Does the thought of attempting an acrylic paint background bring on a bad case of “the doubts”? It seems so…artistic, right? Well, what if I told you that there’s a quick and easy way to create an artistic background that is pretty much fail-proof? Don’t believe me? Well take a look at the step shots below…the secret is blending the wet paint with baby wipes!
Here’s a few important tips:
- be prepared to work quickly. Acrylic paint dries quickly, so unless you add a liquid matte medium to the paint to extend the drying time, make sure that you move from step 2 to step 3 quickly so the paint does not have a chance to dry.
- colors: you will have best success with this technique using harmonious or “analagous” colors, i.e., colors that are next to each other on the color wheel like yellow, green and blue or pink, red and orange, etc. (for more info on basic color terminology, see Color Matters.)
- read through all steps before beginning technique.
- prep: I like to tape my cardstock onto wax paper to help prevent it from curling when damp (use double stick tape).
acrylic paints (see tip above)
paintbrush or foam brush
step 1. Distress cardstock with sandpaper; rub in all directions.
step 2. Mix and apply paints. Generously apply a quick swatch of each color with a foam or regular paint brush; apply paint only on half of the cardstock so that the paint doesn’t begin to dry.
step 3. Quickly wipe across entire page with a baby wipe.
step 4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the unpainted half of the page. Grab a new baby wipe and wipe over entire cardstock, blending the two areas together.
step 5. Lightly rub sandpaper over background while cardstock is still damp; this will distress the cardstock even more so if you don’t want a distressed look, skip this step. Do not worry if some of the paper peels off…it adds a bit of texture to the background.
step 6. Quickly grab one of the baby wipes you used in step 3 and wipe over entire page again; notice that some of the paint on the baby wipe will rub off on the newly distressed areas, blending them with the rest of the page.
I wanted to soften the colors a bit, so I repeated steps 2, 3, 4 & 6 with a white pearlized paint (I did not want any more distressing so I skipped step 5.). To see another example of this technique on a layout, take a look at Burn, Baby, Burn!
Karin of Scrappa.nu is fast! She just posted the results of this technique on her blog…she tried it on a Rolodex card without distressing (step #5). Take a look at how pretty her purple blend is.