Meadow Blossoms with Inktense

I’ve coloured these pretty ‘meadow blossoms’ from Concord & 9th a few times now, this time cutting them out with the co-ordinating die. I stamped the large spray of flowers in Gina K’s skeleton amalgam ink which is beige. I used inktense pencils for the watercolouring including the back panel of stripes. Inktense pencils are watersoluble but unlike some watercolour pencils they are permanent once dry. Many other watercolour pencils are not permanent meaning they will continue to move and dilute whenever liquid is added. One type is not better than another but they need to be used differently.

I used hot pressed watercolour paper for both layers and, although hot pressed is quite smooth it still has texture so you can see some of the pencil shading on the flowers where I first coloured with the pencils on dry paper. The pencil lines diluted once I painted over the top with water but not completely becoming part of the detail of the design. As the inktense are permanent once dry I decided to layer colour on the petals. Some I started with purple, the large one I did the base colour in red. To paint the leaves I coloured only a small amount, painted with water to fill the leaf or just picked up colour from one leaf to complete another one. I did switch to a black fineliner to do the flower centres and add some black dots. I used white paint to add some white dots.

I decided to create my own striped background for the die cut using the fuchsia pencil. Rather than drawing on the background panel directly I pulled colour from the pencil tip onto my glass mat with a wet brush and painted loose stripes on a piece of watercolour pencil using a t-ruler to keep them parallel. As sometimes happens on my work table there seemed to be some stray brusho floating around so I ended up with some random blue spots! Popping up the floral panel seemed like a good idea so I used a technique Jennifer McGuire recently suggested in one of her videos. Rather than pop up a panel on foam tape or a foam cut out just die cut a few extra layers of cardstock and stack them up. I cut two extra die-cuts each with stick-it adhesive on the back and layered them under the painted one. I played with the idea of popping up part of the sentiment but ended up stamping in two different inks instead.

The inktense pencils used: chilli red 500, leaf green 1600, red violet 610, ink black 2200, fuchsia 700

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Meadow blossoms

I attended a class not too long ago taught by my clever friend, Liane, where we used paint chips to make cards. Some paint chips have colours from the same family displayed but others have colour combinations that are suggestions when painting and decorating a room. I used one such card to choose the colours for this blue floral card. The paint chip featured colours called nautica, blizzard and tahini. I found similar colours on my peerless watercolour palette and did some no-line watercolour.

I started by stamping C&9 ‘meadow blossoms’ floral stamp in Gina K ‘whisper’ ink. The ink is a pale beige/grey dye ink which disappeared nicely as I painted with peerless watercolour paint over the top. I worked on non adjacent petals so the paint and water would not bleed from one area to the next. On the largest flowers I painted a dab of ‘Alice blue’ paint then blended it with water to fill the petal.

On the smaller flowers I switched the order and painted each petal with water first then dabbed in some blue paint. The second method resulted in slightly paler flowers. I painted all the leaves and stems in ‘warm sepia’ and the flower centres in ‘pearl grey’. Once all the paint was dry I used two inktense pencils to add veins and shading to the leaves and petals. I painted black dots in the flower centres then drew tiny stems to the dots with a very fine tip black pen. The black thank you die cut is from the PB ‘many thanks’ die set cut from black cardstock and stacked for extra dimension. I think it works well either side of the cute phrase from the PB ‘million thanks’ set which is stamped in nocturne black on a strip cut with the Taylored Expressions ‘simple strips’ die.

If you are stuck for a colour combo try some paint chip inspiration; I don’t think I would have thought up the blue, brown, grey combo without the inspiration on the chip. And call your bestie!

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Meadow blossoms gone tropical

I am over on the Foiled Fox blog today sharing these pretty flowers from Concord & 9th and some no-line watercolour. Make sure you head over there for more details, then take a little stroll through the inspiration on their blog.

It wasn’t my intention to create a tropical looking card but that is absolutely what happened wouldn’t you agree? I chose three colours, geranium pink and alizarine pink from my set of Peerless watercolours and sea blue from my Inktense pencil set. All three colours ended up being bolder than I expected. I stamped flowers from the C&9th ‘meadow blossoms’ set in Gina K’s amalgam ink, ‘barely there’ which is a pale buttery colour, great for no-line watercolour.

There are various methods for no-line watercolour; here I  painted water on each petal first then dropped in a little geranium pink at one end of the petal and alizarine pink at the other then blended the two. The leaves I did by colouring one end of each leaf with the inktense pencil before blending blue into the whole leaf. I also used an inktense yellow, to fill the flower centres and a pink to add veins to the petals after painting. I added little black dots to the flowers with a fine tip pen

I embossed the sentiment from the same C&9 set and did some die cutting with nesting circles to add a little interest with a co-ordinating blue cardstock. I hope you enjoyed this little taste of the tropics; as I write this post it is snowing outside. Yep, a little April snow, just to keep us guessing.

As always I love connecting with you in the comments below or over on the Foiled Fox blog.

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New Year florals

Happy New Year everyone. After a busy but wonderful December full of family visiting from Australia I am getting back into the work groove. I have some lovely products to try out and tell you about in the coming months so thank you for dropping in today to see what I have been doing.

I have used this Fine Line florals stamp from Concord & 9th several times, it is fun to colour loosely, carefully or with co-ordinating stamps that fill the outline images. On this card I used mainly distress markers. I don’t often use my distress markers for colouring directly on the paper, usually I ink stamps with them and then blend the ink with a paintbrush once stamped.

To create this panel I stamped the large image with ranger archival ink on watercolour paper then added colour to the petals with distress markers. On each flower I coloured close to the centre with the marker and blended the colour out to the edges with water and a paintbrush. The first layer on each flower was the palest colour which I let dry before adding a darker colour again from the centre.

