Gilded Wheat

This beautiful wheat stalk, ‘gilded wheat’ is new from Penny Black. You know that feeling when you think maybe a project is complete but you’re not sure so you keep going? I had that feeling after I had finished stamping, painting and highlighting the wheat stalks. I just wasn’t sure whether to add a background or not.

I stamped the wheat in scattered straw and wild honey distress inks then blended with a paint brush. To add shadow to the sides of the leaves and the base of the wheat berries I used iced spruce ink. After painting I switched to watercolour pencils and added more shadow with a similar grey-green spruce colour.

I could have stopped there and not added the background painting which is kind of patchy but I liked the contrast of the gold colours and the grey so I kept going. Before putting the card together I stamped a sentiment from the PB ‘choose happy’ set and ran the panel through the die cutting machine in the SU ‘subtle’ embossing folder. Sometimes people ask me how I settle on my colour combos; this one was inspired by the small leaves at the top of the previous card. Who knew grey and gold would be so happy together?

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Mixed Media-ish

I have in my workroom a few new items to try but with one thing and another I haven’t had a chance. I recently bought two new pads of paper, one is rice paper and the other is mixed media paper from Fabriano, that’s the one I used for today’s cards. I’m very taken with Fabriano 100% cotton watercolour paper so I wanted to see what I thought of the mixed media.

It is quite a while since I’ve done anything with my oxide inks so I pulled them out to make a blended background. After blending I did some water-stamping with both the DD ‘daisy delight’ background stamp and the floral silhouettes from the DD ‘you are everything’ set. The paper worked brilliantly for both steps. After drying the panels I stamped again with versafine clair inks and, as I hadn’t moved the stamps, the inked images landed inside the watermark images.

I dried all the stamping with a heat tool before adding background stamps over the top for added texture. I used white ink for both the DD ‘French script’ stamp and the DD ‘scratches’ stamp. The daisy stamp ended up with a double dose of script when I embossed a white base layer with the SU ‘scripty embossing folder.

I gave both cards a little birthday label and pronounced the mixed media paper a success. Of course I will put it through it’s paces with gel printing and a few other processes but so far so good.

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Cow’s it going?

How much do you love this big highland cow? I hope you don’t mind this departure from my usual subject matter but there is something about this cow (and some other beauties from Pink Ink Designs) that amuses and inspires me! When I saw this stamp I knew it would make the perfect birthday card for someone I know who finds highland cows adorable. Although confused by my behaviour, Crop A While here in Ottawa ordered it for me and I’m so glad.

This card is stamped and painted with dye inks, classic kraft papertrey ink as a base colour then four distress colours to highlight, shade and add personality to the beautiful face and hair-do. I worked in a stamp positioner so I could add the colours bit by bit to build up the image. I did some painting and blending with a paint brush but kept white areas also as they add so much to the design.

After I had completed the painting part I decided not to add anything more but instead ran the panel through the die cut machine inside the SU subtle embossing folder. If you look at the close up image you might just see the linen texture achieved. The ‘cow’s it going’ stamp set includes eleven smaller stamps along side this one including some distinctly Scottish ones so I’m looking forward to following that theme another time. My name is Heather after all, Heather McDonald originally!

Hope you are having a good hair day, like this cow obviously is!

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Garden fresh

Inspiration for today’s card came from a watercolour artist I saw on Instagram. Her name is Garima Srivastava and she paints loads of florals sometimes in cute little jars and vases. I saw one of her paintings then pulled out the new Penny Black ‘garden fresh’ clear set to create my own little trio.

I stamped on hot press watercolour paper with Papertrey soft stone ink, a pale grey that works well for no line watercolour. To paint inside the outline images I used a mix of distress inks and markers, sometimes picking up smooshed ink off my glass mat, other times inking the stamp with a marker to add some definition.

To finish the panel I stamped a sentiment from the new PB ‘ever thanks’ set in versafine clair morning mist ink then popped it up over the embossed mat made with one of my new embossing folders. (SU ‘scripty’). I’m looking forward to filling jars and jugs with flowers. Right now the daffodils are making a fine effort but a little too sparse to cut any for indoors.

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Pansy Gaze

Today’s little card features a sweet stamp from Penny Black. I did the stamping and painting on a thin strip of cardstock thinking I might make a bookmark but as I filled in the background decided to just make a smaller than usual card. This one is 3¾” x 4¾” cut to frame the pansy panel evenly.

I stamped the pansy stamp in weathered wood distress ink then painted the petals with seedless preserves and blueprint sketch ink which was smooshed on my glass mat for convenient pick-up. I painted the leaves with a mix of forest moss, lucky clover and peeled paint. I added wild honey and black soot to the centres after painting all the petals and wish I’d achieved a bit more of a pop with the yellow but continued anyway.

I smooshed the weathered wood ink pad on the glass mat several times to make plenty of the grey-blue ink available for painting a background and then proceeded to paint water first then ink as I went round the image. I was not after a seamless look (obviously!) but more of a rough sketchy look so there are some watermarks, hard edges and bleeds from the green ink. I ran the panel through the big kick with the ‘subtle’ embossing folder from SU for a canvas look; you can see it on the close up.

I saw the first flower in my garden today; it’s a little white star flower…happy sigh.

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Less is More Leaves

When I saw that the challenge at Less is More was “leaves” and one layer, two favourites for me, I was very hopeful that I would find time to participate. Although I am surrounded by leaves of yellow, orange and brown I decided to stamp silver leaves because I have noticed lately a few silver birch trees around the place looking really silver when the wind is blowing their leaves. I chose to use silver, blue and grey for my leaves card instead.

I stamped the birch leaf in versamark and embossed in silver before sponging in blue and grey. I then added more leaves in grey, some double stamped to get a fainter image. The silver does look pretty but the photo doesn’t show it quite as well as I’d wished.

Thanks for dropping by today. Thank you to all the new subscribers and followers as well as the faithful readers who have been dropping in hoping to see something new here. I know it has been a while between posts but I have been busy with a different artistic project. I have been doing a printmaking unit with my small art class; if you are interested in seeing our marbling and linoprinting you can see it on my other blog.

Supplies:

Stamps: With Gratitude, Ageless Adornment (SU)
Inks: Going Grey, Bashful Blue, Versamark
Cardstock: Mark’s Finest Papers Snow Storm Smooth Heavy
Also: Sterling Silver e.p.