Ocean Waves Swirls I

Ocean Waves Swirls I

Posted by DecoArt on Nov 1st 2022

Use the Ocean Waves Water Marbling Paint Set to create a swirled pattern on paper.


  • paper towels
  • iron
  • watercolor paper
  • water marbling tray
  • tray for rinsing



Before you begin be sure to set up your water marbling station. You should have your supplies set up and easily accessible. Following directions on bottle, mix the Magic Medium Water Prep with the appropriate amount of water in the water marbling tray or separate container.

You should also have a tray of clean water to rinse your prints after they are dipped. (TIP: Lay out paper towels to place your fresh prints on to speed drying time.) Plan to create several unique prints at one time.

Some of the drops of paint will sink and you may begin to see drops of paint gathering on the bottom of the tray, this is normal and will not effect the surface where the print is pulled.

For this project use the Ocean Waves Water Marbling Set, which includes the following colors: Light Blue, Blue, Green, Aquamarine and Tropical Blue.

  1. Prepare your size. Follow the easy instructions on the Magic Medium bottle to prepare the size (water) mixture. (TIP: Prepare mixture in a plastic tub with a lid and fill/refill the water marbling tray as needed. Cover unused size and store at room temperature to keep it fresh for up to five days) Now you are ready to add paint.
  2. Instruction #1
  3. Start by using Light Blue.
  4. Instruction #2
  5. Drop paint dots of paint sporadically across the surface of the size. Allow paint to disperse before adding the next color.
  6. Instruction #3
  7. Use Blue next. Drop paint across the surface. Allow paint to disperse before adding the next color.
  8. Instruction #4
  9. Use Green for the next color.
  10. Instruction #5
  11. Drop sporadic dots of Green across the surface. Allow paint to disperse before adding the next color.
  12. Instruction #6
  13. The next color to use is Aquamarine. Drop random dots of Aquamarine across the surface. Allow paint to disperse before adding the next color.
  14. Instruction #7
  15. The last color to use is Tropical Blue. Drop random dots across the surface. Allow paint to disperse before adding the next color. Let your creativity flow and add more or less of each color to achieve your desired coloration.
  16. Instruction #8
  17. For the next step, use the Water Marbling Stick.
  18. Instruction #9
  19. To make the Swirls pattern, start in the center and place the the tip of the stick into the surface of the paint.
  20. Instruction #10
  21. Slowly swirl outward until you have moved across the entire surface. (TIP: another way to achieve the swirls pattern is to slowly drag a marbling stick through the surface of the paint in a winding motion.)
  22. Instruction #11
  23. When you have a pattern you like, you are ready to make a print!
  24. Instruction #12
  25. When your tray is ready to transfer the design onto the paper, use a piece of DecoArt's Premium Water Marbling Paper to get maximum absorbency of the paint. (TIP: Keep paper very dry! If the surface is wet prior to dipping into the size, it won't absorb the paint, which will result in a white spot.) A good technique to minimize bubbles in your print is to hold your paper on opposing corners to allow the center of the paper to touch the surface first. Then, slowly lay your corners down onto the surface. Make sure the paper is in full contact with the surface.
  26. Instruction #13
  27. Allow the paper to float on the surface of the size for a moment. This allows the design to transfer onto the paper. The corners of the paper will begin to pull away from the surface. Lift the paper off the surface by lifting opposing corners of the paper. Although you may notice some slight finger smudges in the corners of the paper, do not be concerned. They simply add to the overall effect.
  28. Instruction #14
  29. Place print face down in a clean tray of water to rinse off extra sizing. This step is optional, but rinsing off extra sizing allows for cleaner, more vibrant colors to shine through! Also, the paper will be less stiff and dry flatter.
  30. Instruction #15
  31. Drain off excess water. Lay paper, print side up on a paper towel to dry. This step will help absorb excess moisture and allow prints to dry faster.
  32. Instruction #16
  33. There will be extra paint left on the surface. You can transfer another print at this point. (TIP: blow on the surface to give the paint more movement and interest.) The pool of sizing can be reused again and again. To prepare the pool for a new project, simply use DecoArt's Water Marbling Premium Cleaning Paper and drag it across the surface until clean.
  34. Instruction #17
  35. (TIP: Remember, just the surface has to be clean to reuse. There may still be paint that has fallen to the bottom. This is called "sinking". This will not affect further prints!)
  36. Instruction #18
  37. Allow print to dry completely. Lay paper, print side down and using an iron on high, iron to flatten. (TIP: Place a piece of watercolor paper between the paint and the table surface to protect the print. If you have steam, place a paper towel between the watercolor paper and the table.)
  38. Instruction #19
  39. The print looks beautiful in a simple frame. But there are endless possibilities as to how you can use these one-of-a-kind prints. Incorporate them in a collage, cover a journal, or even as a background for a mixed media project.
  40. Instruction #20
  41. Try using DecoArt's Water Marbling Surface prep and techniques to hydro-dip a scarf, a pair of shoes or anything you want to try!
  42. Instruction #21