Thursday, March 30, 2017

Technique of the Week: Painting your Stamps with Nuance

This post is in conjunction with the Art 'n Soul Newsletter  article, "Technique of the Week". This card and technique is also featured on the Magenta blog today.

The stamp I chose was the beautiful Magenta Clover Silhouette designed by the talented Ellie Knoll, 48.011.L. You could use any stamp that has a lot of solid surface rather than outlines. The sentiment is another Magenta favorite, Sending you Sunshine 07.952.F. I also chose to use some of the newest colors of Nuance, but really any colors of Nuance would also look great.

I used the MC27 Round Shape Mask for this technique. You get two pieces with this template: the outside of the circle, which covers your card and leaves the circle open to work in; and the circle itself.

I put Nuance powder onto my craft mat in little piles. I inked the stamp with Versamark ink (clear, sticky ink) to help the colors stick. Then, using a damp brush, I picked up Nuance powder from my mat and painted it onto the solid areas of the stamp.

I spritzed the stamp to activate the color, and stamped it onto a piece of watercolor cardstock. I stamped off onto a second piece of cardstock, and then repeated the process to have a second image on my card.

The panel that I stamped off onto will make a second card, but the image will be a little lighter.

Once I had stamped the image twice, I removed the template and dried the image carefully. I placed the inside of the template (the circle) over the stamped images to mask them. I then tapped Nuance powder all around the circular mask, and spritzed the powder with water. You could also do the outside of the circle first; it works either way.

To define the circle around the main image further, I first dried the background, and then placed the template with the open circle back on the panel, and drew around the circle with a green Micron  01 pen.

I sprayed water onto the rest of the Nuance on my mat, and picked up some with a brush and flicked spots onto the background image. Last, I added a sentiment and mounted it to a card.

I used 4 of the 5 newest Magenta Nuance colors for this project: Chartreuse, Bright Green, Lagoon, and Old Rose.

For more photos of this process, please visit my Backporch blog here.

This technique was really fun, and was not hard to do. Try it out on any stamps you may have with a lot of solid surface.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Technique of the Week: Split Cards by Dianne Johnson

This post is in conjunction with the Art 'n Soul newsletter article for Technique of the Week. I adapted this card from a post on Jennifer McGuire's blog. I love the idea of being able to make two cards at almost the same time.

To do this technique, you need to be able to stamp your image in the same spot on two different pieces of cardstock. The easiest way to do this is to use a MISTI stamping tool, or similar product.

I used my new stamp from Magenta, 44.024.Q, Zen Bouquet, and arranged it in the MISTI toward the bottom of a piece of pink cardstock cut to 4.25" x 5.5". I stamped with Versamark ink and embossed it with clear embossing powder.

I then put a piece of Neenah Solar White 80# cardstock cut to the same size into the MISTI, and stamped the image with Memento Tuxedo Black ink, which is a Copic friendly ink. 

It's been a while since I busted out my Copic markers, but it was really fun to get them out and use them again. I chose Copic colors RV32, RV34, and V06 for the pinks; YR12, YR16, and YR18 for the oranges, and YG93, YG95, and YG97 for the leaves.

I am by no means an expert Copic user, but the way I learned to color with them is to use 2 or 3 colors in the same general hue, and use the lightest color first to color all over. Then add the medium color in areas you want darker. Go back to the lightest and color all over; then add the darkest in areas you want dark. Then blend with the medium. Don't color too large an area with one color because if it dries it's harder to blend. If you just use 2 colors, that's perfectly ok too.

I was very much enjoying coloring the blossoms and started with the pinks; then moved on to the oranges.

It was after this that things went horribly wrong. I was thinking of adding some purples and I tested some colors on a scrap piece of cardstock, completely unaware that my scrap was resting OVER my card panel. If you know anything about Copics, you know that one drawback of them is that they do bleed through your paper.

I tried everything I could think of to fix the problem, including a sand eraser and a Copic 0 blender. Everything I tried just made things worse. I mean, there was going to be no covering this with a sequin! I literally did not have time to start over, and still make my blog post deadline.

I ended up cutting my cardstock straight in from the edges on either side until I reached the top of the large blossom, and then fussy cut along the top of the blossom. This got rid of the offending stain. I added pink cardstock at the top and stamped my sentiment there.

