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...

Tuesday 21 August 2012

La Sylphide

Hi all, thank you so much for stopping by... and a big welcome to the new followers - thank you for joining the gang!

I'm sharing a new stamp today - very in love with it - it's from The Stampsmith.  Their main focus  is on photo-real images, so it's pretty new for me, and I'm still experimenting with the best surfaces and inks to get the best possible stamped image.  But my experiments have been hanging around on my desk, so inevitably I started to slide papers and ink colours towards them, gathering ideas around them ready for the first card/project... and here it is:

Isn't she gorgeous?!  Ballet was my first love, so I'll understand if not everyone goes head over heels in the same way I do whenever I look at her!  I originally stamped her in Coffee Archival, but she's had some Victorian Velvet blended over too, to get that wine coloured depth.  The Paper Distresser came into its own giving some dimensionality to the edges of the thickish cardstock.

I wanted a really romantic background for her, but also one drawing on nature, given I feel she's a wood or water nymph of some kind.  From very early on, the ink pads which came out to sit round her were Vintage Photo, Weathered Wood, Stormy Sky and Victorian Velvet, and eventually I decided to just sling'em all in there!

I created the first layer of background using Tim Holtz's wrinkle-free distress technique: swiping the inks in patchwork direct onto my craft sheet, spritzing with water, and then laying and tapping the paper into the pools of colour until I had an effect I liked.  I cut it to frame my Sylphide, and then used the TH Paper Distresser to give some life to the edges.

I did mean to take a picture before I stuck the whole thing together, but I forgot - sorry! - so you'll have to make do with peering around the sides of the dancer.  

Next, I added possibly my most used stamp of all - one of the branches from the Autumn Leaves set, Silhouette Blossoms.  It's just the right amount of thorny, so not too florally sweet.  I put both some Coffee Archival and some Victorian Velvet onto the stamp, and used it to add a framing element in all four corners of the background.

The second background layer is the Tattered Angels texture stamp from the Architectural set applied in Coffee Archival to some Kraft paper, inked with Vintage Photo and Victorian Velvet, and subjected to the Paper Distresser too!

The leftover background trimmings got pressed into service too, as I so liked it.  First I stamped the tiny manuscript music from the Pink Paislee London Market set on the back of what was left.  Then one strip was left quite broad to create a 'ribbon' of music under her feet.

The rest I cut into very thin strips to create some fine paper ribbons for the embellishment in the top left of the card.

I do like doing this, as it means you can really co-ordinate your ribbon to the project.  You may remember other examples from previous projects.  

I curled some inwards and some outwards, so you get some with music showing and some with the ink colours.

I used two long attachers to loop some natural twine around and tied it in a simple bow, running along the line of the music.

The whole thing is mounted on white card, with a very fine, delicate edging of Stormy Sky.

I'm very happy with this card - I think there's quite a lot of me in it.  The colours really please me; I adore the random element in creating one of these inky backgrounds; and, as I said, I think this stamp is really beautiful - down to the sheen on her satin pointe shoes!  

I hope you've enjoyed sharing it even half as much as I enjoyed making it!!  Thank you so much for dropping in - I so appreciate your company and hearing your feedback.

I'm entering this for the following:
The Stampsmith Challenge - it's an Anything Goes, as long as you use at least one Stampsmith stamp
Make Your Own Background over at the Anything Goes Challenge Blog
And since we're on an Anything Goes hatrick... this goes in as another No Rules entry at Simon Says Stamp and Show
That Craft Place are having a Vintage fortnight

Dance is the hidden language of the soul, of the body.
Martha Graham

We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once.  And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh.
Friedrich Nietzsche


Candy C said...

Alison, this is such a lovely piece. Wow! That stamped image DOES look like a photograph. She's just beautiful. You have really done her justice by making her the focal point of such a lovely piece. Love the brown background with the introduction of the blue color. The musical tape is a great embellishment as is the twine. Love it! Thanks for joining us at Simon Says Stamp and Show. <3 Candy

Chrissy said...

So pretty Alison, Ballet was my thing as a child, till I was 14 at least, and then my height, and then boobs, became a top heavy problem and I quit....but this is gorgeous and brings so many memories flooding back, beautiful work.


Anita Houston The Artful Maven said...

Absolutely stunning! Love the floral background...really brings out the romantic feel! Gorgeous and vintage!

Brenda Brown said...

