I very much enjoy making Artist Trading Cards (ATCs). They don’t take very long to make and use very little supplies. They are also very cute, easy to store and of course fun to trade. What’s not to like?

Today I made some simple mixed media cards featuring the Tin Teddy “The Eyes Have It” 1.5″ squares digital collage sheet. This set also comes with the same images in 1″ squares, which will also be ideal for future ATC projects.

I cut out three 3.5″ x 2.5″ rectangles of high denity, white card. This is the standard size for an Artist Trading Card.


For each card I took three similar colours of Distress Ink. I started with the lightest colour and applied it around the card with a finger dauber. This left a lot of circular marks and was not at all even, but that was the effect I wanted.

Then I added the middle colour, again blobbing it about randomly. Finally I used the darkest shade, taking a bit more time to blend it in and concentrating on the edges of the cards. I did these for each card, one with pinks and red, one with yellow and greens and the final one with three shades of blue. Here you see the green card after I had finished, with the inks that I used.


Then I gave each card a quick spritz of water from a small misting bottle. The water pushes the Distress Ink around and once it is dry you get this very cool speckly effect, love it.


Next I used an embossing folder (Lines by Darice) and my Sizzix Big Shot to emboss each card. I chose an abstract sort of pattern for this as I didn’t want something too detailed for the background.


I used my trusty Inscribe soft Pastels and rubbed them sideways against the embossed cards to add a bit of grungy colour.


For each card I used pastels in the colours of the other two cards. So for the red card, I used gold and blue pastels, for example. I smudged them about with my finger tip. Being messy is fun 🙂


Next I used the 35mm Slide die from PaperArtsy to cut out three faux slide frames from white card. I could have used real slides, but had just got this set and wanted to try it. I stamped the frames with the matching PaperArtsy rubber stamps (they come with the die). I applied Tea Dye Distress Ink all over the frames then added blobs of Brushed Corduroy and Pumice Stone. I ran the side of a Black Soot Distress Marker around the edges (inside and out).


I used my little Hampton Art alphabet stamps to stamp the word “eyes” onto three scraps of white card with black StayzOn ink, then wrote the words “right”, “left” and “forward” beneath them with a waterproof black marker. I really should have thought of something a bit more profound to say on these cards.

I coloured each with two shades of Distress Markers, he lighter shade at the top.


Then I used coloured the rest of the tag with the Old Paper Distress Marker. I took Bundled Sage and coloured some patches on the tag, a bit like camouflage. Then I went around the edge of the tag with the Tea Dye marker. I ran the Black Soot marker around the edges as I had for the frames.


I cut out three images from the Tin Teddy “The Eyes Have It” 1.5″ squares digital collage sheet and glued them behind each of the frames. I added the frames to the cards with a tape roller. I added white dots around the inside of the frame with a Sakura Gelly Roll white gel pen. I added the “eyes” tag with a sticky foam pad. I scribbled around the edges of the card with the Black Soot Distress Marker to make a frame. Finally I glued three black seed beads on to each card with a little tacky glue.


For more information about Artist Trading Cards, see my article:
Introduction to ATCs – What are Artist Trading Cards?

Click here for more Artist Trading Card tutorials.

The Eyes Have It Artist Trading Card Tutorial

Links to Products Mentioned on Amazon

Here are links to the products mentioned on Amazon.com (top) and Amazon.co.uk. If you buy from these links, I may receive a small commission from the shop for sending custom their way. This is at no cost to yourself. Thank you.

Links to Amazon.com

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The Tin Teddy graphics used in this project are “The Eyes Have it” 1.5″ and 1″ squares Collage Sheet – available from my shop on Etsy.

Eyes Artist Trading Cards Tutorial – Easy to make ATCs

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