Wednesday, September 23, 2020

August Unity ATCs

Had fun creating these August ATC’s!

Starting with the Know You Are Strong Kit and Unity paper from Whitney’s Have Courage Kit, I found the perfect Washi tape to pair with both. The basewas easy to put together as I just adhered strips of paper and Washi tape on cut up ATC’s and stamped the sentiment on a smaller paper. I then added horizontal watercolor drips to the sentiment paper in matching colors. I embossed the small feather from the kit using leftover paper from the first step using white, purple and teal embossing powders. I fussy cut them out and adhered everything together.

Keeping to a purple theme, I started the second ATC set with the fantastic Life is Better With Friends Kit. I decided to start with a base of patterned paper. It was a 12 x 12 sheet I cut down and added white gesso to... using a heavier hand toward the center. I wanted the pattern to show through on the edges. I stamped and embossed the image toward the left using purple and dark silver powders and used a combination of acrylic paints to loosely add color to it. I then used another stamp to add magenta to the side and top. Finally, I embossed the sentiment in purple and a dark silver. I added a violet rick rack ribbon to the bottom.

As usual, loving using ATCs to experiment with. This time I tried painting with acrylics (need a lot more practice and lessons), tried out the Crafters Companion purple embossing powder I picked up discounted and practiced creating drips. Hope they turned out okay and my crafty friends liked them, despite learning curves! Well, till next time, happy crafting!

Monday, September 14, 2020

Second SMAK Card, Fly!

Created another SMAK card using Unity’s September 2020 SMAK, Everything is Up to You. This was so easy to make and I just love how it turned out! These leaf stamps are so intricate and pretty, I used them in combination to create an autumn inspired encouragement card!

I started by stamping the sentiment in green Versafine ink. I then used a combination of that and the Tim Holtz Crackling Campfire and a little Fossilized Amber to add the leaves surrounding the sentiment. I then spattered the ink all over. I die cut the top and bottom and used a leaf border trim on the sides. I added a green paper border trim piece behind each side. I then used another background stamp from the kit to make the bottom layer. 

For embellishment I added sparkly sticky dots and twine. Hope you enjoyed this simple card. Till next time, happy crafting!

Sunday, September 13, 2020

I See Your Soul Card

Love sunflowers, so I was happy to see one included in Unity’s September SMAK, Everything is Up to You! I recently picked up a grungy Echo Park paper collection and decided I wanted to try using the papers for this grungy card. I pulled out Seth Apter Ancient Amber and Wendy Vecchi Buttercup embossing powders, the Crackling Campfire oxide ink, and my Gansai Tambi watercolors.

I started by first taking a paper from the Transatlantic Travel pack and embossing in yellow the sunflower petals and used the brown powder in the center of the flower. I also used the red ink to get the fade away bits of the stamp. I then began adding dimension to the flower with watercolors. It’s an interesting contrast that the powders fully cover the paper while the watercolor bits are transparent. I used a Brea Reese brush pen in black ink to add some random lines. Again, just trying to go for the “impression” of a flower.  I used other stamps from the kit to add more texture to the background. I then spritzed flecks of black, white, red and gold paint all over. Used the same paper to stamp the sentiment and a gold pen to highlight the letters.

I die cut the sunflower paper, fussy cut the sentiment and backed both with more paper from the kit. I added sequins with prills and black ribbon to embellish the card. I like the combo of the sunflower facing one head on with the sentiment! The “grunginess” just says to me, I see you as you are and that’s okay!

Hope you enjoy this unique take on a card! Till next time, happy crafting!

Friday, September 11, 2020

First Art Journal Pages

So for the last few days I’ve been playing with my September Unity SMAK kit, Everything is Up to You, some new stencils from Stencil Girl and a bunch of products from Altenew (spray), Versafine (ink), Dylusions (acrylic paint), Ranger (paint) and some random acrylics, embossing powder, and pens.

I decided to try my hand at creating a two page layout in my new ArtC art journal I had picked up at a Tuesday Morning last year! What fun... must admit I love watching mixed media artists on YouTube and get a lot of inspiration and courage from watching them play and change things up on the fly! I did the same thing with this layout.

I began first by “gessoing” both pages. I then filled the pages by stamping a sentiment from the kit all over as well as 2 background stamps. I then started adding sprays and paint all over. I knew I wanted to try my hand at Talaya, Goddess of Rain Stencil. So appropriate, as we have another ashy, gray, bad air quality day from all the West Coast fires! I first painted over the area I was going to stencil with a flesh colored paint. I then took a dark brown paint and added the girl. I spent a bit of time adding color and shading to her hair and face and continued this till the end.

