Even though an ATC (Artist Trading Card) isn't a square, it's actually 2.5" X 3.5", how could we not include it as part of the Art Square line of products! It was really more about the fact that we knew many of our customers were trading 'inchies' and a great many of them traded ATC's too. Did you know that the number in each package (12) was determined by how many are often traded at a time?
We created the 'die masking' technique over a year ago as an alternative way to use metal dies. They were becoming more and more popular and we figured there had to be a way they could be used with Art Squares in addition to direct application onto the squares.
This technique is one that is very rewarding because when you present someone with a finished card they are clearly stumped about how it was created!
So here is the step by step...
Cover the TOP side (rougher, slightly bumpy feel) of a white ATC Art Square with masking paper and flush trim from the back side. (refer to yesterdays post for particular brand names of masking paper)
Flip the covered ATC over so the masking paper side is facing up. Lay the die - cutting side down - on the ATC. At this point what you want to do is put it through the die cutting machine so that there is enough pressure to just cut through the masking paper and leave a slight incision into the ATC Art Square. Because the Art Squares are a 4ply material it make take a bit of experimentation to get the plates, and often paper shims, to produce the correct amount of pressure.
We are in love with this Penny Black die called Leap of Joy!
Take your time and carefully peel away the masking paper that is the BACKGROUND surrounding the die cut image of the reindeer, and any little 'holes' that are part of the design. Press back down any part of the reindeer that may have lifted up.
At this point get your ink colors and pads organized. We like to arrange them in the order that they will be used. Pigment ink must be used for this technique and one of our favorites is Fresh Ink from Impress. For this card we used (from left to right) Sicilian Blue, Capri Blue, Gypsy Blue, Navy and French Lavender.
Our tip of the day: invest in a box of 100 daubers and dedicate them to all the different inks and colors you use - that way you will never have to wash them...believe us, it's worth it!
Beginning with the lightest color begin dabbing. Don't rub though as you may disturb the remaining masking paper or 'get under' it's edges with the ink. Vary your dabbing pressure so you are getting good coverage and blending without leaving distinct round impressions from the dauber.
As you lay down each color go back and use the last color to create a seemless blending, repeat this over and over until you are satisfied. You also want to 'refresh' the first colors you put down so that there are no 'dry' ink spots.
As soon as you have finished inking, carefully remove any masking paper left on the Art Square.
Promptly, before any ink dries, dredge the entire ATC Art Square in clear embossing powder.
Take your time when heat setting. Don't be tempted to rush by getting too close. There is quite a bit of embossing powder that needs to really melt - you'll see! Let it cool before handling. As you pick it up you will notice that the area where the masking paper was (the reindeer) will have a matt finish (the surface of the Art Square) and everything else will have a shiny, hard surface, almost like a real tile.
(if for any reason there were dry spots and the embossing powder did not stick on any inked areas, try this.... after heat setting and cooling...cover the entire surface of the ATC with VersaMark clear ink. Re-dredge in the clear embossing powder and heat set again. The resulting overall hard glossy surface is a wonderful finish technique too!)
Because the Art Squares have a 4ply thickness and are a solid core material, it's a nice finishing touch to color the edges with a coodinating colored marker to cover up the 'glaring white edges'! The snow was added at the very last with dots from a white opaque pen, and the sentiment is from the Penny Black Joy Filled clear stamp set.
Be sure and visit the Penny Black BLOG today and every day through Saturday November 22 as each day there will be new postings on both of our sites that combine the Art Squares you know and love with the incredible designs from Penny Black.
And don't forget to comment for entry into the giveaways!
2 winners will each receive $25 worth of stamps from Penny Black!
2 winners will each receive 4 boxes of Inchie Arts products!
To enter to win a product giveaway leave a comment here on the Inchie Arts blog and then visit the Penny Black BLOG and leave a comment there too. And, there is even a bonus entry by "liking" and commenting on the Facebook pages of both Inchie Arts and Penny Black. One winner will be selected from the collective blog comments and another winner selected from the collective Facebook likes and comments. That means 2 winners will each receive 4 boxes of Art Squares of their choosing and 2 winners will each receive $25 worth of stamps from Penny Black. Giveaway closes at 11/22/14 at 11:59 pm PST. Winners will be announced on the Inchie Arts BLOG and Facebook pages on Monday November 24.
6 days...6 different sizes of Art Squares!
See you tomorrow!