Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Technique Tuesday

I love working with brayers. Texture is a must with my projects, and brayers can give all sorts of texture! A while back, I had an online class using brayer techniques and I used all types of things on it to make different textures.

Plastic Wrap (I use Press n Seal!)

Wrap plastic wrap around the brayer. Make sure there are plenty of wrinkles and bunches in the plastic wrap. Ink it up between each roll so your paper won't be unevenly textured.

Make sure you change the plastic wrap between colors to keep your inkpads from staining and your ink from mixing, altering the color.

Rubber Bands

Simply twist several rubber bands around the brayer from one side to the other, making sure to keep the layers balanced through the middle. You can use just a few rubber bands and get a really good texture. Just make sure they aren't laying parallel. I try to twist a few of mine and criss-cross several of them to give the best design.

Kite String (yarn is also good!)

String can also be wrapped around a brayer, but it offers a much softer effect than the rubber bands. The material make-up of the string actually absorbs the ink and only allows a minor amount of it to be transferred to the project, unlike the rubber which will transfer almost all of the ink onto the project.

Wax Paper Resist (A resist is creating a design where the ink is NOT instead of normal where the ink IS)

One of my favorite techniques is wax paper resist! You start by crinkling up wax paper. Reflatten the wax paper between 2 sheets of high gloss white paper and iron the "sandwich" on a medium setting. This transfers the wax onto the glossy paper. Then you set up your brayer. Inking it with your favorite color, you spread the color all over the paper covering it evenly. You must allow the ink to dry for a couple of hours, or heat-set it with a heating tool. Glossy white paper doesn't absorb ink the way regular cardstock does and it can cause the braying to smear if it isn't allowed to dry. Once the ink is thoroughly dry (I let mine sit all night!) rub off the excess wax, leaving a pebbled texture in its wake.

Braying with Liquid Glass

This last technique gets the best of both worlds! I first textured my tan cardstock using plastic wrap on my brayer. Then I stamped my word across the full width of the sheet. Next, using Liquid Glass, I carefully covered my letters in random shapes. Now the liquid glass had to dry for a full 24 hours, but I made sure it was completely dry and glassy before I went on to the next step. I inked up my brayer and covered the paper with a solid color. When my solid color was smooth and even, I used a cotton cloth to wipe the excess ink off of the Liquid Glass. I really liked the effect of this one.

Below you can see the double page layout that I created using just these techniques. I just finished up this layout with pictures of my daughters in an animal parade - very cute!

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