Adding Textures to Gel Prints with Gelli Arts® by Martice Smith

Hello there, creative!

It’s Martice here sharing how I like to embellish some of my colorful monoprints with texture. We’re gonna use a medium called modeling paste. When you apply it through a stencil, it creates a dimensional area that adds an unexpected element to a print.

Let’s get started! 

STEP 1: Trim monoprints 

This step is optional. I like to keep the white border on some of my prints – especially if it doesn’t look too awkward. For this project, I decided to trim the edges. I don’t really care about working with specific sizes. I trimmed close to the design along each edge of the paper. The goal here is to create an additional layer of visual interest to these prints.

STEP 2: Mix modeling paste with paint

Modeling paste is flexible, transparent, and can be tinted with paint.

Here, I’m mixing one part modeling paste with two parts gold paint. (Since I’ve added more gold paint than modeling paste, it will no longer be transparent.) 

I’ll show you what the paste looks like without adding any paint to it later.

Holding the stencil in place, spread the mixture directly on top of the stencil. Spread it smoothly, going in ONE direction. (I usually spread from the top to the bottom.)

Carefully lift the stencil.

If you lift the stencil and notice that your paste is smooshed instead of having crisp, clean lines, don’t worry! You can use a Q-Tip or a baby wipe to “erase” it then reapply the paste.

Stencils with small details tend to work best for adding these finishing touches. But, it’s totally up to you! Here’s another closeup of a floral inspired monoprint – notice how I used only part of the stencil, not the entire thing.

You can also use the paste without mixing in paint. It will dry semi-opaque. You’ll still be able to see through to the underlying layers of your print but it’ll look cloudy.

TIP! Apply another layer of the modeling paste to create thicker areas. 

This photo shows both! Texture paste WITH NO paint mixed in (white numbers) and texture paste with a drop of fluid acrylic mixed in (yellow numbers). 

Which way do you prefer to use modeling paste – with paint mixed in or use it as is and go with the transparent effect? Let us know in the comment section below!

Here are my finished monoprints with texture paste!

If you try this tutorial, please be sure to tag us on Instagram and Facebook using #gelliarts and @GelliArts – we love seeing your creations!

Happy printing!



Gold Metallic Paint / Acrylic paint



Palette knife

Pan of water (to soak stencils in)


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6 thoughts on “Adding Textures to Gel Prints with Gelli Arts® by Martice Smith”

  1. Great ideas and examples, Martice! (you forgot to add modeling paste to your list of materials at the end).

  2. Love your work, Martice. I plan on doing some art with my Gelli plates later and I think I just might use your technique!

  3. Great tutorial Martice.
    I think I will let using with paint mixed in or use it as is depending on
    the print I have. I love how you uised the paste with the gold paint on you print
    but also love the transparant one on the teal/turquoise print.
    Thank you so much for sharing, stay safe and have a wonderful day.

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