Saturday, 14 October 2017

Now on Instagram

Just a little note so say I'm now on Instagram, which I'm loving for posting sets of images rather than just 1-2 on Twitter at a time. Make sure you follow me on there! 

Friday, 13 October 2017

Art Haul: Well, it has been like a whole week since the last one, right?!



This is part of my "must have full set syndrome" kicking in - I decided to get the rest - or near as damn it - of the Dina Wakley Media acrylic paints from Ranger. I already have bought two batches - my first was Night, Blackberry and Rosy (I had not realised the latter was a metallic) and then I expanded into some primaries and more secondaries with Lemon, Lime, Tangerine, Sky, Blushing and Umber. After the haul below, the only ones I don't now have are Gilt, Penny and Medieval - three metallics - I may or may not get them as I honestly seldom use metallic paints but who knows. I've stuck to the 1 fl. oz. (c. 60mL) bottles because they're very economical and have a fine-tip on them already, and above all, they're SMALL. I like to be able to keep all of my Dina Wakley Media Paints in the largest of my Dina Wakley Media storage bags - they're always to-hand and I can move them to other locations really easily. I did um-and-ah over the Black and White - I have a LOT of black gesso, white gesso, black acrylic, white acrylic - I don't really need them. That said, for monoprinting and a lot of other techniques, having paints of the same consistency is really important and it would save me a lot of hassle having to thin CRYLA down with GAC-100 every time I wanted a runnier paint. Dina's paints are quite stiff but they're not true Heavy Body paints like CRYLA that have the consistency of clay and huge pigment loads.

The Dylusions inks are the 4 of the current release (Aug 2017) that I don't already have - I've had Vanilla Custard and Rose Quartz for about a month, and I have Laidback Lilac and Mushy Peas already in the acrylic paints, but I wanted to get the others as I love these muted, more pastel-y shades when used dilute but as you can see from the swatches down below (which I paint with one of Dina's brushes), they're SO striking when laid on thick! The Dylusions paper is designed to resist the dyes so they blot off and leave a lovely even, vivid and bright effect. If you use watercolour paper (which is what I swatch onto) such as the stuff in Dina's Media Journal, you get AMAZING intense effects! 

All of the items in this haul are from Art From The Heart (Dyan Reaveley's business in Harrogate, North Yorkshire) - superprompt service and always a pleasure to deal with. Plus what's not to love when you get a package like this one?







Ranger Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paints in:
   Cheddar [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Elephant [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Evergreen [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Fuchsia [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Lapis [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Magenta [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Ruby [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Turquoise [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   White [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Black [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Ocean [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Ancient [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Sterling [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

For those of you in the USA, you can get 6 tube sets of the 2016 colour release or the metallic paints for just $36, which is a pretty good deal - but sadly doesn't ship to the UK - in the 2016 set, you get Blushing, Evergreen, Cheddar, Fuchsia, Elephant and Ocean, and in the 2017 set you get Rosy, Medieval, Ancient, Gilt, Penny and Sterling. These may be a good way to stash-build economically? It's about a 30% discount for each set.





Ranger Dylusions Ink Sprays in:
   Mushy Peas [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Laidback Lilac [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Periwinkle Blue [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Peony Blush [BUY NOW: USA, UK]



Again, for those of you in the USA, you can get the corresponding 6 Dylusions acrylic paints for $30 right now, which is about 25% off - well worth it, they're great colours! 




Sunday, 8 October 2017

Media Journal: "Fear" (mixed media on gessoed paper)


This piece is my October entry to Dina Wakley's awesome #showusyourmedia challenge done with #rangerink, and this month we have to cover "Fear". I've put it on Instagram as we have to, but I wanted to be able to show the whole process here. To me, it is a man living in darkness looking out of a window at a world being masked by the encroaching darkness spilling from Fear which floats overhead. The colours and beauty of the world are being destroyed by Fear.

