I'm travelling into a new way of working, a new country, a new language, and a new hobby which I'm passionate about. Come with me for some of the journey...

Sunday, 14 July 2019

Memories of the Future

Hello all, and happy Sunday!  I'm back with the details of the second and third of my tag trio of samples using Seth Apter's brand new Mini stamps for PaperArtsy.  The fabulous little stamps are perfect for adding detail and texture to your backgrounds.

This pair, very much a pair, are made in a very similar way to the first one (a slight odd one out in the trio, though very harmonious), but these have an extra gleam of glamour amidst the grunginess.

Again there are Distress Inks and Oxides smooshed onto the tags to start with, and then for the tag with "future boy" I stamped EM41 randomly in Acorn Archival ink.

I was just rolling the tag on in partial stampings rather than a full-on flat-out print.

I stamped again quite randomly, but this time with embossing ink and added some of my much loved Liquid Platinum embossing powder from Ranger.

I love this stuff, as well as this stamp... 

You can see the fabulously grungy, distressed look of those tiny textural cubes, even in the embossed version.

The topping is pretty minimal so as not to cover up too much of the background.  As with the first tag, I went for one of the Idea-ology Photobooth photos...

... and layered it up over some rusty mesh and torn book text, with a little metal cog added for fun.

The one-word sticker is again from Finnabair's Art Daily book of phrases and words.  I hope he's got a bright future.

For "memory woman", it's pretty much the same again, except this time using EM 47.  

I just love these cool brick-like wedge shapes.  They provide an almost architectural feature against the random inky splotches underneath.

Again, some are stamped in Acorn, and some in embossing ink with Liquid Platinum powder applied.

Just look at that soft golden glimmer when the light catches it!

The Photobooth photo is layered up over the same simple ingredients, held together with an Idea-ology mini paper-clip.

I do love this rusty mesh, especially when you tweak the edges for a nice ragged look!

And again the word sticker has had a little smoosh of Antique Linen Distress Stain to warm up the colour tone.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing these tags even half as much as I enjoyed making them.

It's really nice for me to have a record of them here, as they've now gone off to grace the PaperArtsy show display boards.

There are some more samples coming your way soon, but for now I'll love you and leave you with wishes for a wonderful Sunday and a great week to come.  Happy crafting all!

Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.
L. M. Montgomery

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.
Eleanor Roosevelt

Thursday, 11 July 2019

All about the background...

Hello all!  You've probably seen that there are some more new releases being announced every other night over at PaperArtsy.  Tuesday saw the launch of eight new minis by Seth Apter.  I was lucky enough to have them in hand, as I've been making some samples for the trade show stands.  Now that the stamps are on sale, I can share what I've been up to.  So today I'm starting with a trio of tags using these fantastic textural stamps, and there'll be more to follow.

The new minis are brilliantly grungy and perfect for layering into backgrounds.  Each of these tags uses a different one of the new stamps, and then the "toppings" are similar for each.

The middle tag had been hanging around on the craft table for ages, all nicely inky from some previous Oxide experimentation, so let's start there for today.

The first layers are smooshed variations on a Distress Ink/Distress Oxide themes.  I'm afraid I don't know the exact colour combinations any longer, but most of my usual favourites are in there.

I stamped EM44 in embossing ink a couple of times fairly centrally, and used Seth's Rustic Indigo embossing powder to bring it to life.

It has a lovely glossy sheen and since the powder has variations in the granulation, it creates great texture.  And obviously embossing helps the stamp to stand out from the inky splotches too.

Around the edges I added some partial stampings of the same stamp in brown.  I love the angular energy of it.

Obviously, given that the background stamps are pretty much the whole point of the samples, I didn't want to cover them up too much. 

I went with an Idea-ology Photobooth photo layered over a scrap of book text and some of my much-loved rusty mesh, all held together with a mini paper clip (also by Idea-ology).

The single word addition is from one of the recent Finnabair word pads - the Art Daily sentiments.  I gave it a smoosh of Antique Linen Distress Stain to soften the look a little.

