For this tutorial I am using the Antique Linen, Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain crayons. A damp paper towel or wet wipe that should be damp not wet. Gesso, brush and/or palette knife.
Apply gesso to your substrate, in this case a manila tag. I normally apply with a brush then use a pallet knife to random apply some texture. Let dry completely by air drying or using your heat tool.
Once dry add some scribbles (use a light hand) of the Antique Linen to the center of the tag and immediately start blending out with your finger tips, I find I use my pointer and/or middle finger and blend in a circular motion. Blend in the center of the card as shown. Once you have laid down your scribbles don't wait or walk away as as it will dry and be harder to blend when you come back. However if you are finding it harder to blend, tap a finger tip on the damp towel or wipe and rub lightly across the scribbles. If your finger is too wet it will just rub the color completely off. This can be done through out the project. If you rub off more than you anticipated scribble a little more crayon and blend it in.
Now scribble on some of the Vintage Photo crayon. I've done several of these now, but until you get the hang of it, I would recommend that you not completely outline as I did here, do the edges in quarters. Blend until you get what looks pleasing to you.
Now add some scribbles of the Walnut Stain crayon and blend. This shows what I meant about doing it in quarters. Blend the edges.
Once you are done with the blending you will take your damp paper towel or wet wipe and with a light pouncing motion, randomly remove the color from the surface of the raised texture. Continue until you have the desired look you want. And you are ready to embellish or stamp on your tag.
Other things to know... if you use the Tim Holtz / Ranger Specialty Stamping paper you do not need to gesso, the crayons will blend on this. However you will have a relatively shiny surface, like shown on these ATCs. I am also showing two inks.. the one on the left is Black Soot Distress Ink Pad.. this will bead up on the surface, but it does dry. On the right, using the same stamp is Jet Black Archival Ink Pad. Of the people who have seen this picture, more prefer the Black Soot look as it gives a more distressed look. But keep in mind anything you do wet over it will make it bleed.
Here are some images that show the tags in other color schemes. The areas that look like blotching are from having to add a dampness to my finger tip to blend after I over pounced with my wet wipe. It just adds to the distressed look of the tags. You will also see that they have a bit of a waxy finish to them. You see it more when you tilt in the light, but looking at them normally they look fine. I find that archival and other permanent inks stamp the best over the crayon finish. Distress inks will bead up I have been blotting with paper towels, but they leave a cool distress element. .
I hoped this little tutorial answered a few questions and inspired you a little. There are other techniques I haven't had time to try yet but I am looking forward to using my Distress Crayons a lot more now.