I tried adding other stencils and stamps and ended up going over what I had done with white and cream colored paints... hey, can always change it up... and, this is my first try, and... it’s for me! So next, I embossed the leaves from the kit twice with copper powder. I added paints to it and fussy cut them out. I continued to add lowlights and color to these till the end as well. I used the background stamps, again, from the kit to darken the area underneath where I’d affix the leaves. I then adhered them to the pages and tried using charcoal to outline them. I wanted it darker so I used a Brea Reese paint pen to add outlines. I added another sentiment from the kit by stamping on orange paper cutting it up and backing it with black paper,

I’m pretty happy with the delightful meaningful mess I created for my first attempt! I plan to continue attempting more pages going forward as this was so fun - turning blank pages into color and form! Be interesting to see if I can improve my skills in this area! There is certainly a ton of room for improvement!

Well, till next time, happy crafting!

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Unity’s September SMAK Card

Just received the new September SMAK kit, Everything is Up to You and had to immediately open it up. I decided to start making an autumn card using the pretty row of trees. (May shoot for a Christmas version later, as well!)
Wanting something a little different, I pulled my Schmincke’s watercolors out and created a gradient watercolor wash down the paper. I was pretty pleased with how vibrant the colors turned out. Not wanting the background to wash out the image, I pulled out my Vicki Boutin crayons and crayoned over the rubber stamp, spritzed it with water and stamped it on the paper. I did this several times, using a heat gun to dry the image paper. When done, I stamped the tree tops one more time with red ink. There’s definitely a combo of colors in those trees. I love the loose feeling this technique gives the image.

Wanting some bling too, I took craft glue and added dots around the treetops and the ground to adhere flecks of gold, copper and purple glitter. Haven’t used glitter in a while... was fun to pull it out! Now, I was really happy!

I embossed a sentiment from the kit using a Zinc green powder. I trimmed down the image and sentiment. I found gold glitter paper I thought would complement the image and added small border strips on the top and bottom and backed the sentiment.

I love autumn colors and the season! And I think the bright colors and lovely sentiment of this card, could bring cheer to someone this season! See the video at the end for a look at all the sparkle!
Enough on this card, hope it inspired some ideas... till next time, happy crafting!

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Friends of Unity Blog Hop

Hello and welcome back to the Friends of Unity September Blog Hop! You may have missed me last month as I had to prepare for a load of guests and household furniture and boxes to be staying with me for awhile. My son and family moved in (22 month old grandbaby, son and DIL, 2 cats, a dog, a tortoise and a chinchilla) while they tried to sell their condo and search for a house! And, successfully, they’ve achieved both objectives and will be closing on both in the next month! What a joy and great diversion to have them here!

Meanwhile, along with my sanity, I’ve gotten my crafty mojo back! Today I’ll be sharing 2 cards created with the theme of Friendship in mind! Remember to comment on each post in the hop for your chance to win some Unity goodness! In July, I promised a giveaway from my post, so I’d like announce

Andre M

as my winner! Please PM me to claim your stamp set!

The first card was created for a very special friend’s birthday, using the sunflower from August’s KOM, Count Your Blessings, and the sentiment from August’s SMAK, You Are My People! I watercolored the sunflower to match the Summer Charm paper from Craft O’ Clock. I then used pencil to deepen colors and fussy cut out the sentiment, the flower and some butterflies from the paper.

For the second card, I used paper from a Somerset Studio magazine and stamps from Here’s to Love and Friends! The sentiments in this kit are lovely! I embossed the image twice, once with black and the second time, just the flower in shades of red and pink. I then used a Jane Davenport pastel palette and some Qtips and a dry brush to add color. To deepen colors a bit, I added Prismacolor watercolor pencils. I fussy cut out the wreath and made a shaker card with it. I used very pale sequins in the shaker and for embellishment. Finally, I added thin green sticky strips to the black paper backing from Love From Lizi to add a border.

Hope you enjoyed these friendship cards - see you next month! I am the last in the hop order, so if you need to stop back at the top, here it is:

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

July ATC Set

Had fun last month experimenting with a mixed media ATC using inspiration from the Somerset Studio Summer 2020 magazine edition. Collaged patterned paper from multiple sources onto mixed media paper using gel medium. I then added acrylic paint using a roller and my fingers. Once dried, I cut the paper down to ATC size and started adding Unity stamps from a variety of KOMs and SMAK kits! Here’s the start of my efforts!

Next, I stamped the small flower cluster from another Unity Kit onto separate paper and loosely watercolored them. I then tried to differentiate the background ATC with different layers using colored pastes, stencils, different inks and stamp patterns. I used a ton of products on this ATC experimenting with what worked and what didn’t. Again, I love that my crafty friends enjoy receiving all kinds of ATC’s, including some of my failures... all with the best intentions of encouraging creativity! I consider this set an okay attempt... A for color matching, B for effort and C/D for overall effect. 

I decided to share this effort, as I think it could serve as encouragement for trying something new and taking a chance, gathering inspiration from great artists, like, in this case, Laly Mille, and persevering despite so so results. Every opportunity to try something new is a learning experience!

So, with that, I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and try something new to you... a technique, an art medium, or design construct, be it mixed media, vintage, CAS, whatever... Just go with it! Till next time, happy crafting!