Wednesday 30 March 2016

Some moody watercolours

Hello everyone and thanks for dropping in here today.
Those of you who follow my blog and my work will know that I LOVE stamps. I am sure I have hundreds of them, if not more. BUT.... their one draw back is that they can make you lazy. It's so quick to ink up a stamp and press it down. Creating your own art work does take a lot longer....

Anyway, I thought it was high time to take out my paints and pencils once more and do some original artwork, going back to my first love, - watercolour.
So, today, as I am on holiday and have a little more time, I am sharing some of my recent watercolour explorations. A series of moody watercolours and a little portrait.

It's a story from winter into Spring, - so here goes:
A wintry one with the last patches of snow
Evening sun set
Pale winter sun in the late afternoon
River bank (the composition went wrong and I ran out of space for the foreground tree, - duh)....
This was meant to be more Spring like, but it all got a bit dark. I think I have been rather influenced by the weather here which has been rather dark lately.

And here is a little child's portrait, children's faces always fascinate me, it's so hard to capture their innocence...

Well, that's it for today, thanks for visiting and indulging me with my little arty efforts. I'll be back with some more crafty/ mixed media projects soon, meanwhile, hope you get time to do something creative!

Tuesday 29 March 2016

Crafty fun

Hello all and I hope you  had a good Easter. I'm on holiday right now as the school where I work has an Easter break, so way more time for crafting, yay!
Today I want to share a fun little craft project that I have been wanting to do for a while. Actually most of my time is spent on brushing up my water colour techniques as I want to start a nature sketchbook/journal, but it was fun to do some craft stuff in between. These are two bookmarks, each with their own little folder, a fun gift for a friend who loves reading. Here is a more detailed look at the first one:
The folder was made from Kraft card, darkened with Vintage photo Distress Ink.
It's slightly wider than twice the bookmark width with an addition 1/2 " score mark on the spine to allow room for embellishments on the bookmark. I then used one of the Tim Holtz mixed media 1 dies to cut an opening and added some die cuts and twine etc to embellish the front.

The second one was kept simpler, I just added some stencilling and then embellished in a similar way.
Below is a closer look at the two book marks:
Here is number one. I used some Inkilicious stamps and one of the Tim Holtz Wildflower diecuts. The bookmark itself was made with the Sue Wilson Striplets Lattice Window die.
The second one was made in a very similar way, using the same dies and stamps and Distress Inks for colouring.

Well that's it from me for today. Hope you are having a good week and thanks for your visit like always!

Saturday 26 March 2016

Happy Easter

Hello dear friends and followers. Just a little post to wish you all a wonderful Easter and to thank you for all your support!!
I made a quick card and will do a short step by step of how I made it.
I started by cutting two large tickets with the Tim Holtz large ticket die by Sizzix.
I cut one of the dies from the Mixed Media 2 set by Tim Holtz out of the first ticket and then coloured it with Distress Spray stains, Twisted Citron, Peeled Paint, Ground Espresso and a tiny bit of Antiqued Bronze for some subtle shimmer (can't see it on the photo).
On the bottom ticket I glued a piece of old book paper, darkened it a bit with Vintage Photo and then glued the two tickets together. Finally I added some splats with Ground Espresso.
I stamped one of the Dina Wakley Scribbly small birds, coloured it with my Derwent Inktense pencils and a waterbrush and then fussy cut it. As you can see I cut off the feet, - too fiddly and easy enough to draw in later.....
I also cut some of the Tim Holtz Wildflower dies, coloured them with various colours of Distress inks and then glued them together at the bottom.
Now all I needed to do was layer it up, first I tied some twine around the card, added a little Ideaology heart charm and then matted it on white thin card and a top folding card blank made from dark brown Core d'nations card. 
I added some white shading with a Stabilo All pencil to the top of the flowers to make them pop a bit more.
I re-drew the feet and adhered the bird with some foam squares.
And here a close up of the heart charm, fasted with a jump ring.

Wishing you all a very happy Easter if you celebrate it, and may you all feel alive and well!!!
Thank you for your visit

Thursday 24 March 2016

Inspired by 2.... Messages of Spring

Hello all, today I am sharing my second "inspired by" piece and this time the artist I was inspired by is Susan Winget. I especially love her nature paintings, - if you don't know her, I have a Pinterest board dedicated to her, you can find it here
I did not copy any of her pieces directly, I just kind of followed her style (and boy do I have a lot to learn still). I used a combination of watercolours, Derwent Inktense pencils and some stamping with both Archival and Distress Inks.
This is the only focal stamp I used, it's by Inkylicious and I coloured it with Inktense pencils.
The bird and branches were hand painted, fantasy style. I put it in a little frame like Susan often does. I apologize for the fuzzy photo.
The butterfly is also hand painted. I really struggled with that one and did not find it easy at all to get the shape right, much more practice needed me thinks.
Here you can see some more of the background stamping, the little crown is from the Tim Holtz Correspondence set and the letters from Documented set. The swirls around the edges are a Stepmel Glede stamp.

