My inky travels along life's rocky road

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - A


I've just returned from a few days away and on my return I found a beautiful birthday card from a friend in New Zealand with an Autumn theme and a line from a song I like  'the falling leaves of red and gold' . When I found out that this fortnight's letter for the Craft Barn Alpha Challenge was A my mind was made up as to what to do. Autumn is one of my favourite seasons and I love Autumn colours - there is something so beautiful about the way Nature shuts down for the winter and while it is sad to see winter approaching, the dying leaves put on a truly magical display. I wanted the writing to show through this time so I just stamped straight over it but used some picket fence Distress Stain over the area I wanted to put the quote. I know I've used these stamps and this ink pad before in a similar way on other projects but I just love the effect. The ink pad is Kaleidacolor autumn leaves and the stamps are by Simple Expressions. The Shelley quote was in a grab bag. I used a CB die set called fall leaves with some crumpled brown paper that an order came wrapped in and coloured them with spiced marigold, tea dye, peeled paint and aged mahogany DIs. Some parts of the leaves are raised up on foam pads to give a more natural shape and both pages have been spritzed with gold shimmer. Sorry if I haven't visited your W entry yet but I will try and catch up. Have a great fortnight!

Saturday, 20 April 2013

New Stuff!


I was at Ally Pally last weekend and had a great time meeting up with virtual friends. I've been going to Ally Pally for years and felt it had become a bit lacklustre recently. Last September was pretty dire with very little atmosphere but I'm pleased to say that last weekend it was back to its usual busy self. I don't know what Sunday was like but Saturday was heaving. I do hope all the retailers did well because several good companies no longer attend and I feel it's because sales cannot justify the expense and effort of having a stand at the show. Anyway it was a fun show and lovely to meet up with old friends and put new faces to names. I bought some DIs which I have used here (ripe persimmon and evergreen bough) along with a touch of peacock feathers. There is also a spritz of gold shimmer. The butterfly background is a large stamp by a company called Gourmet Rubber Stamps and the ticket is a fab 6"x6" Papermania Urban Stamp called ticket stubs which has 13 different tickets on it (a bargain at £3.99). The agapanthus stamp is from Woodware's new range called Singles (although there are 3 separate stamps in the set).

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Framed Card


Just a quick card made with a new stamp I got from Ally Pally last weekend. It's from Papermania's Urban Stamps range called Entomologist. This is a slightly more arty range than the usual cute animals they do and is well worth having a look at.  The BG is DIs and although it's not obvious from the scan I've layered the butterfly image (coloured with ripe persimmon and peacock feathers DIs). The frame is by Sizzix.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - W


If ever I needed something to be on time it was this fortnight's letter for the Craft Barn Alpha Challenge. I knew I would only have a small chance to get it done in time for the deadline and had planned that if I knew what the letter was on Sunday morning I could have a think about it while I was away all day Sunday. Of course things never go according to plan and the letter didn't appear until Monday so I have not been able to think about this DPS as much as I would have liked. The challenge entry also had to have circles on it so here is my Wonderful Wrinkles page. Wrinkles get a very bad press from companies eager to sell their expensive wonder potions so I wanted to portray them in a more positive light. The BG was made using the wrinkle distress technique which is the first technique I learnt using DIs. This is much easier on a loose sheet of paper than on a bound page but I  managed to carefully crumple the pages and then rub the tea dye ink pad over. It hits the raised creases and gives a crackle effect. I spritzed some water over to make the ink run a little and when dry added scattered straw DI all over (guess who forgot to mask off the definition!) . I wanted to give the effect of wrinkled skin. The circles are from Inkadinkadoo's circle and dots set stamped in Adirondack red pepper, Impress chartreuse, lemon yellow and peony purple and peacock feathers DI. The quote is from a stamp I had made a few years ago. It was too small for the page so I stamped it out and enlarged it. The image is from a card I found at the charity shop. So nothing too exciting I'm afraid but needs must. Have a good fortnight!

Thursday, 11 April 2013

UK Stampers Postcard Swap - April


Sam on the UK Stampers forum has asked for mainly yellow and circles for this month's postcard . I used a variety of yellow tones, scattered straw and wild honey DI, Impress lemon yellow, Adirondack butterscotch pigment and Archival sepia. I brushed scattered straw all over with an ink duster and used  a Christine Adolph cube for the sequin waste effect. The bright yellow circles were made by using the waste peel-off paper from a sheet of round 3D foam pads as a stencil. The text is from an Artistic Stamper journal words set, the flowers from a woodware set and the face was in a grab bag but it's a stamp I've liked for some time from non sequitur on a plate called the Face is the Icon of Creation. Looking at the completed postcard I wish I'd stamped the text in a darker colour but I will leave it alone.
Is it just me or do you find that when you look at your work online you become more objective about it? Is it because I am directly comparing it to other work I see online and find it falls short  or does the fact it is on a screen give me a bit of distance to criticise more openly? I dropped Art O'level (showing my age ) because I (rightly) knew I didn't have a hope in hell of passing but I had always , scribbled, coloured, played around with pens, rulers, compasses. I can't draw to save my life but stamps have always been a way to get around that and I am amazed when I can create things that I am happy with. Because I don't have a natural ability to position/group/place/ I think I need to teach myself these things. Anyone know any good books? OK enough soul searching whatever the outcome I find this hobby keeps me sane and relaxes my brain like nothing else plus the virtual friends I have made have carried me through many a rough day. Thanks to you all.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Katzelkraft Technique March/April


