Artful August Home Journal page

The fun and inspiration continues in Rachel Greig’s Artful August challenge. I am so impressed and inspired by what I have seen. Rachel’s own art has been beautiful and unique every single day. As I mentioned in my last post I have not participated every day but I have definitely enjoyed the times I have followed the prompts. Today’s prompt is ‘Home’ and I decided to make an art journal page of a street.

Make sure you read to the end of this post to find out the winner of Summer Giveaway I hosted with the Foiled Fox.

None of these quirky houses look anything like my home but I have had thirteen different homes over the years so I wasn’t going for realism, instead I wanted to create more of a neighbourhood feel. Once again I cut up gel prints to make the houses, trees and flowers. I particularly like the gel print trees. The one on the left was printed with bubble wrap and the one on the right features texture from three different stencils which ended up giving me leaves and a branch to hang a swing on.

I began by masking the top and bottom edges then used blending brushes to fill the sky with blue distress inks and the road with black soot ink. I cut all the shapes by hand not worrying about perspective or scale and glued them on with multi matte medium. Once the glue dried I drew around all the edges and added detail with with a black ultrafine sharpie. I added markings to the road with a white sharpie paint pen.

Thank you to everyone who entered the Summer Giveaway by telling us your favourite summer activity. I enjoyed reading about beach walks, mountain hikes, picnics, porches and time spent with friends. I hope you are all still enjoying those pastimes. Summer is not over yet! Congratulations to Stephanie Clapper, check your email for your gift certificate to the wonderful Foiled Fox online store.

Supplies

(Compensated affiliate links used when possible)


Winter Garden art journal page

It’s been a while since I worked in my book themed art journal. As I looked over a table covered in gel prints I settled on two blue ones filled with pattern and paint. Both were on rice paper and sized 6″x6″ which is not big enough to cover the whole journal page. I decided to tear a rough edge on the bottom and glue the panels with space above and below.

The inspiration for the page is Kristin Hannah’s novel ‘Winter Garden’. I used Darkroom Door floral stamps to decorated the gel prints with blue flowers then added more stamping to the blue area and the white space at the bottom of the page.

Picking from a few themes in the book I stamped trees to represent the orchard, a suitcase to represent the escape from Leningrad, books from the library where the main character worked. I also used number, correspondence and snowflake stamps to complete the collage.

I am always in two minds about adding words to my pages and this time was no exception. Rather than a quote I just added the name of the novel and author. I used pigment and archival inks for all the stamping, white gesso around the edges and white ink and embossing powder to add the snowflake borders.

Have you read any Kristin Hannah? My book club considers ‘The Nightingale’ our best choice so far! We are always searching for good book club reads; if you have any suggestions please leave them in the comments.

Supplies

(Compensated affiliate links used when possible)

Gel Printing with stencils + video

In recent gel printing sessions I have used some of my intricate stencils from Paper Rose Studio. This stencil, ‘little swirls‘ makes a particularly beautiful background. I’ve been printing on a 6″x6″ gel plate with a 6″x6″ stencil but I cut the print down to make a 4¼” x 5½” card.

I used stamps from Darkroom Door’s nature walk , butterflies and happy birthday sets. (all linked at the end of the post). The process for making this type of print is shown in the video below.

After any gel printing session I usually have quite a pile of prints, some become cards but I am hoping to use more in my art journal. I have to be a bit more adventurous in tearing and layering and turning them into more than just a patterned print.

The making of the background above is included in the video. To turn it into a birthday card I stamped ‘have fun’ directly on the print then popped up a sentiment strip on top. The words are stamped in Gina K obsidian amalgam ink using the Pink Fresh Studio ‘Heather’ lowercase alphabet set.

The making of the background below is also part of the video and you can see the mustard paint beaded on the surface of the gel plate making an allover pattern when printed. I didn’t necessarily want the beading but was happy when it ended up uniform. Paints of different brands perform differently on the gel press so experimentation is necessary to work out how much paint and which brands will give you the results you want.

I turned this background into another birthday card by embossing a car from the Darkroom Door Classic Cars vol 1 set along with a sentiment from the same set plus one from the Happy Birthday set.

I also filmed some gel printing with a few textured surfaces from the recycling box; I’ll be sharing that video soon.

I’d love to hear how you use your gel prints; I’m always open to ideas.

