Making Backgrounds (because you can never have enough backgrounds)

27 January 2015

It feels as though it has been all about backgrounds so far this year.

First of all there were the printed backgrounds here and here. Very satisfactory, but a bit slow.

But you know me - always one to peruse the web to find techniques to share.

And I found these videos on You Tube.

Now, if you are a frequent visitor to my blog you will know that I am rather smitten with these Fresco Finish paints. I love them, and though I also use more heavy bodied acrylics, when it is art acrylics I want, then these are my go to paints. 

Anyway, I am not going to repeat the whole brayer tutorial here.  I really do recommend you watch the videos.

But I did have a go so be warned, this post is a bit photo heavy. 

I started with some manilla tags. I splodged on some gesso with a sponge (technical term that, and it was just sponged on using a cheap washing up sponge cut in half).

A small spot of paint on my large tile (I use if for mono printing sometimes).

From my selected palette.

Hmm - I'm liking this and so quick and easy. 

So lets bring in a bit more colour.  A bit of a zing.

Oh yes indeedy.  I just love how that Gesso adds to the texture.

A little pile of tags to use in a future project (I do have another book forming in my mind)

Ok - so let's get out of the usual greens/yellows/oranges comfort zone!

The same technique, this time on a bit of card stock without the gesso.

And then to add a bit more colour.

Which give me this. (Is it clear?  There are three papers here)

And out came the Grunge Paste and a few stencils. (you can colour the grunge paste with the paint, in case this does not quite make sense).

I used a couple of different stencils and the I used a bit of gold acrylic emulsion (one of those tester pots that you can get at DIY shops) to add a bit of highlight.

I am not so sure about that golf emulsion paint here.

I think I might invest in some Treasure Gold from Paperartsy.  The emulsion paint does not quite cut the mustard. in my opinion.

Anyway, a great morning and some lovely tags for future work.


  1. Love your colours! And so true - you can never have enough backgrounds!! Hugs from Shroo:)xx

  2. Dear visitor. Pesky, pesky gremlins. The videos have gone awol. Bear with me for I will have to crank up the laptop to try to get them back. ( or if you can see them, let me know, but I think the links have disappeared!)

  3. Dear visitor - me again! Videos restored (for me anyways). Let me know if they are missing again and I can fix it. Mystery though!

  4. Ohhhh so glad you are rocking the brayer vibe. Seriously. You cannot go wrong. Always works. And remember, if you are not sure put white on top! Yes. You *need* treasure gold! But which one???

  5. Which one?.. all of them lol

    Actually my 'go to' colours are white fire and pewter. But they are all lush.

    Fabulous backgrounds, simple but effective, and great idea to make a batch ahead of time.

  6. Which one?.. all of them lol

    Actually my 'go to' colours are white fire and pewter. But they are all lush.

    Fabulous backgrounds, simple but effective, and great idea to make a batch ahead of time.

    1. Darcy - I feel honoured that you have popped by my humble blog. And thanks for the tip I think I might treat myself to white fire and pewter. I need to start somewhere, I can't buy them all at once! So it is a useful tip if these are the ones you tend to use the most. Many thanks for dropping by .

  7. Well, this just goes to show that to get good results, you have to start with good color combinations! You have a better selection than I do and I've known for some time now that my paltry and not well thought out collection is holding me back. Looking forward to carving out some time to watch those videos.

    1. Sheila - I cannot recommend paper artsy enough. The fresco finish paints seem expensive because the bottles are quite small. But the colour is so intensive and they keep very well that actually they are more of an investment. I haven't got a colour chart to hand or I would photograph it and send you a photograph because the group the colours in families to help you choose complimentary paints. They also do a few limited edition packs of mixed colours that work well together. I have found them a great way to get started and the colour is much better value than the paints of the same size that you can buy in Hobby craft over here in the UK.

      Paper artsy is a British company but I'm sure they would send stuff abroad and it's possible they may even have a stockist in the US.

      Alternatively, although I have never used them myself, golden fluid acrylics might be very similar. Lots of artists use them I know.

      One thing I would say is that I use heavy body acrylics by daily Rowner usually for morning printing and more slapdash work.

  8. Love, love, love bloggers who document the process! I need to spend some serious time here. Will be following excitedly!

    Julie @ Pink Doxies


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