Thursday, 23 December 2010

Totally out of character!

I've made a card for my sister's birthday in January and I am sure she will be very surprised when she opens the envelope - there's no ink splashed around, no paint dolloped on and everything is very neat and tidy! I even kept my hands clean throughout the operation of making it! Both sides fold in and it ends up like a little book tied up with a ribbon.

I actually enjoyed making it but it was time consuming and I must admit that I don't always have enough patience to do fiddly bits. I think this sort of card will only be made for special occasions in future!

Snowy Days

Many years go by without a trace of snow in Devon but we've had enough over the past week to make up for it! It's very pretty and a novelty for a while but we are now getting a bit fed up with it because it's compacted in the driveway and lane, and of course the gritters don't come along the little lanes like ours.  Luckily Geoff's been home all week so I haven't had to drive - he's been taking me to and from work which is great.

I took a wander around the garden with my camera:

My Shadow - nice long legs despite the knobbly knees (it's the welly boots, honest!)

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Dots & Spots

This card was made for a competion on one of my Yahoo groups, the theme being dots & spots.  The background was done using a couple of colours of Adirondack Colorwash Sprays through sequin waste, which I moved around as I sprayed.  That background sat in my drawer for quite some time just waiting for an opportunity to use it - I liked it too much to waste it on something that didn't deserve it - LOL! The butterfly was stamped on vellum and then decorated (dots and spots!) with a marker pen before being placed on top of it's shadow and having it's wings lifted. The flower is from Purple Onion Designs.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

A tutorial - Colourwash with Salt

I have produced a (apologies for the very poor & yellowy photographs!) tutorial for the November Monthly Art Technique on the Arttechniques Yahoo Group which I thought I would post on the blog as well. Maybe it will useful information for someone!

Colour Wash with Salt


Water colour paper
1, 2 or 3 Water colour paints – depending on the look you want to achieve
Large (for water) and smaller (for paint) flat brushes
Rock salt / granular salt
Gesso (optional)

Using the larger brush, liberally brush the paper with clean water and then, using the smaller brush, lay on the lightest of your coloured paints.

Whilst still wet randomly lay on the other colour/s of paint

Brush over more water to blend the colours together, but don’t overdo it, you need to have some definition between the colours.

Sprinkle with the salt and leave to dry

The salt working:

Once fully dry brush the salt off of the paper and it’s ready to use.

If using bright colours as I have here (mainly for demo purposes) you can mute the brightness by brushing with some watered down gesso (about 50/50). Work gently and quickly so that you don’t disturb the colours in the underneath layer.

Leave to dry, flatten under heavy books if necessary.

ATC made using this background effect – over-stamped with light grey and green inks.

I followed this by using a light liquid blue water colour paint and salt from my salt grinder (don’t let on to DH – kitchen supplies are NOT meant to go into my craft room – LOL!), which gave a random effect with small and teeny weeny grains of salt. The colour is actually a lot better than it looks here; a pretty pale blue without the yellow tinge!

I made the card below using this background:

If you’ve got this far, thanks for looking! I do hope that you have enjoyed this technique and will give it a go.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

A Card for my Mum

It's mum's birthday on 7th November so I made this card for her. The paper is from a Laura Ashley block.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

A Junky Card

I am a member of a local craft group where we have a competition at each monthly meeting. The October competition was to make something using junk. After a quick hunt around I decided that the junk I had most of was wine labels, corks, foils etc (hic!) so I set to making a collage. It needed something to finish it off and I found the perfect thing on a visit to a pub in London - they had postcards advertising a make of rum and the bottle was just the right size to sit neatly on the edge of the card. (My son did query why I was hiding a stash of postcards in my bag! They were free .....!). Tying some shrink plastic tags around the neck of the bottle finished it off nicely.  OK, so I didn't win the competition but I am really pleased with the way the card came together.

Carrying on the Catch Up

A couple more swaps I've taken part in are ......

...... an ATC wap with the theme 'Women'. I chose to do a grungy background and topped it with a Mona Lisa image stamped on vellum. The braid and flower with gem were added to give a more feminine touch.

The other swap was with the Oriental Stamp Art group, I decorated a plain notebook, inside the covers as well as outside. It turned out really cute - seemed a pity to give it away!

Mushrooms and Citrasolve
Last month I was asked by one of the ladies in the Hearts in Touch group how I used citrasolve with the National Geographic pages. I need to mention that it was Adrienne Goodenough who first mentioned this technique on one of my groups, and it's a great one. I added my own twist by gently scrubbing off some of the colour with a small stiffish paintbrush and then adding shading and colour using watercolour markers.

