How to host an Art Journal Jam

I had quite a few people say they wished they lived closer so they could attend the art journal Jam’s that I was hosting.  I decided to create an article on how to host your own Jam.  Often when you have an idea to do something it’s difficult to get going as you don’t know all of the pieces you need to get there.  Here is a bit of my journey.artjournaljam_collage

When you want to meet other creative spirits and share your love of art journaling and you don’t know where to start what do you do? Well you host an art journaling jam that’s what you do! People have expressed an interest in attending an Art Journal Jam but there wasn’t any in their area – so I told folks to simply start one. Here are a few ways to go about this.

  • Decide where you would like to have the jam. In the beginning you’d most likely want it to be in a neutral environment like a café, a community center or library. Later as you get to know some of the participants you might want to host it in your home – it’s up to you. When you’ve decided on a venue speak to the owner/manager and see if they are open to you hosting this event. First of all what I did was scope out the café’s in my area that have an artsy vibe and seem to promote community events like Music jams. Most places will want you to host a jam as that will bring in new clients. Obviously the participants need to buy a beverage if the jam is in a cafe. Talk up your idea – I put feelers out to my friends and even had one good friend suggest I host a Journal Jam for teens in her Metaphysical shop.


  • Create a poster (like I did here) and begin posting it at the café/library and community center. You can also post your event flyer on bulletin boards around town. If you’re feeling rather creative use a few guerrilla tactics by printing off small leaflets and leaving them on coffee shop tables or inserting them inside library books that are artsy. Make sure you have your contact info on the flyer should the artist want more information.


  • You can create a Meetup group, post a notice on Craigslist, mention it on your blog/facebook or on twitter. Ask folks to share your Journal Jam with anyone who might be interested. If you have a newsletter send it out to your peeps.


  • See if you can receive some press or post a mention in the Happenings Column in your local paper. If it’s a free event then usually the paper is happy to mention your gathering. Make sure you have enough lead time for the event. I called a local reporter to see if he’d be interested in writing an article about the Teen’s Art Journal Jam. The reporter was interested as the papers are always on the lookout for positive stories that engage teens.


  • Invite all of your friends and their friends to your art journal jam.


  • Make sure you specify in your flyer that the participants bring dry media – most café’s won’t want you to bring messy supplies.


  • On the day of the gathering have some business cards ready to exchange with others. Arrive at the venue a half an hour early so you can set up your supplies and save a few tables. I created little “Art Journal Jam” cards and placed them on easels and put them on a few tables.


  • Greet everyone who comes in and make them feel welcome. Begin by showing them your art journals or your favourite art journaling books. You might want to share a few techniques or ideas and in turn have the participant share what they are doing. It’s all about sharing, drawing and collaging in the company of fellow art journalers (or people who are curious about it).


  • You might want to take a few photos to commemorate the event and also to post on your blog the next day – that’s a great way to create a buzz. Photos were taken at my jams and even a quick little video you can watch here. Have an e-mail signup sheet so you can contact interested participants about your next art journal jam!


  • Rinse and repeat! Have fun sharing your love and joy of Art Journaling!


Pink Shirt day today!

It’s Pink shirt day today – it’s the day to raise awareness about bullying.  I’ll be wearing my shirt today will you?  Read more about how pink shirt day by clicking on this link.

Love, Violette xox

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