Saturday, May 20, 2017

rough masking...

Hello my fabulous friends!

Today I wanted to challenge myself... Not just by participating in a challenge, but stretching myself beyond my normal comfortable rut...  Not that there is anything wrong with a nice rut, but sometimes you need to step out of it and try new things.

Stamps: Essentials By Ellen Fancy Thanks, Bokeh Dots, Courage
Ink: Altenew Sand Dunes, Frayed Leaf, Deep Iris, Lavender Fields; Clearly Kelly Urban set 

I very seldom do a true single layer card... as in, the stamping is done right on the front of the card base... I think it's because if I stamp on a separate panel, I don't have to be quite as afraid of messing up the whole card... But I wanted to challenge myself a little. 

I actually had a lot of fun with it!

I started out by stamping the sentiment. No, I didn't need to use a MISTI for this, but I wanted a nice crisp impression, and the MISTI ensures that if the first try is slightly splotch it can be fixed, no problem. 

Next I added three sketchy circles.. I LOVE these circles! They are so fun! 

The three-some arranged in a triangle is a common design principle that reliably looks pleasing to the eye. Odd numbers and visual triangles just tend to look good. 

 It's one of those things you learn in art class...

Next I added some clusters of flowers. These flowers are layers from the new Courage set. 

This set was designed to support Breast Cancer Research. This means a lot to me. I've known several women who have fought breast cancer. Both my Grandmothers died from cancer. My dad had cancer years ago (he's been in the clear for a good 10 plus years!). And currently my mom is fighting colon cancer. Cancer is such a horrible disease that affects SO many people in many different ways. Research gets us closer to a cure.. And a cure to one kind of cancer gets us just that much closer to a cure to other kinds of cancer. Together we can win a war that no one, on their own, could hope to beat. 

(sorry for the soapbox... back to stamping...)

Normally I am a meticulous masker... In other words, when I build scenes I start with the image in the fore front, then carefully mask it to add things in behind.... I wanted to stretch myself, so I didn't mask the flowers at all... They are layered right on top of the circles, and you can see the circles through the flowers... 

At first it really bothered me... (I'm a BIT of a perfectionist....) But when I let myself just relax with it, I ended up liking the look and the freedom of not having to mask.

I did do a LITTLE rough masking... I've been watching some videos of people building backgrounds using this technique... Where you mask your image (in this case my flower), but only very roughly. Instead of stamping the flower on another paper and fussy cutting it so it covers the image perfectly, I just tore a piece of post-it note into the approximate curve of the flower and went with it. 

It isn't perfect, but I really wanted to see if I could do the technique and like it. I love the results in other people's projects, but I wasn't sure I could pull it off... (did I mention I'm a bit of a perfectionist? LOL!)

Ok... Here's a close up of some of the stamping. 

I really liked the sketchy, imperfect look of not doing detailed masking.. And it has the benefit of being far less stressful and time consuming! Apparently masking is one of the reasons cards take me so long to make... This one was super fast and easy!

 This project was inspired by Ellen Hutson's PinSights challenge for May.. 
Aren't those colors just GORGEOUS???

There's plenty of time left to join in this challenge... 


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

a little different blending...

Hello my fabulous friends!

I just wanted to stop in real quick today to share what I've been working on today (in-between the yard work and house cleaning)...

Stamps: Altenew Garden Treasure; Essentials By Ellen Fancy Thanks
Dies: Spellbinders Belly Band One
Paper: Strathmore Bristol; Heartfelt Creations Daphne Collection
Other: Pretty Pink Posh Sparkling Clear sequins, clear embossing powder

In the details...
Like I often do, I started out by stamping the images on Bristol paper with VersaMark ink and heat embossing with clear embossing powder. I didn't color it the same way I usually do though.. I wanted a more distinctive color change from the pink to the yellow than my usual technique would give. So, I started out by scribbling a little Light Brown Zig Clean Color at the base of a petal, and a little Pale Rose Clean Color at the top of the petal. I then took my water brush and blended the Light Brown up about a third of the way, and cleaned the brush. I then blended the Pale Rose down about a third of the way. I then used the middle third to blend the two colors together. I dabbed off excess water from the center portion to make the colors lighter. I did that for each petal. I really like the soft blend between the two colors!

The leaves and remaining flowers where more my usual color layering.

The clear sequins were colored using my Peony Pink Chameleon Pen. I love doing this.. it turns out so pretty!  

I wanted to give the card a bit of a tattered and vintage feel, so I inked around the edges with Antique Linen Distress Ink. I then scruffed up the edges and went over the very edges of with a little Ground Espresso Distress Ink. I then took it over to my sewing machine and did a basic stitch around the edge. 

It's been a while since I've done that. My sewing machine has probably  been feeling rather neglected... Isn't it funny how our go-to techniques change? Re-visiting old favorites can be a lot of fun, and a great way to mix things up if you feel you're in a rut, or have creator's block...

I hope you have a wonderful day!


Thursday, May 4, 2017

amazing daisy...

Hello my fabulous friends!

After enjoying some serious sunshine this morning, the clouds have rolled in, and now I'm enjoying thunder... I have to admit, one of the things I miss about where I grew up, is the thunderstorms.  I love a good thunderstorm, and we very rarely get a GOOD one where I live now... 


On to today's project!

Paper:  Strathmore Bristol; WRMK washi sheets;
white card stock
Stamps: Altenew Spring Daisy,  Amazing You
Dies: Tim Holtz Mixed Media
Other: Angelina Fibers Gold Iris; clear embossing powder

I have had this random sheet of Bristol paper sitting on my work table for quite a while... I had stamped some different daisies and leaves from the Spring Daisy stamp set with VersaMark, and embossed with clear embossing powder for another project, and ended up not using these one.. I figured it was time to use them!

So, I watercolored my flowers and leaves using Zig Clean Color markers. Getting the exact color I wanted took a little experimenting. For my flowers, I ended up doing my light base layer in Light Violet so when the rather bright Pink was layered on top, it brought in cooler shadows and help tone down the color somewhat. With the little bits of Wine Red into the shadows it pulled it right to the perfect magenta color I wanted. 

I have learned that with these markers, you can get a TON of different colors by mixing up what colors you layer together. 

After fussy cutting each flower and leaf, I played around with the arrangement. When I got things how I wanted them, I covered the whole arrangement with Glad Press n' Seal, and pressed down.. making sure to rub over all the different components of my arrangement so they all stuck to the plastic.

Doing this allows me to pick everything up (without things shifting) and flip it over to add adhesive. After the adhesive is added to the back, I can put it on the card where I want it, and gently peel off the Press n' Seal off and add a little glue to any areas that may need it. I have never had any problems with the adhesive on the plastic ruining a project... it is tacky enough to hold it, but won't hurt it. 

I die cut this awesome background using Tim Holtz's Mixed Media die, and layered that on top of a card base covered with a WRMK black Washi Sheet.... 

I wanted to add a little texture and bling, so I put some dry adhesive on my card, and made a messy nest of Angelina Fibers. I then glued the flower cluster over top to help ensure they don't go anywhere.

I really like these thin tinsel like, fusable fibers... There are so many things you can do with them! 
For more inspiration and techniques using these fibers, click HERE.

This project was inspired by Altenew's May inspiration challenge... I love all the amazing projects that get entered into this challenge! So much inspiration! Check it out HERE!