Gelli Arts® + Liquitex® Collaboration – Blackout Poetry by Johanna Lawson



With the Gelli Arts® mini gel plates + Liquitex® basics acrylic paints.

Greetings Gelli Arts® creators! Jo Lawson here with some beautiful and inspiring colors from Liquitex® acrylic paints and my favorite mini gel plates. With the start of TWENTY -TWENTY, I wanted to take a moment to reflect and focus, rather than make resolutions I probably won’t keep … 

Read to the end of the blog to enter for a chance to win a prize from Liquitex® + Gelli Arts®! Plus- we have a coupon code for everyone for 20% off 


For this project, I was inspired by the idea of process art. It is always nice to have a beautiful finished product, but most of the time, art is about the process – how you feel when you are creating something all your own. As a meditation and reflection to focus for the upcoming year, I decided to try some blackout poetry- gel print style.

“The words for blackout poems are already written on the page, but it’s up to the blackout poet to bring new meaning and life to these words.

Blackout poems can be created using the pages of old books or even articles cut from yesterday’s newspaper. Using the pages of an existing text, blackout poets isolate then piece together single words or short phrases from these texts to create lyrical masterpieces.

Creating a blackout poem involves steps that are all about deconstruction then reconstruction.”

–John DePasquale (Scholastic)

After finding a book that was gifted to me years ago – a collection of fairy tales by Hans Christian Andersen – I got to work collecting pages for my poems. Then, the fun really began! I created poems by masking the words, then gel printing on top. It was exciting to reveal the poem in the end. I often forgot the words I chose by the time I was done printing!

I hope you find this process as reflective and therapeutic as I did. It was such a great way to ring in the new year! I plan to take these little masterpieces and turn them in to postcards to send to my closest friends. Use this tutorial as a guide and then make it your own! Get creative! For a list of all products used in this project, please see the materials section at the end of this post.

This year, be a poet.


For the best instructions, please view the video tutorial above. Below are a few extra tips.

Start by scanning the pages of an old book or newspaper:

– look for anchor words that will focus your poetry. An anchor word is one word that stands out to you because it is packed and loaded with meaning and significance. Starting with an anchor word is important because it helps you to imagine possible themes and topics for your poem.

1. Once you have chosen your pages, cut them out of the book or newspaper.

2. Cut a small post-it note pad in to 1/8 inch strips (or whatever size fits your font).

– be sure to leave a little bit of the sticky stuff, as these will be your masks.

3. Now read the page of text in its entirety and use your post it note strips to cover any words or phrases that connect to the anchor word and resonate with you.

4. Let the printing begin! Start with light colors for the background bases.

5. Put the stencil down and print on top with a darker color to create contrast.

6. Continue to layer and fill the page until it is completely covered.

7. Let it dry and then lift the post it note masks to reveal your poem.

8. Add any embellishments – doodles, stamps, etc. – to give your poem extra panache!

Remember: this is about the process and how YOU feel creating the art and poetry.


Once you have a good stack of poems, do what you want with them… add them to a journal, use them in a mixed media piece, or, like me, create post cards and send them to the people you love and those who inspire you.


Various Gelli Arts® mini printing plates (circle, shell, triangle, square)

Gelli Arts® 4″ Roller

Liquitex® Basics acrylic paints

Acrylic blocks for mounting plates

Book pages or newspaper

Scissors/cutting tools

Post-It notes

Various stencils

Head on over to my Instagram, YouTube and Facebook pages @smallbatchcards to see more of my tutorials and art.

Get 20% off with the code:


And now… enter in our giveaway for a chance to win some

goodies from Gelli Arts® + Liquitex®!

Gelli Arts® + Liquitex® Giveaway!

Leave a Reply