Magical Mini Books by Gelli Arts® Artist Helen O’Hara

Hello! It’s Helen here with a really magical

Watch black paper transform before your eyes into a beautiful mono-printed
book. Well… ok, so it’s not really magic – but science! This would be a great
project to do with kids to teach about soluble and insoluble materials.

For this project, I’m using the Gelli Arts® mini oval and octagon plates mounted onto an acrylic block for ease of handling.

Watch my video below to see how!

It’s really important to use the right
paint and paper for this project. You’ll need water-soluble gouache paints,
permanent waterproof ink (Indian or acrylic) and strong watercolour paper. Your
paper needs to stand up to a real soaking so the thicker the better. I’ve made
a zig-zag book from a strip of watercolour paper or you can buy ready-made


Roll some gouache onto your Gelli Arts® plate and make marks
in your usual way. I’ve used combs, brushes, stencils and a scrap of pool cover.
Print both sides of your zig-zag book.

Once the gouache is completely dry, cover both sides of the
book with waterproof ink. Try to cover it with only a few brushstrokes; if you
work over the gouache too hard it will rub off. Let the ink dry completely.

Now for the magic!

Hold the book under a running tap. The gouache will wash right off where the ink has been applied, as the paint
underneath is not permanently adhered to the paper. Don’t be tempted to rub the
book too hard or you will wash away the colour too.

Your book will be quite fragile at this point so take care
not to rip it. Once it is completely dry it can be folded back into a zig-zag


Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed this project!

Be sure to tag us on social media @GelliArts if you tried this project!

Helen’s blog:
Gelli Arts® Instagram
Gelli Arts® Facebook
Sign up to receive emails + special offers from Gelli Arts®

2 thoughts on “Magical Mini Books by Gelli Arts® Artist Helen O’Hara”

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: