≡ Menu

Ever make an art journal page where you don’t like it no matter how many layers you add? Nothing seemed to work and it had a lot to do with the serious mood I was in (and it was for no particular reason). Thankfully, something unexpected snapped me out of this headspace and suddenly I began to like the page.

Below are all the layers that I didn’t like. Not one bit. It’s interesting that as I’m writing up this blog post, I kind of like this now. It’s fascinating to me how what we create can look yucky one day and the very next day, the exact same thing can get a totally different response.

While adding these layers of loose color, the play came back. Why? Because of leftover bit of stenciling. I found an stenciled car, from my Coming and Going stencil, and that got me thinking about something completely unexpected. An old tv show with the silliest theme song intro. Keep reading to see how it helped!

Alcohol inks are usually used on glossy papers. That does create great effects but you can also use them on things like art journal pages to make quick and easy splatter. One reason I love using this more than paint lately is because of how quickly it dries!

What was the tv show that got me out of the serious headspace? It was Car 54, Where Are You? I can’t remember the details of a single episode but the theme song sure stuck with me from seeing reruns as a kid.

Ever since finding that stenciled taxi, the theme song to Car 54, Where Are You? was running on a loop in my head. Those lyrics are what I’m scribble journaling there, after all it does capture the spirit of how this page has gone.

Leaving the car white just wasn’t an option. After all, it needed some color! But blue, that would be historically accurate to the tv show, didn’t have the color pop I wanted. So I went with yellow making it look like a taxi again.

I definitely used a bit of artistic license here and that’s part of the fun of art play!

Here are the supplies used. Some of these links are affiliate links which means I get a small percentage. For example, I’m an Amazon Associate & I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and you get a really good feeling knowing that you are helping keep the free tutorials coming!


{ 0 comments }

Gel plates make great layers in an art journal plus they can make things much easier for you when you’re stamping with paint.

An O.O.P.S., an Outstanding Opportunity Presenting Suddenly, happened with the gel plate with white paint. It wasn’t until the very end of the page that I realized what the opportunity in it was.

Stamping with paint allows you to have strong dark lines even when using a large or detailed stamp, like this one from Darkroom Door. The tricky part is getting the paint evenly on the stamp. That’s where the gel plate comes in handy as the ink pad. Just brayer the paint on the plate, and use it just like an ink pad.

If you’ve never stamped with paint perhaps you’re worried about cleaning the stamps. In the video, I share the easy way to get them clean.

This art journal page was all about my gratitude for my great aunt. A fiesty and fiercely independent woman who in 98 years experienced a great deal. All her steps forward as a career woman back when then helped make it easier for all women today. Thank you to each and every woman who paved the way!

The arts were always near and dear to my great aunt. She embraced creativity throughout her life so I stenciled these quotes from my Conversations with Matisse stencil. This brought back memories of a very Matisse inspired painting in her dining room that she picked up in Yugoslavia back when it was called Yugoslavia.

This was a colorful woman who inspired this page, so I had to get the rainbow on the stamped images. Using PanPastels, loose color was added to the page.

Did I seal the PanPastels? Nope. If I’m adding just a touch of them here or there I don’t take the time to seal that little bit. When I do seal them, I use a gel plate to do that too. I’ve a tutorial here showing you how.

More layers of color were added to the page with the gel plate. Just parts of the plate were used, after all, you have the freedom to use some or all of a plate.

If you’re new to gel printing or have ever felt frustrated with your gel prints then you might want to take a look at my workshops. I’ve got several that go deep into why the gel plate does what it does. This means you can fully understand your gel plate and use that knowledge to create the kinds of prints that bring you joy.

After all, the best thing about art supplies is the fun you can have using them!

Here are the supplies used. Some of these links are affiliate links which means I get a small percentage. For example, I’m an Amazon Associate & I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and you get a really good feeling knowing that you are helping keep the free tutorials coming!


{ 4 comments }

A piece of white IKEA furniture and turning it into a conversation piece of art. There was a step that I skipped that led to a problem later on but I don’t regret it one bit! You’ll see why at the very end of the video

Even though both our cups look different, we were using the same paint, just different amounts of each color in our cups.

There’s more than just paint in there, it also includes a pouring medium. If you’re new to paint pouring you might be wondering how to mix it up, how much pouring medium to use, what different pouring mediums do, how to set it up so there’s no mess, and more.

To help you get started the easy way, I put together the free Paint Pouring Guide for you. Everything else you need to know to get started is in there. You can get it sent to your inbox here.

With the cups loaded with layers of paint, we poured directly onto the table. Naturally, you can use any pouring medium you like.

We used Floetrol for the table. At the end of this post I have links to where you can get it online and it’s also available in most hardware stores in the paint section.

Here’s a link to it on Amazon. I’m an Amazon Associate & I earn from qualifying purchases. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and you get a really good feeling knowing that you are helping keep the free tutorials coming!

What about the drips and making a mess? Paint pouring doesn’t have to be messy. Just put a box under your project to catch any paint that goes over the edge. For added containment, I tend to duct tape the inner edges of boxes to be sure there isn’t any leakage.

But there’s something I didn’t do before we started. Prepping the table. When I paint furniture I usually use a super duper primer that sticks to slick surfaces.

There are several brands at the hardware store, and all are good. BUT, I ran out. Or I put it somewhere safe and couldn’t find it. So I just skipped that step. You’ll see in a moment what challenge that created.

Since there was no primer on this surface, the paint didn’t stick well to it once it was dry. So that meant it needed something on top to protect the paint. Resin would have been ideal, but I didn’t have any of that so I looked through what I did have.

Self Leveling Clear Gel. It dried crystal clear with a great shine but there was one huge problem. The Sticky Factor. Once it was totally dry something like a piece of paper would not stick to it at all. But something like a drinking glass would.

The glossy surface has a tendency to stick to things so we have to be careful what we put on it or for how long we leave it there and pull it up gently.

Do I regret skipping the priming and using the self leveling gel? Nope, just for one big reason. If I had waited until I had the perfect supplies, I wouldn’t have been able to do this with my daughter.

She was only home for a short visit and as she’s gotten older, finding times like this is becoming harder and harder. By using what we had on hand allowed us to take full advantage of our play time together.

The table is now a souvenir of our time together.

Next time you’ve got the opportunity to play, use what you have even if it isn’t the “perfect” supply so you don’t miss out on the fun!

Want to know more about paint pouring? It’s all in my free Paint Pouring Guide.

{ 8 comments }