Friday, August 19, 2016

My Alaska Travel Journal + Tips for Keeping A Travel Journal

While we were traveling through gorgeous Alaska earlier this month I created a travel journal to document the amazing adventures we were experiencing.  Creating this journal made the trip much more meaningful for me and when I look back through it I am flooded with memories from an incredible once-in-a-lifetime vacation.  Below are a few tips for you, if you'd like to create something similar based on your travels this summer.

I'm currently using a classic moleskin journal.  I love to include little odds and ends from our travels, as well as sketches of places we've visited. The pages of this journal can handle a little watercolor, but be careful! I recently ruined a page with a cheap watercolor set that bled all over.

Take a few supplies with you.  I took crafter's tape, a couple small rolls of washi tape, blunt children's scissors, a couple sets of travel-themed stickers (I even found one specifically for Alaska at our local Hobby Lobby!), Micron pens and my travel watercolor set. All of this fit into a small bag that I kept in my backpack.  I also added brochures, etc. to the bag as we collected them during the trip. Of course, you would probably use different supplies, but this gives you an idea of what I used to create the spreads above.

Gather brochures, ticket stubs, maps, tags and postcards as you travel.  I recommend having one consistent place to stash all this stuff while you're traveling, so it's not spread all through your luggage.  Then when you have a free moment you can pull it all out and decide what you'd like to use and what you can get rid of.

I like to tape one side of the postcards down and use the back to journal on.

Keep a list of memories you'd like to journal about later. I kept mine in Evernote (though you could do it on paper, or any other way that works for you) and it was very simple.  Just a few words to remind me of the story I wanted to document (ex: "bus tour driver throwing tootsie pops out the window to hikers" or "fireweed lining the train tracks")

Because we had a lot of time on various travel vehicles (two 8 hour train rides and about 12 hours total on a plane) I was able to complete much of the layout for the journal while we were actually on the trip.  I lettered one quote each day, no matter where we were, in keeping with my daily challenge for the year.  And most of the rest was completed on our train ride back to Anchorage after our stay in Denali.  I listened to Hannah Coulter while I worked and it was quite an enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours.

The photos were printed once we arrived home (they are 2x3" prints.  I made collages with two photos apiece and had them printed as 4x6" photos and then cut them in half.  Make sense?) Much of the journaling was also completed once we arrived at home.  I get very motion sick, so writing on a train/plane is not an option for me.

All in all I spent just a few minutes each day we were traveling working on the journal and then a couple of longer sessions: one for layouts and one for journaling. And I'm very pleased with how it turned out.

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