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Norah Head lighthouse

Today’s card has been sent to my dad for his birthday but considering the time it takes for mail to get from Canada to Australia these days and my own postal disorder it did not arrive in time. He is currently visiting my brother so this post provides a sneak peak before the real thing arrives in his mail box. Happy Birthday, Dad! I chose this stamp from Darkroom Door for several reasons. When I first visited Darkroom Door in 2016 I enjoyed visiting and talking with the owners Rachel and Stewart. When my dad returned to pick me up he walked in, looked at all the DD stamps displayed and was drawn to two stamps in particular; this was one of them. During the same 2016 trip Dad and I went to the Norah Head lighthouse, featured on this stamp and not too far from my parents’ home. We went for a quick look and discovered there was a guided tour about to start so we joined in. We heard the history of the light and enjoyed the views from several vantage points.

To paint this scene I stamped the scene in distress inks, the top border, sea and light in stormy sky, the land around the light in forest moss and the foreground rocks in black.  I then used stains to paint the scene; I’ve listed them below. After painting I used a fine tip micron pen to re-draw the railing and details on the light then wrote a sentiment.

My father has been interested in lighthouses for years and has visited many around the world. I have a connection to one from very early in my life. I was born on King Island in Bass Strait, off the coast of Tasmania and home of the tall Cape Wickham lighthouse. Although I don’t remember the occasion I have a photograph Dad took of me in front of the light.

Supplies

Stamp: lighthouse (DD)

Inks: stormy sky, forest moss, black soot distress inks & markers

Stains: worn lipstick, mustard seed, salty ocean, forest moss, black soot, stormy sky, vintage photo distress

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper

Tools: stamping platform

Also: micron pen .01

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Classic garden

A few weeks back I created two fairly glamorous cards with this fancy stamp, glamorous because of the platinum and gold embossing I paired with the very detailed stamp. Today’s card is simply stamped in one colour and embellished with another colour creating this classic navy, red and white combo.

I stamped on neenah solar white cardstock in chipped sapphire distress ink; it is a very detailed stamp so using a stamping platform helped me get good coverage.

Quite a versatile stamp I think…

Supplies

Stamps: flower garden, botanical script

Ink: chipped sapphire distress ink

Paper: neenah solar white, textured red

Also: stamping platform, red & white gingham ribbon


Wings & things

This is one of those cards that just evolved. I’ve had the butterfly stamps at hand while teaching a class with them. I did not have a definite plan; in fact, you may be surprised to hear it started with three butterflies stamped in rusty hinge distress ink. The panel sat around for a while then I decided to paint turquoise brusho and metallic sky liquid metal inside each of the brown butterfly outlines. I didn’t love that so I spritzed interference blue pearl-ex spray over all three butterflies to make the colour bleed into the surrounding area. Still not right, so I employed a technique one of my friends calls ‘drowning’ and spritzed the panel thoroughly. The result was a sparkly blue panel with muted butterflies now looking like background images.

I used pine needles and mermaid lagoon distress inks to stamp foreground images, more butterflies and some flowers. I framed the panel by sponging pine needles ink around the edges then splattered a little white gesso over it. As often happens with my cards I started thinking about a sentiment once there was no room left for one. Vellum to the rescue with an phrase embossed in silver.

Supplies

Stamps: wildflowers vol 1, wings

Inks: rusty hinge, mermaid lagoon distress ink, pine needles, versamark

Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper, vellum, neenah solar white cardstock

Paint: turquoise brusho, white gesso, metallic sky liquid metal

Also: silver embossing powder, interference blue pearl-ex powder mixed with water in a mister


Parade of flowers

The flowers continue to bloom across my blog this week and it’s making me pretty keen for spring to arrive. Today’s poppies are as realistic and detailed as you are likely to see from me! A little different from my distress stain loose and watery florals.  I used a stamp positioner to stamp ‘parade of flowers’ in antique linen distress ink on cold pressed watercolour paper; because of the texture of the cold pressed paper I stamped a few times to guarantee a complete image.

All the painting was done with Dr Ph Martins Hydrus watercolours. When undiluted the colours are very vibrant so I put only a drop of each colour in a palette then added water. To keep the colour scheme muted and cohesive I limited my paint choices. The petals are painted with ‘deep red rose’ and the leaves and stems a mix of phthalo green, deep red rose and Venetian brown. The centres of the flowers are gamboge, with dark details added in ultramarine and Venetian brown.

