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Tuesday, May 6

Blast from the Past: Free ATC Tutorial

I've been organizing files, saving documents and planning some cool things for the future and found this little ATC tutorial that I made a VERY Long time ago that I thought you'd enjoy! Have fun!

Dream ATC with Catherine Scanlon
ATC’s, or Artist Trading Cards – are little works of art that are usually made in sets and traded with friends – either in person or by mail. They are sweet little pieces of art that you can make in batches to have ready to swap with friends.

Here's what you need to gather to make it:

  • Cream Cardstock
  • Patterned Paper (My Mind’s Eye: Lush Pink Damask)
  • Vintage Book Paper
  • Black StazOn Ink
  • Inchie Stamp Set (Inkadinkado)
  • ATC Signature Stamp (Cat’s Life Press)
  • Floral Stamp (The Artful Stamper)
  • Watercolor Pencils
  • Paint brush
  • Water
  • Sewing Machine
  • Marker
  • Artist Trading Card Rules
Here’s how I prepped my papers for this ATC:
  • I stamped the signature card on cream cardstock and trimmed it to 2 ½” x 3 ½”
  • Trimmed the pink scrap of patterned paper from My Mind’s Eye to 2 ½” x 3 ½”
  • Cut the vintage book paper to 2 ¼” x 3 ¼”.
  • I stamped the cherry blossom image on cream cardstock and trimmed it as close as to the image as possible.
  • I also stamped the inchie stamp with the StazOn and punched it out with the 1” paper punch.

To get started, I I glued the signature card and patterned paper together using a glue stick – with the backs facing each other. Then I layered the book paper mat and the cherry blossom image on top and now I am ready to start adding color to the cherry blossoms stamped image with watercolor pencils.


If you don’t have watercolor pencils – you can use crayons, regular markers, Copic markers – or even regular watercolors. I prefer to use the pencils – sometimes I color right on the image and use a paintbrush dampened with a little water to smooth out the color. Other times I scribble the color on a scrap piece of paper and dip a paintbrush in water and pick up the color and add it to my image. Either way you apply the color it works great.


You can see when I color right on the image I don’t worry too much about coloring neatly – as the water smoothes out all the scribbled lines nicely.


Once the blue was dry I added pink to the cherry blossoms and then orange to the stamens – and smoothed the color out with my small paintbrush. To prepare the stamp of the woman, I colored the background with a red marker and the woman’s face with the pink watercolor pencil.

The space to the very bottom right on the cherry blossom image was the perfect spot for my inchie.

I used this tiny word stamp to stamp on cream cardstock and cut into a strip that I added to the bottom of the ATC with a glue stick.


To finish of the design of this ATC I stitched around the border of the inchie and cherry blossom image with white thread. I added the ATC details on the signature card and my Dream ATC is ready to trade.

Here’s the completed ATC:


Thanks for joining me today, have a creative day!

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