I used to think of die-cuts just in terms of card-making – usually as embellishments or sentiments. But ever since I tried using them on my Art Journal pages, I have come to love their versatility and the different effects they make possible.
Here are five ways to use die-cuts on your Journal pages:
1) As a focal point and/or to provide a background for text.
In this example, I used a wreath die to focus on the centre of the page, plus stitched rectangles on and in the die-cut pocket. The die-cut wreath is strong enough to stand out over the busy stamped collage background.
2) For emphasis – the clean-cut edges will stand out against most backgrounds, plus you can accent the edges for even greater impact.
For this one I used the little blue heart to bring that colour across the page and unite the two blue areas. The larger green heart I used to balance out the stamped figure, and I outlined it in purple to bring that colour into the bottom right, which helps to draw the eye around the page.
3) To add an actual tactile element to your design, even over already printed, painted, or stamped texture.
Going over the kraft card die-cut moon with silver gel pen both ties it in with the stencilled silver stars and makes it stand proud of them. Adding the little kraft card heart echoes that material, and the tiny black one repeats the one in the stamped sentiment.
4) To create patterned backgrounds instead of using printed papers or stamped collage.
Here the large distressed hexagon die adds all-over background interest and holds up even over the floral stamped section. I inked it to coordinate with the other design elements on the page.
5) To reinforce and/or balance shapes, colours, or other design elements on your page.
The little green hearts balance and unite the two sides of this page, and the bit of stamping on the right-hand one links it to the stamped character. The blue one on the left echoes the blue stamping on the right and bottom edges, and again helps your eye move through the composition.
There are lots ways that you could incorporate die-cuts in your own Art Journals, alongside your usual media and favourite techniques. I think they make fab inclusions for lots Journal pages – I hope you give this a try!