Fluid Art with Claybord Art Tiles and Marabu Alcohol Inks

Glossy, transparent surfaces that reflect "submerged" colors and designs are quite pleasing to the eye. There are numerous ways to achieve this effect, like using expensive resins or layers of glass, for instance. In this step-by-step guide by Celia Buchanan, you’ll find a fun and easy alternative to explore with Marabu Alcohol Inks and acrylic pouring medium on Ampersand's Claybord Art Tiles.



  • Claybord Art Tiles
  • Marabu Alcohol Inks
  • Pouring medium
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Modeling paste
  • Stencils
  • Palette Knife
  • Cup
  • Medium grade sandpaper
  • Optional: Masking fluid

Note: Pouring mediums vary in consistency, clarity, and dry time; it’s advisable to test this technique in advance with your desired brand.

Step 1: First, spread modeling paste through a stencil across the surface of the Claybord Art Tiles to add a textural design element to your piece. Allow the paste to dry thoroughly.  


Step 2: Then, drop alcohol inks on the surface and spread across with isopropyl alcohol. Allow it to dry.  


Step 3: After that, use sandpaper to remove some of the color and to ensure the edges of the Claybord Art Tiles are smooth and rounded.  


Step 4: Next, place the board on a cup to raise it up off your work surface, and then drizzle acrylic pouring medium on top. 


Step 5: Spread the pouring medium evenly to the edges of the board with a palette knife. 


Step 6: Finally, drop alcohol inks on top while the pouring medium is still wet. 


The Final Product: Pouring medium becomes clear as it dries, revealing the colors and texture below it. Because of this, your artwork will have a smooth and glossy finish.  

Click here to watch the video version of this demo


Optional Masking Fluid Technique: An alternative to modeling paste for the underlying design

Step 1: First, use masking fluid to draw a design on the surface of the Claybord Art Tiles and allow it to dry.  


Step 2: Next, drop alcohol inks on the surface. Be sure to cover the areas with masking fluid completely. Allow it to dry.  


Step 3: Finally, rub off the masking fluid with your finger or an eraser, revealing the clean Claybord Art Tiles beneath. Then continue with the pouring medium per steps above.  


About Marabu Creativity is infinite. Marabu provides a complete range of colors, mediums, and tools for you to imagine creativity in all its forms, including their Alcohol Inks, used in this colorful painting demo Marabu provides creative ideas, valuable tips, starter sets, and step-by-step instructions so artists and hobbyists can be successful with any creative project.

About the Artist

Marabu Artist Educator and mixed media artist Celia Buchanan holds a B.A. in 2-D surface design from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee, Scotland, and an M.A. in arts management in education from the City University, London. Celia’s work has been featured in galleries notably the Institute of Education, London, National Exhibition Center, U.K., and The London Design Center. The author of several books and magazine articles on surface design and fiber arts, Celia has been working in her field for over three decades. She now works and lives in NY and teaches throughout the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean.


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