|A page of squiggles--I usually try to make a note of just WHAT I'm testing, because I forget rather too quickly...the guy at the bottom was sketched with my Namiki Falcon, though, I think...|
|Playing with paint...|
|Ink testing in my journal...|
Your journal doesn't have to full of beautifully designed pages, with arrangements worthy of publication and calligraphy worth of Denis Brown.
It can be a place to play, to explore, to test--materials, techniques, or yourself! I do a lot of that, testing out a new pen, seeing how transparent my watercolor are...it can be a recognizable image, or just lines and spirals.
I often fill whole pages with tests from various inks or pens...at the top of the page I threw in pencils for good measure. (And as noted that page would be a LOT more useful if I'd written down what I was using!)
Some of us have a fear of white paper, but I love this E.B.White quote from late in his life: "Even now, this late in the day, a blank sheet of paper holds the greatest excitement there is for me--more promising than a silver cloud, and prettier than a red wagon."
If the first page of a new journal intimidates you, skip it! Start working several pages in and come back to it. Or use that page for a traditional beginning--a favorite quote, a hand-drawn map, a list of intentions or goals, or a sketch of your current watercolor or sketch kit, as Liz Steel and Vicky Williamson often do!
Whatever you do, relax, trust yourself, enjoy your journal, and have fun.