Turning Your Art Journal Pages into Xmas Cards

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Art journaling is a great way to explore your creativity largely because it can be very private: you make a page and then close your journal and no one else can judge you worthy or unworthy. But what if you want to share your art? I know I enjoy showing friends and family my art journal pages which is what lead me here – sharing with the world. Of course you don’t have to go that far!

A lovely way to share your art journal pages, especially if your friends/family live far away, is to turn them in to cards. In this post I am looking at how to make Christmas cards from art journal pages. First of all you will want to create your pages:
  1. Make some notes/mindmap of ideas – what does Xmas mean to you this year
  2. Decide on a theme – I chose Xmas animals from stories/songs. Other themes might be religious, imaginary, rustic, …
  3. Collect some reference images – you can choose how realistic you want to be
  4. Do some sketches or trace your images
  5. Plan a layout for your page before you begin
  6. Decide on technique – I use a simple, layered technique for my cards.

Here are the 3 designs I came up with:

Reindeer

I use blues and silvers to create a wintry feel to this page. Stamps of snowmen and wreaths form the second layer. I outline the text with a darker colour to make it stand out against the background but had to enhance this slightly in Affinity Photo.

Partridge

I have put my partridge in a tree and given him a pear shaped bauble to hold after the song “…and a partridge in a pear tree”. These are not the most traditional of Xmas colours but hopefully the reference to the song is obvious…

Robin

The colours of this page are more traditional Christmassy colours: red, green, gold. The robin has collected some Xmas baubles and is singing his heart out. Robins occur in many Xmas stories and songs.

Printing

Once you have made your page you can photograph/scan it and make any tweaks with a computer. I used Affinity Photo to move my robin’s eye a bit higher. When photographing make sure that the page is well lit with no shadows falling across it and avoid glare – sometimes a camera flash can cause this, especially if you have used shiny media on your page or bright white.

I have found the best way to print cards is to print 3 on an A4 card then cut them with a guillotine rather than printing on a single card blank. Most printers will only print borderless On a specific range of paper sizes. Layout your page with the card fronts on the right and card backs on the left. If you want to print a greeting or message inside the card you will need to create a new A4 sheet with the greeting on the right. Use a test sheet to check which way to feed your card into the printer. On the left is an example layout that I use.

I hope this has given you some encouragement to make your own Christmas cards from art journal pages. If you like my designs you can order your cards here: 3 Xmas card designs 2020.

Hugs, Ceri xx

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