I have several watercolor journals, both bought and handmade, that I'm working in at the moment, and have absolutely no need for another one.
So I made another one anyway, lol.
I used several sheets of the Stonehenge Aqua 300 lb watercolor paper that I recently received from Legion Paper. These sheets are heavy enough that they won't warp or buckle and don't need anything beneath them or stretching or taping down. They'll hold up, not just to watercolor, but gluing and mixed media and almost anything. So this will be a great book for art journaling or plein air.
The cover painting was a quick study I did, mostly to see how well the Stonehenge Aqua Hot Press paper held up to masking fluid. I used the masking fluid on the stones and splattered it in the sky, then let it set for two days. Generally, the longer you let masking fluid set, the harder it is to remove.
My painting took about 15 minutes and I let it dry for about the same amount of time. The masking fluid came off with no trouble at all. I had one of those eraser-looking removers meant especially for this job, and it was a wet, rainy day. It isn't just the paper that counts - temperature, humidity, and the brand of masking fluid all matter. That's why a lot of people don't like using masking fluid. I wouldn't hesitate to use it again on this paper, if I felt the timing was right.
I used a sticky-back sheet of canvas, glued to the watercolor paper, for my cover and painted it with Ultramarine Acyrlic. Though I hadn't intended the painting for anything other than my test, I thought it had kind of a worn, old-timey look to it, and thought it would work for my journal, so I glued it down with PVA glue, and lined it with a black Sharpie and a white acrylic pen. I think I'll do something more to tone down the brightness of the cover, but I'm not sure what I want to do yet.
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