July Collage & Art Journal Prompts

Sometimes you’ll want to make a collage but have NO idea what to collage about. A good way to jump start the creation process is by using a prompt! For this prompt list, I’ve focused on things that can be translated visually, e.g. colors or images or both. Here you’ll find ideas for colors, subject images, and themes to use in your collages in July.

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July Digital Collage Example

Here’s a how-to video on creating a digital collage using Canva, inspired by this month’s art journal prompts!

Birthstone Color Palette

July’s birthstone is a ruby, a bright red gemstone frequently seen as a symbol of power and youthful energy.

I was inspired by the striking red colors that rubies have, so I focused on that and found complementary colors in jewel tones (with a dark brown color to balance things out a bit). It’s a very strong selection of colors, which I think works well for July as it’s a strong summer month.

(Click to download full-sized image.)

If you’d like to see how I incorporated this color palette into a digital collage, check the example video above!

Word Association

Use these as starting points for brainstorming collage subjects or making a mind map to pull visual inspiration. Again, as I’m located in the Northern Hemisphere these are pretty focused on summer/hot weather words.

July: summer doldrums, sunshine, hot weather, bright and hazy, locusts and buzzing insects, hammock by the lake, fishing pond, picnics, watermelon, humid and sticky air, ice cream, otter pops, sandcastles on the beach, sunburn, vacation, road trip!

Zodiac Signs & Associations

July has two zodiac signs associated with it: Cancer, the crab and Leo, the lion. Here are some associations and keywords for those two zodiac signs:


Element: Water
Ruling Planet: Moon
Spirit Color: Violet
Lucky Gem: Ruby, pearl
Flower: Orchid and white rose


Element: Fire
Ruling Planet: Sun
Spirit Color: Gold
Lucky Gem: Carnelian
Flower: Sunflower & marigold

Remember, you don’t have to be born in July to use either birthstones or Zodiac signs for collage ideas! They’re just starting off points, to be used for brainstorming colors and image ideas. I usually end up pulling the flower associations for mine.

July Full Moon Names

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the full moon in July is the Full Buck Moon, aka the month where deer have completely grown in their antlers.

Other July full moon names are: Berry Moon, Feather Moulting Moon, Halfway Summer Moon, Month of the Ripe Corn Moon, Moon When the Chokecherries are Ripe*, Raspberry Moon, Salmon Moon, Thunder Moon.

*I’ve never eaten a chokecherry and wasn’t even sure what they ARE, but it turns out they’re the mysterious red berries I frequently saw as a child in Maryland. Birds love them! And they’re edible for humans in certain circumstances.

Holidays and events

NationalToday.com has a complete list of holidays and events throughout July, including the United State’s Independence Day on July 4th. Here’s some of my favorites:

  • Wild About Wildlife Month
  • Jul. 1: National U.S. Postage Stamp Day
  • Jul. 4: Alice in Wonderland Day
  • Jul. 7: Doll Day
  • Jul. 20: National Moon Day (moon landing!)
  • Jul. 25: Christmas in July
  • Jul. 31: National Tree Day

Inspirational Quotes

Quotes are my favorite way to brainstorm a collage subject. Here’s some quotes about the month of July which I find particularly inspiring:

“I drifted into a summer-nap under the hot shade of July, serenaded by a cicada lullaby, to drowsy-warm dreams of distant thunder.” ― Terri Guillemets

“Then came July like three o’clock in the afternoon, hot and listless and miserable.” ― Allie Ray

“The summer looks out from her brazen tower, Through the flashing bars of July.” – Francis Thompson

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

“Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.” – Sam Keen

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