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Journal Making | Virtual Open Studio

Using collage-based materials, create a personalized journal to creatively express your thoughts and feelings.

#ConnectWithCAMH #MuseumFromHome


  • For journal cover | cardboard, packaging, cereal box, or discarded book cover
  • For journal pages | Blank or lined Paper 
  • Scissors
  • String 
  • Stapler 
  • Adhesive (glue or clear tape)
  • Decorative items (e.g., collage paper, stickers, or found bling for personalization)
  • Writing utensils



Gather your materials and think about what ideas you want to document in your journal. Is it for zine sketches, a safe place for your feelings, or for random thoughts? Your piece of cardboard will be the cover of your journal and the blank or lined paper will be the pages. Fold your pages in half on the horizontal edge and staple them together along the crease. Then fold and cut a piece of cardboard the same size so that the crease of your folded pages lays between the cardboard’s crease. TIP: A recycled cardboard box has premade creases, cut strategically. 


Showcase your intentions for your journal by personalizing the cardboard with your collected decorative items—collage paper, stickers, or bling. Apply a thin layer of glue or layers of clear tape to seal your cover. If using glue, let dry before the next step. TIP: Flat items work best if you intend to travel with your journal.


Cut a piece of string 3 times the length of your cover. Lay your pages in between your cover along the crease. Fold your piece of string in half and hold the ends together. In between the center of your folded pages and starting from the top of your folds, lay your string in the crease. Bring the loop end around the cover to meet the ends and pull the ends through the loop.  Tighten the string along the center of the journal by pulling the ends and secure with a double knot. For additional strength, you can staple the string to the cover. 


Pick your favorite drawing utensil and fill the pages with your thoughts, drawings, and intentions. As you write, imagine these words or drawings embracing your intentions. Now you have a place for your feelings and thoughts. 

Share your journal with CAMH by tagging us using the hashtags #MuseumFromHome or #ConnectWithCAMH.

About Virtual Open Studios

CAMH’s Virtual Open Studios feature instructions for pop-up activities that draw inspiration from the exhibitions on view. Using readily available materials you can find at home, explore imaginative concepts inspired by world-renowned artists who show at the Museum by making your own artworks in response to theirs. Virtual Open Studios are released on our website at 2PM, the first Saturday of every month. All ages, always free.