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Let’s Play and Use a Toy as a Stencil

Video sharing how a toy can be used as a stencil with spray inksVideo sharing how this toy was used to create a rainbow background in an art journalArt play doesn’t have to follow the rules.  If something looks like a stencil to me it doesn’t matter if it was intended to be a stencil or not.  This art journal page fit perfectly with this month’s Let’s Play theme of turning non art supplies into art supplies!

While cleaning out a closet, I found this Christmas toy buried deep.  I’m not a train aficionado but those tracks called to me in a big way as potential stencils.

Video sharing how a toy can be used as a stencil with spray inksAt first I saw a Japanese bridge, Monet style.  That thought left as fast it came and then rainbows popped into my mind.  Shocking right?  That rainbow idea led me to grab some Lindy’s Stamp Gang spray inks in rainbow colors.


How does this help me play? There is no wrong way to do this so the pressure is off! After all there is no “right” way to use train tracks with spray inks!

Let's Play Video series all about how to rediscover play again!What is Let’s Play?  It’s a series of videos all about rediscovering the ability to play. Each month I share a specific strategy that helped me ditch the stress and rediscover how to play. You can see all the previous ones here.  Each month has a theme, and this month’s theme is turning non art supplies into art supplies.

Giveaway! This month’s giveaway is a $50 gift certificate to Dick Blick! Leave a comment to be entered -details at the end of this post.

In the video, you’ll see how I handled keeping the spray inks from going where I didn’t want with a paper towel and why it made things so much easier!

Watch Using train tracks as stencils in an art journal with spray inks on YouTube.

This month's Let's Play theme is all about turning non art supplies into art supplies!

Want to see more Let’s Play videos? You can find all the weekly posts here.

Sharing your play:   I, and a whole bunch of others, would love to see what you’re creating!  We’re sharing it in the Facebook group called A Colorful Place to Play. Why Facebook?  I’ve listened to your feedback about how and where you’d like to share your play instead of the link parties.

Monthly giveaways:  Leave comment on any (and all for more chances) of the weekly Let’s Play blog posts to be entered and one winner each month will be chosen by random.org.  Want more chances to win a $50 gift certificate to DickBlick.com?  Pin any of the images from the page or share about it on Facebook- then come back and leave a comment telling me what you did and you can have more chances to win! Giveaway closes the Sunday, July 3rd at 11 pm EST and the winner will announced on the blog the following Monday.

Here are the supplies I used. Some of these links are affiliate links which means I get a small percentage. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and you are helping me keep this blog and my videos ad free! Thank you- I don’t like ads any more than you do!

{ 22 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment

  • Colleen June 20, 2016, 8:57 pm

    Your videos are inspiring. It’s fun to look at items around the house and figure out how to use them for art.

  • Jennifer Stevens June 20, 2016, 11:45 pm

    Yay!! How fun is that! Loving this pattern! I love watching your play…I so need to do more of that 🙂

  • Suz June 21, 2016, 6:53 am

    It’s always fun to see your new play, Carolyn! Love the tracks, and I’m looking forward to what comes next.

  • Peg R June 21, 2016, 7:49 am

    You always make me smile. Who wouldn’t have fun with ink and toys. Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Sue G June 21, 2016, 9:29 am

    This looks like so much fun, need to go search my stash to see what I can use, don’t think I have any train tracks. Love your “professional” masking tool. Great use of those ever present paper towels.

  • Elaine FITCHPATRICK June 21, 2016, 10:59 am

    Carolyn, you always manage to make us think. Love the spray ink through these “stencils”. Will try one here.

  • D.Ann C June 21, 2016, 11:42 am

    Cool! Fun tracks and beautiful rainbow sprays!! I’ve been saving the gears from an empty tape runner and some interesting parts from a defunct label maker to try to use as stencils some day.

  • Susan Shelbrock June 21, 2016, 11:42 am

    I look forward to more oh your videos

  • Susan Shelbrock June 21, 2016, 11:43 am

    Shared on fb

  • Regan Appleby June 21, 2016, 12:09 pm

    Awesome job and yes, I use all sorts of odd things in my art.

  • Kathy Gledsdale June 21, 2016, 3:03 pm

    What a great idea, I love it. Sadly not going to buy anymore sprays 🙁 sick of them clogging whatever make I use. But I love your idea.

  • Annette June 21, 2016, 10:40 pm

    Another wonderful demo, Carolyn!

  • Zsuzsa Karoly-Smith June 22, 2016, 7:08 am

    That looks fun! I must rummage through my son’s toy box to find something suitable, LOL!

  • Kristiina June 22, 2016, 10:57 am

    This is so fun. Makes me look at stuff around me in a different way, thanks 🙂

  • LynneP June 22, 2016, 11:56 am

    LOVE what you did with the toy! Your creativity never ceases to amaze me!
    Thanks for the chance to win a gift certificate.

  • Jean Chaney June 23, 2016, 2:53 pm

    Love the idea! Now I will be on a hunt for toys at the dollar store to use. Can’t wait to see what you wind up doing with this!

  • Joanne Ross June 23, 2016, 6:27 pm

    I enjoyed this video and was inspired to play in my journal. I posted on my blog at this link

  • Diana June 26, 2016, 5:19 pm

    I have a very odd assortment of “things” I have used as stencils and used to use to make impressions when I did clay work. After a while everything looks like it could be used!

  • Carol Loumeau June 26, 2016, 8:34 pm

    You give me such inspiration! I have watched several of your “Play” videos and they are a hoot! I love your enthusiasm ! Keep up the grerat work.

  • Ginny June 29, 2016, 9:38 am

    I love this idea AND I use legos as well in my art.
    The tire tracks make great designs on your gelli plate!

  • Annie June 30, 2016, 4:49 am

    Thanks! As Always….so inspiring!

  • MelodyJ July 7, 2016, 4:47 am

    This is a very creative idea.