One of my favourite things is to play with the contrast between the translucent inks and opaque paints, so I'm sharing a technique I love. It also uses stencils, so it follows on quite nicely from Jenny's great tutorial last time out. Click on any of the product links if you feel the urge to go shopping over at our generous sponsor, Country View Crafts.
I tried out a couple of different ways of applying the paint, and you'll see that each has its pros and cons. Another thing I like is that you always get a pair of backgrounds out of this technique (at least), so you've got twice the play area once you're done. Obviously, you can use any colours you like - I've gone for my blues and greens today.
First up, I get both manila tags ready next to one another on the craft mat. Then I lay down whichever stencil I want to work with - today it's one of Tim Holtz's Layering Stencils, Latticework.
For the first go, I applied my Distress Paints direct from the dabber. That gets you quite a lot of paint in play, so with a stencil this fine, you won't get a precise, orderly effect. If you work with a more solid stencil, that won't be such an issue.
As soon as you've got the tag covered, flip the stencil over onto the second tag, painty side down, and use a cloth or paper towel to press it down onto the tag.
Then let them dry, or use a heat tool if you're impatient!
I love the effect of that heavy amount of paint on the first tag, but there's not a lot of clear space for inking, so I decided to start up a second pair of tags straight away. This time, I splodged the Distress Paint on to the craft mat, and then applied it with Cut-n-Dry Foam. You get much less paint on the surface of the tag, so the stencilling is more precise (still with imperfections to be embraced - but that's what I love).
But that means there's also less paint on the stencil, so you have to flip it fast and press down to get it onto the second tag. Look what a cool outline effect I got this time from having so little paint on the reverse flip!
Once Distress Paint is dry, it's completely permanent, so now you can play over the top, knowing it's going nowhere. It will have a resist effect as you apply ink over it. So, I applied the same colours of Distress Ink over both tags using a blending tool...
... building up areas of colour gradually on all four tags.
And here you start to see the fun of the contrast between the opaque paints and the translucent inks.
Even though they're the same shades, the effect is quite different, and light plays off them differently.
The final step in this little game is to do some spritzing and flicking with water. Let the droplets sit there for a moment and then use paper towel to lift them off, and dry again with a heat tool.
As Tim himself has shown, you get a great effect: the paint stays put underneath but the ink, being water-reactive, will shift and lift, so you get a great layered textured look.
So I now have four tag backgrounds to play with - each with different amounts of opacity and translucence. I think my favourites are the middle two - with a fairly even balance between paints and inks (one from the first pair, one from the second), but all of them have possibilities.
So it's always worth trying different ways of applying your paints and inks... there's no right or wrong, there's just playing and exploring. Now I can do some more layering with stencils, following Jenny's guidance from the last Destination Inspiration, or go straight to stamping over the top, or add die-cuts or embellishments, or go anywhere really...
I hope that offers some inspiration for the fun to be had with the opaque Distress Paints and translucent Distress Inks. Remember, even when it goes "wrong", you can embrace that imperfection, even if only as a lesson to try it differently next time!