Heavenly. Just live this Alison.
Hugs Brenda xox

Valerie H. Marshall said...

Gushing over this creation! I love everything about it! I'm inspired to dig out this stamp again... I love it too and haven't used it in ages!! Thank you so much for joining us for The Stampsmith Challenge! Best of luck in the draw!
Val :)

chrissie said...

This is so beautiful and the colours go so well together. The ribbon idea is terrific.

Love Chrissie xx

Julia S-W said...

A truly beautiful vintage piece and I love the colours. Really like the way you've done a range of photos to show detail and you've explained as you've gone along. I love to do that too and when I see it on other's blogs, it makes their work come alive for me. Thank you for sharing in this way.

Alie Hoogenboezem-de Vries said...

What a gorgeous stamp Alison...and a great creation in total, so much to see...and it all fits!
Love the quotes at the end of your blogpost too!

Greetings, Alie :-)

Victoria said...

I'm not going head over heels, although i would be falling head over heels if I ever tried ballet, but she is a very beautiful stamp nonetheless! The colours are very beautiful and I love the addition of some manuscript paper.

emma mitchell said...

This is gorgeous I love the colours , your fab detail and this stunning image .
Hugs Emma xx

Marja's Stamp Addiction en Marja's Creativity said...

WOW beautiful, wonderful, lovely and very stylish.
Lovely greet

Karen McAlpine said...

Oh!! Here is the lovely ballerina card I just saw on your desk!! I really love the detail that you added to the layered backgrounds. Also like how you stamped with the coffee ink and added Vic Velvet over the image. Really gives it a vintagey feel. And, I am so glad that you popped over and entered your beautiful ballerina in the Stampsmith Challenge!!!

Anjas-Artefaktotum said...

What an amzing card with a lovely ballerina stamp. Your card is so elegant and unique I love it very much.

Anonymous said...

Well I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am that you have your first purchase of a Stampsmith stamp. Photo real stamps are my first love so always love to see fellow stampers create with them and a beautiful choice as I also love this stamp, so elegant.
A beautiful card I adore the juxtaposition between the elegance of the dancer and the nature inspired background, that style always appeals to me.
Thank you so much for joining us at TSC and Good Luck with the Prize Draw.

Bärbel said...

Eine wunderschöne Karte! Meine Gratulation zur Errungenschaft dieses tollen Photo-Stempels.

Janny Jager said...

Wowwwwwwwwww Alison,this is really really beautiful.
Love it

Greetings Janny

Doreen said...

This is just gorgeous,Thanks for sharing with us at Anything Goes.xxx

JoZart Designs said...

So beautiful and it brings back memories of when I saw Alicia Markova dance Les Sylphides at the Festival Hall, wait for it! over 50 years ago! Oh my! Thanks for the memory,
JoZarty x

Anonymous said...

she IS gorgeous! Love it!

Anna-Karin said...

Beautiful work Alison! Love the focal image you used and the Coffee ink and soft pink look wonderful together. Gorgeous background pieces too and I love those paper ribbons. Thank you for sharing with us at Simon Says Stamp and Show!

Sophie said...

Was für eine schöne Karte, so liebevoll gestaltet.

Und dankeschön für die ausführliche Beschreibung der Herstellung.
Das ist sehr, sehr großzügig :-)

Du hast ab heute einen Fan mehr, weil mir alle deine Werke sehr gut gefallen.

Liebe Grüße

Anonymous said...

Beautiful work Alison.
Regards Florence x

Ana K. said...

Gorgeous ballerina! Totally love it!

Sarah said...

a lovely image - as a dancer love this! Great vintage colours and tones too. Thanks for joining us at Simon Says Stamp and Show. Sarah.

Julie Mutch said...

This is beautiful - blue and chocolate brown is one of my favorite colour combinations. Cool idea to curl the ribbon as an embellishment. Thanks so much for playing along with us at The Stampsmith Challenge!


Debbie said...

Gorgeous Alison! Love chocolate and blue together. Love all your details and she is beautiful! Thank you for joining us at The Stampsmith Challenge!


Maria said...

Such a beautiful card, I love this ballerina stamp and your background is stunning - those colours are lovely.

Maria x

Michele said...

your layering choiies are simply stunning. gorgeous card for the stampsmith challenge! xo

Cathy said...

What a beautiful vintage card, love the details. Thank you for playing along with the That Craft Place challenge this time.
Cathy xx