Travel Journal Tip No. 2: Using Grids

One way to organize your sketch book pages is by using a grid. Even a very loose grid can be effective. Three grids to consider are a manuscript grid, columnar grid and a modular grid.

Manuscript Grids


A manuscript grid is the simplest of grids and is basically one column with margins  that keep you away from the edges of the page. The area within the margins is referred to as the content area.


Notice that some of the content breaks out of the “frame” and into the margins. Hey its OK to break a few rules once in awhile.

Columnar Grids



This page uses a two column grid. Notice the title in the middle and the text block at the bottom of the page spans across the gutter into the second column. This is a great way to add visual interest to a grid and still maintain structure and organization. I always maintain a gutter between the columns, roughly a quarter of an inch. Depending on your page size you can have 5, 6 or even 10 columns if you want. I sketch the lines of my grid in lightly with pencil and erase after the ink is dry. Even though the lines aren’t visible, the presence of a grid is evident.

Modular Grids



A modular grid divides a page vertically and horizontally. Each division is called a field. Notice that some of the images span more than one cell. As I said earlier, this makes it more interesting to look at and draws the viewer in. An interesting subject does’t hurt either. Below is another modular grid in a horizontal format.


2_travelTip_Grids4Modular2Keep in mind that your creating  an entry in a journal, often times on the fly. It doesn’t have to be perfect. In fact what makes it unique are the imperfections that are almost impossible to recreate on a computer. Keep Journaling.

1 Comment

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One response to “Travel Journal Tip No. 2: Using Grids

  1. Pingback: Sketch + Journal Grid: March Daily Week-long Challenge of the Month — Shai Coggins

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