Altered Art: Transparent ATC [Pick A Stick Challenge]


A recent craft magazine article showed some Artist Trading Cards (ATCs, 2½” x 3½”) made of clear acrylic sheet. By decorating the front and back, there was depth added to the whole image. I loved the idea, so got hold of some pre-cut acrylic ATCs from That’s Crafty. All being well, I’ll be cutting my own soon enough on one of my aforementioned machines.

Anyhoo, the makers of the Pick A Stick Challenge FB group (for art journalers) have come up with a new challenge – the Pick A Stick ATC Challenge. Instead of ten prompts, ATC Challenge has just three, but they still have to be done in order. This month, the steps are:

  1. Use ink
  2. Add tissue tape or masking tape
  3. Use something transparent

What a chance to use a transparent ATC! But that was the last step… what to do? Work out a new technique of course!


I started by sticking down my tissue tape to my non-stick craft sheet, layering up to create the final appearance. By chance it was enough to wrap all the way round the ATC, so you might want to do that deliberately… Peel off the tissue tape layers and set aside being careful to keep the sticky sides from touching,


Next, using StazOn ink, press the pad onto your non-stick craft sheet. Add more colours as desired, but don’t overlap previous colours as there’s a risk of contaminating the pad.


Mist lightly with the StazOn All-Purpose Stamp Cleaner – this beads up the ink a little and makes it easier to transfer to the acrylic.
[Step 1: Add ink]


Using the tissue tape prepared earlier, place it sticky side up into the ink on the craft sheet. The wet ink should hold it down.
[Step 2: Add tissue tape or masking tape]


Peel off the white protective plastic from the acrylic ATC and press down into the ink, making sure you don’t touch the surface in the meantime. I’ve taken off both sides for clarity, but you’d be best to keep the top film on.
[Step 3: Add something transparent]


Lift up the ATC from the craft sheet using the tissue tape overhang.


Dab off any excess ink from the tissue tape.


Heat set/dry the StazOn ink – once it is dry, it stays put on glossy surfaces. You may need a little longer to dry as the stamp cleaner dries more slowly than the ink on its own.


Working on the back, stick down the tissue tape overhangs, and then stipple DecoArt Americana Frost Gloss Enamel (white) over the whole surface using a fine sponge. Dry and repeat for an even layer. Add to the front as well to help seal the ink.


Finally, add a sentiment or other decoration. Most things will stick to the frosting (which is an acrylic paint), but I chose to stamp with DecoArt Americana Chalky Finish for Glass (black).

Used in this project:

  • That’s Crafty Surfaces Acrylic ATC
  • StazOn Ink: Ultramarine / Vibrant Violet
  • StazOn All-Purpose Stamp Cleaner
  • Tissue tape from Tim Holtz/Idea-ology
  • DecoArt Americana Frost Gloss Enamel: White
  • DecoArt Americana Chalky Finish for Glass: Black
  • Stampendous Clear Stamps: Hope Verses (SSC1188)