Friday, 23 December 2016

Let It Snow

I'm sharing this sweet little Christmas plaque which was inspired by a box of Clementines I recently bought.  The box was made of lovely thin Balsa wood and I knew I wanted to do something with it so you can imagine how delighted I was when I found it was quite easy to cut with scissors.
I used black StazOn and a Crafty Individuals stamp for the sentiment and I really liked the pale faded effect of the ink.  I mounted this onto the hessian, fraying the edges and then backed it with a thick piece of board.  The plaque is edged with Stickles glitter glue in bronze and for me that was enough bling.  It sits on a mini easel which shows it off just nicely.
I hope your Christmas preparations are complete and you are able to relax and enjoy a well-earned festive drink - whatever that may be.

Wishing you all a very

 Merry Christmas


Friday, 16 December 2016

Christmas Journal

Hi there and I hope you are well and truly advanced with your Christmas preparations.  This year although I've had more going on than usual, I've managed to keep up with my JYC album and so I'm sharing the first of several pages with you today.

Unlike previous years my pages are really focused on the journaling this time round: recording the here and now and so there are few photographs so far but this was always the main intention of the project.  To photograph or not to photograph, the choice is always ours.
This page records when I started to notice the signs of Christmas this year, which I have to say I felt were really subtle unless I've been walking round with blinkers on. 
I've used a mix of papers, gift tags and stickers to create the panel on the left, journaling directly onto the white background card.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

The Last ATCs for 2016

Today I'm sharing the last 3 ATC cards swapped at UKATC for this year.  I joined both themes for December, green and film stars but only scanned one set before posting.
So here we are with the green theme.  As we'd already swapped our 12 Days of Christmas ATCs  I didn't want to make these Christmas themed. 
Starting with card top left, I inked the white card with StazOn green first before stamping the leaves onto white card with clear heat embossing powder to give them a frosty finish. These were then cut out and layered.
For the ATC underneath, I stamped the backing with Crafty Individuals' crackle stamp in Distress Ink Black Soot and layered with a Flonzecraft stamp in StazOn green. 
 The card on the right is stamped throughout using StazOn green.  Starting with the main card back stamped with Crafty Individuals' lace stamp, it was layered with a swirl design (forgot the stamp manufacturer again) and topped with another CI image, also green although it looks black.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

Christmas Tags Take Three

Here we are then, the last 2 UKACT Christmas Tags.

For the tag on the left I detoured from the usual festive colours and chose orange. I used a white tag but inked it all over first with Distress Ink in Spiced Marmalade before using Crafty Individuals' stamps crackle background and reindeer in DI Rusty Hinge.
Back with festive red for the last tag (sorry I can't remember the make of the stamp).  I stamped the lovely Scandinavian-themed stamp onto white card with DI Festive Berries, then cut into strips, outlining the edges with silver pen. 

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Christmas Tags Part Two

Here are 2 more tags made for the  UKATC Christmas Tag swap.
Sticking with an icy theme the tag at the top was dry embossed using a Cuttlebug snowflake embossing folder with blue sparkles in the snowflake centres.  Next I dropped some thin blue watercolour paint onto white watercolour paper and let it mix and run, inking the torn edge with Distress Ink in Broken China. The sentiment is from Crafty Individuals, also stamped in Broken China.
The bottom tag was sprayed with Tattered Angels' Glimmer Mist in Astral then inked and stamped with a music score in Broken China. The focal sentiment was stencilled using white moulding paste and the smaller ones are from the Crafty Individuals' word block stamp.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Christmas Tags Part One

Today I'm sharing 2 of the 6 tags made for the recent UKATC  Christmas Tag swap. 
The tag on the left uses a lovely Crafty Individuals' word block stamp on a white tag.  The main background was stamped using Distress Ink in Festive Berries, with the smaller mat heat embossed in white on red card.  The reindeer was die cut from silver mirror card, even though it looks blue.
For the green tag I used Tim Holtz faded dots stencil and white moulding paste then added the die cut tree, cut from a Cricut Christmas cartridge, with some added glitter sparkle.  The sentiment you'll recognise from the word block stamp.
More tags to come over the next couple of weeks, along with the last ATCs for this year, possibly a 'Journal Your Christmas' page or 2 and whatever else I can find time to make.

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Christmas Cards

Although I still do a lot of paper crafting, I don't make many cards these days unless it's for a special occasion and then usually only for close family.  Today however I'm sharing a couple of Christmas 'Thank You' cards.
I chose a dotted card mat on white card blanks and used Crafty Individuals' stamps throughout, with Distress Ink in Festive Berries and Broken China.
For this one I also used Tim Holtz faded dots stencil on the card blank.  The dotted card mat is a light grey although it looks blue in the picture.
The focal image looks much paler than it is; here's a close-up.


Friday, 25 November 2016

Figure Painting

Today I'm sharing a watercolour painting I completed recently of a figure.  I've been working a lot on nude figures lately (all from artist reference books) and this is only the second clothed figure I've attempted.
Clearly I need a lot more practice, not least on painting faces and fabric folds but overall I feel this is a step in the right direction. I even managed to stop 'fiddling' with it before I ruined it and that's a first, so progress in all directions.  The trousers particularly turned out well.
In case you're wondering I used Winsor & Newton Professional watercolour tubes and Langton 140lb NOT watercolour paper.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Journal Your Christmas 2016

It's nearly that time again - yes the annual 'Journal Your Christmas' class with Shimelle Laine which starts on 1st December.  I've been taking part in this event since 2010 and really enjoy journaling the festivities and each year I look back at previous albums and see how our celebrations have changed.
This year will be a very different Christmas for us and one which I want to capture in my album as marking a turning point in our family traditions.  I've already completed my album cover and made all the date tags to add to the pages, so I'm ready to start.

