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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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Becoming

I am sharing this card on the Foiled Fox blog today, a great place to visit if you are looking for some inspiring content or some lovely products (in their online store). I am grateful to The Foiled Fox for supporting my creative work in a variety of ways and I want to let you know my blog includes affiliate links to their online store which give me a small commission.

Yet again I used my distress stains to work with a Penny Black floral stamp. You may have heard the distress stain daubers are being discontinued but the spray stains are not so I intend to refill my daubers from my spray stains; the stain is the same in both bottles. If you don’t want to get messy and do refills you can just paint stain onto your stamp with a brush or use an ink pad and spritz your stamp for a looser, more watery look.

I started in my stamping platform by inking the flower and bud with worn lipstick stain. I stamped then cleaned the stamp so I would not contaminate the dauber of the dusty concord distress stain when I added that next. I kept the dusty concord mainly around the edges of the flower and tip of the bud but it blended into the flower a little which is what I was after.

I inked the leaves and stem with pumice stone and stamped. While that was still wet I added forest moss stain to parts of the leaves and stems to get the two toned look. I dried the panel well then splattered some forest moss stain around the leaves and some dusty concord over the flower.

I added a sentiment in versafine clair monarch ink then popped up the whole panel on white foam before adding it to card base.

Supplies

Stamps: PB Becoming, Just Believe

Distress stains: pumice stone, forest moss, worn lipstick, dusty concord

Ink: versafine clair monarch

Paper:

Also: white foam

 


Flower Pageant

Yes, I used my distress stains for watercolouring again! I could definitely have used ink pads or markers but I really like the uneven amount of pigment and liquid the stains lay down when stamped. Odd isn’t it that I like the coverage to be uneven? With uneven coverage I think the stamping looks more handpainted. I used a stamp positioning tool because you can’t be sure with stain exactly what kind of impression you will get first go. I started with the large flower that is flanked by four little flowers. First I just inked the rose with spiced marmalade distress stain then used a paint brush and water to blend the stain out into pale petals. Next I added the dusty concord, festive berries and forest moss stain to the flowers and leaves surrounding the orange rose. I also blended them with a little water, just enough for them to soften into each other but not lose all definition.

To fill out the design I stamped one of the smaller stamps and blended slightly with water also. At this point I felt my design was looking a bit vintagy so I pulled out an older PB sentiment set incorporating a vintage style font and paired it with one of the new flourish border stamps.

A wide black mat tied it all together. I think these stamps might lend themselves to a repeat pattern on a larger piece of paper. Might have to try that.

Supplies

Stamps: flower pageant, flourish borders, sentimental

Distress stains: forest moss, spiced marmalade, festive berries, dusty concord

Ink: versafine clair nocturne

Paper: hot pressed watercolour, neenah black

 


Exquisite

My final springy card for this week features this lovely big flower in two of my favourite distress stains, chipped sapphire and seedless preserves. I stamped this one on cold pressed watercolour paper so once again having the panel in a stamp positioner helped me get a good impression. I inked first with chipped sapphire over parts of the flower, stamped, wiped off the stamp and inked sections again but this time with seedless preserves. I ended up with some blue flowers, some pink and some a purple mix.

I blended the petals of all the flowers with a damp brush and let them all dry. I was going to leave all the centres white but it didn’t look right so I ended up painting them all darker with undiluted stain. To create a soft textured background I dropped a few drops of water around the flower then partially stamped the script stamp in the same ink stains. I dabbed out some ink with a paper towel and added some splatter as well. To frame the whole panel I ran the seedless preserves dauber around the edges then softened the colour with a damp brush.

To complete the card I stamped a sentiment on a fancy little die cut banner and popped it up over the stem of the flower.

Supplies

Stamps: exquisite, script, banner sentiment (Penny Black)

Die: birds & banners

Inks: chipped sapphire & seedless preserves distress stains, majestic blue versafine ink

Paper: cold & hot pressed watercolour paper


Lilacs

Spring is in the air at Penny Black and is beginning to feel like it here in Ottawa too. The method for this card is exactly the same as shown in my lilac video tutorial This card was stamped with distress stains, one of my favourite mediums for creating a loose watercoloury look. I have used the distress stain daubers for years now to ink my stamps but you may have heard, sadly the daubers are being discontinued. Even though I have a healthy supply of daubers I decided to use the spray stains for this card instead just to see if I could get the same effects with a paint brush. It takes an extra step but it worked and the results made me just as happy. If you have the daubers you apply stain directly to the stamp. (I will just add that the daubers are still available at the Foiled Fox right now; I intend to keep using my daubers and refill them from the spray stain bottles. To do this I just carefully lever off the dauber top and pour in some stain then press the dauber top firmly back on.)

