Stencils & watercolour

Some recent art from Kathy Racoosin inspired me to use my stencils a little differently. I used four stencils from Darkroom Door and my ever useful distress inks.

All these cards are one layer; I often attach a one layer panel to a card base and keep the layers minimal that way but this time I cut card bases from cold pressed watercolour paper and did all the stenciling and painting on directly on the card base. I taped the stencil to the card base using the grid on my glass mat to make sure the stencil sides and card sides were parallel. I used a large blending brush to transfer antique linen to the watercolour paper. Whatever ink you use through your stencil will lend some colour to the final images as it will mix with the ink painted on later.

On the twelve square background I painted peeled paint and pine needles ink using the blended antique linen as my guide. On the card below I used wilted violet, abandoned coral and blueprint sketch inks to fill the six blended squares.

After both cards had dried I used a stamp positioner to stamp the flowers in versafine clair nocturne ink. There is texture in the cold pressed watercolour bases so I stamped and restamped a few times. After stamping a couple of sentiments also from Darkroom Door I embossed all the stamping with clear powder. (I’ve listed and linked all the stamp sets and stencils at the end of this post.) I used one or two of the same distress inks  to stamp matching envelopes.

For the next two cards I used the same ‘blend then paint’ method. Once again I blended antique linen ink through the stencil then for the ferns painted a section at a time switching between cracked pistachio, peeled paint and pine needles inks.

I smooshed the ink pads on my glass mat and added a little gold shimmer with a few drops of Ken Oliver’s ‘yellow gold’ liquid metals. The shimmer isn’t very obvious in the photos but in real life it adds a little pizazz!

On the cone flowers I also added shimmer and used peeled paint for the stem, and fossilized amber with abandoned coral for the flower and petals.

Techniques like this make me take a second look at my stencils. I want to try it with a different base colour next time. Take a look at Kathy’s video to see her step by step technique.

Supplies

 

 


Wintertide

As you can imagine, I was thrilled when I saw this stamp. Yes it is one stamp with all these beautiful trees in a snowy clearing! It’s called wintertide and it definitely portrays what I am seeing outside these days.

I worked on hot press watercolour paper because I did plan to add a little water as I worked but the stamp is very detailed so I didn’t want added water to blur the detail and lose all the snowy white areas. There are some white splatters in the sky made by splots of masking fluid splattered on the panel before I started stamping.

I kept the stamp in a stamp positioner so I could stamp one colour at a time starting with pine needles distress ink. I added other distress greens and blues bit by bit to give definition to the trees on the right and the bushy area in the foreground. I spritzed the stamp lightly with water after inking the area left of the big tree so the greens blended with each other. Once I had built up enough colour variation I dried the panel and added a frisket film circle mask before colouring the sky. I used blending brushes to apply tumbled glass and chipped sapphire distress inks to the sky and the snowy path.

This stamp is very detailed but that does not have to mean it is difficult to use. By stamping the whole image first in a light colour you are able to see where to change colours when adding ink with markers or ink pads. When I don’t use markers I add ink to a large area with an ink pad(often a cube) then wipe it off the areas I don’t want stamped. Jill Foster has a fabulous video tutorial for this stamp so check that out if you want some ideas.

Supplies

 


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!

Supplies


Wreath & wreath

I have two more wreaths to share today; I don’t think I’ve ever made so many wreath cards. This year I did them in a class and I’ve done them here at home more than a few times with little stamps and big stamps. The fact that Penny Black came out with such beautiful wreaths this year kept the inspiration going.

The stamp above is called ‘conifer wreath’ and the stamp below ‘homespun’. I used the same technique for both. Working on hot pressed watercolour paper (psst Foiled Fox has Fabriano in stock now!!) I splattered masking fluid over the paper before I started stamping or painting so I would have dots of snow appear at the end. Once the masking fluid was dry I used my glass mat and spread some pine needles, evergreen bough and gathered twigs distress stain over the mat. I diluted it with water then swiped both panels through the stain to pick up pale green and brown blurry colour.

Once the background ink dried I used the stamp positioner to stamp the wreaths colour by colour using pine needles and forest moss distress inks for the foliage, gathered twigs and black soot for the twigs and pine cones and chipped sapphire for some added depth. I drew a few berries on the wreath below with a festive berries marker then painted over them with red from the finetec pearlescent paint set.

To add a little snow to the pine cones I used a white gel pen then splattered some green and brown ink around the wreaths. Once all the ink was dry I removed the masking fluid then added some texture to the panel with the clever SU embossing folder ‘subtle’.

To add a sentiment to the conifer wreath I die-cut a few ‘joy’ words with the PB die, ‘merry & joy’, stacked them and added them over the bottom of the wreath. Now what I really need to get done is a wreath to hang over my fireplace!

Supplies


Merry Misty Melody

I am thrilled to be over  on the Foiled Fox blog again, sharing these sweet little birds. They are from a new Penny Black set, ‘Misty Melody’ and I’ve paired them with one word from  the PB ‘…bright’ die for a wintry scene. By the way there happens to be a 15% discount sale happening until the end of Dec 2 so now is a good time to visit.

