Saturday, January 23, 2010

Creating backgrounds with acrylics: Laura Liddell

To start choose about 3 background colours to work with. It can be more, this is just a starting point. Paper towel, spritz bottle and a sponge for each colour for application.

I am working in my journal where the pages are a thick water colour paper.

Start dabbing the colours onto the page into different areas. Fill the page with colour blending slightly where they meet. Not too much or it could go muddy. Leave to dry.

When the page is full and dry you can add some mask or stencils and dab over them.

Here I have used a scroll dabbed over with translucent blue and below is with a crown and some red added over the top.

You can use your non stick craft mat to put the paints onto. I tend to ruin other pages when I do this as I get carried away and forget there is paint on it.

Now I have chosen a rubber stamp to use and have applied white acrylic paint to it and stamped with it.

The next stage I have dabbed through some sequin waste. I always love the way this adds a wonderful layer.

On the top left corner you can see that I have turned the sequin waste over and have created a subtle negative print from paint left on it. You need to do this before the paint dries.

I have then added some stamping, a little journaling and stamped a figure onto patterned paper, cut out and stuck on.

Here are some other backgrounds from the journal. Some not finished yet, but show how different colours work.

Just play with what you have to hand. This last page was coloured by using Adirondack sprays. This is a much quicker method and gives a different effect.


  1. This is brilliant, so helpfull, I have ton's of sequin waste I never knew what to do with...what a great idea, will try that thank's


  2. Great technique, love your journal pages they look fab
    I'll have to have a go at that it looks great fun
    Claire xx

  3. What beautiful journal pages, Laura! Thanks for sharing your technique - I want to get out my paints and get messy!

  4. Wow! Laura, these are sensational pages! I love how you created layers of detail. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful creativity!

  5. How nice of you to share HOW to make gorgeous art! Great techniques!

  6. I always have trouble starting a project like this. You make it look so easy ... I may just give this a try! Thanks so much.

  7. What fun, Laura! I've been thinking about doing an art journal, but didn't really know where to start. This is a great tutorial - love your pages!

  8. Thanks for your pages!

  9. Just love sequin waste, only discovered what to use it for a couple of months ago despite having the stuff for at least 4 years !!!! Your journal pages are inspirational

  10. Laura,

    Thank you for this awesome tutorial and for sharing your gorgeous art! You have definitely sparked my creativity with your post!

    Ramona :-)

  11. Great journal pages~! Thanks so much for sharing a bit of your very creative self with those of us in need of inspiration!! You definitely inspired me...

  12. Thanks for the wonderfully creative tutorial. I was wondering if you could share what kind of bound watercolor book you use? I've been trying to find something similar, but have had no luck. Thanks!

  13. wow this is a fantastic project!! tfs!

  14. Oh Laura these are fantastic! Beautiful. I must try my hand at this.

  15. this is gorgeous, I must try that out


Thanks for your wonderful words!

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