for Collage & Backgrounds

 Tissue Painting Intro still

Here is a photo of the supplies you need to paint tissue paper:

supplies-painting tissue paper

Here is the supply list of what you need to paint tissue paper: 

  • Acrylic paint  in the colors of your choice ( I prefer Golden Fluid Acrylics)
  • Large flat brush
  • Toothbrush for optional spattering
  • Freezer paper
  • Tissue paper and/or Deli Paper (Sandwich Wrap)
  • Paper towels
  • Spray Bottle for water
  • Palette
  • Water container

This video demonstrates how to paint tissue paper:

The password for the video is: marble

Here is a PDF that shows the process to all the painting papers in this class. To view and print, click on the link:


Steps for Painting Tissue Paper:

  1. Place Tissue paper on Freezer paper, waxy side up, or plastic sheeting
  2. Squirt some paint on palette
  3. Water down paint with brush
  4. Brush onto Tissue Paper careful not to over-brush and tear paper
  5. Spatter with paint or Spritz with water if desired
  6. Allow to dry and then peel up from freezer paper

NOTE: I have experimented with a number of tissue papers. Archival tissue paper works great but is expensive and sometimes hard to find. Some gift wrap tissue works: the kind with a shiny sheen on one side. I used the Spritz brand found at Target for this demo. The cheaper, bulk version bought at Costco does not work for painting as it breaks down and tears.

Anneli, Diane, Merri painting papers

painted papers drying 


The shaving cream marbling technique and the other painted paper techniques work well on deli paper also known as sandwich wrap paper; yes the kind of translucent paper a sandwich often comes wrapped in. I’ve tried 3 brands and my favorite is made by First Street. I bought a box of 1000 sheets at Cash & Carry for around $15. It comes in various sizes. It is thin but sturdier than the tissue paper so the uses are endless!






    Have you dried the tissue papers with your heat gun to dry them faster?

    • I haven’t but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work.

  2. Ana

    Sooooo much fun! I’ve used various tissue papers including some that came in product packaging. There is definitely a difference in that some of them tear very easily and others remain intact. It is sooooo much fun I’m not sure how I’ll use it all. Any way to minimize the wrinkling? It is pretty but in your “hope” journal the paper looks so smooth. Ever tried ironing before or after painting?

    • So glad you are having fun! My paper looks smoother on video than in person.

      I have noticed that the kind of tissue paper impacts the wrinkling or smoothness though. I found that the higher quality tissue paper used the sturdier and smoother it will be. The kind that has a shinier sheen on one side, found in the gift wrap section of stores works well. You can also use deli paper. I’ve found that it is smooth and durable. It doesn’t seem to take the pen quite as well as the tissue paper though.

      If my pages or layers are too wrinkly for my taste, I have used a craft iron with a sheet of release paper between the dried artwork and the iron. Blick probably has them. I bought mine years ago at our local Art Media before they were bought out by Blick.

  3. arturwallz

    Valerie, There are some designs on your page photo’s that are so pretty. The one in particular is the one with the straight lines that seem to fold into every other row. Can you tell me how you got that affect? In the heading photo, it’s the third paper from the left. Thanks so much Valerie! Donna

    • If you are talking about the header photo, that pattern is the shaving cream marbling. I used the skewer going one direction, then dragged the skewer the other direction on the next line, then repeated it, dragging up one way and down the other. Then I spattered the shaving cream with some of the leftover paint using a toothbrush.

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