I worked on hot pressed watercolour paper as I planned to do a bit of blending on the birds. I made a mask for the birds on the branch by stamping it on some masking paper and cutting it out. For someone who dislikes fussy cutting I seem to have warmed to it a little. With the stamp in my positioner I stamped the birds on branch stamp on the watercolor paper in smokey gray versafine ink and on masking paper.

I chose the Papertrey ink cubes that I have been using over and over to stamp little wreaths and foliage patterns. To watercolour with them I squished dark chocolate, Americana and scarlet jewel onto the glass mat where I could add a drop of water and pick up colour with a paintbrush.  I found an image of a European Robin as my guide and painted the breast with the two red inks, the Americana was too brown, the scarlet jewel too pink but the mix was ideal.  For the wings and tales I used a mix of Americana and dark chocolate and the rest of the body I painted with distress hickory smoke. I went over the beak and eyes with a black micron pen and then painted the branches in a mix of dark chocolate and black soot. Once that dried I went over the birds’ feet with the micron pen.

With all the bird and branch painting done I had to decide whether to paint the background sky or blend it with blending brushes or sponges. As I had the mask ready to go I chose blending brushes and positioned the mask to protect the painted birds and branch. I splattered masking fluid over the whole panel and let it dry. To create snow banks in the foreground I tore the edge off a piece of post-it note to mask just under the birds.

I stuck with the Papertrey ink cubes for the blended sky using mainly ‘blueberry sky’ and a bit of ‘royal velvet’.  As I blended over the masking fluid I could see I was going to have a nice snowy sky. Once the sky color was a deep blue I repositioned the torn mask lower down three more times and blended over it for a soft ‘snowbank’ look. I didn’t have to pick up more ink as there was plenty still on the bristles of the blending brush.

Once all my painting and blending was complete I removed the masking fluid gently by rubbing it with my fingers; it is always very satisfying to see the snowy sky appear. To finish the card I cut two layers of the word MERRY from red cardstock backed with stick-it adhesive sheet and stuck them over the snowbanks. As you can see the letters come out of the die individually, I used the negative piece of cardstock and my magnetic ‘staytion’ and ruler to position them all correctly.

Thank you for dropping by today, all the supplies I used are linked below. I will be back here and on the Foiled Fox blog very soon.

Supplies



That Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy

If you went to Sunday School when I did you will probably know which song my title alludes to. Maybe you even sang the tongue twister verse as well! You will probably recognise some of these stamps from two posts I did last week. I can’t seem to leave them alone. For someone who usually doesn’t do much with the little bitty stamps I have certainly taken to these ones.

Today’s cards are once again one layer cards although they almost weren’t right at the end! I often say at my classes that I make the mistakes so you don’t have to! Should I have stamped the word Joy on both cards before I did anything else? Yes! But instead of doing that I die-cut masks of the letters using dies from the Ink to Paper ‘Season of Joy’ co-ordinating die set. I centred the masks on my card bases carefully with the help of my ‘stay-tion‘ magnetic board and then I stamped all over them.

When creating a busy all over pattern it is important to stamp your elements in order of size, big ones like pinecones first and little ones like stars last. I failed to recognise that the letter stamps from the Ink to Paper ‘Season of Joy’ stamp set were the biggest elements of all. It still worked because I had my masks in place but lining up the letters inside the masked area at the end was a wee bit tricky. (Yay stamp positioner!) If I had stamped the letters then covered them with masks I would have had the same effect without the trickiness! Now you know, just in case you might try this fun exercise yourself.

It really is fun working with all the little foliage stamps from the ‘floral Christmas’ and ‘framing floral Christmas’ sets from Ink to Paper. I have now used them for wreaths, bands, circles, hanging swags and these ‘all over’ designs. Once again I used the Papertrey ink cubes along with a few distress inks and versamark just for the gold embossed stars.

I guess you can see I am sticking to my resolution of stamping envelopes at the same time as cards. These ones are ready to be packaged for this weekend’s ‘WALL CANDY Art Expo‘ in Ottawa. If you are in the area please come to Aberdeen Pavilion at Landsdowne and visit Liane and me at the Paper Duet booth. The Expo will be full of amazing art so you might get a little Christmas shopping done.

Of course if you are shopping for yourself you can find all the links below. Thanks for dropping by.

Supplies


Time for tea

I love this little stack of teacups from Darkroom Door. I have some pretty teacups that belonged to my Nanna, some from my Grandma and some from my mother. I don’t often use them because I like a much bigger cup of tea but I love having them. There are intricate details on the cups on this stamp but I have chosen not to colour the patterns individually, instead colouring each cup a different colour. I kept my colour scheme muted sticking with inks I have been using to stamp forests and trees lately.

I used a stamp positioner so I could ink one cup at a time. I kept a wet cloth handy to wipe off any ink that ended up on the adjacent cups. after stamping I blended the stamping with a damp brush to gently spread ink into the cup but not dilute the pretty patterns.

The stamp has its own frame so I trimmed with scissors right next to the frame and ran a peeled paint marker along the edge to make sure it was all inked. I chose my sentiment from another DD tea themed set, ‘Cup of tea” and cut it out with a PB tag die. I had hemp twine which exactly matched so I added a little bow to the tag. The stamped panel is popped up on adhesive backed foam on a textured cardbase.

Hope you have time for tea today, unless of course you are all about the coffee, but that’s a card for another day!

Supplies