I didn't actually need to do much to this to make it look like a woodland scene; the path (or I guess it could be a river with reflections in) and the white 'rocks' were already there as was the 'fallen log' in the background. I shaded the base and underneath the mushroom caps then ran a bit of brown up the left side to look like a tree.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Catch up Time!

How did it get to be October, and the middle of it no less? I think it's time to do a bit of catching up. Although I haven't actually done a vast amount of art work over the past couple of months I have had a few sessions playing around with various background techniques, throwing paint and ink around and generally making a mess (no comments please Karen, Sy or Wendy LOL!!).

One project I took part in earlier in the year was a calendar to be sold in aid of 'Go Red for Women' an American Heart Association initiative. I am a member of the Lost Art Creations Yahoo Group and Terrie, the owner, organised this. The rules were that each calendar page had to contain at least one image and one 'pretty bit' from her Etsy shop and have a heart somewhere on it.  I made the page for March:

Terrie has printed and bound all the calendars and they are now on sale - I am proud to be a part of this, and excited to think that a piece of my artwork may be gracing many walls during the month of March 2011!  Many of us are raffling off our original artwork for this too, with all proceeds going to the charity.

A couple of months ago I took part in a gothic arch swap where 12 of us made double-sided pages to be made into a book. This was good fun - I got lovely and messy with the blue and black inks (which stayed on my fingers for a good two days, despite all my attempts to get it off, I think there was just tooooo much of it!).  There were some absolutely gorgeous pages made by others taking part - mine is below:

Front.  The gravestone flap folds down and the verse behind it is:
Step into the darkness
Say goodbye to the light
We live in an eternity
Where every day is night

I can't give credit to the originator of the verse as I found it on the internet - but I did think it went particularly well with the theme.

Oh to have some Copic Markers - I had one tiny Sharpie in the right colour purple/blue and wore it out doing all the pages, and the colouring in leaves a bit to be desired - it shows up worse on the photo than it did in real life!

Friday, 2 July 2010

A better tiger attempt ...... and he's a winner!!

I wasn't too happy with the previous tiger so, using yet more of my stash of glimmer misted c/s I tried again. This time I like it much better and all I did was to cut closer to the edges of the picture and colour the edges of the card with a black permanent marker. Layering onto corrugated c/s makes it look a much more masculine card so I guess this one will go in the drawer ready for one of the men in the family's birthday.

AND - this was was a winner!  I entered it in my craft club's competition (theme - a technique) and it came second so I got a voucher for the craft shop - woo hoo! I'm doing a happy dance!!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Baby Seagull

When we arrived at work this morning there was a baby seagull on the ledge outside my window - he's possibly 2 - 3 weeks old and we think he must have fallen off the roof above. He kept looking in at me, tapping on the window and squawking for food. I didn't have any raw fish on me today (!) but he seemed to like chicken and melon ........

More glimmer misted backgrounds .......

Over the weekend I did a couple of quickie cards using some of the glimmer mist backgrounds I made a couple of weeks ago. Stamps on both are by Onyx Xpressions.

The tiger is literally just stamped in black Stayzon - so easy!

This pair didn't stand out so well as I'd hoped, but, hey ho, after a bit of colouring in with the old faithful gel pens and being liberally coated with Glossy Accents they turned out quite well - they stand out much better in real life. I really like the background on this one - sequin waste came in useful yet again!

Friday, 18 June 2010

Where did the time go.......?

Suddenly it's mid June and I haven't uploaded any photos for 2 months!  I wound down before we went on holiday early May and then didn't pick up speed again until the last week or so. But, I'm here now and want to show the hanging ATCs I made for one of the groups I'm a member of - I chose to go with a Mona Lisa theme stamped onto a background done with Glimmer Mist sprays. Stamps are by Cherry Pie.

I also made a Father's Day card for my FIL; not sure that he'll actually like it as it's a bit too 'wierd' for his tastes, but I liked the way the background (glimmer mists) and stamps worked and decided to go with it!!  Oh, and I know the sentiment is rather crooked - the sticky tabs 'grabbed'! I'm hoping Dad won't notice!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Yet more Alice in Wonderland

This set of 3 ATCs are for a swap on UKAS. I decided to use a watercoloured background and keep the images black to give a bit more impact.  Again, most of the images used are from Cherry Pie, the Queen is from Inka Stamps.

