Friday, April 17, 2015

Mix-Ability challenge - Fill It In!

It's my turn to host this week's Mix-Ability challenge. I was inspired by some artwork Lydia shared some time ago - treasures she found at an Austin art show. I actually loved this photo so much that I saved it to my laptop so I could look at it over and over again like a giddy school girl...


These are notecards by artist Gina Su - you can see more of her beautiful work at her site here.

Inspired by Gina's work, this week's challenge is to stamp an image but omit part of the outline and fill it in with flowers, shapes, or other doodles. I'm away from home but I brought this Unity Stamp Co. kit with me, and had a little fun doodling up this skirt.


Here's the part of the skirt that I doodled in... I colored the image with Akashiya Sai markers - these are sort of new to me, so I brought them along to play with while we're in Wisconsin. They are brush markers with actual brush tips, and they're really blendy, vibrant and fun. When I'm back home with my video camera, I'll share a little more about them. You can dip them in water for a gradient blend, work wet into wet or color and then blend with water. The brush format allows for really fine lines, too, and they're beautiful for brush lettering if that is your gift (it's just not mine!).


This is another Latch Card, my current rut...


...and because I wanted the sentiment on the left side of the card, my card actually folds on the right!


I'm grateful to those of you who are tracking with us as we seek out what's next for our family... our time here is going very well, and we should have an answer about the teaching position here within a few weeks. So far everything seems very promising.

Have a great weekend - play along with us too! xo

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Impression Obsession DT Challenge: School Spirit

The Impression Obsession team's challenge today is to create a project that shows school spirit.


 My high school colors were blue and white, so I went with that for my interpretation of the theme... I used Chameleon Markers to color the teacup image (Cabbage Roses). On the flowers I used a technique they call Hopping the Color, where the barrel is fused, and then color is added randomly to different sections as the pigment returns.


To add some dimension, I did some One Layer Paper Tole on the foremost rose and around the top.


Be sure to check out these other designers' blogs for inspiration -

Anna @ Sassy & Sweet Notes
Daniela @ For the First Time
Dina @ Mama Dini's Stamperia ---- you're here
Ellen @ The Serendipitous Stamper
Jeanne @ Inky Paws
Jenny @ One Krafty Kat
Karen @ Paper Lilies and Ink
Kittie @ Kittie Kraft
Laura @ Laura's Stamp Art Journal
Vicki @ Summerthyme Studio

Remember you can enter these challenges too, using your Impression Obsession stamps! See the I.O. blog for all the details - you might even win a $25 gift certificate!! We'd love to have you join us.
Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Splitcoast Tutorial - Stencil Monoprint

This week's tutorial is a fun and super simple technique for monoprinting with stencils. Usually we create backgrounds with stencils by applying a medium through the openings.... in this technique, we're printing with the stencil itself.


Distress inks are used in the tutorial, but I used Gelatos for my sample... scribbled them onto the stencil, then misted with water and blended with my finger before printing.


I used my MISTI to line up the donut stamps and position the sentiment... these stamps are from a cute set from Sugar Pea Designs that I forgot I had! I built up the color on the donut's frosting with several layers of ink, which was easy with the MISTI's help.


The donut actually acts like a latch to keep the card closed - the panel it's on is scored but not folded, so it's flexible enough to stay flat but also bend back to let the front panel lift. When the card is open, that feature decorates the inside too. I'll make a tutorial someday if there's interest! I used it on this card a couple of years ago, too.


Can't wait to see your backgrounds - be sure to share in the SCS gallery! xo

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Splitcoast Tutorial: Cupcake Box

We are on the road this week and I didn't have time to make a sample for this week's Cupcake Box tutorial, but I hope you'll check it out - it's adorable!


To celebrate the birthdayness of this week's tutorial and a couple of special family birthdays this week, I have a birthday card to share! I watercolored this Pooh image using Peerless watercolors, then cut the image into a window view with a Gridworks die.


The squares layered up perfectly on to some dark grey Inchie Plus Art Squares. The background was made with scraps that found each other on my messy desk - sometimes after a good clean I'll put together some backgrounds with scraps that match up... it's nice to have a few ready-made card bases on hand. Here's a closer look at the image -


Hop over and check out this week's tutorial! Hope you're having a great week.
Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Mix-Ability: smooth like glass

This week's Mix-Ability challenge is to include some kind of clear glaze-y element or medium on our projects. I had this House Mouse image (it's from Stampa Rosa and it's called Whoops!) stamped and prepped with a Sakura clear glaze pen as a mask for the taped areas on the image (hee! poor little guy...), so went with that for my challenge entry.


I used QoR watercolors and tried to push myself beyond just basic colors for shading etc, and use more than just blue and brown for more richness in the little scene. The purple and yellows really popped up the colors and added so much more depth. I've been watching videos and itching to practice and learn how to loosen up more in my painting, work with more water and with gravity...


Somewhere in the world I have an 'oops' sentiment, but it's not here, so I made a quick sentiment on the computer to fit. I love the little tangle of rayon ribbon - it fits the little mess he's gotten himself into! Here's an angled photo so you can see the sheen of the glaze pen - I love that thing for detailed masking.


Play along!
Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Impression Obsession DT Challenge: You Did It!

The Impression Obsession team's challenge today is to create a project for a graduate.  I've been playing with Brusho Crystal Colors, and used them to make this background - I did make a video of a similar background to record a few techniques, but I haven't had time to put it all together yet, since we're getting ready to travel again in a few days. When I do pull it together, I'll be sure to post it here.


