Friday, 23 December 2016

Clarity Challenge - December 2016 - Christmas Carol or Joy

Once again Christmas has arrived without enough notice!  I'm late finishing off cards and only delivered the last ones last night!

Not a Carol, but a very Christmassy poem, so hope it counts! We have a teddy that narrates this poem, his mouth moves and head moves side to side as though he is reading it; he has brought joy to many who have seen him!

The following 3 cards were created using the same technique, central stamp embossed and coloured, then covered with a post-it, so that the background shading could frame it; then post-it removed and thr 2 different styles of outline added.

The odd shadow effects on the following card, was caused by the daylight lamp, but the card was sealed up and sent before I realised the photo was not so good!  However I included it as I liked the way the mice were peeping!  This technique, of cutting in to the card and tucking in the image behind it, was inspired by Barbara Grays technique with the letterbox stamps.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Blue Poppy - Clarity Challenge

This months Clarity challenge is "Blast from the past", so I dug out a couple of my oldest Clarity stamps. I tried a new colour with the poppy and went for a blue poppy.

I coloured the stamp with distress inks using blue and 2 shades of green and stamped on to watercolour paper.  A wet paintbrush was then used to push the ink around to get a greater coverage between the detail and created a hand painted watercolour look.  The poppy was then mounted on contrasting paper.  To get a subtle background I used another old favourite the butterfly, this was stamped randomly round the base card, then each softly coloured in colours that reflected the main image.  (The small butterfly has often been used on my projects when a smudge needed covering, and was used on a previous challenge to create a fabric pattern on a dress.)

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Clarity Challenge - In the garden

When is a Clarity Blooming Corner not a corner? When it is stamped repeatedly, hand-drawn leaves added, coloured, then cut up into individual flowers and sprays and randomly arranged to create a beautiful foreground to the "In the garden" Clarity Challenge.

I started the process by stamping the the Clarity Stamp Blooming Corner 21 times on a piece of white card.  With the corner not featuring any leaves, I added these to each of the corner stamped images with a black micron pen.  I then coloured all the flowers and leaves using a selection of 10 shades of pinky-purple spectrum noir pencils for the petals and 3 shades of green for the leaves.  Once all the colouring was complete, I cut them all up to create a selection of flowers, mostly individual flowers but also a handful of multiple flower sprays.  The flowers were then shaped by lightly embossing the back to create a dome, these were then arranged around the outside of the prepared background.  The photo does not do justice to the depth of the flowers.  

The prepared background had been created using the Clarity Birdhouse stamp set, using Spectrum Noir pencils to enhance the texture of the birdhouse and fence.  The vine from the Birdhouse originally framed the whole background but this has been covered on all but the top of the design.

At first this was designed as a card, but the work it took and the fact the flowers and leaves hung over the edges it has become an artwork that shall be framed for display in a box frame.

An idea, that sprang to mind when I heard the challenge title, really turned out rather therapeutic with lots of colouring.  I'm sure I will be using this technique again, but maybe on a smaller arrangement!

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Paper piecing

I was inspired to create this card as an entry for the Clarity Stamp challenge.  I selected 5 different papers that showed a range of hues of similar colours.  The elegant lady was stamped on each paper, then the hat and dress were cut out.  Here I have a couple of tips, 1. don't cut the gloves from the dress section until you are ready to glue 2. Don't sneeze after you have cut the gloves from the dress!  Guess how I know!

Then came the task of lining up the ladies on the base card, so that they could be dressed in the graduated papers.  As my elegant lady is from some years ago, she is fixed to a handle, so I decided to scratch a mark on the handle in the centre top and bottom, this enabled me to place a pencil mark to more accurately position them.  

The centre plaque was created by masking over the ladies with 2 large post-it's then applying 2 shades of distress green and over stamping with the crackle stamp in a contrasting raspberry, using the technique of holding the stamp in your hand, rather than securing to a handle, and using 2nd and 3rd generations of ink.

Then the ladies needed grounding so I shaded a puddle under each lady imagining the light source above.

Monday, 27 June 2016

Clarity Stamp Challenge June 2016 - Masculine

I have created this card with a Winter theme that I thought suited the masculine theme.  I believe some people start planning Christmas cards in June too!?

