This is one of my favorite design concepts and one I use very often with my art journal pages. This is commonly used in photography, but if you look at your favorite art pieces you'll find it's common in art too. WHY: Designing using the rule of thirds creates visual interest and energy. It causes your eyes to move around the page and see everything, rather than just focusing on the center and missing parts. In the famous Starry Night painting by Van Gogh, you will see that the village was in the lower third of the painting and the sky took up the upper two-thirds. You also see that the wind leads along the upper line. The moon is in the far right third and the foreground bush is in the far left third. There isn't a whole lot of content in that center rectangle. HOW: These are optional steps to help you visualize where the thirds lines are. If you have difficulty visualizing thirds, adding these guides the first few times will help you see things in thirds more often and it will eventually come naturally. You'll find yourself naturally doing it, not just in creating your pages, but even photography and home decorating and pretty much everything you see. 1) Open you background in Photoshop, Elements or whatever software you use. 2) Make sure you are using the "move" tool. Also, make sure your rulers are showing. (CTRL+R, Command R, or View-->Rulers) 3)Start with your cursor in the ruler, press your left clicker and drag your cursor over to 4" (for 12"x12" page), do the same thing for 8", then do it again in the other direction. This adds guide lines, don't worry, they won't show up when you print. * If you are creating another size, calculate where you would place the guides for 1/3 and 2/3. You now have 9 equally sized rectangles to use as guides in designing your page. * If your guides aren't showing go to View --> Show --> Guides and make sure there is a check next to "Guides" and if not then click on it to turn it on. 4) start creating your page, keeping the main elements along those lines. My favorite use of this technique is to keep most of my design in two-thirds of my page and leaving one-third blank. *** If this is a new concept for you, please know that the lines aren't strict, they are just guidelines for this demonstration of this design concept. "Rules" can be broken and this is only one of many design concepts. It is the one that is most common in design. Here's my finished page using the guides. I stuck to pretty much just using the left two-thirds of the page and my main elements along the left line.