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Monday, July 11, 2016

Two Kinds of Resist: Creating a Background AFTERWARDS

Hi guys! I thought I'd bring you a quick tutorial on not one but TWO ways to use a resist when crafting your artist trading cards, journal pages, or any project really.

Today's project is an ATC I made for an Animals of the Alphabet series of swaps that I am doing. (Click the link to see my progress through the alphabet so far!)

The idea here was to create the background after placing the main elements on the card, using two methods to resist the inks and paints I was applying over the images.

To represent the letter G, I chose this fabulous (pathetic?) image of a giraffe from Lost Coast Designs. I stamped the giraffe in black Stazon ink on a piece of white cardstock. You don't have to use Stazon for this technique, but do be sure that the ink you use is waterproof.

Then I took a marker with embossing ink and a chisel-edged nib and calligraphed a flourished italic capital G. I sprinkled it with white embossing powder and heated it until the powder melted. The melted powder is waterproof and will resist any water-based media you apply on top of it.  :)

Tip: Use a pounce pillow before writing or stamping your image and sprinkling your EP to reduce/eliminate stray globules of embossing powder.

Next I applied a clear dimensional gloss medium (I used Ranger Glossy Accents) all over the giraffe, striving to achieve an even coat without air bubbles. This takes a while to dry--I left my project overnight, although it doesn't necessarily take that  long.

Here's what it looked like after applying the gloss medium--I used the flash to take the pic so you could see the gloss:

This gloss medium is really cool. Even if you're not using it as resist, it gives a raised pillowlike effect on whatever image or part of an image you apply it to...sort of like those gel-pillow stickers you can get--although it dries firm and not squishy like those stickers. It has a lot of creative uses other than this one!

So! After your gloss medium is fully dry, the fun begins in creating your background. You can use a watercolor wash, stamp over it, etc. Any water-based media will work, and your embossing powder and your gloss medium will offer stout resistance!

Tip: Before your water-based media dry, it's helpful to take a bit of paper towel or baby wipe and lightly rub over the resist areas to remove any film of color that might dull your images.

For this card, I used a mini ink tool and Distress inks to rub color into my background. I rubbed the ink right over the G and over the giraffe without a care in the world, secure in the realization that resistance was not futile.  :)  After I had the basic colors down, I flicked a bit of water on the ink to create some spots, and suggested a hint of giraffe patterning with chalk ink through a stencil; then I spattered gold and copper metallic powdered pigment all over the card with a dry brush, and misted lightly with water to help bind the dry pigment spatters to the card. I edged it in sooty black chalk ink, and that's it.

Here is the finished result again. (You'll have to just imagine the shine from the metallic spatters, since they didn't photograph anywhere near as shiny and glinty as they are IRL. Also, the giraffe is raised off the card from the gloss medium for a slight 3D effect.)

Here's a pic of a tag I did with the same gloss medium resist technique. I highlighted the figure with the gloss. You can see how the original manila color of the tag shows through so nicely against the bright colors I applied to the rest of the tag. All I had to do was give the figure a quick wipe when I was done going nuts on the background, and voila!

What do you think? As always, I look forward to your comments or questions below!


  1. Cool! I wondered how you did the giraffe ATC.


    1. Thanks, Marilyn! I wish the 3D effect of the giraffe photographed better. I love that dimensional gloss medium. :)

  2. Wonderful ATC's.... great work doing the resist, I love doing this technique, not used the 3D glossy accents to do it, have used the Pebeo Drawing Gum, then you can colour image after!

  3. Hi Val! Thanks for stopping by. :) So fun to hear you're a member of the Resistance too LOL. Agree that those masking fluids are great--you can get really intricate effects by coloring the image after you remove the resist, can't you? I would love to be inspired by some of your work with the Pebeo gum! Please link me up if you have anything posted. :) I love it when we can share what we are doing-I get so much inspiration from our cross-fertilization!