Tuesday, 27 January 2015

The New Black

The second swap for January was to make something using the technique showcased here.

The basic instructions were add lots of texture, paint black, colour using mica paints and sprays, highlight with Treasure Gold etc.

So, being straight after Christmas what else would I start with but a used cake board. My house is testament to the fact that I keep all sorts of "rubbish" because it will "come in for something" and cake boards with scored foil covering make a great recycled substrate.

My first layer of texture was torn book pages - the pieces overlapped to cover the entire board and stuck down and sealed over with ModPodge.

Because the board was circular I was inspired to make the piece look like the Earth.  I then used an entire pot of Distress Crackle Paint that had been knocking around since I don't know when to create the continents by applying a very, very thick layer with a palette knife.

Layer three of texture was created by adding embellishments of various types. The foliage is die cut fun foam, there are paper flowers, shells, bits of fibre and hessian and items moulded from paper clay. The letters were old stash glittered in red and green but it didn't matter that I didn't have matching colours to make up the words for this.

I mixed black acrylic paint and clear gesso to create a black primer and painted everything with two coats. Black gesso would been easier but I didn't have any and wanted to get on. The blue sea and green land were painted with Lumiere paints mixed with a bit of water to get it to run around into the cracks.

All the embellishments are painted with Twinkling H2Os. I used lots of old stuff making this that hadn't been out of the cupboard for ages. Lastly I applied Treasure Gold with my fingers (what else?) to highlight some of the texture details.

Here you can see some of the detail. The circles were made by coiling up the wire stems cut off the paper flowers.

The twirly bits like little springs were made from left over wire stems too.

Now I have to figure out how I'm going to post this to my swap partner.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

What happened?

Trials and tribulations of life, family and work... I can't believe it is such a long time since I last posted! To be fair though a lots of stressful stuff has been going on and I haven't had time or inclination for much crafty stuff for a while but at last my head is back in the right place now when I do get chance to "play".

Fewer of us played in our twelve days of Christmas swap in 2014 so I made 4 little gifts so we all had 12 presents including our own but I never got round to photos or posting - so apologies to the lovely crafters in the swap group for not showcasing their works.

I have made a crafty start to the new year (with out resolution which seems to be the kiss of death to any good intention). Our monthly regular swap for 2015 is 6x4 postcard made with a specified Gelli plate technique. So far so good because January was a basic additive technique - even I can cope with that...

I brayered a layer of cream to start with and then added:
 - sponged blue paint on a stencil and pressed 1st and 2nd generation prints onto the plate
 - dabbed red paint onto plastic canvas using my finger and made random blots onto the plate

Once I had pulled the print and let it dry I added some text stamping to the most open areas on the print.

I'm looking forward to February too because we are subtracting and that is my favorite technique for backgrounds. After that I fear I might be outside my comfort zone but nothing ventured as they say.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

A technique I've not tried before

I can't believe I haven't tried this out before - layered embossing....

For this, swap the organiser shared some step by step instructions for the technique and we could make whatever we wanted. I decided to play safe and work on an ATC for my first attempt, using very sturdy board as the foundation.

Stage one - cover the entire front with Versamark ink. Then using at least three colours of embossing powder cover bands of the surface in turn before heating to melt. I discovered that my stash of embossing powder is more limited than many other things - black, white, clear (no good for this) and metallics mainly - so I struggled to find enough variety for this experiment.

I used green, blue and bronze in the end for the first layer.

Step two - apply some more  Versamark randomly with finger tip - smearing to avoid finger prints the instructions said, although for a future project I like the idea of deliberate finger prints. I applied silver embossing powder on this layer and heated again.

Step three - using a background stamp (the line stamp from a Paper Artsy Hot Picks plate in this case) apply more Versamark and emboss in white.

Finally stamp the main image in black.

I then added a final layer of clear embossing powder melted on top to even out the surface because some areas were a bit pitted, as if the chipboard had absorbed the Versamark and not grabbed enough powder even with all those layers.

The result is rather limited by the colours I had to hand but if ever there was an excuse to shop this is it. I need some pretty colours to play with further.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Decorative houses

This month's swap - little houses to decorate our craft space. We are meant to make a row of three houses (with hanging loop) but I used the Tim Holtz dwellings die so  I had to make four. It would have been wrong to leave one out, how would I decide which one?

The rules of our swap were few - well only one really, that each house had to be no bigger than ATC sized so I had to chop the bottom off some of the die cut shapes.

Each is covered with part of the same gelli plate print which went from dark blue to lime green via shades of greeny blue in between. The windows and doors were stamped with Paper Artsy stamps.

The windows are glazed with glossy accents and each roof has texture added with matte accents or crackle glaze.

I jollied them up with a bit of contrast using die cut flowers. All four are mounted on to a strip of sturdy card with a tab to hang it from. I hope the recipient likes bright colours!