I have another double page spread in the 6″x 6″ journal today. Don’t tell the others but this one seems to be getting all the attention at present!
The pages in this journal are thick watercolour paper so I wanted to take advantage of that and use watercolour techniques. Most of the pages I have completed up until now have had a base layer of gesso or acrylic paint.
As you can see I taped the edges of the pages with tape before starting. I added some stamping in black here and there using a stamp from the Darkroom Door ‘number medley’ set. Next I used the DD ‘honeycomb’ stencil and modeling paste to add a texture strip from left to right down the centre of the spread. I added a small section bottom left also. Once the paste was dry I began painting colour around the honeycomb and across both pages. I spent a while doing this so as to see the blends and build up some depth of colour.
Other than some black stamping I used only three colours of distress ink, both spray stain and from the ink pads. I took care to keep some white space; sometimes I realise too late that I have colour all over the pages. I stamped some grasses in peeled paint archival ink so they would not dilute and broken china distress ink so they would dilute. I also stamped sections of the world map in rusty hinge. Although I loved the combo of peeled paint, rusty hinge and broken china I thought a bit of metallic shine would be nice so I added some wildflowers embossed in Brutus Monroe ‘penny’ powder.
With a copper coloured gel pen I wrote the first verse of ‘For the Beauty of the Earth’ in the lower right hand corner then added the embossed word ‘beautiful’. And of course there is some copper splatter to finish it off. This is a style and look I have been hoping to create so you’ll probably see a few more like this one.
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This week I have shared a gel plate video and a series of cards made with prints and leftovers from that gel printing session. If you look closely at this journal page you will see a couple more prints put to use.
The Darkroom Door set, Nomad, recently arrived in my mailbox and the main reason I chose it was the pile of suitcases. I own one old suitcase which belonged to my grandmother; it houses the ‘dress up’ collection. It is not unlike the third one in the left hand stack. The stamp set also has a single suitcase, some passport stamps and two sentiments, one included on this page.
To add even more vintage-ness to the vintage suitcases I stamped them on a grid and striped prints from the gel printing session. I used corrugated cardboard to make the patterns on the gel plate originally. I stamped the suitcases in archival inks then added extra colour with distress inks and gel pens. To create the background I smooshed blueprint sketch distress inks on a piece of acetate, spritzed water over the ink then transferred it to the masked journal pages. With the blue protected I blended a brown base, also with distress inks. Over the top of the inking I added some impressions with the DD world map and scratches background stamps. To balance the suitcases I added the vintage car and sentiment on the right hand side.
Maybe these pages came from my longing to be out and about seeing new and old places, or a longing to be poking around antique and thrift stores. The latter will probably happen before the former.
Are you longing for a trip somewhere? Are you thinking near or far?
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Many of us are separated from family and friends these days so when I saw this new set of sentiments from Darkroom Door I knew immediately that I could put them to good use. The set is called ‘long distance’ and is a long strip of sentiments one under the other, eleven in total. I have several sentiment strips from Darkroom Door and have not cut any of them into individual strips. Instead I tend to stamp the whole strip or a section of the strip and then snip off or die-cut the ones I want to use.
As many of you know I am originally from Australia and all my family still lives there while my husband, children and I live in Canada and have done for twenty years. When I designed this card featuring the DD ‘world map’ stamp I did so with my Australian family and friends in mind so I had to make sure both countries were still on display after I added the sentiments. I stamped the map on hot pressed watercolour paper in tea dye distress ink and acorn versafine clair, dried the inks then started painting colours over the map. I smooshed tea dye, carved pumpkin, abandoned coral, broken china and mowed lawn distress inks on my glass mat and painted loosely with no major concern for borders or accuracy. I searched ‘antique map’ for an inspiration photo to guide me.
I cie-cut the map panel with a Waffle Flower A2 additional layer die then applied vintage photo ink around the edge of the map and the sentiments with a blending brush. It’s a subtle addition but I also stamped pale postmarks on the sentiments using the DD ‘global postmarks’ stamps. I will be showing you more of the new stamps from Darkroom Door over the next few weeks but there are already several blog posts on the Darkroom Door blog featuring the new beauties so make sure you pop over there to take a look.
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I posted a coffee themed card using the Darkroom Door ‘coffee time’ set recently which prompted a request for a pack of coffee themed cards. These ones are on their way to Australia, and were made with the addition of the word ‘virtual’ because, well, you know why. I rarely do multiples and when I do they are never exactly the same. This time I did four of one colour scheme with the cup and saucer stamp from Darkroom Door’s ‘coffee time’ set and then four more in a different colour scheme a little more like my original coffee card featuring the take out cup from the same set.