I worked on one petal at a time painting first with water then dropping in some deep red rose paint. I blended the colour to the edges then added more paint if necessary to create shadow or deeper colour near centre of flower. While each petal dried I worked on a non-adjacent one. When all the petals were dry I added some more red here and there to create a bit more depth and when that dried I used a very fine tipped brush to paint veins on some of the petals. I wanted to stamp the sentiment on a matching panel so I painted diluted deep red rose paint on a scrap of hot pressed watercolor paper the die cut three tags using die from ‘gift card pocket’ set. With the stamp postioner I was able to stamp ‘With Love’ sentiment from ‘special wishes’ set on tags one at a time so when together they would over lap each other.

I wrapped twine around top of painted panel, attached the three sentiment tags over the top and attached the panel to a natural coloured card base.

Don’t forget to pop over to the ‘Sparkle with Us’ challenge hosted by The Foiled Fox and me. There is already some sparkly inspiration linked up but we’d love to see more.

Supplies

Stamps: parade of flowers, special wishes

Die: gift card pocket

Paper: rough 100% cotton watercolour paper, hot pressed watercolour paper

Ink: antique linen distress ink, imperial purple versafine ink

Paints: deep red rose, gamboge, pthalo green, Venetian brown, ultramarine Dr Ph Martins Hydrus watercolors (soon to be available at The Foiled Fox)

Also: antique hemp twine


tulip bouquet

Here are some more blooms  to spur on the spring feelings. I worked on an abstract brusho background, one of the panels I mentioned back in an earlier post created with some sprinkled and spritzed brusho. I took my colour cues from the brusho and stamped the stems and leaves in forest moss distress ink and petals  in spiced marmalade.

Next I sprinkled very small amounts of gamboge brusho in the tulips and activated it with a damp brush. I did one petal at a time to stop them all just blending into the same shade. I made sure some areas stayed dark and others were more diluted and light. I did the same thing for the stems and leaves but used turquoise and olive green brusho.

The panel is cold pressed watercolour paper so there is some texture to it. Have you tried stamping over a brusho background? I enjoyed the way the brusho dictated the colour scheme for me but didn’t take over the whole panel.

Supplies:

Stamps: tulip bouquet, smile today!

Paper: cold pressed watercolour paper, neenah natural white

Inks: spiced marmalade distress ink, forest moss distress ink, olympia green versafine ink

Paints: gamboge, turquoise, olive green brusho

Tools: Stamping platform


Blossom branch video tutorial

  

I am happy to be sharing all manner of sweet spring goodness here and on the Penny Black blog this week. Starting the week is this gorgeous blossom branch stamp and a video tutorial. Blossom branch is a brushstroke stamp so I was after a hand painted look on my finished project. In my previous video I used distress stains applied to the stamp. For this project I worked with distress inks and markers, once again a water-soluble medium but in a format that can be applied with more accuracy than distress stains. The result is more detail on the final image.

I worked in a stamp positioning tool so I could add one or two colours at a time, three shades of green for the leaves and  several pinks for the petals. You can see my process in the video. At one point the camera cut out without me realising so you don’t see all the blending of petal. I used the same process for all the flowers though, so you can get the idea from all that was filmed. I included a tip for a quick matching envelope too.

Hope you have fun with this technique. See you tomorrow.

Supplies

Stamps: blossom branch, choose happy
 
Inks: versafine vintage sepia, shabby shutters, crushed olive, peeled paint marker,
   
worn lipstick, abandoned coral, barn door marker, gathered twigs marker
 
Paper: hot pressed watercolour paper

Also: MISTI, gold signo gel pen
 


Woodlands

I had a lovely time with this new photo stamp from Darkroom Door. It’s called Woodlands and was perfect for creating an autumn scene, a winter scene and a sunset. Step by step instructions and a complete list of supplies are available on the Darkroom Door blog

The autumn scene involved brayering and distress inks.

The sunset features the bright hues of colorburst powders over embossing.

The winter scene below, which might be my favourite, was painted with distress inks.

I used a cool technique with a stamp positioner to get a layer of snow on the branches; if you’re interested pop over to Darkroom Door and check it out.