Friday, March 24, 2017

SPRING Coffee Lovers Blog Hop!

It's time for the Coffee Lovers Blog Hop, and I'm so excited to be a Super Sponsor again! Keep reading for the prizes and a special coupon code for my online store!

I watercolored this fun little caffeinated scene from Stampendous for the occasion ... I used QoR watercolors along with some Zig and Distress markers for the details and shadows. The sentiment is from my stamp line at Impression Obsession. The paper strips I used for the background panel were on my desk from a few other projects - I love putting random scraps together to make a panel like this - such a fun way to build a color palette!

For a chance to win prizes in our hop this week, you have to play along! Head over to the Coffee Loving Cardmakers blog for all the details, and to link up your spring coffee, tea, or cocoa themed project! 

These 3 handmade pendants are up for grabs as prizes this week! You can find them and more coffee (and other!) themed gifts in my online store - and to thank you for hopping and visiting today, you can use coupon code COFFEEHOP for 20% off your entire order!

Thanks again - enjoy the hop, and go make something pretty! xoxo

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Splitcoast Tutorial: Shadow Stamping

This week's tutorial over on Splitcoast is a fun review of how to create a simple drop shadow - look for lots of tips for color choices and for manual stamping and stamping with a positioner!

I chose to work with a new set from Impression Obsession - Peggy Jo Ackley has an adorable new line of stamps and coordinating dies, and they have been so fun to play with! This one is called Sew Happy. I stamped the dress form on a white "Swatch" from Inchie Arts using Memento ink... my first impression was lined up at the 2-1/4" mark along the top of my MISTI. For the second impression I also used Memento ink (Desert Sand?), moving the matboard down slightly and over to the right about 1/4".

I colored in the shadow outside the original outline with a matching Copic marker, then colored in the first image.

So the dress form didn't look like it was floating, I added some connecting lines from the feet back to the feet of the shadow.

I had watercolored the background panel the other day - it's just done with some of the smaller stamps, stamped randomly on some Canva-Paper.

Hope our tutorial gives you some ideas for shadow stamping!
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Friday, March 17, 2017

MIX-ability - Submarine Day

It's my turn today to host the MIX-ability challenge over on Splitcoast... I decided to go with a holiday theme, and also to veer from the expected... so today's challenge celebrates Submarine Day with underwater images and scenes...... and a little green, of course!

I made this card with many thoughts of Lydia, who wrote our tutorial for this background technique and also has a special love for seahorses... I did the background using reinkers (Adirondack and Distress).

The seahorse was colored with Inktense pencils... I added some highlights to the bubbles with a white gel pen, and used a little acrylic paint to add to the background. The seahorse image is somewhere in limbo - it was from a company I adored called I Love Rubber Stamps - the company was purchased by Creative Vision Stamps but at the moment those images aren't available online. If you love it, though, feel free to contact the company to inquire - I was told they still have unmounted rubber stamps that they sell at stamp shows.

The sentiment I used is from the Seaside Wishes clear set by SugarPea Designs - such a cute set.

I hope you'll join us for this week's challenge!

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Impression Obsession DT Challenge: Not So Moody Blues

The Impression Obsession team's challenge today is to create a blue project. I love using older images for these challenges occasionally, and this one of Gary's (Rowboat) looked like it wanted to be blue... sort of a stormy, cold day like we've been having this week!

Working on a 4" Art Square from Inchie Arts, I laid down a good bit of water in the sky - it has a pinkish tinge because the brush I picked up still had a little ink in it from another project... oops! Thankfully, it worked for me.

I used Hydrus Payne's Gray liquid watercolor paint, which is so concentrated that less than a drop was plenty for the entire background. I love the way it feathered in the sky - such a cloudy effect. The art squares hold a lot of liquid, so quite a bit of water is needed to get a surface effect like this, and you do have to work a bit more quickly than you would on watercolor paper. The same was true for the salted area in the foreground.

I used a colored pencil to add deeper shading and details where they were needed, and some white acrylic paint to brighten the highlights.

Be sure to check out these other designers' blogs for inspiration -

Vicki @ Summerthyme Studio

Remember you can enter these challenges too, using your Impression Obsession stamps! See the I.O. blog for all the details - you might even win a $25 gift certificate!! We'd love to have you join us.
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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Splitcoast Tutorial: Cling Wrap Background

This week's tutorial over on Splitcoast is a fun Cling Wrap Background - it can be done with any water soluble medium, a water mister, and cling wrap from the kitchen!

This card, honestly... I don't normally use such bright colors and it's not at all reflective of the weather or my mood when I was making it... but I don't know who could be uncheered with a bright yellow like this! I used Peerless and Hydrus liquid watercolors on my cling wrap, and this is Shizen watercolor paper, which is very textured cotton paper. Liquid watercolors are so concentrated - they're really a joy to work with. Even a single drop goes a very long way.

