Sunday, 29 May 2016

A Special Day

Someone very lovely that I know has just had a very special day.. she is now a 'Mrs' 

Huge congratulations.. 

1. Card embossed with a Cuttlebug folder then a heart removed from the centre. 
2. Mount over turquoise mulberry paper
3. Fill the centre with buttons and liquid pearls. 

Darcy x

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

New Journal..

My friend Miriam found some cheap journals recently and very kindly sent one to me, we have decided to do paired journals. We each do a page in our own journal and then swap  and work in each other's journals and then swap again and so on.. 

So to start with i decorated my covers, using Grunge Paste through stencils, painting this black and then using 2 coats of Glossy medium to seal and protect. 

The pages in this journal are very thin, so I have gone right though the whole book glueing pages together in pairs. Although this cuts the page numbers down by half it does mean you have thicker pages to work on, very helpful when using wet media. 

So here is the first page done by me.. I began by scraping layers of Fresco paint. 

Then adding black, more white and then brighter translucent colours. 

More black, and some portfolio crayons, also some white dots in the black areas. 

I love all these layers

I then sketched out my focal design and whited it out. 

Added in some underpainting. 

I also added some texture , using Grunge Paste on the mushroom tops and on the stalks. 

I added shading with paints and once dry I added more shading with coloured pencils.

The last shading was around everything with Stabilo pencils. 

I added the text.. 

I think this might be my favourite area, love the layers and bits of texture,

This now needs sending off to Miriam so she can do the next page, can't wait to see what she does. 

Darcy x

Friday, 13 May 2016

Gelli Plates

Over on the PaperArtsy blog this past two weeks we have seen lots of inspiration using gelli plates to do mono printing. I do have a large (real) Gelli plate, but I fancied playing with some smaller ones, especially the small shaped ones. 

When I looked into buying some I found they were just too expensive for me, so I had a play at making some. 

There are many recipes online, I modified the amounts used for this session to achieve an amount of gel that would be just enough for the shapes I wanted. 

First I sourced my moulds, these are lids from tins and boxes,  mostly metal or plastic. The heart is only cardboard,(it was a chocolate box) to be able to use this I had to coat the inside with some matte medium. 

In a bowl I poured 1 and 1/2 cups of glycerin, to this I added 6 tablespoons of powdered gelatin , allowed it to soften a little and then gave it a good mix. 

I then added 1 and 1/2 cups of boiling hot water. 

The water will sit on the surface to begin with, you have to mix it really well, but not whisk.. you do not want lot of bubbles. i mixed a little bit and then let it stand a minute or so while I got on with making dinner, then I mixed again and let stand again. Each time the gelatin sinks a little so you keep going back to it and mixing some more. 

You have plenty of time, this does not set immediately, and remember the water is boiling hot, it will stay hot for a while. 

I think i went back to it and mixed maybe 5-6 times.. as I said i was making dinner, so it was no problem to keep mixing it as i went past. 

Pretty soon it was all well blended and time to pour. 

I filled my moulds and left them to set, this takes about 4hrs. Though you are better to leave them overnight if you can. 

The tiny circle tore badly as I released it, I had thought it might, it was shallow and very small. But that was ok. I popped that gelli into the microwave with some other leftover gelli and melted it for 30seconds. I then poured it into another lid. 

I used the small square and circle lids twice, I let the first lot set, released them and then poured more gelli back into them. I had my leftover gelli in a jug, it set in the jug but was easy to remelt when I needed it. 

So here are one of the circles and one of the squares. I made a paper template from baking parchment and used this and a large sharp kitchen knife to make the straight cuts. 

Voila! here are my shaped gelli plates, along with the heart. 
Heart is 7cm wide x 5.5cm tall (dip to bottom point)
Triangle 9cm long on each side
Hexagon 8cm across

Here are the other two squares. 
Medium square 12.5cm x 12.5cm 
Small square 9cm x 9cm 

Finally the circle and rectangle. 
Circle = 9.5cm diameter.. 
Rectangle = 7cm x 10.5cm

This recipe does not need to be kept in the fridge, just lay then somewhere flat and free from dust. I will be keeping mine in a plastic box that has a lid.I have them laid on acetate sheets so they are easy to lift out, with another sheet between the layers. 

Now to have a play with them. I shall make another post once I have some prints. 

Darcy x

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Wanderlust page 8

Here is another Wanderlust page, this time the prompt was 'my future' I totally forgot to take photos with this one, though to be fair the technique is very simple. 

I began by adding strips of washi tape to my background. Over this I added paint, stamped with lids and added flicks. 

Then i peeled up the tape and decorated the trees. 

I love this texture.

This is so simple to do, take a look at THIS VIDEO it explains the technique perfectly. 

As for it fitting the prompt, well our futures are always uncertain.. a bit like stepping into a forest. It can look dark and scary but often there are hidden gems of beauty on the path, and thru the trees we glimpse flashes of what is ahead. 

Darcy x

Sunday, 8 May 2016

Wanderlust Kate Crane Part 2

So here is the mini journal that I made for the Kate Crane lesson. I have to say it was a lot of work.. not hard, just very time consuming. Lots of pages needed colouring on both sides with several layers on each.

Despite the time taken I am pleased with how it turned out. I have no idea how I will use it yet. Kate suggested a travel journal, but as i don't really go anyway that won't work for me lol It will probably end up just as a handbag journal, to play in when I go to town and stop off for coffee. 

I pretty much followed Kate's instructions, it is actually nice to just follow along and not have to think too much lol 

My front cover features a stencil by Seth Apter  I love these collage style stencils. The covers measure 13cm x13cm. 

