting these things head on, I often like the pieces I create more.

Look Up_small

wonder wander

Art is subjective and personal. I often feel like publishing my work online is like letting people see into my soul or my diary. Once you lose the fear of judgement (or just get over it – not everyone will like your work and that’s okay) creating becomes a lot more fluid. Art therapy is a huge buzzword right now, especially with adult colouring books outselling novels and geeks inheriting the world, there really isn’t a better time to join in!

The only advice I would have to people thinking about starting an art journal or a creative online community is to jump in! You can easily find supplies in supermarkets, Paperchase, and Hobbycraft and these things don’t need to be expensive. I have had an ongoing love affair with Crayola since I was a child and they haven’t let me down yet. There are also some great resources out there (Art Journaling 101, Pinterest, #getmessyartjournal, #makeyourmark) if you are nervous or don’t know how or where to start.

Diving in head first will never be a bad thing when it comes to your own creativity, you just need some inspiration, some paint, a glue stick and your imagination!


A few words from the primary blogger – After featuring Julia’s innovative and enlightening guest blog on veganism, I was even more eager to see her art journaling post. As an only child, I spent a lot of my childhood making scrapbooks, drawing, and of course writing, so I loved the idea of art journaling from the get go. Julia’s inspirational words and incredible art work has made me want to take, yet another, trip to Paperchase for art supplies.

If you’d like to guest blog for ‘moon child’, visit the guest blogging page for more information.

What do you think of art journaling? Let me know in the comment section below.

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