Since I had just finised a journal with TH Saunders Waterford watercolor paper and the in-studio journal is a 9 x 12 inch Fabriano Venezia which also is white paper, I thought I would like to use some toned papers.
I really wanted to use one of my Nideggen journals (which are a lovely 6.5 x 9 inch size or so but I also was enjoying the idea of doing more of the fantasy sketches. I didn't know if the paper would take to all that wetting and blotting.
I love Nideggen and use it for my watercolor and gouache with ink journals all the time, but I work differently with those washes—lay them in and move on. The paper does buckle even with light washes, but it is so much fun to work on that I put up with the minimum of buckling.
Since April is going to be a densely packed month for journaling, real and fake, I decided a test was in order. I had a sheet of Nideggen I'd cut out of a previous journal (to make room for collage material). I used it for a test. I really overworked this piece just to make a point to myself that the paper could handle it. It did.
So all systems go. I'll be working in a Nideggen journal as my regular visual journal for the next few weeks. (I pasted this sheet down on the first page of the new journal.)
Here's my point for today. Pick a journal that is going to support the work you want to do for the immediate future. Yes, we all have paper cravings (I want to get back into a Strathmore 500 Series Mixed Media Journal so badly…) but for the best productivity and help to our creativity (which leads to greater productivity; things in life are like that) we all need to stop and consider what will aid us the most.
For some people using the same journal (size, paper, etc.) time after time fuels their thought process and their creative engine. For others (and I fall into this group) constantly switching up the page size and the paper type fuels me. It keeps me on my toes when selecting and using media in the journal. It allows me more options for play.
Even so, the selection of a journal is not random. Give it great thought. To work a journal should support your life, not cause stress and frustration.
Enjoy your journal today—soon it will be filled and you'll be on to another one.