I don’t have all the distress markers so I did some colour with markers and some with distress ink smooshed on my glass mat; both techniques work but using the ink gives intense colour more quickly and depending on the colour can be easier to blend. For quick and accurate application the markers are handy. As I use distress markers, inks and stains fairly regularly I have sometimes wondered about doing a comparision of techniques with the different distress products. Is that something you would be interested in seeing?

I chose black as an accent colour to team up with the black outline stamping. I cut slim mats and coloured enamel dots with a black sharpie as I didn’t have any black dots on hand. The sentiment is from another C&9 set, ‘filled in florals , and is matted and popped up with black dimensional tape.

Enjoy your day!

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Snowy flight

This sweet little bird shivering on a branch is called ‘snowy flight’, it’s a recent stamp from Penny Black. I started by painting and stamping the whole stamp on a larger panel but ended up zooming in with a circle die. I have framed it with a tartan or plaid panel stamped with Concord & 9th’s ‘plaid’ stamp set. I was in two minds about the patterned framing but I like how warm and cozy the plaid looks, a bit of a contrast to the little bird I’m afraid!

Both the bird and the plaid I stamped on hot pressed watercolour paper that I had splattered with masking fluid earlier. Before stamping the bird I splashed and splotched some diluted ‘chipped sapphire’ distress ink over the panel to create a bit of sky. I added more at the end when I had finished painting the bird, branches and berries. I kept the stamp and panel in the stamp positioner so I could ink the stamp with distress markers, stamp it then blend with a paintbrush. The branches are ground espresso or gathered twigs, the berries and bird’s breast are ‘festive berries’ and the rest of the bird is hickory smoke and black soot.

To create the plaid background (does anybody else call it ‘tartan’?) I stamped the large stamp in hickory smoke ink then blended over it with water to soften the look and cover any white areas. Once that was dry I added the red lines with festive berries ink. I definitely did this one in the stamp positioner so I could move the panel and keep the line stamp in one place. Removing the masking fluid is always very satisfying, it revealed tiny white flecks on the plaid and bigger ‘snowflakes’ on the bird panel.

Thank you for dropping by today, you will find all the supplies linked below and if you look closely you will see I provide two options for some products. If you purchase through my links to either the Foiled Fox in the US or Scrap n Stamp in Canada I receive a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my creative endeavours in this way.

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I’ve been playing with the alcohol inks again!

Last weekend I spent Saturday creating with alcohol inks while learning from Kathryn Kanadian who was in Ottawa teaching a couple of classes. Kathryn is a wonderful teacher and I now have a few new tricks to try and techniques to practice. This lavender panel was created with dots of ink on an applicator; I used passion purple, rich gold (Pinata) and  juniper (Ranger) along with some blending solution or isopropyl alcohol. I dabbed the applicator all over the craft plastic for quite a while and added blending solution and more ink when needed. The gold ink didn’t move much but the other two colours created a lot of pattern. These delicate flowers which look a little like lavender are cut with PB ‘tall flowers’ dies. The sentiment from the PB ‘special sentiments’ set I stamped with dusty concord archival ink. I had a section of the patterned panel left over so I was able to die cut some more flowers to pop inside the card. You can be sure I put stick-it adhesive on those panels before I cut such skinny flowers out.

The panel of browns and gold below came together as Kathryn was encouraging us to experiment with blending solution to move the ink. I used more than I usually would and was delighted with all the variation of colour I achieved, the dotted patterns and the splotches of gold here and there. I used ginger, espresso (Ranger) and rich gold (Pinata). Kathryn had samples of her wonderful work including a coffee themed card that inspired this one.

I used the Concord & 9 ‘simple serif’ alphabet dies to cut the letters from antique gold cardstock and framed the panel in antique gold also.

The daisy panel was a bit of a breakthrough for me as I had only made landscapes with alcohol inks by accident or trial and error in the past. With the introduction of a stylus and alcohol ink brushes I was able to paint some daisies and splatter a rain shower over the top of them.

I began by creating a green background with the help of some isopropyl alcohol and green ink (not sure if it was meadow or pesto??)  I used a stylus to dot the centres of the flowers in copper and pitch alcohol inks (Ranger) then I used a brush to paint petals around the centres and stems and grass at the base. The splatters of isopropyl alcohol pulled the composition together.

Although it looks black the cardstock framing the panel is actually dark green. I embossed a little sentiment from the PB ‘family sentiments’ set in white powder.

I created a few more panels during the class which hopefully I will turn into cards soon. Thanks Kathryn for a wonderful class.

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Autumn songbird video

Hi there; it’s a special day! Not only am I hanging out on The Foiled Fox blog today, I also have a video to for you! I first used the Concord & 9th ‘songbird’ set last winter and incorporated the pine boughs, leaves and berries. This time I went for an autumn theme and used distress inks and distress stains as I seem to constantly be doing right now. I may need to mix things up a bit around here.

I have shared a few no-line colouring projects here lately where I stamped with antique linen ink; this project could also be considered no-line colouring but I stamped the outline images in brown, yellow or grey, colours I then used for painting. As the bird and leaves were not too fiddly I cut masks out so I could have leaves peeping out from behind things.

I worked once again with a fairly limited palette of fossilized amber, brushed corduroy, pumice stone, stormy sky and black soot, basically grey, blue and yellow tones.

When it came to the sentiment I decided to pull out the C&9 ‘grateful for everything’ set  because I love the words and that funky script. I added splatter and some sponging which filled the background a little making it appear lest stark.

I would love to know if you have some favourite ‘all year round’ stamps or sets. Here are a couple more all season options:

PB Nature’s gifts
PB Peaceful Moment

Thank you for joining me today, I’m looking forward to returning in October for some more fun with the Foiled Fox.

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