I used my MISTI to get a good solid print on the focal image - where it wouldn't print because of the texture of the watercolor paper, I just filled in with a brush marker.


Stamps I used: Girlfriends Silhouette, Make It Happen, Interesting Texture 1


Be sure to check out these other designers' blogs for inspiration -

Anna @ Sassy & Sweet Notes
Daniela @ For the First Time
Dina @ Mama Dini's Stamperia ---- you're here
Ellen @ The Serendipitous Stamper
Jeanne @ Inky Paws
Jenny @ One Krafty Kat
Karen @ Paper Lilies and Ink
Kittie @ Kittie Kraft
Laura @ Laura's Stamp Art Journal
Vicki @ Summerthyme Studio

Remember you can enter these challenges too, using your Impression Obsession stamps! See the I.O. blog for all the details - you might even win a $25 gift certificate!! We'd love to have you join us.
Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Splitcoast Tutorial - Double Twisted Easel

This week's tutorial over at Splitcoast is a Double Twisted Easel card - this is a tutorial that had been requested by a member, and you know... if I could make the video and survive - you can do this one too! The video for this tutorial has 3 different versions of the card:

There is a single Twisted Easel - my sample is shown in the video, but I tucked the finished card into another tutorial (linked above) after I realized it was already in there as a variation... derp! This image is from the Cat's Pajamas - love it!


I also included 2 ways to make the double easel depending on how you want the panels to face when the card is displayed.


I die cut the Heart Frame die out of label paper for the card fronts - it cut easily and the adhesive was light enough that I could make adjustments before I really stuck it down. The sentiment is from one of my Valentine releases - it's called Many Waters.


I made a little belly band for my card to hold it together in the envelope, and pull the design together on the card front. This would be a great design for an anniversary card or one that will have lots of signatures inside - the finished double card is 4" x 8" and fits in a business envelope.


Hope you'll try it out!
Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Mix-Ability - Graph Paper

This week's Mix-Ability challenge is to incorporate graph paper into our projects! It was nice to finally finish up my class kits, and have some time to play.


I started with a gel print from my file, and randomly brushed on some gel medium.  I stuck graph paper onto the print and burnished until the medium began to dry, then pulled the paper away. Some of it stuck, including the graph design. Not sure if that's a true 'transfer', but it worked! I did the same technique with a small scrap of reddish paper in the lower left corner.


I stamped the poppy (Unity Stamp Co.) onto graph paper, then pulled out Prismacolor Pencils... I worked from dark to light, beginning in the areas that I would have shaded first if coloring the poppy traditionally. To complete the poppy shape, I scribbled in a stem and leaf with a ballpoint pen.



If you haven't played along with the challenge yet, I hope you will! If you don't have graph paper handy, there's a download you can use - no excuses!


Hope you have a wonderful week!
Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

DT Thursday: Gilded Relief technique

Welcome to Impression Obsession DT Thursday! I saved my tutorial samples to share with you today - yesterday +Lydia Fiedler shared a technique on Splitcoast that she calls Gilded Relief. In her samples she uses paper flowers but I wanted to try using die cuts... both cards here use the Open Scroll Butterfly die and the Ornate Rectangle Frame.

I started by die cutting the 2 pieces out of label paper - the lighter weight of the paper gave me a clean cut, and the light adhesive let me play around with the paper a little for just the right placement.


The white gesso I have is incredibly thick, so I used a black gesso to cover the watercolor panel for the next step.


I streaked in some other colors to give the piece some character - I used a pretty dry brush so that the black underpainting would still be seen through the layers. I added some stamping over the paint... and stamped with some paint...


The final step is to rub lightly over the raised areas using Inka Gold or another metallic medium - this color is called Old Silver. Even with the lightweight label paper, the dimension still shows... I'm so glad to know that, since I have a wooden box to alter - I think this technique will be a great way to give it new life!


Here's a closer look at the finished piece (sentiment is from the Maya clear set).



Thanks for visiting me today! xo
Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Chameleon Markers

Today on Splitcoast, in addition to Lydia's beautiful Gilded Relief technique (look for my sample tomorrow!), the Product Focus team is testing out Chameleon Pens! My set arrived the day before we left for our trip to Indonesia, so I haven't had a lot of time to really come up with an in-depth review, but I have had some fun playing with these, and I have a few samples in the PF gallery as well.


Some thoughts... I like them! The markers are a lot of fun to play with. I thought initially that the blending time would make me impatient, but I've found that I use that time to plan my next coloring location, and it hasn't bothered me at all. Typically I blend for 5 seconds before coloring again... unless I have music on, and then I completely lose track.


 The markers do have their limitations, and they're not meant to replace traditional alcohol markers, but they do play well together. For me, the strength of these markers is in their ability to blend in small areas. Their selling point is the gradated shading, and that's fun to work with.


The full set of markers comes with some replacement nibs, which is great. I had some streaking issues with the brush nib, but I actually preferred working with the smaller nib, because it was easier for me to keep it upright for optimum blending... I usually use a brush tip on its side, and that's not best for this type of blending.


One tip for mixing colors - on one of my samples I wanted to add some deeper blended shading with the black pen, and when I use it over my previous coloring, the blender fluid caused my coloring to fade just slightly... next time I'll do the black shading first and then color over the top.

If you've been curious about these pens, come check out the reviews and samples. You'll find tons of info and videos in Chameleon Pens' forum as well!
Thanks for stopping by!