Rather than dob stain on the stamp with the dauber I sprayed some stain into a palette and painted it on to the ‘lilacs’ stamp with a watercolour brush. I used bundled sage and forest moss on the leaves and seedless preserves and dusty concord on the petals. There are some pale lilacs in the background; I stamped them first by painting stain (bundled sage and seedless preserves) onto the stamp and stamping it on a wet piece of hot pressed watercolour paper. I just stamped randomly to spread some colour around then pressed a paper towel over the panel to remove excess water and colour. I dried the panel completely then transferred it to my stamping platform so I could stamp one colour at a time. I painted  seedless preserves stain on the stamp first and stamped onto my panel. Without cleaning the stamp I added some dusty concord to a few areas on the stamp and stamped again. The stain blended both on the stamp and on the paper. I cleaned the stamp and used the same technique for the leaves, bundled sage first then forest moss in a few areas to create shadow and depth to the image.

To add another couple of flowers I repeated the process described above after repositioning the panel. I added a sentiment from the new ‘grateful heart’ set with imperial purple versafine ink.

Thanks for dropping by and thanks for all your encouragement.

 

Supplies

Stamps: lilacs, grateful heart
.
Distress stains: bundled sage, forest moss, seedless preserves, dusty concord
.
Ink: versafine imperial purple ink
Paper: hot pressed watercolour

Also: MISTI or stamping platform


Lilacs video tutorial

I am excited to share not only these pretty new stamps today but a video tutorial as well! I know, it is hard to believe.

I created this card using a technique I love to use with brushstroke stamps: watercolour with distress stains. I generally use the dauber topped distress stains but as they are being discontinued I thought I would try applying stain with a paint brush. It adds another step in application but the end result is just as pretty.

I filmed this video and a couple more with my son’s new camera which I am still getting used to so there are some focusing issues where the camera chooses to focus on my hand instead of the panel. I didn’t think it was enough of a problem to start again so I hope it isn’t too annoying. You get to see me drop my paintbrush with stain on it in the middle of the panel and come up with a quick fix too. I hope you enjoy the video and get to do some creating of your own.

Thanks for dropping by.

Supplies

Stamps: lilacs, grateful heart

Distress stains: shaded lilacs, wilted violet, bundled sage, peeled paint

Inks: Spanish moss versafine ink
Paper: hot pressed watercolour, neenah natural white

Tools: MISTI


Graceful whisper

This branch has been waiting patiently for some ink so I went rather non-traditional and pulled out some purples to create this card. I splattered a few panels of hot pressed watercolour paper with masking fluid yesterday so I would have them on hand for future projects. The effect is subtle on this one but you can see little white dots in the sky and foliage if you look closely.

I used a couple of teardrop memento inks and a marker to ink the stamp. With the teardrops it is possible to apply ink somewhat strategically. I started with the lighter grape jelly ink and dabbed it here and there over the stamp. My panel was in my stamping platform so I was able to do grape jelly ink first, then add some dabs of the darker elderberry ink second. I went back and forth with the two inks and occasionally a spritz of water until I was happy with the image. I coloured the stems with a memento tuxedo black marker, stamped to complete the image then moved the panel to stamp a second branch the same way.

Once all the stamping dried I used mustard seed and salty ocean distress stain to paint the sky. I kept it fairly diluted and dabbed with a paper towel if I had too much water or stain. To finish it off I stamped the sentiment from the PB ‘sentiment collection’ set in versafine onyx black ink then matted the panel with black and attached it to a white card base.

Supplies

Stamps: graceful whisper, sentiment collection

Inks: grape jelly, elderberry, tuxedo black marker

Stains: salty ocean, mustard seed

Paper: hot pressed watercolour, neenah epic black, neenah solar white
 
Also: masking fluid