Thursday, July 18, 2013

Printing WORDS With Gelli Arts®!

Maybe you'd like to include words in a Gelli® print? Watch this video and see how to do it!

Words can add meaningful visual interest to your prints. Especially on art journal pages!

But here's the tricky part... words and letters written or stamped in paint on a Gelli® plate will print in reverse! 

So, unless you're proficient at mirror-image writing — OR, you're willing to stick with X's and O's ... and a few other letters with vertical bilateral symmetry ;-) — you'll probably find the following step by step ideas helpful! 

Below are two easy techniques for making your gel-printed words reader-friendly! These are subtractive methods — meaning paint will be removed to create the letters.


Technique #1 -- Just follow these easy steps!

Step 1
Write a word (or words) on a piece of tracing paper with a Sharpie or other marker. You want BOLD writing!

TIP:  You can also add some guidelines for your print composition! They're especially helpful when you print multiple layers.

Step 2
Flip the tracing paper over — so the writing appears backwards. Tape your tracing paper in place to your work surface.

Step 3
Place your Gelli® plate on a clear protective substrate — such as Mylar, acetate, Plexiglass, DURA-LAR, glass, etc. (I'm using DURA-LAR for this demo)

TIP:  Roll a clean brayer over the plate to squeeze out air bubbles. 

Gelli® Plate on piece of DURA-LAR
Step 4
Place the clear substrate on top of the tracing paper and position your Gelli® plate over the writing. Tape in place.

TIP:  If you want your writing skewed to one side of the print, remember to place your Gelli® plate over the writing on the OPPOSITE side from where you want the writing to appear on the print. This compensates for the left/right reversal in the printing process!

Step 5
Apply a thin layer of paint onto the gel plate with a brayer. Avoid opaque paints, as you want to be able to see your lettering under the plate :)

Golden Open Acrylics Used in this Demo

Step 6
Trace over the lines using a cotton swab. It can help if the swab is slightly dampened with a drop of water first. 

**The writing in the paint will be backwards (mirror-image).

Step 7
Use various texture tools in the wet paint to add another level of interest to your print.

Step 8
Cover the painted plate with your paper. 
Rub gently to transfer the paint ... then remove paper to pull your print.

TIP: This technique will work best with fairly transparent and slow drying paint ... to allow time for tracing. Golden Open Acrylics are ideal for this! Or add Golden Open Medium or Acrylic Glaze to your regular acrylic paint to increase its working time while adding transparency.

Step 9 - Fun and Final Step!
Add a second gel- printed layer using transparent pigments — to create wonderful mixed colors on your print!

Technique #2 - Three Easy Steps 

for Including Words in your Gelli® print!

Use cut out letters! Ideally, with some dimension. 

This can include hand-cut letters, die-cuts, craft foam letters, and chipboard letters. Self-adhesive alphabets are available at art and craft stores — and they're great for this technique!

Step 1
Arrange the letters and adhere them to the substrate of your choice — to create a lettered printing plate. Adhering letters to craft foam gives you a flexible and reusable stamp for gel printing your favorite words! 

Tip: Do not reverse the letters. Your placement should be right-reading.

Step 2
Press the lettered plate into the painted Gelli® plate — and remove. The letters will remove paint and leave a mirror-image impression on the Gelli® plate.

Step 3
Cover the painted Gelli® plate with paper, rub — and pull your print. So easy!

Have fun putting words in your Gelli® prints!


Our Giveaway Prize Kit will get you started putting words in your Gelli® prints!

Our GOLDEN GELLI® Giveaway Includes: 

The three 8 oz. jars of Golden Open Acrylics included in this prize are:  

            • Quinacridone Magenta
            • Quinacridone Nickel Azo Gold
            • Manganese Blue Hue

To enter to win, just leave a comment here on the blog — or on our Facebook page! Share this blog post on your Facebook page, blog, Pinterest or Twitter ... and we will enter your name twice! Just let us know :)

One lucky winner will be chosen by random selection on Tuesday, July 23rd!! We will announce the winner here and on the Gelli Arts® Facebook page!

Special thanks to our friends at Golden Artist Colors for supplying the generous 8 oz. jars of Open Acrylics for this Giveaway! Our winner is getting a GIANT haul of premium paint!!! :) Talk about LUCKY!!!

Good Luck and Happy Printing!

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