Friday, May 27, 2016

Technique of the Week: More Fun With Vellum

This week I’m showing you another fun way to color vellum. With this technique you can make an easy, fast card that has beautiful pops of color. I got this from Jennifer McGuire, and changed it up just a little.

You will need dye based ink, vellum, stamps, Versamark, and white embossing powder. I think White Diamond embossing powder would work very well for this also, but I needed to make some sympathy cards, and I didn’t want them to be too sparkly. I used Distress inks for this because at 60 colors, they have a huge range of colors to choose from, and they worked very well. For stamps I used Magenta Dogwood Branch 0643.P and With Sympathy 07.928.I. 

I took a piece of 48# vellum and cut it to 4” x 6”. I scored it at 5” and made a flap to fasten it around the top of the mat card after I finished coloring and stamping. I used the Distress cubes to add the color, since you can color smaller areas with them. Using the Wilted Violet color first, I rubbed the pad directly onto the vellum.    

I then rubbed the color with a clean cloth until it was no longer shiny and wet. I did this in different sections with each of the three colors.

Making sure the panel was dry, using my new mini MISTI (LOVE), I stamped the Dogwood Branch, and the sentiment onto the now colored vellum with Versamark ink. I embossed the stamping with JudiKins White Opaque embossing powder.

To enhance the Dogwood Branch image, I colored the inside of the dogwood petals with a white Prismacolor pencil. I went over the top of the coloring with a Wink of Stella clear glitter marker for just a touch of shimmer.

I made two more cards in this same way, using the same stamps, but different colors. They were amazingly fast and easy to do.

To finish the cards, I attached the panels to a piece of cardstock cut to 5.25” x 4”.  For the green/blue and the blue/purple ones, I used white as the backing, but for the orange/pink/blue one, I found that a piece of orange Stardream looked the best. I folded the scored flap over the top of the mat and attached it with scor tape. I put a little vellum tape along the sides and bottom of the colored panel. The entire matted pieces were attached to a base cards, which were cut and scored to an A2 size. 

For more step-by step pictures, plus close-up photos of each card, please go to my Backporch blog post here.

In our last order to Penny Black, Susie got a die called "Out to Sea." She recently made a couple of cards, and we wanted to share them with you here. We are taking paid pink sheet orders because everyone who sees these cards in person wants this beautiful die. We have taken some photos of them for you, but you should really see them in person, since the photos don't really do them justice. Many people think that the one that was cut from white is an embossed stamp.

It's not embossed, it's a die! Glossy paper was used, and the color in the background is alcohol ink, as is the color in the foreground of the one below.

Yes, it's one die. We think these cards are beautiful and elegant, and would make great guy cards!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Technique of the Week: Shine, Shine, Shine

This week’s technique features Wink of Stella brush pens on vellum paper.  You will be amazed at the shine you get when you use these pens on vellum.  I saw this technique on Jennifer McGuire’s blog and I couldn’t wait to try it.

To get started I cut a piece of 36# vellum to 4.25” x 5.5”. Because I planned to emboss my stamped image I used a powder tool over the surface of the paper. I put the paper in my MISTI and positioned the Magenta Azalea stamp (14.651.Q) from their Spring/Summer collection on my vellum paper. I picked it up with the cover of the MISTI and then inked it with Hero Arts Unicorn White Pigment Ink. Next I applied Judikin’s White Opaque Embossing powder over the stamped image.

When heating the embossing powder on vellum paper you need to be careful so that you don’t warp or melt your paper (speaking from experience unfortunately!) Before you direct your heat gun to your paper, let it run for about 30 seconds or so to be sure it is up to temperature. Keep the heat gun moving over the surface of your vellum. You can also heat it from the back of the paper, just be sure to keep the heat gun moving. It takes a bit longer to emboss on vellum but for your patience you’ll be rewarded with a beautifully embossed image. The embossing powder will act as a ridge to help remain within lines when you are painting.

I put the image on my craft sheet and collected my Wink of Stella pens. The Wink of Stella brush pens come in 15 colors, plus clear. I only have four pens – clear, dark pink, green and yellow, but after doing this technique I certainly plan to buy more!

Before I started I used a scrap piece of vellum to try some blending. I originally planned to blend some of the yellow with the green to create a yellow-green color for the leaves and blend some of the yellow with the dark pink to create a shade of orange for the center of the flowers. I ultimately decided to keep it simple and just use green, dark pink and clear for this image. 

I started with the leaves on the azalea image using my green pen. I started at the base and painted about half way down the leaf. Then I used my clear pen to blend the color to the tip of the leaf. I continued with all of the leaves in this manner. The Wink of Stella stays wet for a bit longer on vellum than it does on regular paper so you can blot up excess color with a paper towel, add more color or do more blending.


Once I finished the leaves, I started on the flower. I followed the same technique as with the leaves. I applied dark pink to the center and then used clear to blend the color out to the tips of each petal.  

To finish the card I adhered a piece of So Silk Beauty Pink (cut to 4.25” x 5.5”) to the front of an A2 card. Since I planned to add the frame you see in the photo. I applied 1/8” Scor Tape to the back of the vellum and then attached it to the front of the card. (As you can see from the photo, regular adhesive shows through vellum so if I hadn’t planned to add the frame I would have used Vellum adhesive to attach the image to the card.)

I cut a piece of textured white cardstock to 4.25” x 5.5” and then used Spellbinders A2 Matting Basics B (the 3 3/8” x 4 5/8” die) to cut a frame. To give the frame some dimension, I adhered foam tape to the back of the frame. I just cut the foam strips in half lengthwise as shown, removed the backing paper and adhered to the frame to the front of the card. I added a few iridescent sequins using Ranger Matte adhesive. I also like to use the Pico Shimmer embellisher to add an additional drop of shine on my sequins. I set the card aside to let it the sequins and Pico dry overnight.