Some simple twine finishes things off at the top, and this photo gives you another really good look at the cool industrial grunginess of EM44.

I think rather than create another mammoth blogpost, I'll leave it there for today, and I'll be back over the weekend with the details of the other pair.  Be sure to come back soon and check out the gleam of gold to be found in those grungy backgrounds!  Thanks so much for stopping by today, and have a great weekend when it comes.

I think that when you remember, remember, remember everything like that, you could go on until you remember what was there before you were in the world.
From War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Friday, 5 July 2019

Heavy Metal

Hello all!  Thank you so much for your lovely feedback on my little miniatures excursion Around the Fireplace at PaperArtsy.  We're back to regular crafting today with a new challenge starting at A Vintage Journey.

Our host, the amazing Amanda, would like us to do some metalwork for her theme Precious Metal.  You can go with the real thing with metallic embellishments, or create metal effects with paints, inks, mediums or anything else you can come up with.

As always, there's lots of inspiration from my fellow Creative Guides, which you should definitely check out, but before you go, here's my offering.

I've created a pair of heavy metal ATCs using Oxides, Fluid Acrylics, and Treasure Gold.  Not bad for some scraps of paper, eh?!

I'd been planning to try to stick to the "precious" part of the metal theme title, and go with some gleaming metals, but I found myself back in the world of rust again before I knew it.

I was pressed for time, so I decided to go small (not that small is always quick, as we know from the dollshouse work!).  Who hasn't got time for a couple of ATCs, especially when you've got some ready-to-go MDF ones from Calico Craft Parts waiting for you?

There was a leftover piece of embossed card, done with Tim's Foundry 3D Texture Fade, hanging around the craft table (you can see it's been scribbled and stamped on in the meantime), so I glued it down onto the ATCs and trimmed the edges.

Time to start with the mixed media layers... first of all a coat of DecoArt Dazzling Metallics in Dark Patina (hmm... photo missing, stoopid camera), and over that a good spritzing of Brushed Pewter Distress Spray.

I then dribbled some Distress Oxide Sprays onto the surface, just flicking them on from the bottom end of the tube of the unscrewed nozzle.

Next up, the DecoArt Fluid Acrylics, mainly Paynes Grey and Quinacridone Gold in different intensities and mixes.

After that, I did some drybrushing with the Dark Patina and added some Treasure Gold in Pewter with my fingertips to highlight the raised areas.

I kept going back and forth adding rust, colour or shimmer until I was happy.  They've also had some splatters of leftover Quin Gold from the craft mat, of course.

I really like the finished effect.  This is a look I may well want to re-create, so these reminder details are for me as much as they are for you!

The words are just some kraft ChitChat stickers which have had an extra burnishing with some more leftover Quin Gold paint.

There's also some shading with diluted Paynes Grey, and I used a fine-tipped black pen to outline them.

I added some simple twists of rusty wire...  Who can resist rusty wire?!

The positioning of the wire and some of the rustiest bits of "metal" was pure serendipity.

I didn't plan it in advance, but it's clear that the rusty wire has "caused" those particular bits of deep rusty texture!

I suppose maybe my subconscious was controlling my hands as I was wrapping the wire!

I have got a little bit of "precious" shimmer to my metal.

Treasure Gold always comes into its own when there's any texture to be found.

And I'm pretty happy with the blues and greens of my rusty patina...

... though of course some of those lovely inky edges and splotches got a bit smoothed out with the later applications of other media.

Because they're on the Calico ATCs, these have a really substantial feel to them...

... maybe not quite as heavy as actual heavy metal, but pleasingly chunky nonetheless.

Do check out the other Precious Metal projects over at A Vintage Journey - they're well worth stopping off for - and we hope you'll be inspired to come and join us somewhere down the road this month with your own metallic marvels.  Happy crafting all!