The nice thing about making multiples is starting with a large panel to create the background. I used hot pressed watercolour paper for both sets and splattered masking fluid over the panel first. I like the addition of some random white spots and shapes from a masking fluid splatter but often I wish I’d done more when I remove it from the finished project. To create the cards above I smooshed ground espresso, salty ocean and crushed olive distress inks on my glass mat. I spritzed water over the inks until they were spread over a large area then placed the watercolour panel over the top and moved it around to soak up random coloured patterns. When I turned the panel over there were blotches of each colour along with blends and blank areas. I did some further spritzing and picking up of colour until I was satisfied with the coverage. Once the panel was dry I cut it into four pieces and used both the DD handwritten script and brick wall stencils to add pattern in the same three distress inks. I used blending brushes to apply the ink which gave me soft blends that faded away into nothing at the edges.
Next I add coffee cups and coffee stains in ground espresso ink. I blended ink inside the cup on some panels but on others I added more ink outside the cup to darken the negative space. It is hard to describe my process with the cups as I did each one differently and kept playing with the three inks until I was happy with the results. On a couple of the panels I added a partial print of the world map stamp. With all the artsy stuff done I just needed to add the ‘virtual coffee’ label. The word ‘coffee’ is part of one of the word stamps from the set so I masked, stamped and embossed then wrote the word ‘virtual’ above and embossed that. I was interested to see I could write the words with a papermate flair pen and then if I covered it with clear embossing powder straight away I could get the shiny embossed effect. I do have clear embossing pens but it is impossible to see what I’ve written with a clear pen!
I also did four more cards with the takeaway cup stamp using much the same technique and a peeled paint/scattered straw/dusty concord colour scheme. I added a few stamped coffee beans to these ones; the ‘coffee time’ set is a very cool collection of stamps.
Thanks for joining me for ‘virtual coffee’ today. I hope your week is off to a good start.
Are you missing the coffee shops? I’m sure you are missing your friends and perhaps you are missing coffee with friends. This one is for a friend of mine who loves her coffee!
I began with a piece of hot pressed watercolour paper and splattered a few drops of masking fluid over the whole thing. Once the masking fluid was dry I sprinkled sandstone brusho on my glass mat, spritzed the brusho with water and swiped this panel through it. It took a few swipes before I had an orange and brown abstract background. I added some dark brown brusho on one side and spritzed that to make it blend and spread a bit. Once I’d dried that I blended through the new Darkroom Door ‘handwritten script’ stencil with rusty hinge oxide ink.
At this point the panel was very much just an abstract background so I stamped the cup from DD ‘coffee time’ in gathered twigs distress ink and blended the stamping with some water and extra ink. The set also has a coffee cup stain stamp so I added that here and there, spritzing it to make it blurry. I stamped some postmarks from the ‘global postmarks’ set because I can’t help myself.
Unfortunately the coffee cup did not stand out enough from the background and the background itself looked incomplete. DD world map stamp and blueprint sketch distress ink came to the rescue. I stamped the world map several times on the panel in gathered twigs ink and then, to break up the orange and brown monopoly, I added some blueprint sketch ink in just a few places. I found some blue cardstock that matched the blue and stamped ‘friendship’ and ‘you’re the best’ from the DD ‘friendship’ strip of sentiments to finish the card. Oh, and I added a thin strip of brown cardstock separating the blue from the patterned panel.
I’m glad I didn’t give up on this panel; it is just the thing for my friend who I will enjoy a coffee with again one day.
Stamps: Darkroom Door Correspondence set, Darkroom Door World Map
Ink: Versafine Ink Onyx Black
Distress Oxide inks: Fossilized Amber, Broken China, Cracked Pistachio
Also: gold paint, Nuvo Black ebony crystal drops, black foam sheet, craft mat
Paper: Neenah solar white, Hot pressed watercolour paper
This vintage looking map card is for my husband’s birthday today. I am not suggesting he is vintage, far from it as he is only one week older than me! I used the world map background stamp from Darkroom Door and distress stains to give it an aged look. I began by stamping the image on hot pressed watercolour paper in versafine onyx black. Versafine is a pigment ink so I knew it wouldn’t bleed when I added stain and water over the top. I added vintage photo distress stain over most of the panel first then followed it with more distress stain and water (colours listed below) loosely filling the oceans in blue and the land in yellow and green.
When the panel dried I added some water splatter and stain splatter. Up until this point the process had been fairly quick but then I started playing with sentiment ideas. The one on the card is probably attempt no.217! I went through several different wordings and a couple of paper types and nibs before I resorted to something simple. Once I had written it satisfactorily I dropped water on it, extra stain and added a little postmark which just happens to be from a place where I lived the year before we were married. Sweet words like “I’d travel the world with you” were not to be. Don’t get me wrong I would travel the world with him and did travel from one side to the other 16 years ago. My simple wish with a pointed pen and ink and lots of love!
Stamps: World Map, Correspondence (Darkroom Door)
Inks: versafine onyx black (tsukineko) vintage photo, broken china, mustard seed, bundled sage, ground espresso distress stains & inks (Ranger) Mocha writing ink (Parker)
Pens or pencils: handmade nib holder (Foiled Fox)
Papers: hot pressed 100% cotton watercolour paper (Fabriano) natural white 110lb cardstock(Neenah)