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Art Journal Composition Techniques

Hello crafty friends, Nina here with Part 2 of the series, 7 secrets to a stunning art journal page. In this part we are going through different approaches to use when arranging your focal elements in your art journal page. Art Journal Composition Techniques.


Art Journal Composition Techniques

I put together a Composition Techniques Sheet that you can download free in full size at the bottom of the article. The sheet includes cards that are very easy to use, each card will have the name of the composition technique, a sketch of the technique as well as an example from my projects where I used that techniques.


These techniques are the ones that I use most on my art journal pages:


Art Journal Composition Techniques
1. Rule of Space

-1- Rule of Space:

In this composition, if your focal element is a moving object, like a car, bike, boat or a running animal. Leave a space in front of your moving object to walk into or behind your object as if it is a moving object. This gives a dynamic feel to the art journal page. It also is a great idea to help choose a matching sentiment. For the object that has space ahead of it, you can have a sentiment that says "this is a great start" and for the one with space behind it could be "hope you had a great journey".


Art Journal Composition Techniques
2. Rule of 1/3ds

-2- Rule of 1/3ds:

In this composition you will have imaginary vertical and horizontal lines that divides your page into thirds vertically and horizontally and place your elements where these lines intersect.





Art Journal Composition Techniques
3. Diagonal

-3- Diagonal Composition:

Place your elements diagonally from one corner to the other and fill a diagonal half, leaving the other diagonal half empty.







Art Journal Composition Techniques
4. Balance Elements

-4- Balance Elements:

In this techniques, place a small element diagonally on the other side of a larger one to balance the composition.







Art Journal Composition Techniques
5. Centered Composition


-5- Center Composition:

The focal element in this composition is placed in the center of the page with an equal space all around it.






Art Journal Composition Techniques
6. Rule of odds

-6- Rule of odds:

This composition will typically have an odd number of elements, I usually use three elements and I place them in a triangle composition.






Art Journal Composition Techniques
7. Horizontal Bottom

-7- Horizontal Bottom:

This composition is wonderful to use when you want to place a mountain range horizontally on your page, cars, trees, hillside or ocean waves. You will feel that your page feels more busy at the bottom.





Art Journal Composition Techniques
8. Symmetrical

-8- Symmetrical:

In this composition you will symmetrically place your focal elements on each side of your page.






Let me share with you the techniques I chose to use with my four backgrounds that we created on part 1.


Diagonal composition for the cute owl on the watercolor background.


Art Journal Composition Techniques

Center composition for the tea pot over the gel plate transfer background.


Art Journal Composition Techniques

Rule of space for the butterfly on the ink smooshing background.


Art Journal Composition Techniques

Horizontal bottom composition for the embossing paste and acrylic background.


Art Journal Composition Techniques

Stay tuned for part 3 where we will discuss binding option, final touches and embellishing your art journal pages.


Check the video tutorial here:



Here is a download link to the Composition Techniques Sheet:


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