Friday, January 16, 2015

Postcard - Traci Bautista style

Here is the postcard I mentioned here!!  I am super happy with how it turned out as it is my first attempt at doing the Traci Bautista style of art.  I used the hot glue stencils I made the other day  - they were really fun to play with.  I watched several of Traci's videos on line so I could get a feel for how she did her layers and what supplies she used. Most of the videos are in "quick mode" so I had to really pay attention to figure out what supplies she was using and how she was using her tools.
I started by creating my background on glossy photo paper. You can check below for more information. Once I was happy with it I found a bright piece of hand decorated paper in my stash and punched six ovals (SU)  from different areas of it to get a variety of colours.  I used a red stamp pad and a Making Memories magnetic alphabet set to add the words to the petals - life, thoughts, words, deeds, kindness, joy.  I used a red gel pen to add a squiggly border to each petal.  I created the flower center by layering a red scallop outline over a yellow scalloped circle and layered a C over it.  The C was created by cutting two neighbouring circle Nestibilities out of yellow cardstock which created an O.  I then trimmed out a section to create the C and added an outline filled with cross hatching using the red gel pen.  I eventually added red watercolour pencil and used a wet brush to push it around to get a more solid shape.  I hand lettered the rest of the letters to spell "Choose" and once it was dry I spritzed it with yellow ink spray.  I hand cut the leaves and stem from a piece of green hand decorated paper and added some definition with a green watercolour pencil blending out the colour with a wet paintbrush.  After positioning all the elements I glued the petals, stem and leaves in place using white glue in a fine tip applicator and added the flower center over them using a small square of 3D foam tape.  

So here is what my side table looks like after a stint of playing with ink sprays and hot glue stencils. I created sprays by mixing a few drops of dye reinkers with water in little TH misters. That worked great.  I ended up using navy (Night of Navy), medium blue (Brocade Blue), red (Real Red) and yellow (Crushed Curry) (SU) for my creations.  You can see in the photo the first three backgrounds I created and how much paper I had down to catch the over spray (those will eventually have more colour added and be added to my hand decorated paper stash).  The first one - yellow & blue - the blue was too dark.  The other two were too close to the colour of the flower petals to be effective backgrounds. The lighter blue was a much better choice.  I laid several stencils over my 4" x 6" glossy photo paper and spritzed it a couple of times with the medium blue spray.  I removed those stencils and added others and added a couple spritzes of yellow. When I removed those stencils I turned them over, spritzed their flat backs with yellow and laid them on the corners of my developing background.  I was happy with that.  Next, I turned another stencil over, spritzed it with blue and laid it over my background, repeated the spritzing and laid it in a different place.  That was better.  I was quite happy with the results and the contrast between it and the bright petals was really good, but it still needed a bit of something.  I decided it needed a bit of red/pink.  I knew that spraying the red would be too dark so I punched an eyelet border (SU) out of white cardstock hoping to use it like a stamp.  It was very porous and immediately absorbed all the colour I had spritzed it with.  Bummer!!  I kept experimenting and eventually discovered that once it was saturated with colour I could use it like a stamp - perfect.  I just laid it over my background in three places and rubbed the back to transfer the ink.  That worked very well and gave me the more subtle colour I was looking for.  I have resisted adding any black to this piece of art mostly because I did not want to ruin it and also to let myself just appreciate the colours for what they are though I may consider just a few drops of black ink spritzed in a few spots from the bristles of a toothbrush!!


Hot glue stencils!!!!!!

I have signed up for a postcard swap and we have been given free reign as far as technique and theme go. Several artists had been suggested earlier so I went looking for Traci Bautista as I had been to her site before and liked her art.  I discovered that she makes hot glue stencils!!  What fun!!! After a search online for tutorials on making these I got started.  I dug out my silicone mat, plugged in my glue gun and in no time I was making stencils.  It was a blast!! I made flowers, stars, grids, circles, hearts, arrows, and a few miscellaneous all over patterns that are just swirly.  Fun!!  I did have to remove the glue strings which took a bit of time but in the end I have over twenty stencils of my own art!!  I will be using these along with some ink sprays to create backgrounds for this postcard swap. I expect I will be adding some designs to some of my hand decorated papers as well.
Here are some close ups of some of the ones I made.  Therese

Chunky book page - blue, crackle paint and "allure"

Joined a 4"x 4" Chunky book page swap on one of my groups with the theme of "blue, distressed crackle and allure".  It took a few days and some internet research to come up with my concept for the project and to find tutorials for creating crackle paint.
I am very happy with my crackle background.  More info on that a bit farther down.   I decided to use techniques that draw me to creating - hearts, green and pink, texture, inspirational quotes, script backgrounds, hand lettering, etc.  I started by trimming my background to a four inch square and then stitched it with white thread to a white backer which was embossed with hearts.  I dug through my stash of hand decorated papers and found one with pink and green.  I glued a portion of it to cardstock and die cut a heart (SZ) out of it.  I embossed the heart using a script stamp (SU) and white embossing powder.  I glued it to my blue crackle 4" x 4" background using hot glue, added the felt flower and leaf embellishments and the little quote with hot glue as well.  I hand lettered the words and added the dots using a white gel pen.  Very happy with it!!
Crackle backgrounds - there are many tutorials on line for making them.  I started by using a clear crackle medium which I have own for a long time. I applied it to quarter sheet of dark blue hand decorated paper and followed the direction on the bottle.  I let it get tacky and then applied light blue acrylic paint to the surface.  It crackled some but not enough for my liking.  So I went looking for another method.  Someone on the group recommended several tutorials so I watched them and decided to use cheap white glue and paint.  As you can see on the left I started with several squares of blue serendipity paper which I painted liberally with cheap white glue ($1) and then painted with white and silver acrylic paint while the glue was still wet.  I had to apply a generous coat of paint to avoid disturbing the glue layer too much.  I left them over night and they crackled very nicely.  Unfortunately, the contrast between the upper and lower layeres was not really what I was looking for so I started over.
I used a quarter sheet of dark blue cardstock, applied the glue as described above, added a medium blue acrylic paint over it and left to dry overnight.  It crackled very nicely and the contrast between the two layers was much more what I was looking for.  The photo to the left is the same piece of crackle background as you see in my finished piece but they look so different.  Must be the light over my other work surface that made the difference.
So if you are looking to give this technique a try I would recommend the cheap white glue and acrylic paint technique.  It is cost effective and gives you very nice crackled background.  Here is a link to a tutorial.   Enjoy!!