Wednesday, February 6, 2019

January Calendar - Part II

My January calendar still needs a few finishing touches, like a border on the outside edge and some color between the boxes, but while I'm working on those, here's a step-by-step explanation of how I drew the elliptical layout for the 12" x 9" calendar page.

31-day elliptical calendar layout

1 - Use a pencil to draw the layout, then ink the final lines.
     Mark a 1/2" border on all four outside edges.


2 - Connect opposite corners with diagonal lines.


3 - Use a clear plastic ruler to mark a line on both sides of each diagonal line. (I used a Westcott ruler with tenths increments. The spaces between my boxes are 1/10" wide.)


4 - Draw center lines vertically and horizontally to divide the rectangle into equal quadrants.


5 - Use an ellipse template to trace half of an ellipse shape onto the center of the page. Be sure to align the template with the horizontal line.


The center ellipse should look like this...


5 - To make a border around the center ellipse, use a ruler held perpendicular to the ellipse line and make tic marks equidistant from the line all the way around. (Hint: Don't try to use a larger line on the template - the proportions won't match up with your initial ellipse.)


Use the tic marks as a guide to draw a solid line. The border space around the center ellipse can be embellished any way you like.


6 - Make tic marks to allow for a 1/10" border just inside the outside border line on the page. Divide the space between those marks and the center ellipse in half. Make tic marks on both sides of the halfway marks. (You're marking the 1/10" space that divides the boxes.)


7 - Lay a piece of tracing paper over the page and use a pencil to lightly sketch an elliptical shape to connect the marks you just made. The new ellipse should echo the shape of the center one. You only need to sketch the new ellipse in one quadrant. Use the tracing paper pattern to transfer the design to the other three quadrants. Be sure to draw a double line with a 1/10" space between the lines.


8 - Repeat Step 7 to draw a larger ellipse between the middle ellipse and the outside edge of the page.


9 - Add more equally spaced division lines to the outside ellipse. The lines should appear to radiate from the center, so align a ruler with the center point on the page and rotate it around the page to draw your lines. Make sure the quadrants match, except for the lower center box which is larger, to give us a total of 31 days.


10 - Ink all the layout lines, as shown in the image below, then erase the pencil lines.

You're ready to start filling your boxes with daily sketches!


  1. That came out really nice! I'll have to give it a try ~ Thank you!

    1. I'd love to see your calendar, if you do it with this format.

  2. What a unique idea! Thanks for the step by step explanation!


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