Outback life

It’s been very quiet here on the blog as I have been in Australia since late June. The circumstances of the trip were  unexpected and very sad but the time here with family has been precious. My husband and I along with his brother and sister spent most of July in Alice Springs which is a surrounded by desert in the middle of Australia. The landscape is not unlike the scene pictured above.

This stamp, ‘Country Life‘, is one of the scenic ones from the recent Penny Black ‘Dreaming’ release. It was probably not designed with the Australian outback in mind but that is the direction I decided to go. ( I made this card before I knew I was coming to Australia but it is a match for some of the scenery I’ve seen lately)

I started by stamping the windmill and grasses in wild honey, rusty hinge, gathered twigs and black soot distress ink. I used markers and ink pads to darken the colour moving down the structure. The base of the windmill and the grass silhouettes were completely black so they would be visible even when I added a dark background.  The ‘wild honey’ sections of the windmill appear to be reflecting the last rays of sun in the evening. It is winter in Alice Springs right now so the days are short; I was surprised each day by the early nightfall. Once the windmill and scrubby bits of grass were stamped to my satisfaction I inked the whole stamp in versamark and embossed in clear powder. This is a technique I have seen Jill Foster use on scenic stamping. With all the colour on the windmill and grass ‘sealed’ in by embossing I was able to add all the background colour without altering the windmill or grass at all.

To create the background I placed a post-it note across the horizon and used brushes to blend a wild honey, salty ocean and blueprint sketch sky. I changed the position of the post-it to mask the sky so I could blend gathered twigs and rusty hinge ink over the ground.

Here’s a photo I took in Alice a couple of weeks ago. Blue skies every day and red dirt everywhere!

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23 Comments on “Outback life”

  1. Christine says:

    Great job capturing the outback feel.

  2. So sorry to read about the sad circumstances in which you traveled to Australia Heather.
    Your card immediately grabbed my attention, because that beautiful scene you created looks just like the Karoo in South-Africa. No wonder so many South-Africans choose Australia as an alternative “home” ! Hugs ♥

  3. Mary Ann A Evans says:

    Great card. My son lived in the Alice for six years…Pine Gap/USAF. Your scenic cards are lovely.

  4. creatingincolors says:

    That is a beautiful scene. My thoughts are with you as life has brought you sad circumstances.

  5. Bonnie says:

    This is a beautiful scenic card, Heather. I’m sorry about the sad circumstances of your visit. Thanks for sharing the beauty of the surroundings.

  6. Pat says:

    I’m sorry your visit to Australia was due to sad circumstances Heather but your support will have been a great help to the family. I think this is so evocative of the outback and the colours really bright and pretty and you have captured the setting sun so beautifully. x

  7. Helene says:

    So sorry for your loss

  8. cadair2014 says:

    So sorry to hear that your trip to Australia was for sad circumstances. Take care.

  9. Lagene says:

    Beautiful sunrise or sunset! Praying for comfort during sad times.

  10. Elaine Daniels says:

    Time with family is always precious.i am so sorry that your trip was for sad circumstances and will keep you and your family in my prayers. Stay safe.

  11. Verna Angerhofer says:

    Absolutely gorgeous scene. I love it.

  12. MIMI says:

    Take care Heather and enjoy your visit with your family. Sorry to hear about the sad circumstances for your trip.

  13. Liane Desmarais-Cavanagh says:

    That’s really lovely. What beautiful colour, and so pleased you managed time to see and enjoy it.

  14. tish rowe says:

    Heather,
    I was wondering why you had not posted. Now we know. It is awesome that you do get to go to Australia. You mentioned unhappy situation. I remember when your mother passed away.
    I hope that there is peace and comfort in whatever the situation is.
    Thank you for sharing this post and pictures. It is lovely.
    Tish Rowe

  15. DIANA Barnes says:

    Glad you are back safe and sound!

  16. Trish G says:

    Beautiful. So glad to see your rendition of the new scenic stamps. I have most of them and enjoy Jill’s techniques, and I also love your techniques so am hoping you continue to share more in this new series of Penny Black stamps.

  17. June whitham says:

    I haven’t left a comment before but when I saw this card at first I thought it was a photo that you had used. Excellent job, loved it, regards June

  18. Clelie says:

    So sorry to hear of the sad time you and your family are going through…I pray God brings His Comfort to each of your hearts. ♥ I love your card and looked at Jill’s video you mentioned. What a great technique. I can’t wait to try it! Thinking of you with a warm hug! ♥

  19. Karen Jackson says:

    I love the clear, still heat you have managed to convey in the colours of this card Heather. I am so sorry for your sadness, but glad that you are back safely. I have missed you.

  20. Hilde Jaeggli says:

    I am sorry for your sadness, but I hope time will help you to overcome! I love your card! It remembers me of the two Years I lifed in Alice Springs, 1964 till 1966 , It was a happy and interesting time , also our first daughter was born in Alice Springs! Coming from Switzerland it was a big change in my life, I still think back to this part of my life!

  21. Ellie Knol says:

    As Hannelie Bester said, the stamp reminds me of scenes in South Africa, not just in the Karoo, but also in Die Laeveld. Brings good memories back as I have lived in South Africa for very long. Sorry to hear about the sad circumstances..

  22. […] you have read about how I made my recent scenic cards (outback, canoes, oceanside, sailboats) then you already know the drill for this one. I inked and stamped […]


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