Playing With New Toys

Happy New Year everyone!  As is usual for me, I tried something new on New Year’s Day!  On Boxing Day while scouring the sales (I didn’t find anything on sale!)  I ordered  a Tonic Studios Stamp Platform by Tim Holtz from Amazon (it was the cheapest) and it arrived a few days ago.  There was a video from Art by Marlene on Facebook where she used the platform with the 6×6 inch gel plate.  I thought that would be a great thing with regard to registering multiple passes on your print as the plate and paper will stay in the same place.  The problem with registering correctly with the gel plate has a lot to do with the fact that the plate is about 1/4 inch thick.  To match the paper up correctly can be a challenge and I was hoping that this stamp holder would help with that.

This is what the stamp platform looks like.

IMG_0666The gel plate stays in place on its own and paper is placed on the right and is held in place with two strong magnets.

I’m not really ready to get stuck into a big project at the moment especially as the weather has been bad and so has the light, which is always a problem for me this time of year as I don’t see too well in dim light and it makes me tired.  I went through a load of what I considered ‘unsuccessful’ prints and decided to have a play with them.  I thought I might actually make an attempt at putting them in a journal.


Here is my set up.  It is a little bit messy and I do tend to spread myself around a bit, but it is organised.


This is part 1 of my experiment.  I decided to focus on the backgrounds.  I had issues with the paper sticking to the gel plate (It does that), so the magnets really didn’t help much, but it also didn’t hurt the printing process

.  I found my seagull and teapot templates and placed them on top of the prints and then rolled out paint onto the gel plate, placed a stencil over or stamped with bubble wrap before placing the gel plate onto the paper.  I also aligned the plate up prior to stamping which was easy to do as the platform is clear.  Most of the time it aligned perfectly, except for one time I forgot to do it.


In part 2 of this project, I will need to cut another template out of card and then I will be able to cover the background so I can print more on the teapot and seagull.  I may also just get a stencil and hand stencil those parts.  I have options.  Who knows, what were initially ‘unsuccessful’ prints may turn out to be successful after all.

9 thoughts on “Playing With New Toys

      1. Arlene

        Let me know how you get on with it Jill. I was trying it out on work I already made, so it should be a lot easier when I start from scratch!

  1. About lighting: Here in Oregon we have many dark days and I’ve set up my studio with track lighting which holds, very bright, lower wattage, cool temperature daylight spectrum light bulbs. I have two tracks which each hold about six lights. They give me lots of wonderful light . Have you considered using daylight lightbulbs in your studio?

    1. Arlene

      Hi Michele, I don’t have a studio, I have a dining room! I do have a craft light with a daylight bulb, but it isn’t always satisfactory. It is something I need to figure out.

      1. I totally understand. I don’t really have a studio either so I converted my living room into my studio and we use the dining room/family room for everything else. My husband wasn’t thrilled about me investing in shelves and lighting, but I am at the age and mindset where I can’t worry about that! I am working on converting the old owners shop in the back yard to an art studio. I am still in the process of that but you can read about it in the category called “Making a Cottage Art Studio” on my website if you like.

      2. Arlene

        My house is quite small so that wouldn’t work for us, but if my husband goes before me I can use the camper van as a studio. 😳

      3. If your husband goes before you I dare say you can do anything you want including making your whole house a studio. 🙂

        However, no matter the circumstance, the fact you are making art even without a “studio” just goes to show, when there’s a will, there’s a way! You have the will and are making the way for your art to emerge! (applause!!)

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