Once I decided on the colors I was going to use for the image, this card came together very quickly so I hope you will give it a try. I encourage you to try blending the colors you have because these pens blend beautifully. This is another good technique where you can stamp several images at one time to have them available when you have a few minutes to paint. The photos don't fully capture the shimmer so please stop by Art 'n Soul to see this card in person. 

Friday, May 13, 2016

Technique of the Week: A New Use for Embossing Paste

This week’s technique uses embossing paste to accentuate and add dimension to watercolor painting. 

To create this card select a stencil that creates an outline.  The example uses Magenta Artist’s Flower, TM120.  Unfortunately, this stencil has been discontinued but we still have a few in the store.  Other Magenta stencils that would work well include Stylized Leaves (TM141); Bird (TM155); Dogwood (TM149) and Sunflower (TM148.)

Begin by placing a 4.25” x 5.5” piece of Tim Holtz Watercolor paper on your craft mat.  Place the stencil over the craft mat and tape it down so the stencil doesn’t move around when you are applying the embossing paste.  In my example I used Gold Metallic Imagine Craft Creative Medium Embossing Paste but Dreamweaver Embossing paste will also work. 

Use a palette knife to evenly apply the paste across the entire stencil.  Hold the knife at a 45 degree angle to the stencil as you apply the paste.  You can scrape off the excess and return it to the jar.  Remove the tape from the bottom and sides of the stencil, leaving the tape in place on the top. 

Lift the stencil (the top piece of tape will act like a hinge and allow you to lift the stencil evenly from your work.)  Remove the stencil and set your piece aside to dry for approximately an hour, depending on the thickness of the paste.  Immediately wash the stencil and palette knife with warm water to remove the paste from your tools. 

After the paste is completely dry you can begin painting.  You will need small watercolor brushes, water mixed with Perfect Pearls powder (1/4 tsp to 2 oz. of water) in a small bowl or cup, regular water in a small bowl or cup, and Nuance.  I painted the background first using Nuance colors of turquoise, cerulean blue and mauve; the leaves were done with grass green and jade; the flower was done with scarlet, hot pink and red.  Sprinkle a bit of each color into a palette but DO NOT add water to the colors.  You also need a cloth or paper towel to wipe your brush on as you paint.

Begin by using a paint brush to apply the Perfect Pearls water to a section of the background. 

Pick up a bit of the dry turquoise powder with your paint brush and dab it on the wet watercolor paper.  Keep adding more color and blend it over the wet area using dabbing motions.  To add another color, rinse your brush in the regular water, dry the brush on the towel, and then dip it lightly in the Perfect Pearls water.  Pick up a bit of the cerulean blue or mauve and apply it to the same section of the background and blend it with the turquoise using a dabbing motion. 

 As you finish one area, use your clean brush to apply more Perfect Pearls water in another section of the background.  Then apply more color and blend until you get the result you want.  If the colors are too dark, you can also dab the color off with a paper towel.  If the color flows into the leaf or flower, you can also dab it off with a paper towel.  When the background is complete, use a heat gun to dry it (or let it air dry.)

When the background is dry, use the same process to paint the leaf and stem with the greens.  Use less Perfect Pearls water on the leaves to prevent the color from flowing onto the background.  You can always add more water as needed.  Don’t blend the colors completely – you want to have shading on the leaves by leaving part of them lighter as if the sun was shining on them. 

When the leaves are dry, paint the flower with the shades of red, again leaving part of the petals lighter by blending out the color as if the sun was shining on the flower.

When the flower is dry, use an embossing powder tool on the lower right corner of the panel then stamp the Magenta sentiment “Think about you often, care about you always” (07.954.G) with VersaFine Vintage Sepia.  Emboss with JudiKins Clear Detail embossing powder.  The panel was then cut to 4”x 5.25”, adhered to a panel of Beauty Pink So Silk and then adhered to a panel of gold cardstock and finally adhered to an A2 card.

You can see the finished card at the store, as well as the card shown above, created with the Magenta Leaf stencil (TM141).  Magenta has other stencils such as a bird (TM155), Dogwood (TM 149) and Sunflower (TM148) would also work well with this technique.  The painting process goes more quickly than it sounds, provides a great finished product, and is really fun to do.  Paste several at a time, and you will have them to color when you wish. Using Perfect Pearls water, rather than regular water with the painting, adds a lovely shimmer to the card too.  I hope you will give it a try. 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Technique of the Week: Perfect Shine

One of the gems in our weekly newsletter is the Technique of the Week article. This week, Dianne tells you how to get shine in your stamping with Perfect Pearls powder. Here's her card:

Dianne used the Magenta stamp Flower Trio 14.641.M, and the Magenta sentiment Life is Beautiful 07.940.G. 

If you do not receive our newsletter, you can view the Newsletter archives by clicking on the link to the right of this post at the top. If you want to get our Newsletter in your inbox each week, please come by the shop and sign up, or email us and ask to be added. You will be glad you did.

This week in the newsletter we are announcing exciting new classes from Prismacolor artist Terry Medaris and local artist Sally Penley. There is a link to the right of this post at the top for the Art 'n Soul calendar, which will have all of our classes listed. You can come by to sign up, or call us and sign up over the phone with your credit card.

We hope to see you soon!

To view additional photos and a step by step how to for our technique of the week, please visit Dianne's blog "Backporch" by clicking here.