What does fear mean to me? I'm very open about my past bouts of clinical depression - I've had two in my lifetime. One hit during my Ph.D and I spent 1 month on Valium hoping it would pass, and then 18 months on Prozac when it didn't pass. I've since been in remission but I have had a few small relapses - the most recent one being around Christmas of 2016, but thankfully it only lasted a week or so and was caused by a pain drug I was trialing. Depression robs of you of so many things and for me, it robbed me of the ability to relax as I was paralysed with fear 24/7 - not the slight nervousness or worrying about finances that most people (irritatingly) call "anxiety" - I mean full blown unrelenting 24/7 clinical anxiety where your heart is racing all the day long and your adrenaline is at maximal levels and your body is ready to fight-or-flight...except you're just trying to sleep or watch TV. It's hell. It really is. NEVER dismiss someone who talks about depression or anxiety - not until you experience them can you really know what it feels like. I felt during both bouts that I'd become a shadow and that all the colour had been robbed from my life and the world. That was the basis of this work. Fear hangs over the man in the picture's world and spills out darkness. The world inside of his window is already just shadow and the world outside of his window is slowly being destroyed too. He has copper to his left, which is associated with beauty and creativity - things fear rapidly destroys.

If any of my readers think that they or someone they know is suffering with clinical anxiety or clinical depression, speak to a medical professional - don't leave it to chance. If you're unsure, you can self-test online for free, and if you live in the UK you can get free online cognitive behavioural therapy - I used that very website over 10 years ago and believe me - it works. You are not alone - but never try to ignore it. Depression is a fatal illness if not treated - you would not ignore cancer, don't ignore depression.

WHAT I USED:
Ranger Dina Wakley Media Journal [BUY NOW: USAUK]
(I used a "watercolour paper" page)

Daler and Rowney Simply White Acrylic Gesso [BUY NOW: UK]
(this is not available in the USA so I recommend this instead)

Old credit card for applying gesso

Ranger Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paints in:
   Lemon [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Lime [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Tangerine [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Sky [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Night [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dina Wakley Media 1" Flat Brush
(this is from the 4-pack of short-handled brushes [BUY NOW: USA, UK])

Dictionary definition of "Fear" 
(mine is from a 1951 Oxford English Dictionary from a second hand book shop)

Paper scraps - mine are from:
   Idea-ology Tim Holtz Correspondance 12" paper stash [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Idea-ology Tim Holtz Tissue Wrap Melange [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Copper foil tape [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dylusions ink sprays in:
   Black Marble [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   After Midnight [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   London Blue [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Matte Collage Medium [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Foam brush for applying Collage Medium

Pipette for dispensing ink

Winsor and Newton ProMarker in:
   030 Black [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Idea-ology Big Chat stickers [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Idea-ology Small Talk stickers [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dylusions White Linen acrylic paint pen
(this is from the 2-pack of paint pens [BUY NOW: USA, UK])

Ranger Dina Wakley Media Scribble Sticks [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

WHAT I DID:
STEP 1: I used an old credit card to apply gesso to the page in the journal and left it to dry for a few hours - this is a great way to get a really thin, even coat that is just enough to paint on.



STEP 2: I wanted the idea of colour being masked by shadow but still very much being there, just hidden, as that's what fear really does to you - it makes you forget the colour of yourself and the world, but the colour is still there. I selected Night (of course) as the shadow, and I wanted Lime, Lemon, Tangerine and Sky as my colours of the world.


STEP 3: I also wanted some collage elements and in my scraps bag, I had some strips of tissue wrap torn from the edges of a recent project and an off-cut of paper from a paper stash that had some orange on it and would match the theme. I cut a dictionary definition of "Fear" too, and I arranged the elements on the page to work out how they should go. I wanted to have the paint under them so that they were a window the viewer is looking out of, seeing fear out there, spreading shadow over the world.




STEP 4: I added paint to the page and made some bold strokes, leaving some paint thick and textural.





STEP 5: I applied Collage Medium to the elements and added them directly into the wet paint - I did not worry about ensuring every edge was stuck down. I added a few little bits of Collage Medium over the paper so that it would act as a resist in later steps, but only in a few spots.




STEP 6: Whilst it dried, I was working on another project and went to look for something I needed and I found a role of adhesive copper tape that I'd forgotten and I decided to use some, so I applied it here to add to that abstract "window" concept. The outermost layer of the rape roll had oxidised a bit which made it even better. Once I'd put it on, I added Black ProMarker down one edge and blurred it with my finger whilst wet, so that the copper hardly showed on the one side - it just needed muting a tad!



STEP 7: With the paint almost dry, I used a pipette to apply 1mL London Blue, 0.5mL After Midnight and 0.5mL Black Marble along the top of the page and in a few other places, in separate spots - the ratios were important as I wanted the lighter blue to mix into the darker colours but still be visible. I held the page vertical and let it fall, catching the ink on a paper towel at the bottom of the page.



STEP 8: One spot of the ink looked like a head, so I used Night paint and some rough brushwork (the brush was wet) to apply some shadow and to turn that head into a person in darkness looking out of the abstract window and seeing fear.



STEP 9: With the Night Scribble Stick slightly damp, I 'edged' the whole page with it. I then used Night and Black very wet to border the dictionary cut-out and to add some spatters.



STEP 10: Using the stickers and a white paint pen, I added a phrase at the bottom of the page: "Fear is when no beauty shines and darkness robs the world of life and colour". DONE!











Media Journal Layout: Little Things




I've done a few garden-related pages in one section of my Dina Wakley Media Journal recently - I shared "Beautiful Garden" recently - so I wanted to do a kind of "title page" of sorts, that was a welcome to the garden-section of the journal. I chose to use the kraft process paper pages for their strength and colour and even though I covered them with tissue paper and then layers of Archival Ink, it's still possible to see the lovely tone of the kraft underneath it all, and it adds a "ground" to the whole piece, as well as muting down some of the background colours and making them more earthy, which allows the collage pieces to really shine. This layout was in part inspired by the names of the colours in Wendy Vecchi's line at Ranger. It is also a kind of tribute to the incomparable work of Vicky Papaioannou, who is one of THE best mixed-media art journalers out there.

I've wanted to do a leaf-and-flower based collage for ages and I had just the dies to do it, which I'd not yet used - so it was pretty good fun. I used a lot of stamping and inking steps you could skip I guess, but they added detail, and I like my journal to look beautiful close-up as well as at a distance. It is based on a flower garden surrounded by trees with leaves blowing in the wind and butterflies and moths visiting the flowers and reminding us that there is immense beauty in their simplicity. I also wanted the idea of an entrance and of looking through the leaves.

This is kind of a "big" project, in that it uses a lot of different things, but they were all from my stash, and it did not take terribly long - it did have some drying steps, of course, and I actually did this over a couple of days, but the total "active" time was maybe 2h at most. The result is vibrant and beautiful and I love it. You don't need to have all of the Dylusions Ink Sprays for example - you could use watercolour paint or markers or whatever you have, and you can use any suitable dies, or just cut things by hand - use what you have.


WHAT I USED:

Ranger Dina Wakley Media Journal [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(I used a double-page spread of the kraft process paper pages, both for the colour and the thickness, which is pretty critical to support the collage - I think this would equally work in a Dylusions Creative Journal [BUY NOW: USA, UK], and you can obviously get kraft process paper Insert Pages [BUY NOW: USA, UK] if you want to fully match the look)

Ranger Dylusions Size 12 Mixed Media Journalling Tags [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Archival Inks in:
   Sap Green [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Leaf Green (Wendy Vecchi's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Library Green [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Forget-Me-Not (Wendy Vecchi's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Garden Patina (Wendy Vecchi's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Cactus Flower (Wendy Vecchi's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Tea Rose (Wendy Vecchi's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Dandelion (Wendy Vecci's Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Manganese Blue [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dylusions Ink Sprays in:
   Rose Quartz [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Bubblegum Pink [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Pomegranate Seed [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Vibrant Turquoise [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   After Midnight [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   London Blue [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Lemon Zest [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Fresh Lime [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Vanilla Custard [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz red rubber stamp sets:
   Autumn Blueprints [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Reflections [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Tim Holtz Distress College Medium in:
   Matte [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Vintage [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(you can buy a pack of three Mini Mediums comprising Matte, Vintage and Crazing, which could be more economical option [BUY NOW: USA, UK]) 

Tim Holtz Idea-ology Tissue Wrap in:
   Melange [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Tim Holtz Idea-ology Layers in:
   Botanical [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Tim Holtz Idea-ology Clipping Stickers [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

OASIS Feather Butterflies in:
   Pink/Cerise (7cm, pack of 12) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
NB: the USA link points to a similar product as the OASIS brand was not available.
(I actually used a feather butterfly from my stash, which came from the wedding supplies section of a craft store some years ago, but these ones from OASIS are a good match)

Sizzix "Tattered Leaves" Bigz Die (Tim Holtz Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Sizzix "Small Tattered Flowers" Thinlets Die Set (Tim Holtz Line) [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Winsor and Newton ProMarkers in:
   Y418 Ivory [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Y919 Primrose [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   O739 Saffron [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   M428 Blossom [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(you can use any alcohol markers, obviously - and it's easy to find equivalent colours in other brands)

3/4" golden taklon crafting paintbrush for applying the tissue wrap
3/4" natural hair or other very soft crafting paintbrush for the leaf/flower collage steps
(for the latter, you can use any soft brush but do not use a watercolour brush as you'll ruin it. Both of the brushes that I've been using are dirt-cheap Craft Smart set of 40 brushes, which cost me under £10 for the set [BUY NOW: USA, UK] - whatever you use, it has to be soft or you'll run into issues - these natural hair brushes are a mix of horse hair and synthetic)

Ranger Mini Ink Blending Tool and Foams [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

2" foldback clips [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(you will need 8-10 of these, as they are for weighting the edges of the pages to keep them flat whilst drying - this completely prevents curl)

WHAT I DID:



STEP 1: I applied tissue wrap to the journal pages using the stiffer taklon brush and matte Collage Medium and then put fold-back clips around the edges of every page to weight it down and help it not curl. I left it to fully cure for a day or so and then cut off all the excess paper with scissors, which I kept for use in collage projects. I applied more collage medium if there were any edges that were loose. You need to keep the fold-back clips in place through the whole project - they should be applied so the clip-y bit is just on the very edge of the paper - they're there for weight rather than to hold things together. Remember when inking to move them around a little so as to avoid gaps. I chose this particular tissue because the pattern has moths which match my theme but also has music and that fits the idea of listening to Gaia and working with the planet, which are very much in my ethos, and I love this paper as it's not coated, so it takes ink really well.



STEP 2: I prepped one tag to be cut into leaves ("the leaf tag"). I sprayed it all over with Lemon Zest and then added Vibrant Turquoise, which produces a dark green, followed by Fresh Lime to lighten it. I blotted it with scrunched paper towel that I'd used before so that the various types of Art Dirt™ on it would transfer over and add some dark flecks for texture. I then sprayed Vanilla Custard in two patches to create some lighter, warmer tones (the large warm yellow patch in the image above). I blotted that and left the tag to dry fully.



STEP 3: I prepped a tag to be cut into three types of flowers ("the flower tag"), so I made half blue, half pink and the overlap became purple, so I could have three colours of flowers. To do this, I sprayed one half with Rose Quartz and then Bubblegum Pink in one patch and then just a little Pomegranate Seed before blotting as per STEP 2. I then sprayed the other half with Vibrant Turquoise and London Blue followed by After Midnight and the lightest touch of Pomegranate Seed so that it would have just a little colour-continuity with the other half. I again blotted it in the same way, and left it to dry.



STEP 4: To add more texture, I stamped the mirrored script stamp from the Reflections stamp set over parts of both tags, very roughly so it would not really stamp well and not using a block. I used Archival Ink as it won't budge and has great colours. For the leaves tag, I used Leaf Green and Library Green, both applied to the stamp at once. For the flowers tag, I used Forget-Me-Not, Garden Patina and Cactus Flower, again, all applied to the stamp at the same time. I left the ink to dry for about 30 minutes before die-cutting.



STEP 5: I used my blending tool to softly apply Leaf Green Archival Ink to the bottom 1/3rd or so of the tissue-covered journal pages - like grass. I then applied a region of the much paler Sap Green above it to give a lighter patch - like distant trees far away. I then used Forget-Me-Not for the sky and added some Manganese Blue especially around the top to create some darker patches. I used Tea Rose around the edges and over any gaps as it adds warmth and brings things together somehow. In this and all other steps, I tried to leave the large moth on the tissue on the left page clear of ink, so that I could use it for something later. Don't forget to move your foldback clips to apply ink where they were so you don't get white spaces.