Nearly missed a deadline!

There I was, happily thinking that I had until the end of the month to get my 'C is for ....' swap (on the CCS yahoo group) to my partner when I noticed that several people were posting that they'd sent and / or received theirs. I thought I'd best check my dates and lo and behold, the swap is due on 12th April and my partner is in the States!  After a quick panic I decided to use a small canvas as my 'C' and just to make doubly sure I used a clown stamp by I Brake for Stamps (I love this stamp, it'll possibly be popping up on here quite often).  The background stamps are by Cherry Pie, although Marina might not actually recognise them as I loaded them with acrylic paint before stamping so they're a bit messy (which is what I wanted - it wasn't a mistake, honest!).

The photo shows up the fact that I used tissue paper to stamp the clown on to - I should have used thinner tissue. I usually use the thin backs of napkins but this tissue was handy ...... the edges showed too much so I tried to disguise them with more of the gold embossing powder I put randomly on the edges / corners, but using a Versamark pen was too precise. Still you live and learn and overall I do like the effect so it's one to play with further.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Catch up time ....

Although I haven't posted anything for a month I have been playing in my craft room, albeit not as much as I'd have liked (of course!). 
On the Art Techniques group I have taken part in an ATC swap with the theme 'Quotes'; I chose to use one of the Humorous Seniors stamps by I Brake for Stamps and a quote by Bob Hope.

I have also made ATCs for a swap on CCSwaps, this time with the theme 'Nature'. The background is done using the watercolour / rock salt technique in yellow and green. Once dried I applied a thin layer of watered down gesso to mute the bright colours and then stamped leaves etc in a variety of colours. The stamps used are from the Hearts in Touch Botanicals sheet.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

More Alice in Wonderland ....

I've had great fun putting together an Alice in Wonderland postcard for a swap I'm taking part in. Hopefully I've managed to convey the story of Alice drinking from the bottle and then going into Wonderland. The larger Alice image is by my friend Chris at Kaycee Crafts and most of the remaining images are by Marina at Cherry Pie Art Stamps. The background is done using Glimmer Mist sprays.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Circles ........

I'm taking part in an ATC book swap with Cherry Pie Art Stamps - there are 13 of us taking part, we're making one ATC per participant and sending to Marina who will somehow, magically, bind them into a book; a keepsake forever :)

The theme for this swap is 'words'; we chose one word and mine was 'circle'.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

A couple of birthday cards .....

February heralds the start of the birthday season in the Wareham household, some I'll make cards for, others I'll buy.  Today I made a card for my sister in law Julie using stamps from Cherry Pie's Alice sheet on an alcohol ink background

(the inside says .... a very happy birthday)

and I also made a card for my mum's close friend John using a photo I took during our trip to Kenya last year. This little guy was living with his family in the Masai Mara.

Monday, 1 February 2010

For something totally different .....

....... I made a card for my friend Sandy's birthday using a Hearts in Touch fairy stamp. Painted with Ecoline watercolours and shimmer added to the wings with Perfect Pearls. I've just invested in the gold Ecoline - it's soooooo good :) I used it for the frame and to highlight the flowers and butterfly. The background is done using alcohol inks.

More Cards for Haiti

I finished off these cards at the weekend.

Saturday, 30 January 2010

Cards for Haiti

A local group I am a member of had a bring & buy sale on Tuesday with proceeds going to Shelterbox's Haiti appeal. I made a batch of cards, some using alcohol inks, some using glimmer mist sprays, and took along. So far I have sold 19 and am in the process of making another batch.  I kept them simple so that I could churn them out - I played with the alcohol inks on a large sheet of glossy c/s and then cut it into 4" squares before matting and mounting on 5" square cards.  I did cut the c/s for the glimmer mist sprays first as I am mean with them and didn't want to have too much waste! I adore the heart & music stamp (by Stamps Happen) and have been mainly selling those cards for Valentines.

done with Alcohol Inks

done with Glimmer Mist Sprays

And a couple of close ups (unfortunately I didn't think to take photos until after I bagged them up!)

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Altered Slide Mailer

I made this a couple of weeks ago but didn't want to post photos until I had sent it off to it's recipient. I used gold acrylic paint as the base, decopaged the front with part of a gorgeous napkin that I had been hoarding for a long time and had fun decorating inside with pictures and fibres from Lost Art Creations. Even my DH was impressed, although he didn't really know what it was! LOL!