As an artist who has been collecting materials for years, sometimes I'm hesitant to add to my stash of media. When I buy materials any more I like to hone in on how the particular item will enhance my creative capability.
If you are just starting out with art journaling, have no fear! It doesn't take much to get some color on the page. If you are brand new to creating, I would recommend starting with collage. A collage journal takes the fewest materials and you do not need to know how to draw or paint. Simply selecting, placing and gluing down images is a great way to express yourself.
Here's a short list of my go to supplies for art journaling. There may be some things on the list that are staples to you and some that you haven't tried. Choose the materials you are drawn to and have fun playing! There are endless free tutorials online that can help you learn how to use new media.
1. Craft paints...I use Dick Blick matte acrylics and am especially fond of the pastel set. Whichever craft paints you choose be sure to add in black and white. They can be used to add contrast, and white craft paint can cover over mistakes which leaves a matte surface to continue creating on.
2. Acrylic ink...I only recently discovered acrylic ink and now I wonder how I ever did without it. You can add a few drops to your craft paints to mix new colors, create semi sheer to sheer washes of color when you add them to water or use the inks straight up like paint.
3. Collage Pauge or glue sticks...Glue sticks work well for quick projects, however they are not so permanent. Let me tell you, if you do a lot of collage you can go through glue sticks like a bakery goes through butter. My latest glue of choice is Collage Pauge instant decoupage in the Matte finish. It is a multi purpose water-resistant glue, sealer and finish that you can use for projects like collage, decoupage, papier mache and more. Also Collage Pauge has no fumes or odor so it is safe to use indoors.
4. Watercolors...For sheer washes of color and watery messy effects, turn to watercolor paints. I prefer opaque paints and add a lot of water to create lighter washes. As you can tell I tend to choose materials for their versatility.
5. Magazines and decorative paper...Choose magazines and paper you are drawn to. I love Marie Claire, National Geographic, Midwest Living for travel photos and Spiritual magazines like Tricycle and Spirituality and Health.
6. Pens, Markers, and Black Faber Castell Pitt Artist Pens...If you want to add text, even sharpies work great. And sharpies seem to have a shelf life of close to forever, so they are perfect if you are working on a budget and are looking for a marker that won't dry out.
These are some of my go to supplies. There is so much out there, try different things and soon you will discover media that you totally love.