STEP 6: I die cut the Tattered Leaves Bigz die twice from the leaves tag and then used the leaves from the Small Tattered Flowers Thinlets die set to cut more leaves from the gaps - I had 6 big leaves from the Bigz die and probably 12+ small ones from the Thinlets. I then used the 3-4 largest flowers from each of the 3 flower types from the Thinlets set to cut flowers from the other tag. I tried to keep each one to either pink or blue or purple so that each flower shape was the same colour.





STEP 7: I used the Autumn Blueprints stamps to embellish my 6 leaves from the Bigz die. The Blueprints stamp set wasn't designed by Tim Holtz, it was actually his stepson MJ's work and it does bother me that the actual designers are never credited on the packaging. It has 3 leaves that don't quite match the dies but they match enough to add veins and texture. I separated my leaves into piles of "mostly yellow" and "mostly green". I stamped them all in Archival ink - the former with Dandelion and the latter with Leaf Green. I did this by inking the stamps face-up on my worksurface and then placing the leaves onto the middles of them so that the stems and veins would be in the right place. I then left them all to dry.

STEP 8: I went back to my background in my journal and used the same mirrored script stamp from the Reflections set to apply script in Manganese Blue, Library Green and Dandelion - all on the stamp at the same time - very, very lightly over various parts of the background. This was just to add a bit of visual continuity and is very pale and hardly shows in photos but you can see it in real life.



STEP 9: I used Tea Rose ink on my blending tool to go over every leaf and flower to cover up the white/cream cut edges of the cardstock and to go over any uninked areas - this adds a lovely orange-y undertone and edge to them and echos the background, it seems to being things together for me. I love Tea Rose - it's just magical how it will soften and mute any colour without making mud.



STEP 10: Collage time! Remember to always, always apply Collage Medium to both your leaf/flower and to the page and then stick wet-to-wet - if you don't, things will curl like crazy, and fall off. You also need to brush Collage Medium over the top of the item to seal it. This is why I used such a soft brush, as the Dylusions ink WILL mobilise with Collage Medium and the softer the brush the better as it will minimise this from happening. You need to work quite swiftly through this step - I applied larger leaves around the top and smaller ones around the sides and falling from the sky - again, avoiding that moth - and then I added the flowers around the bottom.



STEP 11: After brushing Collage Medium over all of the stuck-down leaves and flowers using the soft brush, I kept going to cover the whole of both pages - this leaves the tissue non-permeable and gives it very different properties! Whilst the Collage Medium was still wet, I did my College Medium Blend technique, which looks awesome! The trick here is that you need wet/starting to dry matte Collage Medium all over your project and wet matte Collage Medium on your brush. You then dip the bottom 1/3 of your brush into vintage College Medium (which is just Collage Medium with the Distress Vintage Photo dye added) and brush it into the medium on the page in various locations - some over the leaves, some just in the edges. Because you have so much wet medium on the page already, the vintage version is diluted down to give a much more subtle effect, which I prefer. Don't forget once this step is done, you need to wash that brush properly with soap and water! At this point the whole thing needs to be left overnight to dry out. The next day, I went round the edge with scissors to remove the overhanging parts of the leaves, which I've kept for other projects.








STEP 12: To the huge moth on the left-hand page, I applied Ivory ProMarker all over and then Primrose over most of it. I used Primrose and Blossom to colour the various parts of the moth, and I repeated this over any other large moths on the background that did not have Archival over them. The dried Collage Medium will make the paper non-porous so alcohol markers will sit on the surface, just as they do on marker paper, which makes getting a really soft, pale look very easy - though they have to be left to dry thoroughly or will smudge. The overall effect is very subtle and pale and that is exactly what I wanted.



STEP 13: I selected phrases from the Clipping Stickers that produced a kind of a poem and applied them to the righthand page, then covered them with Collage Medium to ensure they stayed stuck. Once it was dry, I applied Tea Rose Archival Ink over them with my blending tool again, just to give some continuity with the page.



STEP 14: I selected 5 butterflies from the Layers Botanical pack and applied Tea Rose Archival Ink to each one - which is not easy as they have a glossy coating. I placed them around the layout and then stuck them into place with Vintage Collage Medium to subdue the white borders somewhat. I left them to dry and once dry, I applied a layer of Tea Rose Archival again, to soften.




