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Resin petri dish effect

Updated: Apr 11, 2021

Have you ever seen petri dish effect created using resin and you're wondering how to achieve that? I've got you covered!

Petri dish is one of my favorite effects to create. They look magical, like another universes or portals to places literally out of a sci-fi movie. You can predict how it will turn out to a point but a lot of it is down to a random beauty of fluid art.

What will you need:

  • silicone mold of your choice

  • epoxy resin

  • gloves and respiratory mask - please always keep yourself safe when working with resin

  • alcohol inks

  • heat gun or a bubble remover spray

Silicone mold.

The deeper the form, the more amazing the effect will be but it can be achieved even with very think forms. I can highly recommend forms from Funshowcase and if you use voucher code justbecausepandawithFUNSHOWCASE you'll get 15% off your purchase.

I usually use forms that are 2-3cm deep.

Make sure your form is clean before using it and if possible use a release agent before pouring your resin to make sure your design comes out easily.

Epoxy resin.

This is the most important part. Various resins will produce different patterns. My favorite resin for petri dish effect is ArtResin. Resin should be a thick type, you could in theory wait for your watery resin to cure a bit before starting the petri dish magic but I prefer not to risk it ;) I know what works for me. Saying that, maybe you prefer the effect of watery resin, design tends to stick more to the top of the form, not go down all the way OR go down all the way and get smudged. Try with your resin and see what you like.

Above you can see different effect created using same technique and same alcohol inks but different resin. Middle one is ArtResin. The other two are polish brands, pretty watery ones. As you can see with ArtResin some parts are transparent, in this case, the middle of the heart. Thanks to that the effect of depth is even more beautiful. But really, it depends on what you like. Experiment with the resin you have at hand.

Alcohol inks.

Alcohol ink brand also makes a difference. For the petri dish effect I have found two ink brands to work very well: Pinata series from Jacquard Products and T-rex inks. Especially important is the white ink which will be used to push color inks down. For this, hands down Pinata Blanco works amazingly.

Let's start!

  1. Pour epoxy resin into your silicone mold almost to the top but leave a bit space for the inks

  2. Drop color ink on top

  3. Follow color ink by white ink

  4. Continue in layers, the deeper the form the more layers of color / white

  5. Optional step: You can use a toothpick to swirl design a bit and draw shapes that way

  6. Pop any air bubbles with a heat gun or bubble removal spray. Heat gun is much safer than torch, I accidentally used torch instead of heat gun once and due to the alcohol inks my form caught on fire. Please be careful.

Don't be afraid to mix colors, single layer doesn't have to be in the same color. Mix and match and go crazy with colors.

It's easy to overdo it though, remember that too much ink can affect resin curing. I always allow my petri dish effects to cure a bit longer than for other designs.

I believe the below video will describe it better (it includes the toothpick swirl):


Hope you enjoyed reading this blog post,

please go check my social media and etsy store <3

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