Letter T ATCs

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Another swap I signed up for revolved around the letter T. It was up to us how to interpret that and I usually go for the more literal and pick a theme that starts with the letter. And at this point I already knew these would be going to Beth so I wanted them to be extra special.

Beth does a lot of work in layers, so I thought texture might be a good theme to go with. Texture can require a lot of layers. I started with a gelli print pull I had stashed in a drawer. It already had probably 4 or 5 layers of color.

I cut out a 2.5″ x 3.5″ piece to use as my base. To that I used some clear gesso to adhere a piece torn from a page of The Christmas Carol. Gesso under and over it, to seal the edges.

I wanted to add a little color to those words so I brought out this set of Autumn Sunrise Cosmic Shimmer watercolors . . .

. . . and added some color over the literary selection. Hahahaha!

ColorBox Dystress colors. I use them for everything now, pretty much. I used these two colors to ink the edges of the ATC.

I hoped Beth would be able to figure out my T theme. I wrote it on the back just in case. Hahahaha! I do not remember where I purchased this alphabet set – I have had them for years! I thought a great big T would fit very well in that lower corner. I used some Peacock Feathers Distress Ink to stamp with.

You can see a little of the T in this shot. Stamping images is an easy way to add a layer – some texture – to any piece of art you work on. StazOn is a great ink to use because it is permanent. If I use wet media over this ink – the ink stays just like it is. It doesn’t smear or blur or lighten in color.

It makes a nice easy layer that stands out since I used a darker color. I wanted to stay away from black ink and this gothic purple fit the bill nicely.

Here are those Hero Arts Daubers again. Hahaha! I do love them and I had forgotten that I had them! Do you see those orange smashes of color with the bubbles? That’s the dauber dots. 🙂 I seriously just smashed them on and left them to dry. Bubbles and all.

And you can see in this photo how those bubbles dried. I also added some green smashes of color. I’ve been asked about texture paste before so I though I’d show you the tools. A palette knife to smooth it on, the texture paste I choose to use – it’s from Ranger – and an Itty Bitty Stencil from Joggles.

I placed the stencil over the section I wanted to add texture to and used the palette knife to smear the paste over the top of the stencil and smoothing it out. The paste goes down into the stencil openings just like icing a cake. Remove the stencil and wash it before that stuff hardens on it. And sit your art aside to dry. I let this sit for a few hours. Usually overnight is good. But I am impatient.

While this was drying I used a few Painters Express Yourself Paint Markers from Walmart to add color dots in various locations.

This is a great picture. It shows something that doesn’t always happen. Did you notice in the previous couple photos how white the texture paste was? And here it isn’t? As it dried, the paste totally absorbed the yellow color from underneath. From the orange dauber. I’ve had these glossy accents in my closet and I had never used them. I purchased this bottle probably 15 years ago. That wouldn’t surprise me. I got it way back when I was trying to learn how to stamp cards. Before I learned that card making wasn’t my thing. I was surprised they still worked. You can see some dots on the letter T where I just made dots with the accents. It has no color so you still what is underneath. But the little dots are raised, they add dimension. Not earth shaking but another layer. √

I wasn’t all about the yellow textured dots, so I took some pink thistle Opal Polish and rubbed it with my fingertip over the yellow spots.

And I liked it better, but it still needed some pop. I used those painters markers again and added dots on the dots. Dots on dots, like Hops on Pops. Dr. Seussing up in here. Hahahahaha! Let’s see, what else did I do? Added some black stenciled hearts – what happened to not using black ink? And I brought these extremely old Dauber Duos (do they even make these anymore???) and dabbed some lighter purple circles to mimic the purple on the texture paste dots. I was able to trace around that letter T with a white paint pen.

I inked the edges with some more Dyestress colors and used a black sharpie to outline the hearts and make some random marks. And I think that was about it.

I took this photo the next day during the daytime and I think these colors are closer to being accurate. Letter T first ATC was done. Moving on to number two!

This one came together a lot quicker and began with an ATC I had pre-colored with some inks.

I have these really awesome stamps designed by Danielle Donaldson that I got from Joggles. They originally came in two sizes, I picked the smaller ones and stamped them on card stock. Then watercolored them. So much fun!

I knew I wanted some wording that read tools of the trade – that would be my letter T theme. I figured that lower section would work for that, so I figured out a placement for my elements and adhered them.

Grabbed the letters I need to stamp the words . . .

. . . and did just that! Ok, remember ATCs are 3.5″ tall. So you can see this little set of alpha stamps – are really small! This was one of the best deals I ever got at Michael’s. Sometimes they have round racks near the registers with items for $1.00 in them. That is where these came from. I got this whole set for one dollar. I also got a set of capitals for the same price.

Doesn’t it look spiffy? Just missing some inked edges. I don’t know why I do that every time, but I do. It doesn’t look complete to me unless those edges have some color. Hahahaha! Fun note – Beth told me when she saw this ATC she had to laugh because that one tube of Daniel Smith paint? That is the only color she has from Daniel Smith. Hahahaha! I had no idea! Just a lucky coincidence.

And here it is with the inked edges. I love it!

Letter T is done and at Beth’s already. Another swap that was happening was the Quirky swap. Hmmmmmm. I thought Beth needed a quirky coin also.

I started with this fun stamp and some Schmincke watercolors. I knew the whole owl wouldn’t fit but I was going to cram as much on that coin as I could fit! Hahahaha!

I brought out my Art by Marlene die cuts and found a cute little nose and a crown. Snipped them out, layered them together and adhered them to the coin. My curved scissors (I’ll show a link at the end) worked very well to trim the leftover owl away.

I used both these inks to color the edges. I didn’t really scruff much color onto the coin because my Dylusions Inks had already done such a good job of that.

I needed to up the quirky factor so I pulled out my book of Tim Holtz Snarky Sayings and chose these words. I inked them and added them and quirky bird was all done. Such a super fun swap! And Beth sounded like she loved everything! My job here is done. √ Almost. Got to leave you with a bunch of links. 🙂

Snarky Sayings
Curved Scissors
Cosmic Shimmer Watercolors
ColorBox Dyestress Ink
StazOn ink
Hero Arts Daubers
Ranger Texture Paste
Itty Bitty Stencils
Painters Paint Markers
Glossy Accents
Opal Polish
Danielle Donaldson’s Stamps
Studio Light Art by Marlene



12 thoughts on “Letter T ATCs

    • thanks, sandra! they were a lot of fun and a nice break from the other projects I have in the works 🙂

  1. You are SOOOOOO creative, Alice!! Your ATCs are fabulous. I just love all the colors, textures, layers and words. And those Danielle Donaldson stamps ~ delightful!

    Thanks so much for the links you always include too. I have a craft mat now, because of you. 🙂 Oh and some ColorBox Dyestress ink pads too!

    • hahaha! glad I could inspire your creativity and spend your hard earned money. hehehehe! enjoy your art tools!

  2. Beautifully done really loved the tools of the trade! Thank You for sharing!

  3. These are sooooooooooooooo cool. I especially like the ‘tools of the trade’.

    • thanks! I think it’s my favorite of all the ATCs I’ve done and it was really simple to do. I already had the stamps 🙂

  4. Oh a laughed over your quirky owl – perfect for Beth that one & so funny with the ATC & Beth only having that tube of Daniel Smith paint. I wouldn’t like to even guess how many layers of Texture you have on that first ATC.

    • I know! I would like to know how many layers, too, but a whole lot for sure! I just kept adding and adding to it. I do love the owl piece 🙂

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