STEP 15: Finally, I took a red feather butterfly (cutting off the wire from the underside) and applied Tea Rose Archival Ink over the wings to mute them very slightly, and stuck it close to the poem/sentiment using Collage Medium all over the underside of the body and the edges of the wings. I then closed the journal and put a 1kg pot of gesso over the butterfly to weight it down to ensure it adhered properly.






Friday, 6 October 2017

Beautiful Garden: Media Journal layout


This layout called "Beautiful Garden" was a pretty quick one that I could have done in 20 minutes but I had a 24h gap waiting for the stamp set (below) Scribbly Insects by Dina Wakley to arrive, so that I could finish it off. I may extend the garden onto the opposite page or do some more pages in similar styles. 

It's worth my quickly saying - this project uses both the Media Journal and Scribble Sticks by Dina and you can buy them both together as a set and make savings if you don't have either of them already - follow this link for USA customers - and this link for UK customers.


WHAT I USED:
Ranger Dina Wakley Media Journal [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(I used one of the "watercolour" pages, without any gesso etc)

Ranger Wendy Vecchi Archival Inks in:
   Leaf Green [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Forget-Me-Not [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Tea Rose [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
[you can get the Forget-Me-Not very economically as part of the Wendy Vecchi Media Palette which is 4 full-size Archival Ink pads in one container - it also contains Orange Blossom and Fern Green, which you could use instead of Tea Rose and Lead Green in this project, plus Buttercup, which is just glorious. These palettes save you both space and money - BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dina Wakley Media stamp sets
   Circle Patterns [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
   Scribbley Insects [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

Ranger Dina Wakley Media Scribble Sticks [BUY NOW: USAUK]

Derwent Spritzer [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(or any other mister)

Ranger Mini Ink Blending Tool and Foam Pads [BUY NOW: USA, UK]
(3 pads are needed for this project)

Tim Holtz Idea-ology Clippings Stickers [BUY NOW: USA, UK]

WHAT I DID:
STEP 1: I used Leaf Green Archival Ink on my blending tool to pounce a series of circles and blend them together lightly to make a grass-y background at the bottom of the page. Leaf Green is quite pale so you need so use quite a lot but I wanted some circles visible from the blending tool so there was continuity between the background and foreground.

STEP 2: I did the same using Forget-Me-Not Archival Ink to make the sky, which I did as a series of patches, like there was cloud present. I then used Tea Rose Archival Ink all around the edges of the page and in patches on the sky and grass - it adds a kind of muddiness to the green and blue and sort of brings the page together - I did not use very much, it's best left subtle.

STEP 3: I misted the scribbled circle stamp from the Circle Patterns set with water and then added scribble sticks directly to it, allowing some colour to spill into the central "well" that isn't meant to touch the paper. The different combinations I did were Magenta + Blackberry; Tangerine + Lemon; Sky + Night and Night + Umber. I stamped them over the sky and top of the grass, quite randomly, and to some of them, I added a little bit of White or Black in a small patch just to add variety. I let the middle of the stamp hit the page in places, so some of the flowers had a partial centre. I let some flowers overlap.



STEP 4: Using my point-to-point technique, I drew in the stems. This is really easy but you need to dry your Scribble Sticks first! You just put two sticks with their tips touching, both about 80 degrees to the paper and draw with them both as though they're one - this creates wiggley stems in two tones. I used Lime and Night for this.



STEP 5: I sprayed the bee stamp from Scribbley Insects and coloured all of the bee with the Black Scribble Stick and then used Night on the wings and stamped it in the sky, flying away.

STEP 6: Once the bee was dry, I coloured her with dry Scribble Sticks, with some stripes Black and some Lemon with Tangerine along one edge. I went over the wings with Sky very lightly. I did later go back with a damp brush and merge the Lemon and Tangerine slightly but it doesn't really matter too much - I did the same on some of the flower stems actually. With a dry Night Scribble Stick, I added some dashes like they used to in childrens' books to indicate flight.



STEP 7: I chose some phrases from the Clipping Stickers set that felt right: "a wonderful creature" "a very wonderful place" "in the garden" "there is nothing simpler" "be thankful". I added those top right, outlined them with the Umber Scribble Stick and then blurred it a little with a damp brush. Done!