Supplies

(Compensated affiliate links used when possible)

3D Tulips

My embossing folder collection has grown a bit more this week. I ordered a couple from Paper Rose Studio and tried out the Tulips 3D folder today. After a few experiments with watercolour paper and neenah cardstock I used the same technique on both these cards with different inks.

The green panel above was done with neenah solar white cardstock and the pink below is watercolour paper. As I didn’t end up adding more than a spritz of water the effect is the same on both panels. I embossed the cardstock then used blending brushes to add Catherine Pooler spruce ink to the card above and bellini to the card below. For added detail and shimmer I used delicata inks direct to the panel, shimmer white over the spruce and rose gold over the bellini.

To complete the cards I added tulip diecuts from Penny Black (promise me II) and sentiment strips from Paper Rose Studio. I have seen printed sentiment strips from a few companies now and decided to try these. They are printed on slightly glossy cardstock and are designed to pair with die-cut words. There are several copies of each sheet of words or phrases so if I botch the cutting I can try again.

I know tulip season is over but I had to give this folder a try. I also know tulips don’t come in green but I think the spruce one is my favourite of the two.

I appreciated all the suggestions and comments about the alcohol ink panels. I am considering a few of the ideas and will do a video as requested as soon as possible. Thank you for taking the time to enter the discussion; I love hearing from you and gathering new ideas.

Supplies

(Compensated affiliate links used when possible)


Pretty fantastic

Children’s cards are something of a rarity for me but this one ended up being so much fun I might try them more often. I’ve had this gold embossed giraffe image sitting round for a while. The stamp, from Pink Ink Designs is called ‘giraffe’, no surprises there! It’s a large stamp so I cropped a bit of the neck off so it would fit on a 6×6 card.

I used Staedtler watercolour markers and papertrey ink cubes to watercolour the giraffe and the amethyst ink cube for the blended background. I decided on the stencil background after I’d finished watercolouring the giraffe so I cut a giraffe shaped mask and positioned it over the giraffe while I used blending brushes and the Paper Rose studio ‘fragments’ stencil.

The giraffe stamp set comes with a pair of glasses stamp but I went bigger and sparklier with a die cut from Penny Black. I embossed the purple glasses in clear sparkle powder first then clear gloss ultra high to seal the sparkle and make them shiny. The sentiment is from the PB set ‘perspective’. Pink Ink Designs has some beautiful big animal and fantasy stamps. They totally captured my imagination when I saw them. I’ve already shared a card with the dragon stamp and have one with a sea turtle still to come. Not my usual themes that’s for sure.

Supplies

(Compensated affiliate links used when possible)

Waratahs

Some of you will be familiar with the flower featured on this card. It’s the Australian waratah, state flower of New South Wales. When I was in NSW recently I visited ‘Alice in Paperland‘ in Port Macquarie and picked up this beauty. Due to my recent class I’m still on a no-line watercolour kick so that’s the method I chose for the stamp’s first inking. The set is called ‘Thanks a bunch’ and includes this large stamp, the sentiment I used and some little ones. I stamped in antique linen distress ink, kept the stamp and hot pressed watercolour panel in my stamp positioner then searched the interwebs for photos of waratahs. Even though I found plenty of bold red ones I chose a slightly more muted colour scheme and painted it with diluted aged mahogany ink. As usual I smooshed the aged mahogany ink pad on my glass mat so I could dilute the ink easily and pick it up with a paint brush. I worked petal by petal which took a while but I mixed up the process by switching to leaves while petals dried and also taking snack breaks.

I wanted the bluey greens of eucalyptus leaves so I used shabby shutters ink mixed with evergreen bough for one branch of leaves then bundled sage plus evergreen bough for the others. The remaining flower I painted in antique linen. For the stems I used the same greens and added some tea dye ink for a brown tinge. I used markers to ink the tiny gum blossoms and gumnuts, gathered twigs, festive berries and wild honey. Because I kept the stamp and panel in the positioner I was able to ink the centre of the waratahs with an aged mahogany marker which helped retain the fine detail. I think I accidentally inked the centre with gathered twigs once also, oops!

For the sentiment I used stazon claret because it matched the flowers so well. You might be able to see the texture on the finished panel; I achieved that look with the clever ‘subtle’ embossing folder by sizzix for Stampin’ Up.

This is the first card I’ve made with Paper Rose stamps but  I do have a couple more of their stamps waiting in the wings.

Supplies