I made my album again this year using the Bind-it-All and 8" x 8" bracket covers from Teresa Collins.  I inked the edges of the cover in StazOn red ink and started with a sheet of red paper with the addition of a torn piece of music script for 'The Christmas Child'.  Annoyingly the picture is blurred, even using the close up option on my camera.
I used a large stencil and white moulding paste for the word 'Journal' and typed the rest of the album title.
A simple cover but I've found over the years that if I add to much there is a danger of the embellishments snagging on other albums on the shelf and getting torn off.
Inside the album I've used Bind-it-All moveable page protectors which will hold the red and green card backing for each day's photos, journaling and embellishments.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

The First Christmas Post

But not the first Christmas projects as I've just completed my 12 Christmas ATCs and 6 large Christmas tags for swaps over at UKATC.  I'll share the tags at a later date when the swap is complete but today I'm posting a tag made for a secret Santa gift.

I cut the kraft card rectangle to 2 1/2" x 4" and rounded the corners, inserting the grommet using a Crop-a-Dile.

The background was sprayed with Tattered Angels' Glimmer Mist in Sugar Maple then heat embossed with white powder.  This is a large, word block stamp from Crafty Individuals and an incredibly versatile one which I highly recommend adding to your collection.  I didn't want to use the whole stamp so masked out areas with sticky notes so I only stamped the wording I wanted.

A restrained tag by my standards and certainly compared to the ones I made for the swap but sometimes it's good to try something out of your comfort zone. 

Thursday, 10 November 2016

No Faces, No Wings, No Leaves but Collage

That's the theme over at Art Journal Journey this month and as usual there's some fabulous inspiration so do take a peak.
My inspiration comes from Armistice Day and the Poppy Appeal and I deliberately left the page fairly plain because I wanted the poppy to do the talking.
  I started by sticking torn pages from a dictionary as my background and then painted the poppy using watercolour paint, so the dictionary pages show through.
I stencilled the word 'Peace' using black StazOn ink and typed the rest of my sentiment to collage underneath.

Monday, 17 October 2016

The Colours of Autumn

The theme at Art Journal Journey this month as chosen by Valerie is  'Indian Summer - Golden October - Autumn'  and there are some wonderful entries showcasing the colours and textures of the season.   I chose to focus on the colours and movement of the season but this theme could be interpreted in lots of ways so click HERE to find inspiration for your own page.
I love the colours of Autumn as the leaves change and I tried to capture that feeling of leaves falling from the trees, adding to the collection already on the ground.
I started by dropping very wet watercolour paint in red, yellow and brown onto dry paper then tilting the page to allow the colours to mix and run.  To this I added a few dabs of darker brown and bright yellow here and there to brighten the faded look
Using an acrylic leaf stamp pressed into the wet paint as it dried I managed to create faint outlines of the leaf in an attempt to add texture and depth.
A few cut out leaves, inked with half red, yellow or orange StazOn and stamped onto orange and brown card, added to the depth to create a sense of motion.  

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Artist Trading Cards

This is a scheduled post for the September ATC partner swap at UKATC
First off I chose a travel theme, using a piece cut from an old atlas and on the left you just see the white texture paste added with Tim Holtz clock stencil.
The globe is stuck on with 3D foam pads to give dimension.  The Eiffel Tower is stamped using Distress Ink in Frayed Burlap onto card stamped with Crafty Individuals' script stamp and DI Pumice Stone.

Next I used watercolour to paint the sunset background, then stamped the Inkylicious dandelions in DI Black Soot. The sentiment is from the same stamp.
Finally I decided to use some of the odd letters I have left from different alphabet sets.  The background is cut from an old dictionary page and whilst I didn't have a clear plan for this card, I like the way it turned out.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

This Year's Road Trip

I haven't disappeared for good, just been busy at work and then on holiday.  We've been back a week but I'm still trying to get into the old routines and failing, so I opted to scrap our first destination.
We spent a few days in Las Vegas as I've never been and I have to say the first day I didn't like it at all but it grew on me and I would definitely go back for a few days if ever in that part of America again.
So here's the first scrapbook layout dedicated to our time in Las Vegas and to represent that false, glitzy, in-your-face city I wanted a busy, bright and full-on layout. 
We went on the Big Red Bus Tour of the city which included a really helpful map so I've used a section of that as the background and some of the labelled pictures to add to my own photos.
The wooden lettering was sprayed with Krylon paint and dotted with Stickles to add a bit more glitz and the little bag stapled to the top contains a souvenir betting chip.


Thursday, 8 September 2016

Quick Sketch of a Twig

Another scheduled post today as I'm busy with work at the moment.  This time a twig which I picked up whilst walking round the loch. 
It's drawn in charcoal again, using the paper stump to blend the tones and I also experimented more with heavy and light pressure to give the twig some shape.

It's a little fatter than the real thing but overall I've captured the shape and I found that it was relatively easy to describe some of the finer detail around the two tiny branches. I used a kneadable rubber to 'remove' the highlights along the twig.