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Making monotype background papers

Monotype background papers are loads of fun to'll feel like a finger-painting child again. Just gather up some acrylics, a glass or plastic sheet (even parchment or waxed paper will do in a pinch), some papers cut to size, and any mark making tools that you wish. I used nothing but sponges, a brayer, and my fingers!

1. Place a dab of each color that you wish to use in a small plastic cup. Thin the paints with water so that they will move freely on the glass or plastic surface.

2. Use masking tape to block off the size of the area that you wish to paint on your glass. You will be applying paints to the glass surface, not directly to the papers. The slick surface allows the paints to move freely as you manipulate them, until you are satisfied with the design.

3. Play with your paints on the glass surface. The addition of water to the mix will allow you additional manipulation time, but don't allow them to dry out. Try not to over-manipulate them either, or you'll end up with muddy colors.

4. Take your first piece of prepared paper and lower it to the surface. You can roll it on carefully or just drop in on. You can also slide it around slightly if you'd like an extra serendipity factor. Smooth lightly, and roll it back up from the surface.

You can often get at least two more prints from the same surface, each one lighter than the one before, like these.

Here's another batch:

The wavy surface was obtained by my use of a textured glass surface. Think creatively in what you use as the surface for your monotypes, and have fun!

Copyright 2009 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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