My Brooklyn Sketchbook Project Journal

The Sketchbook Project, Paper cutting art, Paper cutting journal, My Sketchbook Project Journal


Dear Wonderful, Creative You:

I’ve been interested in cutouts and layering in my art journals for quite a while. It started with my class, Fluid Art, where I create tunnel journals. Soon I started using my cutouts as collage, as I teach in my new class with 21 Secrets, Papercuts. All of this got me hungry to do more serious paper cutting. I dedicated my Brooklyn Sketchbook Project journal to practice paper cutting.  It’s been a ton of fun and I’m thrilled to share the process with you.


Tunnel Journal, Accordion journal, Paper sculpture, Paper art

Paper cut beginnings: A tunnel journal I made in Fluid Art


My Sketchbook Project Journal with Paper Cutting

The Sketchbook Project, paper cutting art, paper cutting journal

Here’s one of the first pages I made in my Sketchbook Project Journal. It’s fun to play with opacity, and positive and negative space using paper cuts.


The Sketchbook Project, Brooklyn Sketchbook Library, Paper cutting Sketchbook

I also love when there’s an interactive element to my art journal pages. This page has little stamens in the middle of the flower form. If you gently blow on them, they flutter. Isn’t that fun?


Brooklyn Sketchbook Project, paper cut art, paper cutting

This page had so many cuts! There were moments when I wasn’t sure where this page was going or whether I’d like it, but I stuck with the process of following one step to the next, and I love the end product. So far I haven’t drawn or planned out my pages, but created intuitively, following one cut to the next. This page had so many cut outs! It feels amazingly light. It’s incredible how much weight came out of the page.


Paper cut journal, paper cutting art, paper cutting, The Sketchbook Project

Another thing that fascinates me about paper cut journals are the shadows each page creates. It’s wonderful to see how each page changes as you turn the page and lay down the next page on top of it.


The Sketchbook Project, Paper cut journal, Paper cut art


Really, one of the most important elements to a rich art life is curiosity. I’m curious about how to create interesting shadows. I’m curious about how to combine layers of cut paper in interesting ways. I’m curious about  layering cut lines and holes. Finally, I’m interested to see how much paper I can take out of each sheet and have it still hold together.


Paper Cutting and Collaging Workshop

If you’d like to get in on the paper cutting and collaging, you can learn how to combine gorgeous painted pages with beautiful paper cut outs, like this one in my new workshop, Papercuts.


21 Secrets, Paper cutting art


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Creatively Yours,






  1. Christina Cloud

    Oh my gosh those cut paper designs are so awesome and I’m also wondering how you managed to cut so many tiny holes into perfect patterns in a single sheet of paper! Craft knife? I’ve always been interested in playing with the idea, but not sure how to do it successfully.
    Great post Amy!
    Christina Cloud @christinalyn365

    • Amy Johnson Maricle

      Hi Christina!

      I used an Xacto knife to do all my cuts. I’m going to likely create a class, but for sure you can experiment with whatever feels good to try. That’s how I approached it.

      Have great fun Christina!



  2. Deborah

    These beautiful pages feel alive and look like lace!
    I love the work but I am thinking countless hours!
    Very interested!

    • Amy Johnson Maricle

      Hi Deborah:

      Oh you are so sweet. It does take time, but it’s a beautiful project to take your time with. Stay tuned for news about the class I’ll be teaching! If you haven’t already, you can get on my mailing list here.

      XO Amy



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