by Martha Lucia Gomez
Using this acrylic block technique is an easy way to create a colorful background with a watercolor effect on your paper projects like cards and scrapbook layouts. You can do this technique using any water-based pigment or dye inks, and acrylic blocks of different sizes and shapes. You do not need a lot of different supplies to make beautiful backgrounds! You can do this with a single color of ink, but I used two colors of Memento water-based dye inks because the colors in the line blend together so nicely.
Select the size and shape of the acrylic block that you want to use to create the background. Here I used a block large enough to cover most of a standard size card but small enough to also leave a white border. Apply the ink directly on the acrylic block by swiping the ink pad on the surface.. Dye inks appearance on the block will look clear, but once you press the block onto paper the color will pop! I used two different colors, Memento Dandelion and Tangelo. I love the way the two similar colors fade into one another.
Spray your inked block with water. The intensity of color depends on the amount of water that you apply. Less water will result in more color, and more water less color. Since the dye inks are waterbased the water will allow the orange and yellow to blend even more. Turn your block around and stamp the color directly over your cardstock or watercolor paper. Press the block into the paper with your hands to transfer the color. Lift the block off of the paper and let the cardstock dry naturally or speed the process with a heat tool. This technique can be used on most types of cardstock.
Arrange your clear stamps on the acrylic block. If you are not sure how you would like the design to look you can practice placement before you ink the stamp. This gives you a sense of the final look and feel. It can be eye-pleasing to have the stamped image use the full panel frame, meaning it covers both the colored and white areas. Here I decided to place the large floral image in the top corner and the sentiment “Thanks” in the opposite corner. Ink your main image using Memento Tuxedo Black to create a contrast. Adhere your inked and stamped panel to the black card base using double-sided tape. The black in the flower print and sentiment will pop even more because it matches the paper of the card base.
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