Well that's pretty much it. I enjoyed kind of going back to doing some hand drawing and painting, so expect to see more.....
Thank you for dropping by here today

Tuesday 22 March 2016

Inspired by 1....She Dreamt...

Hello everyone, thanks for dropping in. I don't know about you, but I so often get inspired by different blogs or things I find in places like Pinterest. I decided to start a new little blog series that I am going to call "Inspired by". The piece I am sharing today was inspired by Froebel Sternchen Susi who paints incredibly expressive faces almost every day.

During the weekend I had some time to play in my journal and decided to try out my new Distress Crayons and decided to include a face drawing.
I covered a double page in my journal with Tissue wrap and then with a thing layer of gesso.
I used a Bingo Stencil and grunge paste, did some background stamping, added some colour with a mix of Distress Crayons and then did some stencilling, wit the crayons too, rubbing the colour away with a baby wipe. Love the textural effect, definitely something to explore further.
Next I sketched a face with a Stabilo All pencil and added subtle bits of colour with the crayons and a tiny bit of white acrylic paint. I also added a few strips of Tissue Tape and more background stamping of course,
The heart was cut with a Sizzix/Tim Holtz die and then again coloured with the crayons and some stencilling.
Because I thought the girl looked quite sad, I gave her some tear drops, and finally the sentiment was computer generated and that was pretty much it.

Hope you are having a good week with some creative time in it..... Thanks for your visit like always

Monday 21 March 2016

A card to fit the person for Calico Craft Parts

Hello all, another preview day I'm sorry to say.... I have a somewhat different card (well for me anyway) over on the Calico Blog. Here is a preview, -  one of the elements of my card:
To see the rest, just CLICK here

Thanks for your visit like always and have a good week!

Saturday 19 March 2016

Spring flowers for Shimmerz

Hello all, - it's my turn today to share a project over on the Shimmerz blog, so just a little preview here...

To see the full project, like usual, all you need to do is CLICK HERE and I wanted to also say how much I appreciate all of you, specially those who take the time to hop over.....

Thank you for being here and have a wonderful weekend!

Friday 18 March 2016

Finally a Friday Freebie Happy Easter/Spring Time

As some of you know I used to regularly share Friday Freebies some years back. Then things took me in other directions and I have not posted one for ages and ages. But today for all those of you who enjoy them, some Easter papers, tags and tickets for you to use.

My T.O.U are simple, - you can use these papers in whatever way you want, you are welcome to sell what you make. The only thing I ask is that you don't sell them in the form they are. 
The papers are designed to be printed 8 x 8, but of course you can re-size them. The tag sheet is designed to be printed on an A4 sheet. If you need a different size, please email me and I will see what I can do.

Enjoy your Easter/ Spring Time crafting and thanks for your visit!

Monday 14 March 2016

Background fun

Hello all and thanks for dropping in! Well the weekend was here and I had some time to play, yay, - so I experimented in my techniques journal and played with  a new background technique, (well for me anyway). Here first of all is the finished page:
I'll give you a quick run down on how I did the background. Mine was inspired by a video I watched on Youtube by Blanche Siegmann from La Blanche stamps.

There are 3 main steps to it: You need Ranger or indeed La Blanche speciality stamping paper, - I used Ranger and it worked fine.
Step 1 - cover your page with Metallic Distress Stain (I used Brushed Pewter).
Step 2 - When stain has dried, swipe over it with a Distress Ink Pad, I used two blue tones, Salty Ocean and Tumbled Glass. You can blend the colours a bit with a blending tool if you want.
Step 3 - Take some stencils of your choice, a damp cloth or baby wipe, gently rub over the stencil and the colour will lift. After that I did some more stencilling, this time using Archival ink in coffee.

I finished the background by doing some background stamping, using La Blanche stamps, and both Archival Black and gold acrylic paint.

Here is the finished background and I have to say I am pretty pleased with it and will definitely use this technique again.

Here you can maybe see a bit how the stamping in Black and gold kind of works together. Unfortunately it's almost impossible to pick up the subtle shimmer of the gold paint.

I added a few thin strips of old book paper and tissue tape for a bit more interest.

To finish the page I stamped a few Ephemera pieces, again, using various La Blanche stamps.
I also used a vintage photo from  a 7 Dots Studio  collection.
And here is the finished page.
With a rusted up pen nib added to the little paper strips.
And here at last the finished page glued in place in my journal.

Well, that's it for today, have a good week and stay creative! Thanks for your visit like always

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