The World is a Garden

Do you recognise this set? It is the Darkroom Door ‘Eyes’ set I featured on a journal page a couple of weeks back. For this journal page I used a smaller pair of eyes and also one eye from the closed eye stamp so I could create a ‘wink’!

The background is stamped loosely with four bright distress inks and the DD ‘daisy delight’. When I say stamped loosely I was not looking for complete images so I inked sections of the stamp with a couple of inks then stamped on the journal page. I did the same again with a different pair of inks until I had filled both pages. Because distress inks react so well with water and my pages are cold pressed watercolour paper it was easy to blend the petals with a wet paintbrush. Where the inks overlapped I got some nice blends; there were a few muddy blends but overall look is of a garden bed of daisies which is what I wanted.

No surprise that I did not have the whole design planned out from the beginning so I had to work out the best way to add the eyes without disturbing the very dilutable flowers I had already watercoloured. I ended up stamping them on tissue paper and gluing them down with a gluestick so as to not add more liquid to the background. I also stamped the large letters for the quote on tissue paper using the DD ‘sketched alphabet’ stamp set. Having the eyes and the words stamped on tissue made it easy to play with the arrangement until I was happy with it. The smaller words making up the quote I wrote by hand with a black marker.

The quote is from ‘The Secret Garden’ by Frances Hodgson Burnett, a book I enjoyed reading as a child and a parent.

Just a quick question for you, did you try reading the quote straight across the two pages or did you see it went down the left then up to the right? Just wondering because I didn’t even think of both options when I was laying it out.

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Darkroom Door Eyes

Are you surprised to see a face on one of my projects? This journal page spread was definitely outside my comfort zone but I am very happy I persevered and brought it to completion. The page began with the new ‘Eyes’ stamp set from Darkroom Door and a pile of gel prints. There are eight pairs of eyes in the set in a couple of different sizes. I chose to stamp the eyes on a pale gel print done with oxide inks and the DD background stamp ‘flower garden’. To help me draw the rest of the face around the eyes I found a magazine face with similar size eyes and that gave me the right scale and placement as I completed the head and features.

Although I like the idea of adding hair I decided to do that on a future project and used some textured wrapping from a bunch of flowers instead. The bright pink helped me choose other gel prints to complete the background collage. You might not see them all but DD background stamps and stencils are featured on most of the torn collage pieces.

I embossed the Spanish tiles background stamp on a bright pink gel print, tore it up for collage and attached a strip to cardstock so I could cut earrings. I also used gold embossing when adding the words. I alternated phrases from the DD ‘you are everything’ set with the new DD ‘made for you’ set.

I worked in my new handmade journal which is 7″x7″. Once I had the facial features pencilled in I went over them with marker then added shading with coloured pencils. I also stenciled some stars over the collage and embossed in gold to give the whole spread more unity. The pink turban was a bit of a challenge which ended up looking a bit more like a swim cap than a turban but you get the general idea don’t you?

I will be using the eyes again both to practice drawing faces and as elements in future journal pages. I hope you are enjoying seeing the new stamps from Darkroom Door; they are always full of the artistic magic and clever ideas of Rachel Greig.

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