Bible Journaling tutorial Christmas nativity

Matthew 2:1-2
Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, "Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him."

As I type, there are 3 days until Christmas and it does not feel like Christmas at all. There are a thousand little reasons why I just want Christmas and this year to be finished; however, I am doing my best to focus on the true reason for this holiday and to convey that to our little one. 

I was inspired last week by several Instagram #biblejournaling posts that did a silhouette of the nativity scene over a beautiful sky background and thought I'd try one too. Here's how I did it... so easy!

First, I carefully removed the mish-mash of washi tape that I had on the page for Matthew chapters 1 and 2. Carefully!!!

the ESV double-column journaling Bible

Next, I sketched in the nativity scene complete with Bethlehem on the left (wish I could find the Instagram post that had a sweet version of the city over the text of the page), a donkey (Jesus would later ride into Jerusalem on a donkey) and a shepherd (He is our Shepherd), and the 3 wise men (all worldly wisdom will bow to Him). 

As you can tell I just freely drew this... proportions are off and animals are rather funny looking, but it's my style and imperfect like me.  

Then, I started to layer a background of the night sky in watercolor. I began with dark purple (supply list at the end of post) at the bottom and chose to put yellow at the top to signify the breaking of the dawn and a new era for all people of the earth.

To do this, I tapped a clean, wet brush over the area I was about to paint and then picked up some color and tapped it onto the wet page. This is called wet-on-wet in the watercolor world. Super easy... just tapping my brush!

I added blue overlapping the purple a bit and up to the yellow (but didn't mix because the yellow wasn't dry and I didn't want it to turn green).

After this first layer dried, I went back in and darkened the purple and extended the blue further up. 

Some of the areas did turn a funny greenish color, but I just kept going and added pink at the edge of the blue... you know how clouds sometimes turn pink at sunset? I was going for that on the spur of the moment. I tapped a little purple on the areas that had turned green to tone them down. But was pleasantly surprised that I created a sort-of galaxy effect on accident!

Happy little accidents! Thanks, Bob Ross!

Once I was happy with the background and it dried (you can either let it dry naturally or use a hair dryer... carefully!), I was ready to ink in my nativity scene. 

I've always preferred the Faber-Castell PITT pens as they've been more smooth and consistent in their laying down of ink and because I have several widths/brush tips due to their great bundling deals (see below for Amazon affiliate link).

I started with an S tip and slowly did the outline and then re-traced just inside that line with a 1,5 tip to make it a bit thicker. Then I filled the areas in with a SB. It dried in a few minutes and I went back over the silhouette with the SB to get an even coat of black ink. 

And since I can't seem to leave well-enough alone, I got my favorite white pen and added stars and highlights on the faces of the Holy family.

See? Easy!

Sketch... paint background.... ink silhouette... add white pen details! 

And here are the supplies I used:

(Below are affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using these links. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.)

Some of my favorite watercolors:

I also used the yellow from this set (this price is crazy but yes, they are professional watercolors. I got my set probably 10 years ago on clearance at Michael's crafts for maybe $30):

Here are the pens I recommend. They come in a variety of tip sizes. Here is a large set. There is also a 4 pack:

And the best white pen ever:

I had a fun Saturday creating this page and it helped me feel a little more like Christmas while focusing on the real meaning of Christmas. Now off to start a new family tradition and bake some yummy gluten free cupcakes for our Happy Birthday, Jesus party!

Here's a little bonus page I did. For me, it's not Christmas if you're not listening to all of the Amy Grant Christmas albums! So one afternoon while watching our little one, I simply wrote the lyrics of the song "Emmanuel" on Isaiah 9 with a Pilot G-2 shimmery gold pen. So simple and fun! Bible journaling doesn't have to be complicated or expensive.

The pen is from this set. They are great pens! I got mine in a 3 pack from Walgreen's, but this is a good deal:

Thanks for following along with my little artsy journey. I hope it inspires you to connect deeper with God's Word.

Keep doodling,
:) Ann

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