30 Journals 30 Days: JONATHAN “BLADE” MANNING


How long have you been Art Journaling?


I began combining my journals with my sketchbooks when I started the Every Day Matters challenges in 2008. The more I wrote, the more I wanted to draw and paint in them.



How has Art Journaling impacted, changed, or enhanced your life?

That is immeasurable! I am so much happier and complete. In every aspect of my life from family to work to my love life, I am freer and more confident. The willingness to just pour raw creativity onto a page really allows you to let that creativity spill over into your whole life.



What are a few of your favorite Art Journaling materials?

I prefer the cheapest materials around. Mostly, I like the way the very cheap papers, acrylic paints, and watercolors, brown over time. I really like the “Urban Decay” feel it gives my work. I also use a lot of spray paint and children’s toys.



Who are some of your favorite Art Journalers?

Oh wow, let’s see… Besides you,

Dawn Sokol is awesome

Leslie Herger was one of my first online gurus

I learned a lot from Samantha Kira

and I really enjoy Natalie Malik



What kind words of encouragement would you say to an Art Journal newbie?

Don’t quit! Don’t worry what anyone else has to say about what you do. You don’t have to show anyone if you don’t want to, but DON’T QUIT!



Where can we contact you… give us some link LOVE!

I am all over the place!

My Newsletter

My Blog

My U-stream

My FaceBook Fan Page

My Flickr

My Twitter

Videos Starring Jonathan:


Short Bio:


I have been a closet artist my whole life. I have always kept sketchbooks and journals. However, at a very young age someone dear to me told me that what I was doing wasn’t “pretty” and that I couldn’t really be an artist. I was crushed. I quit openly practicing. It didn’t stop me from trying to do it secretly, though. My secret obsession with blank books and pens has cost me a fortune over the years. When I say it “cost me”, that’s because I never followed through with it. I would buy them and use maybe two or three pages and then they would go into a closet until they were eventually thrown out as part of a cleanup.

In 2007, my grandfather died, and then in 2008 my mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It turned out that hers was just a tumor and was completely operable, but the brush with death was all I needed to open my eyes to the fact that I was missing what precious little life I have left. I decided to start keeping a sketchbook again. Interestingly enough, that entire journey is online. I have shared every moment of that at http://artisticbiker.com.


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