Hello and welcome all... with an especially big welcome to the new followers!
It's Tuesday, and time for a brand new challenge over at Fun With ATCs. It's been absolutely brilliant to have so many of you play along recently. There were so many fabulous entries over the last fortnight, and I hope we've got another theme that will tempt you this time around. It's Choose a Song. We'd like you to create an ATC inspired by a favourite song - just share your ATC with us, and let us know which song you've used as inspiration.
Mine was inevitably influenced by the time of year, and I've created an ATC inspired by the beautiful carol In the Bleak Midwinter.
I'm pretty fussy about the version though... it has to be this arrangement by Harold Darke, not the Holst one which more often gets done at carol services. I've always loved the words, and it wasn't until I'd been singing it in choirs for some time, that I realised that it was no wonder: they're by a poet I love, Christina Rossetti.
I had a lovely time making this - singing the thing to myself much of the time - and though it's relatively simple, I'm really pleased with the end result.
The base is a piece of manila card cut to ATC size (2.5 x 3.5 inches for anyone new to the format), and stamped with my Wow music manuscript stamp in Coffee Archival.
I edged it with Gathered Twigs DI, then brushed gesso (with not too much on the brush) from the edges inwards to get the windswept look.
The words and picture are both from the gorgeous Midwinter set by Artistic Outpost.
I stamped the cottage onto kraft card, using Coffee Archival again, and then used the PaperArtsy Fresco paint called, appropriately, Snowflake to "colour" the image (not sure if that's quite the word when you're adding white to a kraft background!)
I tried to create a sense of the billowing snowdrifts around the house in the brushwork, and then used very fine strokes around the eaves to give a suggestion of icicles.
The lyrics are also stamped in Snowflake (though I played with a Coffee version too, before deciding in favour of the white) onto a kraft background.
And then Gathered Twigs also came into play to edge both the pieces of kraft to give it some more definition against the musical background.
I don't know whether it was partly using the Gathered Twigs Distress Ink which gave me the idea to add the actual twig.
It was mainly because there were some twiggy bits still lying around leftover from my Golden Memories of Home. It just seemed the inevitable next step to highlight one of the bits of twig with a bit more paint, and lie it along the foot of the ATC.
When I was out taking the pictures for this post, we'd just had the most extraordinary hoar frost overnight (it went on to last for another 36 hours), and the whole garden looked unutterably beautiful - so I just wanted to share a couple of those photographs with you too...
Apparently it's to do with the moisture levels in the air at the point when the temperature hits freezing, and that causes the formation of these glorious crystalline structures.
Could it have been any better timed for a post inspired by a song about midwinter - though this was far from bleak?!
So there's my ATC for you, with that little frosty bonus. Do hop over to Fun With ATCs to see what the rest of the Design Team have been up to; my amazing team-mates have created some wonderful, inspirational work. And we'd love it if you have time to play along in amongst all the frantic last minute shopping, wrapping, decorating and cooking - go on, just one little ATC!!
I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape - the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show.
Andrew Wyeth (painter of some extraordinary winter paintings - Google Image search him!)
I'm entering this in the following:
The Stampman's challenge for December is In the Bleak Midwinter, and they're especially looking for us think snow/ice and to use white
Happy Daze are playing In the Deep Midwinter for December too
Out of a Hat Creations also have a Winter theme
And I'd like to add it to the December Referral at Artistic Outpost which is Anything Goes with an AO stamp