Crafting Dendritic Designs: A Step-by-Step Guide to Unique Collage Papers


Exploring dendritic collage papers to achieve the ideal fractal effect.

In this art demo I’ll be sharing one of my favorite techniques which is as simple as sandwiching paint between two panes of glass or plexiglass to produce the most stunning patterns. In creating dendritic papers there are a few key factors that you don’t want to miss such as the type of paint you’re using, different weights and textures of papers, and many more small variables.

I will be sharing the pros and cons of using glass versus plexiglass, providing some crucial tips about applying pressure, layering colors, and creating dots. A crucial tip for this practice is knowing just the right amount of paint to use. Too much and you’ll get a paint blob. Too little can produce little to no magic at all. It’s all about finding that sweet spot to produce these intricate dendritic patterns. At the end, I explored adding multiple colors and even trying the method on different colored papers like black drawing paper. Just the right iridescent paints and bright color combos can produce mesmerizing results – think sprawling galaxies on paper!

Whether you’re looking to create a ‘quieter’ paper that compliments your more vibrant art or richly patterned pieces that stand on their own, this episode is packed with tips and tricks. Catch the full video for all of the ‘dos and don’ts’ and see how easily these methods can be integrated into your next project.

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Supplies Used

Drawing paper 80 lbs 
Copy paper 28 lb

Black drawing paper 

8×10 glass 

OR 5×7 plexiglass 

Murphy Cleaning Spray (to clean glass & plexi) 

Nova acrylic paint

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All artwork is the sole property of Catherine Rains and is held under copyright, even after purchase.The images, artwork, and contents of this website may not be copied, collected, or used for personal or professional gain without the written permission from Catherine Rains. Images on this website taken by Laura Thompkins or Catherine Rains.