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Magazine Collage Art Ideas and Inspiration – A Free Mini Course

If you are looking for inspiration for your magazine collage art, you have come to the right place! Here are all my best tips and ideas for how to do magazine collage in a free mini course (no email signup needed!)

Magazine Collage Art Ideas and Inspiration - A Free Mini Course

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Free Magazine Collage Class Info

Okay, first you might be wondering why I am offering this class for free! This is a series I did on my YouTube channel that you can watch in random order, all higgldy-piggldy OR you can bookmark this page and get all the goodness in the right order to make amazing magazine collages!

In this video series I go through all the steps to making a magazine collage, starting with picking your art journal, getting it ready for collage, picking images and even doodling and final steps!

1. Starting A Brand New Art Journal

The very first thing you need to do to start a magazine collage is to pick an art journal. Now, once you have gotten good at this you can do individual pages and then make a DISC art journal, but that is more expensive.

As a beginner art journaller, I have found that having one journal to work in is the best way!

Picking Your Art Journal Tips

There are MANY different kinds of art journals out there (and I think I have tried them ALL!) Here are a few ideas you can use to decide what kinds of journal to buy cheapest to most expensive…

Composition Book ($1) – You can buy plain jane composition books in for about a buck during the year or as low as $.10 at back to school time. They are a great and cheap way to start if money is a consideration. That said, the paper isn't great and you may spend more time and money to glue pages together and prep pages than it is worth.

Altered Book ($1-5) – I have used LOTS of altered books for art journals. Functionally you can take any old book that has “signatures” in it and use that for your art journal! It is cheap, but you have to be willing to spend a bunch of time getting your journal ready (tearing out pages and prepping them). Here is a video showing you how to prepare an altered book!

Dylusions Small Flip Book ($15) – This is a smallish, wide art journal that is great for beginners because the paper is designed for art and is ready to start with right away! I am doing a whole series on my YouTube channel using this book and I am loving it because I can throw it in my pocketbook and doodle away when I am out!

Ranger Ink - Dylusions Creative Flip Journal - SmallRanger Ink – Dylusions Creative Flip Journal – SmallRanger Ink - Dylusions Creative Flip Journal - Small


Grumbacher or Canson Mixed Media Books ($12-23) – Both Grumbacher and Canson make amazing mixed media pads! I have to give the win to Grumbacher pages that you can take in and out individual pieces of paper for ease of creating.

That said, you might hear A LOT of people saying they don't like mixed media paper (they like watercolor paper better)… but with all the glue and paint you will be using I prefer the mixed media paper! You can get these at Michaels with a coupon if you are saving pennies!

Grumbacher Mixed Media Paper PadGrumbacher Mixed Media Paper PadGrumbacher Mixed Media Paper PadCanson 100510927 XL Series Mix Paper PadCanson 100510927 XL Series Mix Paper PadCanson 100510927 XL Series Mix Paper Pad


Dyan Reaveley's Large Creative Journal ($25)- To me this is the height of luxury! Beautiful paper, a cool closey loop and a nice big size! That said, it IS a little intimidating to start one of these so if you are just beginning go with something that you can rip out pages if you “mess up”.

Ranger Ink - Dylusions Creative JournalRanger Ink – Dylusions Creative JournalRanger Ink - Dylusions Creative Journal


2. Making Backgrounds For Your Magazine Collage Journal

Once you have your journal picked, you want to start prepping your pages (make them pretty for a background). I like to have lots of pages done so that I can just plop some magazine cutouts on the pages when I am in the mood to create!

I did this method for a “color block book” that I put together… you can also make mixed media backgrounds or use inks and stamps to make backgrounds.

There are a million different ways to make backgrounds. I would FOR SURE try to use ALL your different supplies to see what you like best! I use acrylic paints, inks, stamps, stencils, sprays…. whatever I have laying around that can get some fun color on the page!

For example, when I started I followed Dyan Reaveley who uses all water reactive sprays to make her backgrounds. I found that I like to use paints or permanent inks instead, but had I never tried both, I wouldn't know what I like!

3. Making Borders For Your Pages

I have found that I like to have borders around my pages to frame my magazine collage images AND to make them more integrated into the page. If you don't have any kind of border you images will look like they are floating on the page with nothing to hold them down!

4. Picking Images For Your Magazine Collage

Holy buckets! I am like 800 words in and we are just getting to picking some images, but for real, if you prepare your art journal and your pages, the whole collage process will be MUCH easier!

How To Pick General Magazine Collage Images

There are SO MANY things you can use in your magazine collage art! Here are my best tips and ideas for picking images to use as heads, bodies, arms and anything else you might need!

Finding Magazine Collage Faces

Since most magazine collages have some kind of head or face aspect, it is super important to know how to pick faces that you can use for your artwork. Here I take a number of magazine pages and show you why I picked them to use in my art journal!

I am not an “advanced” one of those collage artists yet so this video will show you how to pick faces that are easy to use in your art when you are just getting started with magazine collage.

5. How To Make Paper Dolls – Magazine Collage People

I like to make my “people collages” separately from my pages. I find it MUCH easier to make “paper dolls” than to try and stick my images of people or characters directly to the pages!

I find that by doing the images separately I worry less about making mistakes and “ruining” my pages.

6. Adding Extra Bits To Your Magazine Collage

Sometimes the “extra” things you add to your magazine collage are what “sells” it as being real. For this we are looking for hats, fun patterns or designs and maybe even doggle friends!

7. Putting Together Magazine Collages

I tend to do a bunch of different collages all at once! Here is a process video that shows you how to get some pages pulled together using fun magazine collage ideas before the final steps!

8. Finishing Up Your Magazine Collage Art Journal Page

Last but least, you need to put your whole design together! This is a magazine collage process video that shows how I finished up a magazine collage page!


Tuesday 27th of February 2024

Thank you for sharing your talent.