Bible (Art) Journaling

Formed in the womb of the mother


For ages people have been writing important and/or personal things down in the margins of the Bible. And a lot of artists have made beautiful works of art based on biblical texts and subjects.

A newer trend is drawing, painting and writing in the Bible, in the margins or over the text on the pages, or in a special journal: Bible (Art) Journaling. You don’t have to be an artist to join the world of Bible (Art) Journaling. The time you spend with God and with His Word is more important than the product and the beauty of the page you are creating.

You can work in a Journaling Bible, or in a Parallel Bible, and if you don’t want to work in the Bible you can work in something else, for example a notebook.



You can buy a lot of materials, which can make Bible Journaling very expensive. That’s why I think it is better to use what you have, and work your way up to more materials. Almost everybody has pencils, pens, a ruler and erasers and colouring pencils.

  • A Bible, Journaling Bible or a notebook/ artbook/ journal
  • A pen, pencil, eraser, ruler and black thin pens or markers or gelpens if you want to do handlettering and/or doodling
  • Acrylic paint, aquarel or watercolour paint, colouring pencils or other materials when you want to make drawings and paintings
  • Stickers, pictures, stamps, washi-tape, stencils and every other material you can think of.


“Bible Journaling is a life giving, chaos breaking, transforming, creative conversation between you and the eternal God” ( Lisa Nichols Hickman, Writing in the Margins)

“Bible (Art) Journaling is creating on the pages of the Bible as a devotional proces. To engage more freely with the Word of God in new ways and to record personally inspiring scriptures in creative and artistic ways, which serve to remind us of moments in our personal journey with God and help us grow in our faith.” ( Rebekah R. Jones, on her website)


Be Careful!:

Bible pages are very thin, so it is good to be careful. Pencils and pens can easily rip the pages, therefore it is smart to apply the colour without much pressure.

Apply the Gesso or paint with a businesscard or something else from the base or middle of the pages and smear it to the sides of the pages, so the pages will not be crumpling.


It is normal to see the ghoasting or shadowing of your work, even the printed words can be seen on the other side of the pages if you hold it up to the light.

Bleed through 2
The front of the page
bleed through
Bleeding through

Bleed through can occur when wet materials are used, the paper is soaked with the material you used, so it is very visible on the other side of the page. Some markers, ink and stamp inks will give you a lot of bleed through. Bleed through can be prevented by prepping the page. To do this, you will need to apply one or two layers of Gesso, Clear Gesso and Gel Medium can be used.

Wet materials as Gesso and Gel Medium, ink and paint will crinkle the pages. Apply watercolour paint and aquarelle paint with as little water as possible.


Bible Journaling or Bible Art Journaling can be done in a lot of different ways.

  1. Handlettering: Drawn and handwritten letters can be used, altered and made beautiful, in all kind of shapes, fonts and ways. You can use a variety of pens, pencils and paint for different results. A blog about handlettering will follow soon.
  2. Doodling: You can enhance your teksts and letters with doodled flowers, arrows, flags or different images.
  3. Stamps: There are a lot of stamps which you can use in your bible. This way you don’t have to be an art-pro so you will have great results.
    image kopie 2
  4. Stickers: Stickers are a quick and neat way to decorate your Bible.image kopie 4
  5. Tip-in: If you don’t want to work in the Bible, you can put a tip-in, like a Journaling card, with washi-tape.IMG_1996
  6. Washi-tape: There are a lot of different washi-tapes available. A good washi-tape doesn’t destroy your paper when it is removed. And you can make the pages more interesting with a pop of colour.
  7. Gelpens: With a gelpen you won’t have any ink leaking through the pages. They will give interesting colours and you can write or draw with them.gelpennen
  8. Pencil drawings: You can get great results when you draw or colour with pencils.IMG_1997
  9. Tissuepaper: Pages can instantly transform when you use Modge Podge and tissuepaper. It will give you an almost transparent picture over the page.
  10. Acrylic paint: I often use acrylic paints as a coloured base. I apply it with a businesscard. Acrilic paint can also be used to make your work transparant in your Bible when you dilute it with water.IMG_2002
  11. Aquarel or watercolourpaint and pencils: The pages in most Bibles can take Aquarel or watercolour paint and pencils very well. But be aware of the wrinkling of the pages and the bleed through. You can use Gesso as a base to avoid bleedthrough.
  12. Fabric, threat, lace and band: Applying these materials are a fun way to decorate a Biblepage. But be aware of the bulking effect of the materials in your Bible.



  • Journaling Bible
  • Writing in the Margins, Lisa Nichols Hickman



Terms you can use to search to find inspiration:

  • Bible Journaling
  • Bible Art Journaling
  • Lettering
  • Handlettering
  • Doodles/doodling


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