Graphite and Versamark Resist technique

February 24, 2012 in Mixed Media Posts by Ursula Smith

Remember pencil rubbings? Maybe you still do them, but mostly I did them as a kid. That is untill recently. Heidi and I decided we wanted to have a Rubber Stamp set that feature an alphabet that was made from Grave Rubbings (see out small Halloween Rubber Stamp set at, which features that alphabet). That got me back on my love of graphite and the simple pencil! I have used graphite powder with some of my experiments with encaustics, and I used pencils to do rubbings on embossing folders.

But the other day, I was wondering if pencils and graphite and charcoal powder would work with Versamark ink. Boy, did they ever!! The technique is simple- use a Rubber Stamp and stamp with clear VersaMark ink onto paper.  If you are using a pencil, just rub the pencil over the stamped image. Using the side of the pencil is better than the tip. The pencil will show up darker on the stamped portion of the paper than on the un-inked portion.

If you happen to have graphite or charcoal powder, you can do something similar- use a Rubber Stamp and stamp with clear VersaMark ink onto paper, and then with a cotton ball or paper towel (or fingers &#59;)) dipped in the powder, rub it over the inked image. It is just magic to see the stamped image resisting the graphite/charcoal. Wipe away any excess powder.

Note that if you use the powder, you should spray the finished piece with a fixative, so that the powder doesn’t smudge or wipe off.

So, give this new twist on pencil rubbings a try! Here are some examples I did quickly in my studio. I will embellish with some pe work, or die cuts or other embellishments.  Enjoy!!!


Here are some samples done with a pencil, and charcoal powder using the VersaMark Resist technique.


Pencil Versamark Resist


Here I used a white and black charcoal pencil with the VersaMark Resist technique.


White Charcoal Pencil and Versamark Resist Technique


Here I used a white charcoal stick with the VersaMark Resist technique. This is a bit heavier than the pencil, so I found it looked nicer if I spritzed lightly with water on the background (outside of the stamped image) AFTER I rubbed the charcoal, and wiped away excess powder.


White Charcoal Stick and Versamark Resist Technique


Here I used Graphite powder through a stencil.


Graphite Powder with Stencils


Here I spritzed the paper with a little bit of water before I used charcoal powder through the stencil.


Graphite Powder with Stencils Wet Paper

Love of Art Fly Tribe Blog Hop

February 14, 2012 in Mixed Media Posts by Ursula Smith

We are in another Blog Hop! The theme for this hop is For the Love of Art. I wasn’t quite sure what to write for this post. I mean it goes without saying, that I Love Art. Doesn’t everyone? And then I started thinking- maybe not.

Take my kids, for example- we went to the Museum of Modern Art a couple of years ago, and while I walked around fascinated, they couldn’t wait to leave! They weren’t sure what to think of some of the art there, and in some cases, maybe they needed a little more experience to grasp some of the exhibits. At least that is my hope- that they will eventually love Art as much as I do!

At MOMA, one of my favorite pieces was an exhibit of different (I’ll call them) marks on different media. They were simple, yet interesting marks and patterns, and I enjoyed seeing how the materials interacted with each other. That is one of the things I like best about some of the work, I do. Trying different inks and paints or other materials, and using them in different ways, on different surfaces, and seeing how they interact. I then bring the images into Photoshop and manipulate them even more, blending the images in a myriad of ways.  It isn’t super elaborate artwork that will hang in a museum, but it often ends up as interesting marks on different media.

I am currently working on some videos that will be available in the near future- some free, some for sale through Easy Scraps Digital Downloads- on using Photoshop with artwork and combining images digitally in order to create new art. And while that is more complicated than a simple mark on paper, it starts with exactly that.

So, in the spirit of celebrating the Love of Art, even simple marks on paper, I have included an example of using graphite and pencils with Versamark ink  in a Resist technique. I will cover this in more depth next week, but for now, here is a sample card I made while I investigated these materials. It started with a simple mark on paper, and through the power of Photoshop turned into this…




The image at the top of this post features a necklace made by Kelly Mae Kreations. I met the owner, Violet,  through an online class that I took from Kelly Rae Roberts. Violet, and I belong to a group of like-minded Artists from that class. We call ourselves the Creativity Tribe and today, our group is hosting another blog hop. So I hope you will have a chance to visit Violet, and the rest of the talented Fly-Tribe as we celebrate our Love of Art. Enjoy!


Final note: If you follow the blog hop on to Rachel Payne’s blog post,, you will find the Facebook page for our group. Come join us there!!

Kraft Glassine Inka Gold Resist with Color

February 9, 2012 in Mixed Media Posts, Video Posts by Ursula Smith

Here is the last in our series on using Inka Gold and Kraft Glassince by Tim Holtz together, this time with a Colorbox chalk ink pad, for another cool effect. Enjoy!


Using Photoshop with Digital Downloads

February 9, 2012 in Digital Related Posts, Photoshop Posts, Video Posts by Ursula Smith

This video will walk you through the steps that are required to use Photoshop to edit a file and duplicate a portion of the image. We will be starting with one of my Digital Download file that has multiple card fronts in a single image. I will demonstrate how to copy just one of those card fronts and make duplicates, so that you can print multiples of just that single card front.

This video should work with most versions of Photoshop. You do not need the latest version for this particular video.

We will be posting more videos in the future. Please check back for a series of videos on using your original art work with Photoshop.


Kraft Glassine Burnished Gold

February 3, 2012 in Mixed Media Posts, Video Posts by Ursula Smith

Hi all! Happy friday!! Here is part four of the series on things to do with Tim Holtz’s Kraft Glassine. Again I am using it with Inka Gold- I just LUV the two of them together!!