Before I fixed the top of the white card, I put both cards together and cut them in two about halfway through the stamped images. The cut was in the same place on both cards. This gave me 4 pieces to mix and match up onto 2 cards - two colored pieces, and two plain, embossed pieces.

To complete the cards, I stamped a sentiment that I designed for Magenta for the new Spring collection, 07.968.H "You are Amazing just the way you are" in Versafine Onyx Black ink. I added a few sequins and some dots with the Pico Embellisher. I added a gold peel off strip between the top pink panel and the bottom colored panel on one card, and added a bit more of the pink cardstock at the top to compensate for the part I had to cut away.

I really like how these fraternal twins turned out, and I love this sentiment that I think really goes with the overall theme of the cards. Whether you are brightly colored or more plain, you are Amazing just the way you are!

I hope you will give this technique a try. The hardest thing about it was cutting into my coloring. You do not have to use Copics to color. You can use other markers, or color pencils. You can also use watercolors if you use watercolor cardstock. For more photos of the process, including a picture of my blobby mistake, please link to my Backporch blog here.

Amazing news!

Our Distress Oxide inks have actually shipped from Ranger, and should be delivered on Thursday, March 23! We had been told it would be a wait of at least 6 weeks, so we are overjoyed! We will also be receiving some other Ranger products, including the new Distress crayons and crayon tins. If you want any of these products, we advise you to call or come in and make a paid pre-order to reserve your product from the order. When they are gone, it will be a long wait to get more, so don't miss out!

Our Impression Obsession order has arrived! We have filled pre-orders and if you ordered, you should have received a call. We have lots of extra stamps and dies from this order, so hurry in for best selection.

We still have lots of fabulous stamps and stencils from the Magenta trunk show, but they are going fast! We also still have a few of the newest Nuance colors left also.

There are still a few spots left in the Sally Penley Mini Masterpiece class Saturday March 25, 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.. If you would like to come, please call us and sign up; you will not regret it! This class is going to be lots of fun!


Friday, March 17, 2017

Technique of the Week: Happy St. Patrick's Day by Pam Nelson

Today’s card combines a stencil, embossing paste and Nuance powders. 

I saw a version of this idea some time ago on Heather Telford’s Blog but unfortunately I couldn’t find the specific blog post again to share with you.  However, you can see her blog here and she’s a very talented artist.  I also drew from techniques I have learned from our talented Marj Marion and Lynell Harlow, creator of Dreamweaver Stencils. 

To start, cut a piece of Black Hopsack cardstock to 4 ¼” x 5 ½” and tape the long sides to the craft mat.  Tape Tim Holtz Latticework Stencil (THS012) to the cardstock, being sure that it is straight.  Usually I would put post-it notes along the edges but I skipped this step as I planned to trim the cardstock down after the stencil paste dried.  The outside border of the stencil provided enough protection to the side panels of the cardstock.

Use a spatula, held at a 45 degree angle to apply embossing paste over the stencil.  This example uses Dreamweaver Pearlescent Embossing Paste because I wanted extra shine on the card.  

After the entire stencil is covered with the paste, sprinkle it liberally with two of the newest Nuance colors, Bright Green and Chartreuse.  In this example the chartreuse is more of a highlight and the bright green was used more heavily.  

Spritz the Nuance with water mixed with Perfect Pearls (1/4 teaspoon Perfect Pearls to 2 oz. of water) until the Nuance is dissolved.

Remove the tape from one side of the stencil, leaving the other side taped down.  Lift the untaped edge (the taped side will act as a hinge allowing you to lift the stencil smoothly.) 

Remove the stencil and then put it in some warm water to avoid letting the paste dry.  

Use the edge of a paper towel to wick up puddles of water from the embossed design.  Remove the tape from the cardstock and lift off the craft mat.  Gently wipe any excess paste off the short edges of the cardstock. 

Use a heat gun to gently dry the embossing paste, heating the bottom side of the paper and then the top side of the paper.  The steam will be trapped between the layers of the embossing paste and will start to gently bubble.  Lynell Harlow called this technique “Molten Magic.”  Continue heating the top and bottom of the piece until the paste is dry.  This technique gives a fun texture to your card and enhances the Nuance colors.

This is a close-up view of the embossing paste as it starts to bubble.
The larger bubbles will collapse, leaving a fun texture on the surface.