The birch trees were the first part, which were then masked with a paper mask extending the birch trees to make a square frame.  A small moon mask added, with a "ripped hill" mask to define the sky.  Forest ridge stamped trees used for the background trees.  I then stamped "Santa's car" NDC97 back issue, however I did not want it too Christmassy.  So, I stamped the car on to a post-it, then cut this so the Star which was on the top of the tree was remaining with space to top right, then using the beauty of clear stamps, I stamped the car and tree, so that the star was over the post-it, thus removing the star from the stamp (kind of a reverse mask!)  It was a little tricky and I did have to redraw the top of the tree as it looked slightly odd without the star!  The base of the birch trees were hand drawn grass tufts using a fine liner.  The car and shadow (in front of the trees and the middle of the trees) was coloured with Spectrum noir pencils, with extended car tracks!

Monday, 30 May 2016

Clarity Challenge May2016 - Anything goes

This is an experiment with embossing resist technique and Brushos.  First the Clarity Butterfly trees was stamped in Versamark, with a couple of Clarity words from the Birdcage set, these were all were clear embossed.  The Brushos were used on top of the embossed image; there is a little trial and error required for how much water to add, as you need enough activation to outline all the stamped image, but don't want too much that the colours blend!  There are several experimental pieces, in various colour combinations, that did not make it to publication!

The main design was mounted on contrast blue, and the card base background stamped with all 3 sizes of butterflies (from the same Butterfly Tree set), picking out the different colours of the Brushos.


Saturday, 30 April 2016

Clarity challenge April 2016 - Masking

Last minute as usual!  I did a lovely card with a bunny but cannot find it!  This was the first card I did this month for the mask challenge,  before the bunny!

Very simple masking the hills in a rainbow of colours and the silhouette butterfly tree.  The happy Birthday was stamped onto a waste piece of card, but thought it added interest having the touch of bronze.

Monday, 21 March 2016

Clarity challenge - Lily

This months entry uses Lily, in fact my first outing with this stamp, and also inspired by the Jo Rice workshop I attended earlier this month.

First stamp Lily and the Butterfly Tree.  (The tree was coloured on the stamp using craft creative ink sticks, which enabled me to colour the trees and butterflies independently.)  I then masked the top and bottom borders with post-it notes, then masked Lily with the Clarity mask.  I then used brushes to create the sky and hills, using the ripped paper technique.

To colour Lily, I used the outside of the mask, and also made the outline of each layer of the dress, so that the pattern would not run over different layers!  First a light pink base coat brush covered the whole dress area, then stamped.  The stamp I used for the dress is a Clarity Butterfly stamp which I don't think is available anymore, let's just say when I bought it I also got a VHS video called "The art of transparent stamping" by Barbara Santerelli (photo also attached below)!  The rest of Lily was coloured with Spectrum Noir pencils, with shading added over the stamped dress to emphasise the folds of the dress and edges.  The tree was enhanced with Spectrum Noir pencils, as I was not happy seeing the hill outline behind the tree.

To add more interest to the hill, I lightly flicking a green pencil over the edge of more ripped paper.  Finally I removed the post-its and drew a pencil line long the line of the post-it mask, adding blobs at random intervals for interest.  Then, when I thought I had finished, I decided to add the dimension of a separate Butterfly from the Butterfly Tree set, with its wings lifted off the card; this was coloured with the same pallette as Lily's dress.

Here's the video, it's dated 2002!  Been a fan for many years!
And here's the old butterfly stamp I used for Lily's dress, it measures 28mm across so rather magnified below!  Looks more like a flower on her dress, but the idea was it would continue the Butterfly theme from the Butterfly Tree!

Friday, 26 February 2016

Clarity Challenge - Love - Feb2016

This is the Valentine card I made for my Hubby, who is so kind and thoughtful and has taken the household reins whilst I have been working away, so heartfelt love to him.

Although it might not be that obvious all of the stamps are Clarity, with a bit of a twist.

The L is quite obvious with the Elegant Lady stamp and the hand drawn shadow.
The O is made from the leaves from the naked tree set, with the addition of the little bird from the birdhouse set (at 10 o'clock on the wreath).
The V gave me the greatest challenge with the two sides of the Blooming corner masked off one at a time and stamped at the appropriate angle.
The E is sponged through a letter stencil (of my own making) then the Butterfly from the Butterfly tree stamped through the stencil.

The 4 images were stamped on individual cards then edged with Promarkers to give the impression of greater depth, before attaching to the background card.  The use of a sepia colour joins the individual images.

Sunday, 31 January 2016