Bright Wishes: 1 NEW Stamp Set, 2 Different Watercolor Techniques

We’re only TEN days away from the launch of the 2017-2018 catalog where you will see some gorgeous new products like the wishing well set called Bright Wishes which I am sharing a sneak peek of today.

Bright Wishes contains a beautiful large line-drawn well stamp which lends itself well to all types of coloring techniques.  For those who know me, they know I LOVE to color stamped images!

While my preference for coloring is using a great set of colored pencils (Yes, you can imagine my excitement when SU! brought back watercolor pencils!), the images from the Bright Wishes set above are both stamped onto watercolor paper and colored with markers and an Aqua Painter for a watercolor look.

One of the images took THREE TIMES longer than the other to color.  Can you guess which one?    Read on for the answer.

The card on the left was created by first stamping the Bright Wishes well in Sahara Sand.  This light color was chosen because it would essentially disappear and allow the image to take on a more free-handed watercolor appearance once the marker/aqua painter watercolor was added. Because it is necessary to color up to the lines and extra care added to adjusting/overlaying colors, there is a lot of moving to dry areas and waiting for the adjacent area to dry so that you can add more color. In other words- If you don’t wait for the well stones to dry and watercolor the greenery you’d have green bleed into the well’s stones.  It isn’t easy to remove watercolor bleed!  You must have dry surfaces when you watercolor in adjacent areas or add color over areas.  This is why the PINK card on the left took 3x longer than the BLUE one on the right.

The BLUE card on the right was inked by applying marker ink to each area using different colors. I colored the roses Real Red, the greenery Old Olive, the well stones Crumb Cake, the wood Sahara Sand, etc.  Once the whole stamp had ink, I huffed on it (adding moisture from my breath back to any area which may have dried) and stamped the image.  I then used an Aqua Painter where the brush was just damp enough to move the color around within the leaves, flowers, stones, wood, etc.  This creates a watercolor look, however it also takes all definition of the stamp away.  Once the image dries, ink the stamp with Chocolate Chip and using a Stamp positioner like the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig, stamp the details over the image. Your watercolor blobs of color will have definition once again.

Did you know which one took longer?

Do you have a preference in the results?  Just because a technique takes longer doesn’t mean everyone would prefer the results over the less time consuming result.

However you decide to color the Bright Wishes stamp set, I believe if you like to color it is a great set to add to your collection. You can do that starting June 1, 2017 by shopping with me HERE.

Until next time…

-Joanne

Quick Cards with A Beautiful You

It is that time of year when a lot is happening and events are popping up and I need & want to make a quick card and get it in the mail to someone.

Does that sound familiar?

If so, you know that  you also do not want the recipient to think you spent very little time on their card. You want a great idea that makes that  card look good, but takes very little of your precious time.  This is where ink block spritzed backgrounds & blacking out stamps for silhouettes are perfect techniques-quick and simple, but someone who doesn’t craft won’t know that.

So, if you need a last minute Mother’s Day card, Graduation card, or an encouragement card for a friend who has had a bad time lately, try turning to one of these cards.

Today’s cards only take about 15 minutes each to make- much less, if you do a bunch of backgrounds all at one time.  Also, you can change your background color ink to your own preference. Pick your recipient’s favorite color to make it look more personalized.

You only need a few supplies in addition to your watercolor paper and stamps to get started. Add a Stamp-A-Ma-Jig for the mother/daughter card.

To create the background:

  • Add ink to your clear block with a marker (just scribble across the block) or ink pad (stamp empty block into pad)
  • Spritz inked block with water. More water will give a different look than a light spritz.
  • Stamp block onto your watercolor paper.
  • Repeat as needed to cover your background. Add more ink or water as desired.
  • Combine colors (wash off stamp block in between) for a different two-tone look.

The image below shows less water on left and more on right.

After the background dries, Stamp your image.  I used Stazon Jet Black, but you could use another black. Make sure your background is dry or it might bleed. Heat set the background with the heat gun or a blow dryer if you wish to hurry the process along).

After stamping the image onto watercolor paper, use a black Sharpie to trace and color in your image.  If you wish to add items (like the graduation cap & diploma, draw and color them in.  If you wish to eliminate items from the stamp (the little girl’s umbrella), do not ink that portion of the image when stamping. (More details below)

To get the proper placement for the little girl, use the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig and do not ink the umbrella in your final stamping.

How to add girl:

  • After Stamping and coloring your woman black, you will need your Stamp-A-Ma-Jig.
  • Place the window sheet supplied with Stamp-A-Ma-Jig into corner of the Jig as shown in instructions.
  • Stamp umbrella girl image (with umbrella inked) onto window sheet making sure to place your acrylic block squarely into the corner of the Jig.  Do not remove from acrylic block until complete!
  • Remove image sheet from Stamp-A-Ma-Jig and place over card so that the girl image has the woman’s hand resting on her head. Do Not Move window sheet once you like the placement!
  • Bring Stamp-A-Ma-Jig back to window sheet so that it nestles into the corner once again, careful not to move the window sheet until placed.  Once the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig is in place, you carefully remove the window sheet, leaving the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig in place (Don’t move it!)
  • Stamp your umbrella girl, by placing in the corner of the Jig as you did previously, this time without inking the umbrella.
  • Use your black Sharpie to color in and make any hair adjustments needed. (You may need to draw in a bit of the top of her hair)

It sounds like a lot of steps, but it does go quickly if you are comfortable with the Stamp-A-Ma-Jig.  Practice does make this simple & quick.

 The graduate card was inspired by a fellow demonstrator, Sue Parker, who created a beautiful paper pieced version for her daughter’s graduation.  I couldn’t resist doing it in a silhouette version.

The cap is drawn over the hat and colored in so no one ever knows the hat was stamped.  I then free-handed a diploma-perhaps a little larger than i would on a second try.  You may wish to lightly pencil in before using your marker.

One last card to share-

I have a few friends going thru very difficult times right now.  So, having a quick card to send a caring thought is of great use.  As I stated at the beginning of this calendar year, sending encouragement is always appreciated by the recipient.

If you haven’t guessed by now, all the sentiments are in my handwriting.  Using my own handwriting on the front of a card is unusual for me, but it is quick and easy way to get exactly what I wanted to say to the recipient. It seemed to work with these cards due to the organic look of watercolor.  Although, I’m still not a huge fan of my own handwriting. (Is anyone?)  I didn’t have to spend time looking for the sentiments I wanted from other sets.  Of course, you can always do that.

Go on with your busy lives & send the handmade cards too!

Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers seeing this.

Until next time…

-Joanne