Art Journal vs. Bullet Journal

What is the difference between an art journal and a bullet journal? Which one is right for me?

These are great questions! And to be honest, a year ago, I don’t think I could have answered you. As it turns out, they can be as different or as similar as you want them to be. Anything with the word “journal” in it can be tweaked to fit you. There are no hard fast rules. Truly, if there were, who would be coming to make sure you are following them? Your journals, you make the rules!

But, still, what’s the difference?

Art Journal vs. Bullet Journal: What is the difference?

For me, the difference is found in the purpose.

Bullet Journals
The purpose of my bullet journal is organization, record keeping, and memories. I write what I’m reading in the Bible, what I am thankful for and the things and people I am praying for. I make a list of the seeds I’m planting and how many eggs the kids bring in each day from the chicken yard. Using a bullet journal helps me not to have loose papers all over the house.

Art Journals
The purpose of my art journal is to practice my painting and to make a memory. I follow prompts that help push me out of my comfort zone some days and other days I paint something special from that day. For me, there are no rules in my art journal and it doesn’t have to be perfect. It’s just for me.

When they cross over
Sometimes bullet journals and art journals cross over, and that’s okay too. Remember, your journals are whatever you want them to be. Some people only put words in their Bullet Journals, others make them fancy with stickers and washi tape, while others cover them with original drawings or even tape paintings inside. I love seeing form and function married into a beautiful Bullet Journal, but that isn’t for everyone.

In the end, I do a little bit of both. When life is crazy, I do less decorating in my bullet journal and leave my art journal behind altogether. When I’m feeling creative but don’t have an outlet for it, I bring one or the other out and go crazy. 🙂

Bullet journal for kids: Homeschool Assignments Pages

One more idea
We homeschool and I’ve started organizing my older children’s schoolwork bullet journal style. Until recently, I just made columns and filled them in, but in the last week or so, I’ve been trying to make them a little more fun. This week I asked my daughter what she wanted her theme to be and she picked cupcakes. She thinks it’s fun and I got to merge my form and function. 🙂 (Note: I used kid’s markers for these pages and for some of my others. I just tape together two pages so the bleed through doesn’t show.)

Do you have a bullet and or art journal? How do you use them?

Gathering here.

April Egg Production Tracker for the Bullet Journal

***Updated 4/2/19: I have begun making printables for your homestead.  Find a growing library of them here.

April Egg Production Tracker

I’ve been busy here with non art related things.  First off, we had baby chicks in the house.  Then there is the outside work when weather was good.  And in my “free” time, I’ve been working on my now six year old’s quilt (it was a birthday gift for her 4th birthday.)  Ahem.

So, I was excited to have a couple things in the art world take priority this week.  Two are cards I worked on for ladies at church (hopefully I’ll be able to share them soon.)

This is the other.  April was starting and I needed somewhere to log our chicken egg production.  So I thoroughly enjoyed a couple hours of quiet yesterday afternoon, after I got the kitchen clean, finishing up this page in my farm journal. 🙂

April Egg Production Tracker

I’m not thrilled with the colors.  I still say that kid’s markers work fine for this, but the color choices don’t always end up being exactly what I wanted.  Oh well.  It’s a bullet journal.  I’m choosing to let go of perfection and just enjoy the process. 🙂

Gathering here.

Pushing through some quirks


I’ve been known to be anti-trendy.  Which is to say that if it’s trendy, I prefer to stay away from it… even if I like it.

I’m not sure why I’m like that, but I am… sorry.

That’s why it was so weird a couple weeks ago when I, standing in front of the tape display at Office Max, told my husband I wanted a roll of washi tape.  I blame Shayda!  Apparently I really am last on this boat because my mom and my sister both have collections of the stuff.  Who knew?  But I loved how Shayda used washi tape in her bullet journal.


Yes, I know.  Bullet journals are all the rage right now too.  But I’ve resisted… until now.  Who has time for all that non-sense (sorry… not hating, I promise!)  I have secretly been stalking bullet journalers on youtube lately.  Have you ever seen a “plan with me” video?  Well, I’ve been watching some of my favorite youtube artists plan their bullet journals and part of me wants to jump in.  But….  I use my phone for my calendar stuff… and it’s working for me.  And I have all my homeschool planning in an excel sheet… and it’s working for me.  I don’t NEED a bullet journal.

But then…

Just think, if I do a little chicken doodle every month on my egg tracker page, I may figure out how to draw them. 🙂

What about all the things I don’t currently have a system for?  Like tracking my chickens?


A spot for recording what I’m thankful for?


My Bible reading highlights? (This doubles as a tracker for reading and meditating on God’s Word every day for me… in addition to whatever I’ve done with the kids.)

I don’t usually jump in to stuff like this in the middle.  I’m a “start January 1st or not at all” kinda girl.  But I’m working on that.  I didn’t have the dot grid journal I wanted either, so I decided to just jump in with what I have as a sort of practice (see, I’m pushing through those quirks).  I’m trying it out.  I’m using the rest of this only half used composition notebook.  It’s not perfect, but it’s working.  And I’ve told myself I’m only doing this on trial for now.  (That’s less pressure for perfection!)

Going forward I’m thinking about using two different bullet journals, one for the “farming” side of my life and one for everything else.  If I can get a book I like, I’d like to start the “farming” journal in March (I’d better get on this).  My “regular” journal would include my prayer journal pages, gratitude, reading highlights, habit trackers (including weight loss), and homeschooling pages.  I’d like to start this one in July when we start our new school year (its a compromise to not starting January 1st).

The best part… when I don’t have time to be illustrating and painting like I would like to, a bullet journal gives me a chance to do something creative in little bits of time and to experiment with less pressure.  And something to share here… even if they are still pretty beginner level. 🙂  Some of my pages may be fancy and others may be plain.  We’ll see what I have time for.


Do you have a bullet journal?