Watercoloring Stamped Images + Canvases with Distress Crayons

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Hey friends, it’s Nina-Marie here with you today bringing you a video featuring the Tim Holtz Distress Crayons and how to do some fun watercoloring techniques with this unique medium! This video also features the super cute and BRAND NEW Crazy Dogs stamp set from Tim Holtz… lots of Tim Holtz inspiration to be had today! ;)

The Distress Crayons are one of the newest additions to the Distress line that was revealed by Tim Holtz and Ranger in early 2016. What makes the crayons unique from the other Distress mediums is that they become permanent once they’ve reacted with water. Whereas a Distress ink, stain or spray can be reactivated with water over and over, once Distress Crayons are activated the first time, you cannot reactivate them again.

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In today’s video, I’ll be showing you how you can watercolor with the Distress Crayons on both watercolor paper and media board (canvas-covered chipboard). I chose both surfaces because they each have a bit of “tooth”; in other words, they are more rough in texture. If you want a watercolor paper that is more smooth, try Strathmore Bristol paper.

The watercolor paper I will be using today is the Canson XL paper and the canvas media boards are ones I picked up from my local craft store. However, I will link to a Dina Wakley media board assortment we have in the Simon store that is pretty much the exact same thing as what I used in today’s video. Do keep in mind that you will want to prep the canvas media board with gesso before applying your Distress Crayons over top because the coating on the media board is a bit slick; I’ll talk about this in the video as well and show you how I applied some Dina Wakley gesso over the canvas before watercoloring.

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One of the things I love most about using a paper or canvas that has more of a rougher texture, is that it allows the texture of the crayons to show up better. The natural texture of the Distress Crayons adds a lot of interest to your project, and you can use this to your advantage when creating with this medium. In today’s video, I’ll show you how I enhanced the texture of the Distress Crayons when I applied the dot background to my mini canvas to create a bit more visual interest.

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So to see these crayons in action and learn some tips and tricks for how to best use them in your watercoloring, be sure to check out the video below! If you enjoy the video, please give it a big thumbs up and subscribe to our YouTube channel and blog so that you do not miss any of our weekly posts and videos!

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  1. Thanks for all the great info & ideas. I bought a set of these crayons and am a bit lost as to how to use them. Isn’t that typical of Tim Holtz lovers – buy a product cos it’s his without actually using it!

  2. Absolutely fabulous projects and great idea to do a canvas. Terrific video showing these crayons in action! Thank you :)

  3. Thanks for this video. I bought some of the crayons but haven’t used them yet. Maybe I’ll break them out now that I’ve seen this great demo. Thanks.

  4. I love the cards, they are bright in colors and so funny with those dogs. Thank you for the video tutorial and the inspirations. Now I’m very interested in trying the distress crayons.

  5. Such a fantastic technique – thanks for sharing!! I am going to have to get a few more crayons so I can give this a whirl!

  6. Love this card and canvas, the crayons are so fun and easy to work with guess I have more things on my wish list!

  7. I just had to have these crazy dog stamps! I love the little canvas & I appreciate learning techniques using the new Distress Crayons. Thank you for the inspiration!

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