Here are my insides..of the book, not my actual insides, cos that would be a bit gross and not very arty lol  Because of the paper that I was using I had enough to make two pockets instead of one. 

I really like all the colour inside and the use of different sized pages. 

So far all I have added is a few quotes here and there. 

In total there are 50 small pages to work on, so it's a bit of a monster really .. plus 6 tags! However because of the concertina style it all folds up very neatly and is only 2 cm thick. I guess it will expand as i fill it, so it may become chunky. 

Very happy to be able to tick one lesson off lol 

Darcy x

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Wanderlust Kate Crane Part 1

I fnally got around to starting the actual lessons on the Wanderlust course, not all have appealed to me so I am picking out my favourites to do. Going right back to the beginning of the year { I am so far behind lol} I chose to do the Kate Crane class. 

Before the main lesson we had to fill some pages with mark making, I had done this many years ago, but it is always handy to have a collection of scribbles and marks and patterns that can be used in other projects. 

I had some very very old sketchbooks that I had taken apart, thus giving me a huge pile of paper. Not really good enough to do good drawings on, but ideal for quick sketches and for mark making exercises. From some of these I made some tiny signatures, the pages are only 10 cm by 14cm. 

I compiled 7 signatures each with 4 sheets, giving me lots of little pages. I have bound them into a piece of canvas, whch I painted. 

Front cover:

Front and back covers, showing the stitching in the spine where the pages are attached. 

Here you can see I have lots of pages and I wil fill them all over time with patterns and ideas for use on bigger pages. 

Here are a couple of the pages done along with Kates exercises. 

Not a new technique for me, but nevertheless I did enjoy doing the pages. Sometimes it is good to revisit old techniques. 

Darcy x

Monday, 2 May 2016

Wanderlust Page 7

I am amazed I am keeping up with these lol, though I am woefully behind with other parts of the course lol 

This page is inspired by the prompts 'Everything you did today'

Again I had a ready coloured background, done so long ago I have no idea what was used. 

I addded some bits of leftover papers just for texture. 

and then added more paint, around the edges is copper metallic paint. 

using charcoal pencils I added my image, and to that i added some stamping using the wings and circles from one of my latest stamp releases. 

 I added more copper and then the text which is a list of things done that day. Things such as travelling on busses, going swimming, attending a hospital appointment, having coffee in Costa. 

 Apart from the text I really like this page. 

Darcy x

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Lots of Texture

Another sample from my Feb stamp release, love the texture on this one. I began with a 5x7 card and covered this with Grunge Paste thru a stencil. 

I then started to add paint in layers, first Tango, then Cherry Red then Baltic Blue. Next a layer of Snowflake, then Smurf. Once these were dry I rubbed back with a babywipe to reveal the layers of colour. 

The numbers were stencilled with Baltic Blue and then bumped with Snowflake. 

I painted card with Baltic Blue, then added Crackle Glaze and then Snowflake. I like to always rub back the crackling a little to distress it. 

Next I stamped the spikey flower from EDY18. I cut these out and mounted them onto stiff black card. 

Because the black card is stiff I was able to curl up the ends of the petals, adding great dimension. I also added orange buttons to the centres. 

To finish, the flowers were added to the card, some flat and some on foam pads to add extra height  and the text was stamped over Cherry Red. 

I just love the height achieved on these, I wish i had thought to add another layer of petals to make them more like water lillies... ah well, next time..

Check out your favourite PaperArtsy retailer to fnd these stamps on sale. 

Darcy x

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Birthday Bag

I recently needed a birthday gift.  I love handmade bags, especially these totes that will fold up and tuck into a handbag, ready to whip out when needed. I hadn't painted one in a while, so thought it would be a nice gift to make. 

I started by making a calico bag, though you could buy one. 

I popped some cardboard inside the bag to protect the back, then I marked out a panel and painted it with White and fabric medium mixed. 

All paints are PaperArtsy Fresco Chalk. 

Next I added blocks of other colours, all mixed with fabric medium, I used old discontinued colours to try and use them up. Smoked Paprika, Sky, Spanich Mulberry, Jade and Prawn. 

I added a little Banana to brighten some areas, then used a brayer to add White. Over this I stamped the text from EDY17 using Plum Archival ink. I also added the hanging beads using Marlin. 

Then some stencilling of the circles from PS031 using Jade, plus another layer of White. 

I finger painted a little Sky, Smoked Paprika and Banana in places, then used sequin waste to add more stencilling using Spanish Mulberry. 

Then another layer of brayered White. 

All these layers are very thin, and allow you to build up depth and dimension without obliterating the colours beneath. 

I stamped the Cherry Blossom tree from EDY19 twice at each side, using a piece of paper as a mask to make sure the trees were in the right place. The tree stems weren't quite long enough, so I lengthened them just with a piece of plastic and Black paint. 

I added dots of Prawn to the trees, and then stamped the dotty circles from EDY17 using Cornflower Archival ink. 

Finally I added some lines of black paint and some circles of white with a lid. 

That was the background finished, so now to add the border to ground the panel. I used the torn paper edge stencil PS031 and Pea Coat paint, blending the paint inwards with a soft brush. 

To embellish the panel I painted some flowers and leaves onto cotton fabric.  The frilly flowers from EDY18 are in Bougainvillea, Lilac and Captain Peacock. The Poppy from EDY19  is in Smoked Paprika and Cherry Red. the three stems are done with a variety of greens on each one to add interest. 

I also painted more fabric with Sky and Pea Coat for the text from EDY17. 

All the bits were glued on, and then the text panel was stitched around. 

Here it is finished, I am very pleased with it and hope the birthday girl likes it too. 

Darcy x