How to Start with Digital Art Journal

how to start digital art journal

Embarking on Your Digital Art Journal Journey

In the realm of creativity, there is a burgeoning trend that has captivated the hearts and minds of artists and enthusiasts alike: digital art journaling. This innovative twist on traditional journaling allows for an endless spectrum of creativity, making it accessible to anyone with a passion for expression and a digital device. Whether you’re a seasoned artist or someone just dipping their toes into the vast ocean of digital creation, starting a digital art journal can be both exhilarating and therapeutic.

The Magic of Digital Art Journaling

Digital art journaling merges the introspective practice of keeping a diary with the boundless possibilities of digital media.

Sometimes, it is just messages that we want to record or keep. Feelings that need to be processed.

Unlike traditional journaling, a digital art journal is a space where you can blend photos, texts, and digital paintings to create a unique and personal digital diary. The ability to undo mistakes, experiment with layers, and explore an infinite palette of colors makes it an inviting space for experimentation and growth.

Tools for Digital Art Journal

Before you begin, you’ll need to select the tools that will best suit your creative process. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • A Digital Device: Whether it’s a tablet, smartphone, or computer, choose a device that feels comfortable for you and fits your lifestyle.
  • Art Software or App: Numerous programs are available, from Procreate and Adobe Photoshop to simpler apps like Affinity Photo or Adobe Fresco. Many offer free versions or trials, so take some time to explore and find one that resonates with your style.
  • A Stylus or Graphics Tablet: Consider investing in a stylus for your touchscreen device or a graphics tablet that connects to your computer for more control and precision.

Many times pages are done with an iPad and finished with Photoshop, and many times, everything can be done with one program

. It just depends, how the creator feels more comfortable with.

Some of my Favorite: Photoshop CC. Procreate, Adobe Fresco, Rebelle and Corel Painter

Creating Your First Canvas

Once you’ve chosen your software, it’s time to create your first canvas. This is your playground, where you’ll lay down your thoughts, emotions, and artistic experiments. Start by selecting the size of your canvas—think about whether you want your journal to be portrait or landscape, and what dimensions feel right for you.

Remember the page can be many times just playing with paints, collage and doodles.

Finding Inspiration

The blank canvas syndrome is real, but don’t let it intimidate you. Inspiration is all around you:

  • Nature: Take a walk outside; the colors, textures, and patterns found in nature can spark countless ideas.
  • Photography: Use your own photos or find stock images online that resonate with you and incorporate them into your pages.
  • Quotes and Literature: Let the words of others fuel your creativity; a poignant quote can serve as a powerful centerpiece for your page.
  • Music and Sounds: Create while listening to music or ambient sounds; they can influence the mood and flow of your artwork.
  • Your Life: things you want to work on and feelings.

Techniques to Try

Here are some techniques to help you get started:

  • Layering: Combine various elements by stacking them on top of each other. Play with opacity to let different layers shine through. Mix the brushes with digital scrapbooking supplies.
  • Collage: Mix images, text, and textures to create a composite piece that tells a new story.
  • Brushwork: Experiment with different brush types and settings to achieve unique effects, from watercolor washes to bold ink strokes.
  • Typography: Incorporate text in artistic ways, using fonts and hand-lettering to add depth to your pages.
  • Photos Techniques: create cool photos techniques to make it fit the art journal

Developing Your Style

As you continue to explore digital art journaling, you’ll naturally develop your own unique style. Don’t rush this process; allow yourself the freedom to evolve. Your journal is a reflection of you, changing and growing as you do.

Practice in a playful way makes all the difference; there’s no right or wrong.

Embracing Imperfection

One of the most liberating aspects of digital art journaling is the ability to embrace imperfection. If something doesn’t look right, you can simply undo it or cover it up with something new. This encourages a mindset of exploration and learning rather than striving for unattainable perfection.

Joining the Community

Digital art journaling doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. There’s a vibrant community of artists sharing their work online. Platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr are great places to connect with others, gather inspiration, and share your own journey.

Challenges and Prompts

If you ever find yourself stuck, look for the challenges and prompts that many art communities offer. These can provide a structured way to spark creativity and introduce you to new techniques and themes.

Reflecting and Growing

Remember to periodically look back at your earlier entries. You’ll be amazed at how much you’ve grown as an artist and individual. Each page is a step in your creative journey, a visual diary of your life, and a testament to your artistic evolution.


Starting a digital art journal is a journey of self-discovery and artistic expression. It’s not just about creating beautiful pages—it’s about telling your story, exploring your feelings, and documenting your world in a way that is uniquely yours. So grab your device, fire up your favorite app, and let the adventure begin. Your digital art journal awaits, a blank canvas ready to be filled with the wonders of your imagination.

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