Thursday, 28 July 2011

Oh Romeo Romeo ...

So my dear husband is acting this week and next in the annual open air Shakespeare amateur production by the Masque. It's the first time he's done any Shakespeare even though he's been acting for years and I'm really proud of him. 

He's playing the Friar and it's first night tonight!  So in honour of such grand thespian pursuits I made this little memento using stash I haven't used yet.

To be honest the creation was one of those ooh "actually I think I'd rather use the bits that were going to go in the bin rather than the shapes I meant to cut" moment.  The original idea was to cut two shapes from the Vintage Cabinet Card die, one as a base plate and then the second cut in half vertically to make doors.  But then when I cut the shapes from mount board I really liked the waste and how they stacked together to make a really deep recess for an aperture.  So I cut a back board to act as a base plate and set to work colouring and stamping.

The background was paper I painted in stone colours and used Distress inks and stains in old linen, wild honey, pumice, crushed olive and tea dye. As luck would have it the PaperArtsy Arched Apertures stamp fitted perfectly in the recess so that was stamped as a repeat across the card in grey stazon. Bit more inking to tone it all down.

For the top of the aperture I again coloured some paper cut out the shape and ran it through the bricks embossing folder, more stains on top finally finishing with some black to highlight some bricks and the aperture. 

Finally the balcony, I coloured a scrap of paper with the same paints and inks and used the PaperArtsy stamp Swirls and Curls 4 to suggest ironwork.  This was mounted on a scrap of mount board to raise up from the aperture to give some depth. 

I'm quite pleased with the result  - as is the thesp! 
If you like it too then why not leave a comment, it would be great to hear what you think.



Monday, 25 July 2011

Do you think I'm fixated on the colour blue?

Well fancy that no post for nearly a month and then two come along almost at once!

These four canvases are an amalgamation of three different projects that individually weren't working, but take them apart and reuse the various bits and voila!

I'd made the the four ATC's ages ago from mount board that was painted and distressed and stamped with perhaps one of my most fave stamps from PaperArtsy in grey archival.  I had intended putting them on an A4 canvas, but  you know they just didn't look right, so they ended up on that "um" pile. 

And then I made the pink moths (PaperArtsy again) for another project that again just didn't look right, so they ended up on the "um" pile.

Anyways, the other week we went to the garden centre and I was mooching round the bargain books bit and spied these A6 size canvases - good price, can never have enough canvases knocking around for that moment of inspiration.
So last weekend I painted four of them in a light grey paint, put some crackle glaze over the top and then over painted in a dark grey, added a few dry brush bits of pale blue, rubbed bits back to the pale grey with a a wet wipe and there they sat on my work desk till this Sunday.

This Sunday, I knew I wanted to add a bit more texture so used a big background text stamp from PaperArtsy (the Blackie book one) in mushroom and then weathered wood distress embossing powder over some Tim text stamps and a postcard stamp.

Edged the ATC's with some old silver inka paint, glued on with my trusty glue gun and then thought - they need something else ... tum-te-tum MOTHS!

So rubbed back the pink moths to the silver, spread some dark grey paint over the top waited a bit and wiped the excess off, did a bit more sanding, bent the wings and glued them on. Finally edged the canvases in tissue tape and rubbed over some dark slate ink.

I'm pleased with them and I think they'll compliment hubby's fishes (see previous post) top and bottom in the place we've identified to hang that canvas.

But I think I do now need to move away from the blue paints and inks and try another colour combination - possible pinks seeing as I purchased a number of pink fresco paints from LB Crafts on Saturday!



Sunday, 24 July 2011

Did ya miss me!

How vain am I!
So I haven't posted for over a month - bad girl.  My excuse - well we had a week away in the sun (read books, ate nice food, drank wine and beer, got in the pool occasionally, used up a lot of suntan lotion and watched people) and work has been rather busy. To try and keep on top of things, meet deadlines and create myself some time to dedicate to big projects I've been working late and working at home in the evenings.  I know, I know work life balance etc etc but Friday saw me finally break the back of most of it and I didn't bring any work home for the weekend - hurrah!

In amongst this constant slog of work I did manage to make this for my hubby for his birthday.

It's a 12x12 canvas which I painted in a denim blue paint, stuck downs some bits of torn book pages around the edge, colour washed over the top in a darker shade of blue , rubbed back bits with a baby wipe and sprayed over the top in places through a swirly stencil with a tattered angels ( I have loads of them I must use them up) glimmer mist in a silvery blue to represent the sea.  I put tissue tape around the edge and swiped a pale blue over the top of it to tone in and add an edge to the front of the canvas. 
I love using tissue tape in this way as it covers up any spills and seepage from sloshing paint around on the top (I'm a messy crafter)!

The central panel has come out really well, it feels and looks like old leather. It's a piece of old crate paper so it's quite heavy anyway.  I painted over in a dark midnight blue paint and then some crackle glaze and then a watered down pale blue.  I've now got the hang of this old crackle glaze and it's about getting the top layer of paint to the right consistency (single cream) and enough of it to give a good but not too thick layer - practice does indeed make perfect(ish).  

Some text was added in brown ink - very subtle (which means you can't really see without looking very closely - but I know it's there and I know it adds to the look and feel of the piece) I made sure I added some paint to the reverse of the square as I knew I wanted the edges to curl up a bit.  Finally added some stitching rounds the edge to anchor the piece.  The longer it dried the more it began to feels like leather rather than paper.

Finally the fishes,  these were the starting point as my husband loves fish - to look at and eat on occasion!

I knew I wanted to use metal and puts lots of texture on using embossing folders, paint and alcohol inks. I also wanted to bend and shape them so they didn't sit flat on the paper. They sort of worked and if I'd had more time I might have roughed um up a bit more.

And the arrangement - well I'm a pisces, so they had to go that way!  He really liked it and now we are just trying to work out where to display in the house!

So, leave a comment if you like, it's always good to hear praise and constructive comments (honestly I can take it - I've been staff reviews for the past fortnight so I'm well versed in giving and taking constructive feedback on performance).