The technique challenge on the Katzelkraft forum is to make a graded background. Valou has given instructions on a fast way of achieving this here and has also linked to a tutorial by BĂ©atrice the owner of Katzelkraft . I was inspired by a post on the Katzelkraft DT blog by Gwen Scrap here and decided to do something similar . I used squeezed lemonade, picked raspberry and salty ocean DIs with some ink dusters. The BG text is by KTZ and the main image is a discontinued stamp by Simple Expressions but KTZ do a very similar stamp. I wrapped carpet thread and a small punched tag around the image and mounted it on foam pads.
I made a similar card with a more subtle gradation using wild honey, spiced marmalade, rusty hinge and barn door DIs. The ribbon came from a toiletry gift set.



Monday, 8 April 2013

Crafty Individuals Challenge - April


Spring in Fashion is the theme of this month's challenge on the Crafty Individuals blog. I have been meaning to take part in these challenges for some time but never getting around to it. I decided to take a different slant on this and take the title literally. In the Springtime everything in Nature starts to grow and becomes green again so I used one of the first CI stamps I ever bought CI-152 on a BG of peeled paint, crushed olive and shabby shutters DIs. I stamped the image in Archival library green and mounted it on some background paper from Book 1. I used a scrap of the patterned paper to stamp and 3D mount the butterfly for a little dimension. The base card was made in the same way with a little Impress emerald added as well. The text is computer generated.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Tim Holtz Tag - April

 
This is my take on Tim's April tag as seen on his blog. I started by laying down some distress ink on a craft sheet (broken china, peeled paint and wild honey). I don't have any distress metallic paint (actually I don't have any of the distress paints) so I used a bit of Brilliance reinker in cosmic copper. The dragonfly stamp is by Paper Artsy and I stamped it on the tag and onto a scrap of plastic (I think it was the cover of a company report originally). It looks quite blurry above because the plastic image has been stapled over the image on the tag. I used a chipboard number, an ornate corner and some die cut cogs and used some paint dabbers to give them a slightly distressed look. The tape measure is a leftover scrap from here and I used a piece of tissue tape. I stamped a Tim Holtz sentiment and cut it into a small tag which I stapled to the tag. I do like the effect of the BG and would probably spread the Brilliance reinker a little more sparingly next time.




Saturday, 6 April 2013

LIM 114


I haven't entered the Less Is More Challenge for ages and as I had a little time to spare today I thought I would try and produce something for this week's challenge which is Lime & Black. As you can see this is a VERY clean & simple card. I used the Memory Box loop border die on a scrap of card coloured with Brilliance pearlescent lime. The sentiment is from a See-Ds set finished off with a tiny gem over the 'i' (click on the image for a better view).

Friday, 5 April 2013

Craft Barn Alpha Challenge - R


R is the letter chosen for the Craft Barn Alpha Challenge this fortnight. I was thinking of Romance but then I saw this quote in a magazine (it's an ad for Audemars Piguet watches) and decided to go for Rules. It reminded me of Picasso who was a classically trained artist before he developed his own amazing style. I covered the pages with white acrylic - I prefer it to my slightly yellow gesso. I roughly doodled around the word and decided to use rusty hinge DI and red pepper Adirondack as my ink colours. The ruled lines stamp is by Katzelkraft and the embossed ruler/tape is a CB folder. The cracked BG is a stencil which I brushed ink through and then outlined. I decided to add some rosettes from my bit bag. Finally I wrote a few rules that we come across in daily life.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

UK Stampers ATC Swap - April


A trio of different ATCs this month on the theme of 'The Senses' which Vonny has set over on the UK Stampers forum. I decided to focus on a different sense for each one.
Sight - I picked this base card from my bit bag. It was a scrap I had brayered with a Kaleidacolor spectrum inkpad. The text is by Paper Artsy, the spots by Inkadinkadoo and the eyes by Hampton Arts. I used decorative tape around the edges.
Touch - I wanted this ATC to be very tactile so I embossed the base card with Swiss dots and attached a torn piece of painted corrugated card with eyelets. The text is cut from TH's alphabetical die and the image is a leftover scrap from a Hampton Arts inchie stamp. I found a couple of pheasant feathers in my embellishment box to complete the ATC.
Smell - I picked up this Papermania build-a-flower set from Hobbycraft a few weeks ago and thought it would go well with the sentiment. The sentiment came in a grab bag and I've always been hesitant to put it on a card because the 'while you can' bit sounds a bit like the person you're saying this to might pop it soon (maybe it's just me). Anyway the 'smell' bit seemed right for this ATC. I gave it a squirt of Burberry Brit before posting but I don't expect the smell to last.

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