Artful Reader’s Club: September Edition

I got a bit behind in August…so this month I am reviewing 2 books….so with no further ado, the September Edition of ARTFUL READER’S CLUB review, I am posting art and reviews for: Raw Art Journaling by Quinn McDonald (2011) and Personal Geographies – Explorations in Mixed-Media Map Making by Jill K. Berry (2011).  (I give both books a THUMBS UP!) And, for those of you who are unfamiliar with The Artful Reader’s Club, please visit Darcy’s site: ART and SOLE – ARC and feel free to join in our fun.


Both books have so much to offer to the inexperienced and experienced artist. I really enjoyed them and will continue to use them as references for inspiration for especially for art journal spreads. The colorful instructions in both books were relatively easy to follow and adapt.

RAW ART JOURNALING is my favorite of the two books for inexperienced art journalers. Quinn McDonald encourages her readers not to worry about messing up techniques. It is all about raw expression through mixed media…words, color, scribbles, paint, glue, book pages, magazine cut-outs, graphite, etc. From the start, Quinn has you dealing with your GREMLIN…the one that tells you all the negative stuff about your art. She encourages you to describe or draw it on a separate piece of paper (or as I did, a junk journal), write all the negative words it says and then rephrase them as encouragement. Here is what I did minus the encouragement, which somehow got cut off in this image:

ako-sept-02.1My encouraging words are: Hell YEAH! I call myself and artist and so much more! This is not only art but more importantly is my way to express my emotions and thoughts. YES! I can draw!! Her book is FUN! Even if I did not have the suggested materials, I was able to get a lot out of  her instruction…über inspiring. Just take a look at the table of contents:

ako-sept-04 ako-sept-05



PERSONAL GEOGRAPHIES has more involved projects, which will appeal to more experienced mixed media artists. The pages in this book are so attractive. The maps can be as complicated as you wish to make them as you explore your inner sanctum and your personal experiences . Jill includes templates and her directions are easy to follow with supporting photos for each step. She offers variations for each project and pictures of how other artists did the maps, too. This is my interpretation of mapping my hands inspired by her directions:


As you can see from the table of contents how much information has been included in Jill’s book:




I highly recommended both books. Next month I plan to read: The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.


9 thoughts on “Artful Reader’s Club: September Edition

  1. I enjoyed reading your reviews and seeing your colourful art, you clearly loved both books 🙂 I haven’t seen the first one, but I do have personal geographies, which is one of my favourites

  2. I really enjoyed seeing the tables of contents on these two books, but I’m not sure I understand the Raw Art Journaling. I’ve seen the map making book before, so that one I was familiar with. I appreciate your review of both these books.

  3. I enjoyed reading your reviews and found myself quite motivated by the wonderful artwork you have produced. Shall have to look out for them. Your gremlin is superb!

  4. i hadn’t seen either of these book, you gave a great review of them both. i love the 2 art pieces that you made, especially the poetry one. It’s been ages since i did that, picking words out, I might have to do it again sometime soon.

  5. Fabulous reviews! I had “Personal Geographies” on my Amazon wishlist….but it seems to have I have a birthday coming up I’ve crossed my fingers…..
    I’m going to treat myself to “Raw Art Journalling” I think…..I so admire the artwork you produced for both books. Inspiring!
    Hugs xx

  6. So late getting round to look this month, my daughters wedding in three weeks time is to blame I am afraid. So interested in your reviews as I have not seen either book. Your gremlin and found poetry pages are super. Will be adding these books to my wish list. Thanks for your review.
    Jen x

  7. Pingback: Artful Reader’s Club: October Edition | Blissful Art

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