Green picture made with feather painting

Creative Summer Challenge |Make a Mark

Hurrah! It’s the start of  Creative Summer Challenge to make a Visual Journal for Summer 2018.

If you’d like to find out more about the challenge, read this post


Summer Creative challenge make a mark with a simple rubber stamp

This week, we’re going to concentrate on sketchbook ideas, but some of the ideas and prompts can be used for other types of journals too.


The hardest part of keeping a journal can be starting the first page because a blank page can be a daunting thing. So write something. Anything. Your name. The title of the journal. The date. An introduction. A quote.

Stick something onto the page. A painting you admire. A photograph of someone or something that you love. A print you’ve made. A map.

Or just turn the first page over and start a few pages in. You can come back to the first pages later or use them for making notes or a list of contents.


If you’re worried about blank pages further on, then make some marks on them to make them less precious.

Add some colour

Put a colour wash on the page or add a margin of colour down one side.

Add some pattern

Draw lines.

Scribble and doodle.

Add symbols.

Visual journal with stamp made from eraser and triangle pattern border on page

Use rubber or foam stamps to make patterns along the edges of the pages. Make your own stamp by using a craft knife to cut away parts of an ordinary eraser. If you just use the edge (as above) you can cut another simple pattern on the opposite side. Use the flat side for a larger image.

Other mark making ideas

Bleached pattern on sketchbook page colourwashed with ink

Use a brush dipped (carefully) into bleach to make marks on a page colourwashed with ink. (Washable blue used in photo above.)

Dip a feather into some ink and flick the ink or try to paint a picture.

Stain the page with cold tea for a vintage look.

Use a stick and paint to add dots or lines.

Use a calligraphy pen to write a quote.

Mark each page with a date stamp or number stamp.


We’re going to throw you some prompts each week that may help you if you’re stuck for ideas. Feel free to use every prompt, cherry pick your favourites or ignore them altogether.


There’s no pressure to share your work online but you can post it onto our Facebook page, tag @Slamseys in Instagram or leave a link to your blog in the comments below this or any of the Challenge posts.


For more information about the Slamseys Creative Challenge, read Introduction to the Creative Challenge

Next: Creative Challenge Week Two | A Different Perspective

11 thoughts on “Creative Summer Challenge |Make a Mark

  1. Thank you so much for this first week of the Slamseys Creative Summer Challenge – it’s been such fun and very therapeutic! All agog for next week’s prompts now! E x

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