The sunburst die is from Impression Obsession, and that's cut from label paper... the other dies and the sentiment are from the Cat's Pajamas.

That's all I know! Hope you know... you make me happy too!
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Monday, March 13, 2017

Bird prints, and a tip about canvas panels!

I had the chance to paint this weekend while the house was a little more quiet... I was able to finish 2 paintings, which made me really happy! Lately I've been staying in one mode at a time, and my last month has been a combination of illustration mode (summer, fall and winter stamps) and card-making mode (summer catalog and board samples). It felt good to pull the paints out and work on some birds!

I keep a stack of canvas and wood panels on my desk, and use them to brush off any excess paint I have left from gel printing or other painting projects. After a while, they accumulate a good variety of random colors and strokes, and they're ready to be painted on. These are the canvas panels I use - I love the variety of sizes.

I usually start by sketching some kind of container and painting around it in watered down white or black paint for a negative outline, then I shade and highlight within the outline. Afterwards, I sketch in a bird and give it a white base with acrylic paint or gesso so the paint retains its color in the following layers.

Paint goes on in layers until I have the look I want... and then the extra paint goes onto the next panel to begin the process all over again!

Prints are available in my store of both of these paintings, and the original at the top of this post is also for sale (the other is on its way to bring joy to a friend in Canada!). I have lots of lamb prints available as well - they are perfect for spring, for baby shower gifts, and for sharing comfort or condolence.

Thanks for stopping by today! xo
Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Irises for you!

I'm cringing at the possibility of snow flurries today after several weeks of springlike weather and the emerging of hundreds of irises, surprise lilies, daffodils, peonies, and MORE in my yard... hoping for minimal damage from the cold so we can see what's really planted here - I'm getting all the feels I used to get as a child reading the Secret Garden and Rainbow Garden. There are surprises every day!

My mom celebrated her birthday yesterday, and this was the card I sent to her - over the years she has taught me so much about plants and gardening, and I wanted to share a little piece of the beauty that's about to be here! Happy birthday, Mom!

This iris is from Sheena Douglass' line of stamps from Crafter's Companion, and I love all the details in the image as well as the large format! Floral stamps are one of my excesses... my Evernote catalog tells me I have 632 stamps, digis, or dies tagged "Floral"...! Hmm.

I used watercolors from various companies to color in my panel, as well as a script stamp from Impression Obsession. This is Fabriano Studio Hot Press paper, which works really well for stamping. I buy the heavier weight and the larger size pad so I can cut the paper to size. It's great for die cutting too!

Here's a little peek into my yard!

Have a great weekend!
Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Impression Obsession DT Thursday - border backgrounds

It's my turn to host this week's DT Thursday for Impression Obsession! When we did our Summer release hop several of you asked for instructions on using border stamps to make backgrounds with the MISTI, so I thought I'd use today's post to show that to you. I intended to make a video, but I'm fighting allergies today, so photo steps will have to do. Sorry about that! *sniff*

For my first card, I used the Triple Dot border stamp - I started by positioning it the long way across, at the top of my quarter sheet of cardstock. I didn't worry about it going all the way to the edge, because I knew I was going to trim it.

With the first impression, there was a little ink to the left of the card on the base of the MISTI, and I used that to determine the interval that the card needed to move each time. In this case, 5/8" was the right distance to move it up. I used the remaining ink to stamp a second time.

Each time I was ready for a new row, I just scooched the cardstock up 5/8", and stamped, scooched and stamped. You can see below that it doesn't affect the cardstock to extend over the edge of the base onto the ruler area.

Here's a closer peek at the finished panel on my card... I love how the dots fill out the space. I saw another designer doing this technique and instead of moving the cardstock and leaving the stamp in place, she was removing and repositioning the stamp for each stripe! So much extra work and room for error.

On the second card, I made a plaid pattern, and the concept is the same...

I started with a single row with the Chainlink stamp.

For this pattern I moved the card up 3/4" each time so I'd have an even space between each row for other patterns.

When those rows were done, I turned the cardstock and stamped at the same interval the other way.

I used another stamp (Sticks) in between the rows for additional color, and also repeated the first stamp in Broken China between every other row  at 1.5" intervals.

I had one other great tip, which was to cut a wider fish tail banner with a hexagon die, and that would have been better if the die hadn't shifted anyway...

So just pretend I meant to have it at that offset angle - I think it's cool anyway! Here's a closer look at the background on my card.

Stamps I used: Triple Dot, Potted Cactus SmallChainlinkSticks,  Vintage Planters clear set,  Timeless Classic clear set

Thanks for visiting me today - I hope this was helpful!
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