Trim the embossed piece to 3 ½” x 5 ½”.  Cut a piece of white pearl cardstock to 3 7/8” x 5 ½”.  Cut a piece of white cardstock to 4 ¼” x 5 ½”.  Use foam applicators to cover the edges with a blend of Lucky Clover and Pine Needles Distress Ink.  Spray lightly with Imagine Crafts Sparkle Sheer Shimmer Spritz.  Adhere to the front of an A2 card.  Then center the white pearl cardstock on top, followed by the stenciled piece. 

For the sentiment, cut a piece of white pearl cardstock using Impression Obsession Rectangle 6-in-1 Frames (DIE242-YY.)  Use Rosie’s Roadshow Stamp “Happy St. Patrick’s Day” to stamp the sentiment on the center rectangle with Green Archival Ink.  Emboss with clear detail embossing powder.  Adhere the curved frame from the die cut (see picture) to the front of the card with Ranger Matte Adhesive.  Adhere the sentiment rectangle to the front with a piece of foam tape. 

You can also see the completed card at Art ‘n Soul. The photo doesn't capture the shine from the Pearlescent Embossing Paste or the Shimmer Spritz.  

Lynell Harlow, creator of Dreamweaver Stencils, will be teaching three different classes April 21st – April 23rd featuring stencils.  If you enjoy stencils or want to learn more about them, be sure to check out her class card samples.  Lynell has beautiful techniques to share with you. 

The Magenta Trunk starts today and it contains a fabulous selection of stamps as well as stencils that will work really well with embossing paste. I hope you will give it a try! 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Technique of the Week: Oxide Background by Dianne Johnson

This post is less of a technique and more about trying out the new Distress Oxide inks. I was skeptical in the beginning, but now I know I LOVE these new inks.

by Dianne Johnson

Oxide inks are a hybrid of Pigment ink and Dye ink. Where Dye inks soak into your paper, Pigment inks sit on top and take longer to dry. The Oxides have the best of both of these worlds. They blend like a dream, and they stamp better as well. They also incorporate the best of the water-reactive properties of regular Distress ink. there are 12 colors currently available, and Ranger is overwhelmed with orders, so we have to get in line; but we WILL get them in! We are taking paid pre-orders for the inks, either the full sets, or individual colors. We are also taking paid pre-orders for the re-inkers.

Right now we have 8 of the 12 colors for demo'ing, and we will be happy to demo them for you.

For my card, I first blended Fossilized Amber, Spiced Marmalade, Fired Brick, and Broken China, adding a little Wilted Violet at the end. I sprayed the card, using the Tim Holtz spritzer bottle, which makes large and small droplets. 

You can almost do no wrong with these inks, whatever I have done looks good. However, I wanted to stamp and emboss with White Diamond embossing powder, and I decided that my inks were a little too light for the white to pop out properly.

Starting over with new colors was no problem, because playing with these inks is just so much fun. For the second try, I started with Wilted Violet, and added Broken China (I LOVE the combo of these 2 colors), Cracked Pistachio, and Spiced Marmalade. I spritzed it to get the water spots, and decided it was still too pale. I made sure to dry the spots and went over the card with some Faded Jeans, Fired Brick, and intensified the colors in the Wilted Violet, Broken China, and Cracked Pistachio.

This time I thought the colors were dark enough, and so I added more droplets with the spritzer, and dried the card thoroughly. I stamped my image and sentiment with Versamark ink and embossed with White Diamond embossing powder by JudiKins.

I hope you'll give these new Oxide inks a try. I think you'll find them as fun to work with as I did. For additional photos of this process, please visit my Backporch blog post here.

As you know, Art 'n Soul is Magenta's Retailer of the Year for the seventh year in a row, and this allows some privileges. The reason I mention this is because we have advance viewing of the new Magenta Spring Collection, and one of the stamps for Spring is a new one by yours truly, a Zen Bouquet of flowers. I also have several sentiments in the collection. 

Since I received my stamps just yesterday, I decided to give you all a sneak peek of two of my new stamps on the card this week. These are available for pre-order at Art 'n Soul now, along with the entire 2017 Spring Collection. Please come by and see our sneak peek catalog and place your orders. You can be among the first in the world to receive the beautiful new Magenta stamps!

You can also order Nuance, either in sets or individually. The first 12 sets of the newest 5 Nuance colors sold out in a day. We will get more, but to insure that you get the colors you want, place your order today.

You can view samples of the first 25 colors at Art 'n Soul, and here is a promo photo of the latest 5 colors in the collection.

The colors are Old Rose, Chartreuse, Bright Green, Lagoon, and Anthracite. There's nothing else like these new colors, and they make a wonderful addition to the Nuance family.

Be sure to mark your calendars for mid-March because Magenta is sending us a trunk show! The Magenta trunk shows are always packed with so many beautiful stamps and stencils, so you will want to shop early for the best selection. We are expecting the trunk show to arrive around March 15th or 16th, so check back with us for the exact date, and keep an eye on our Facebook page!

You can check out our latest Newsletter here and check out the great classes we have scheduled, including a great one this very weekend. We also have fabulous classes scheduled with Lynell Harlow, founding member of Dreamweaver Stencils, and Sally Penley, who is an amazing local artist. 

In case you have missed any of our Newsletters, there is also a link at the top right of this blog where you can look at all of our archived Newsletters.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Technique of the Week: "Young at Art and Young at Heart" by Marj Marion

By Marj Marion

I love my role as Nana to my five grandchildren, and they love it when I bring an art project with me when I travel to see them and provide g-kid care.  One of their first questions upon my arrival is “Did you bring an art project?”.  That warms my heart! Many of you are young at heart, and you might have fun giving this a try…it’s fun for adults as well.

Assorted plastic or metal trays or boxes, a large pill/medicine keeper, some marbles or beads, card stock, and desired paints or re-inkers.  Also advised are some paper towels, rags and/or baby wipes for cleaning up.  Large self-closing tweezers or small plastic spoons are helpful. 

Optional: metallic embossing powders. Find marbles in the toy or floral sections of craft stores. Plastic trays or flat boxes can be found at the Dollar stores.

Here are some of the coloring options for marble painting. Choose one, two or more colors, but beware of making “mud” if you use too many colors!

Put some paint or refill ink in the sections of the pill keeper. (or use a muffin tray or small plastic containers. If your paint is thick, you can dilute it some with water so the marbles will roll around easily. In the samples I made, I used diluted Dylusions paints, Martha Stewart Satin paints and assorted refills (Adirondack and Distress).

Place a marble in each section of the pill keeper and gently  move the pill keeper around so the marbles are coated with paint or refill ink.

Here you see the pill container, with various paints (first five sections) and re-inkers (last two sections) with the marbles. I suggest a god quality pill container as they close more securely and tightly. Note that the paint won't last very many days before drying out, so just use the amount for your "project of the day" and then rinse out your container.

Choose the size bin container you want, either the right size to hold a single A-2 panel, or consider a larger pan that will hold a full sheet of card stock, whichever you want. The full size paper allows you to make many art panels at once.

This shows a larger piece of card stock with marble “tracks” from two shades of dye ink refills. These paintings are lighter in color, and make a nice, subtle background.

Use long handled tweezers (look for these at Harbor Freight Tools) and grasp the marble. Place the marble on your paper in the tray, and tip the tray back and forth so it rolls all around. With children, you can use a tray or pan with a lid if needed to control the paint, but most kids can learn to just roll the pan back and forth, rather than shaking it. Kids can use a small spoon to retrieve the marble.

I usually do one color at a time. And, if you don’t like the first big blob of paint that occurs, you can place the marble at the edge of the paper before rolling it, or set the marble on a scrap paper to dab off a bit of the paint before placing it on the card stock in the tray.

For a variation, while the paint is wet on the card stock, you can sprinkle on some metallic embossing powder, and when paint is dry, heat the embossing powder until it melts.  The paint may bubble up some, but that makes nice texture.

The background above shows two colors of marble painting plus some gold embossing powder for accent.

Here are more photos of samples I made using this technique. You can change up the composition, and use contrasting paper, die cuts and stamping to complete your cards. These cards and marble painting samples are available to view at Art 'n Soul.

by Marj Marion

by Marj Marion

The finished card below shows the ink refill marble painting background, with "Inspire" by Impression Obsession, and the painting splatters from a Tim Holtz stencil. More info on the cards will be at Art 'n Soul. Come and see them in person!

by Marj Marion

This project was a lot of fun and my grandchildren really enjoyed doing this with me. I hope you will give it a try!