For this ATC tutorial, I used stamps from Tim Holtz (Stampers Anonymous – Creative Collages CMS044) that are designed in a collage format to fit perfectly on ATCs. Collage stamps do most of the work for you.
I used several Distress Inks (Fossilized Amber, Seedless Preserves, and Twisted Citron).
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Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) measure 2.5″ X 3.5″ and are meant to be shared (traded, swapped, given away) but never sold.
One of the things I love most about Distress Inks is how easy they are to blend. I used my Ink Blending Tool and Non-Stick Craft Sheet for best results. Students often ask if they really need the Craft Sheet. My honest answer is a resounding YES. In fact, I use it so much that I purchased a 6′ long section of it years ago and covered a huge area in my work space with it.
Getting the Ink onto the Paper
I started out applying ink to the Ink Blending tool and, working in a circular motion, I lightly applied the ink to the ATCs. Note that I touched the inked-up Blending tool to the Craft Sheet before getting ink onto the paper.
To say it another way, I first load the ink onto the foam pad and then I push the foam pad onto the craft sheet. After that, I gently move from the Craft Sheet to the paper. Most noteworthy, I don't go straight from the ink pad to the paper. I use a light hand and apply layers of color, one on top of the other, which makes for a smooth transfer of color.
Here's a photo once I added the second color. I just got that Twisted Citron ink pad last week and it's an intense green!
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Focal Image Stamping
I decided to bring in a bit more color with touches of Seedless Preserves here and there on each card. Finally, I ran the Jet Black Archival Ink all over the edges (again, using the Ink Blending Tool.)
If you have any questions about this ATC tutorial, please leave them in the Comments below and I'll be sure to respond. Would you like to see more ATCs? Check out my Pinterest Board devoted to ATCs, ATBs, Altered Playing Cards and other small arts. There are nearly 1,000 samples pinned there.
If you’d like to learn more about the techniques I use working with Distress Inks, Dylusions Ink Sprays, Distress Stains and more…. check out my online class with Craftsy. It comes with lifetime access and a money-back guarantee! It’s called Inventive Ink: Colorful Mixed Media Effects. Here’s a 2-minute preview video: