Creating backgrounds with Spectrum Noir Pens & Pencils

Afternoon lovelies, I hope you are all having a lovely week and are looking forward to the weekend. 
The current challenge theme over at the Spectrum Noir challenge this month is backgrounds, I love creating different backgrounds using my Spectrum Noirs, but i know people have said to me before they find it a bit daunting....which you shouldn't because it is so much fun ! 
Now i had to pick which two backgrounds to show (if i had my way this tutorial would include several backgrounds) but i settled on using your Spectrum Noir Pens, and one very quick and easy one using your Pencils. 
First one is using your pens and you will need: 
  • Your Spectrum Noir Pens....I tend to use 3 colours that I will be using to colour my image, or that matches backing papers 
  • Spectrum Noir Blending fluid 
  • A small paintbrush for each colour marker
  • A craft mat....or something to protect your surface with 
  • Some Scrap paper

I will be using Saturated Canary Copica Digital Stamp for this, and you need to print out/stamp out two copies, one on your Neenah Card Stock and one onto some copy/scrap paper. The one on the Scrap paper needs to them be cut out as you will be using this as a mask to stop your main image getting ruined. 
Two bits of advice regarding this technique...
1. Wear clothes you don't mind getting MAY get ink splatter and i don't want you ruining your best shirt. 
2. Colour the image AFTER you have done the background, i say this because something you will get the odd splat of ink go through/get under the mask and if the image is already coloured it could end up ruined. 

First thing you want to do is protect your work surface and then have a practice run, for this you need your Spectrum Noir pens you have picked, the 3 paint brushes, scrap paper & Spectrum Noir Blending Fluid 

You need to do one colour at a time. Take the chisel end of your marker and "colour in" the bristles on the brush, I really load the brush up otherwise you have to keep going back, Then add 1-2 drops of blending fluid onto the brush and flick onto the paper. I find it better to build the layers up otherwise you can overload the paper, and make sure you leave each colour to dry before moving onto the next one. 
If you find your brush has dried, add some more blending fluid. 
This was the effect i got with 2 drops of blending fluid, for me it was too much....this is why we do a practice i know for the effect i want this time I only need 1 drop per brush. 

Now you are ready to mask off your image, I just lay it on top, but you can buy masking fluid. 

 I have got a nice even mix of colours :), you can now see why you need to mask off the image ! 
You can now remove your mask...but don't throw it away because you can use it again next time. 
You can now colour your image :) 

 Here she is on the finished card, along with mini Spectrum Noirs :) 

And here is a little side view, I went for a subtle background, but you can really layer this up and use as many colours as you wish. 
Items used: 
Spectrum Noir Pens-
FS2,FS4,FS9,TN2,TN3,TN4,EB5,EB6,BT1-5, IG1-9,CT1-4,GB5,PP2-5
Blending Fluid 
Neenah Solar Cardstock 
Crafter's Companion Kraft Card
Crafter's Companion Printable Vellum 
Cocktail sticks 
Papers are from My Minds Eye 

Background using Spectrum Noir Pencils 

This is a nice quick and easy background if you do not have much time. 
Items needed: 
Embossing folder of choice....I have used Embossalicious Rose Vine
Spectrum Noir Pencils, I only used 025 which is a nice red, but you can use multiple colours. 

I want a circle for my background, so I die cut one using Core'dinations and then embossed it using the above folder. Then all you need to do is take your pencils and colour the raised areas, i only wanted to pick the roses out this time, but you can colour whichever bits you can even leave the raised sections and colour the around :) 

And here is it on a card...looks effective doesn't it ? I have used the ever beautiful Princess Rose Red Digital Stamp and coloured her with my Spectrum Noirs (list below) This technique is a really nice simple one, but can be so effective.  

Here is a side view and you can see the red on the roses a bit better. 

Items used: 
Spectrum Noir Pens: 
TN1-4,EB1,EB5,EB6,EB8,DR4-7,TB2 & 3, CR1,FS4,FS7
Spectrum Noir Pencil 025 
Papers are from my stash 
Flowers are all from Iamroses 
Ribbon & broach are from my stash 

So there you go two fun background techniques that you can use and have fun with, and if you do recreate them and have used your Spectrum Noirs why not enter this months Spectrum Noir challenge you could win £30/$30 of Spectrum Noir products

Happy Crafting 


  1. These are fabulous and thanks for the tutorial.
    Linda xxx

  2. Thank you so much for the tutorial,your colouring is amazing, especially their hair - two fabulous cards

  3. Stunning creations. Thanks for the tutorials Tracy. FAB.

  4. Really good tutorial. Your colouring is brilliant. .
    Thank you, Jo xx

  5. these are fab backgrouns and gorgeous cards Tracy.

    gr karin

  6. I love these , going to give it a try, thanks for sharing Hun x

  7. Gorgeous card and such a lovely image...sweet papers too..use of specrum noir pens are extremely good, I will have to keep this as a little tutorial for myself to copy .....Tracy. a reminder... I hope you have joined in my candy and blog hop....♥aNNie
    The Journey is the Start

  8. Two lovely cards, Tracy! Love the splatter in the first!

  9. Thanks for sharing these tutorials - so kind - both cards are super!

  10. What a great background! Thank you so much for the tut, I will have to try this. :D

  11. Wow, stunning card! Love the embossed circle, great idea! Kerry x


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