I were better to be eaten to death with a rust than to be scoured to nothing with perpetual motion.
Falstaff in Henry IV Part 2 by William Shakespeare

At the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge this week they would like you to Make Your Own Background - done!
At the Mix It Up Challenge they are playing Anything Goes with an Optional Twist of Foiling - I didn't get quite as far as foil, but since it's optional, I'll offer up my metallic pair there too

Saturday, 29 June 2019

Around the Fireplace at PaperArtsy

Hello all!  I've got a little (and I mean really miniature!) sneak peek to tempt you over to PaperArtsy this evening.  I've been playing with the Tiled Patterns theme going on there this fortnight.  Well, if you mention tiles to me, the chances are my brain will head towards the dollshouse world, and that's exactly what happened.

A simple idea led me on from one thing to the next until, before I knew it, I had some full-on miniatures work going on.  I hope you'll be able to pop over to PaperArtsy to see all the details.  And then get busy doing some tiling yourselves!  Oh and just to let you know, if you are one of those who enjoys the miniatures side of things, there's a new post over at Cestina's Dollshouses to enjoy too.  Have a great weekend all.

I am a product of long corridors, empty sunlit rooms, upstairs indoor silences, attics explored in solitude, distant noises of gurgling cisterns and pipes, and the noise of wind under the tiles. Also, of endless books.
C.S. Lewis

If you don't mind hopping over to PaperArtsy to see the full project...

I'd like to play along at Frilly and Funkie where the theme is Home Sweet Home - the warmth of the fireside, the belongings which matter to you, and having beautiful surroundings, all an important part of what home means to me
At the Bleeding Art Challenge they'd like us to Add Cardboard to a project - well, it's there as the foundation of the tiles, and the recycled packaging which forms the hearth, and also creating the mantlepiece shelf, so I hope that will fit the bill

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Wild and Organic

Hello all and welcome to a rusty post!  It's been a while since I got my rust on, but that old distressing itch took hold with this page.  (I mean the itch to weather and distress things, rather than a nasty rash, if you see what I mean!)

There are some more words from the Neal's Yard catalogue on this textural spread, so it's another chance to join in over at Art Journal Journey for Halle's Words To Live By theme.  

I recommend clicking on the photos for a close-up view of all the textures, but I'm not going to give you much in the way of a step-by-step, sorry.

That's partly because there aren't any process photos (I was too busy with the process itself), and partly because I don't really remember much about it.

I find that when you're in a state of flow you don't necessarily know much about what's going on.  You're just channelling it.

I know there's some tissue wrap buried somewhere under there on this 10 x 10 page...

... and blue Colorex ink deep down in the layers.

There's crackle, both paint and glaze, but both DecoArt, I think...

... and then plenty of paint - mainly DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics, with Quinacridone Gold playing a major role.

I super-heated it in places...

... creating these glorious bubbles of texture.

And I've used some of the Rusty Patina made by Imagination Crafts...

... for the turquoise and aqua touches of extra texture along the cracks and fissures.

Here are those words from the catalogue.  I meant to use the dip pen and ink over the top of them, as I did with the Inspiring Herbs page, but I forgot.  And now I quite like them like this, not taking too much attention.

Any paint or medium left over on the craft mat got mopped up with a watery brush...

... and splattered across the page to create even more deliciousness.

I seem to remember adding a burnishing touch of Florentine Treasure Gold to highlight the textures even further.

And the whole thing has a really pleasing glimmering sheen which catches the light.

That's where I think I'll leave things for now, with a final close up of my favourite bubbles!

After all this wild, organic, rusty decay, the next post will take you somewhere far more tidy and controlled.

I hope you'll be able to drop in again for that at the weekend (especially if you're one of those people who enjoys the miniatures side of things) and, in the meantime, happy crafting all!

All things that have form eventually decay.
Masashi Kishimoto

I'd like to join in with Words To Live By over at Art Journal Journey
And I'll make this my third and final entry over at the Creative Artiste Challenge Blog where they are on their 50th Anything Mixed Media Goes theme