Outer Space Background

by Francine Vuillème

Create a mixed media universe for an outer space scene.


  • Watercolor paper
  • Painter’s tape
  • Paint brush
  • Cup of water
  • Heat tool or folded paper towel
  • Watercolors or other water-soluble medium (blue, red or pink, black)
  • White acrylic paint mixed with water
  • Wink of Stella clear glitter brush pen
  • Space-themed rubber stamp, such as a shuttle or rocket image (Blast off & Phone Home stamps from The Alley Way Stamps used here)
  • Other supplies as needed to complete the project (blending card, white top-folded card base, white embossing powder, heat gun, anti-static powder tool or bag, 3D foam pads, adhesive tape runner, Black Licorice Hybrid Ink (My Favorite Things), Versamark ink, Copic markers)


  1. Step 1

    Cut a panel from watercolor paper and secure it to your work surface using painter’s tape. This helps reduce warping. Apply clear water to the center of the panel with a paint brush, leaving a white border at each edge.

  2. Step 2

    Apply a wash of blue watercolor paint, then randomly add red/pink and black, or experiment with other colors. Blend where the colors meet and let the wash flow naturally.

    You can use dye inks, watercolor crayons, or any other transparent water-soluble media for this technique.

  3. Step 3

    Absorb any excess pools of water with a paper towel. Allow the panel to dry before adding another layer of watercolors or use a heat gun to go faster.

  4. Step 4

    Repeat steps 2 and 3, applying additional layers to achieve the desired color intensity and look.

  5. Step 5

    Add a layer of shimmer to the night sky using a Wink of Stella clear glitter brush pen.

  6. Step 6

    Pick up white acrylic paint mixed with water using a wet brush. Tap the brush to make splatters over the panel. Let the panel air dry completely.

    You can also flick an old toothbrush with white paint or spritz a white spray to achieve a similar result.

  7. Step 7

    Color and add a space-themed image to the project.

  8. Decorate the panel as desired.

  9. Step 8

    Complete the project.


Your Turn

You've seen the tutorial, now you try it! We've got a section of the gallery set aside for Outer Space Background. Try this technique, then upload your artwork to the gallery. Show us your creations!

***Please note - Internet Explorer/Edge is not a supported browser, and will not allow you to see the videos. Please use Chrome, Firefox or Safari to view our tutorial videos.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

Beautiful outer space background. I can see the layers in the sky. Love your video as well.
Shirley  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 4:07 AM
Awesome little boy's card! Must try this technique this weekend. grin
Maggie Minnich  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 5:32 AM
Awesome tutorial Francine....
Dandi93  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 5:54 AM
Very sweet card. I love the background and the way you colored the little rocket ship! Thank you for the tutorial. grin
Dori Johns  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 6:44 AM
Great Tutorial - thanks!! The wink of stella really adds the "stars" well.
Kathy Stacy  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 6:48 AM
Can't wait to try it!
Muscrat  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 7:19 AM
Love the effect you've achieved; can't wait to try this. Thanks for a great tutorial!
claudia zimmerman  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 7:32 AM
What a fun and clever technique. Love the cute little spaceship!
Julie Heyer  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 8:00 AM
Francine - your voice is so beautiful and soothing - great tutorial - I'm trying this one today. Thank you for doing this tutorial!
lydia  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 11:23 AM
Fabulous tutorial and your card is simply stunning!
Emma  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 1:50 PM
I'm an astronomy buff and love the NASA photo everyday post, so I'm always trying to get a good nebular sort of feel to less then happy results. THIS is perfect!!! Easy, with plenty of depth and character without fighting with the stamped (or collaged image). BRILLIANT!
SusanJane Ankeney  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 2:09 PM
Gorgeous! I am trying it right now on a card for tomorrow! I ended up a little heavy on the dark but it's an awesome technique and your card is gorgeous!!
angela bode  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 4:45 PM
Thanks for the great tutorial. I used it for a night sky. Your directions were great.
Linda Paider  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 8:16 PM
I made my background but may have to wait until Saturday to finish. My demo friend has some stamps that would work for this. I'm not finding any stamps in my collection to work with the background.
muscrat  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 8:47 PM
Heidi that video was fabulous. I could listen to your voice all day!!! Your creation is terrific too. You are so talanted my friend. Big hugs, Susie
Susie Williams  |  Wed Nov 18, 2015 at 9:47 PM

Great technique! And you did a fantastic job with the tutorial.

Michele Masarech  |  Sat Nov 21, 2015 at 11:34 AM
I love this space background. Thank you for the tut.
Another greeting for a little boy (or girl) -- hey! how about making this for your husband? is:

I love you to the moon and back.

Thanks for the instructions. Much appreciated.
CroShayLady  |  Sat Nov 21, 2015 at 3:53 PM
Super cool technique!!! THS
KellyJean Gettelfinger  |  Sun Nov 22, 2015 at 6:03 PM

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