ETA: Thank you everyone for your excitement regarding the release of this new product idea. Email me with your posts so that I can see what you have created!!!
Announcing the winner of our blog candy Airbrush Starter Set and Copic Airbrushing DVD Vol 1!!! Sorry for the delay - after having a fever and icky headcold I am a bit behind. Thank you for your patience!
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-09-24 16:02:26 UTC
Debbie you are our lucky winner! We will be contacting you shortly for your snail mail information, but if for some reason you do not receive our message, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Congratulations and we hope that you enjoy your new tool!
It is so exciting to be finally be sharing this information and these tools with you today! These have been in the planning stages for a LONG time. As with all good things nothing seems to move at a quick pace - LOL!
When I first fell in love with the Copic markers I was fascinated by the airbrush system. As I learned to create using this addictive little tool I realized that the ability to control the spray was extremely important. By controlling the spray patterns I was able to achieve the results I was looking for. Unfortunately I would find that the force of air would buffet my project, blowing it around my work suface, as well many times my spray pattern would get in under the edges of my mask.
If you watch the beginner section of the airbrushing DVD you will see that sticky notes were the option of this artist's choice. I never did use sticky notes, but rather Eclipse Tape. When needing a quick throwaway mask, I still use Eclipse Tape to mask - due to it being paper thin, the relief does not inhibit the spray pattern and create a "shadowed" edge. It works extremely well, except... my project continues to be chased around my work surface with the force of the air and it will only withstand a few uses before needing to be replaced.
The other products I would utilize are the many adhesive backed masks in the market place. I still love these, but again they are not ideal. It is so important to pat the sticky surface on blue jeans, or a t-shirt to remove some of the adhesive. This allows me to then lift the mask from my project without tearing my paper surface when I have finish airbrushing. Alas, sometimes the patting takes a misstep, being the overachiever that I am, and then it will not stick at all. So I was in a quandry and started thinking about what would work better.
Yet, another problem I was having was turning my project to get even coverage as I sprayed. I would end each project with beautiful rainbow color fingertips. Holding the project down and turning it were definite problems - I do love rainbows, but the constant need to rub my hands with alcohol was not a good thing - LOL! Being the gadget girl that I am I just knew that I needed new tools!
Experimenting with numerous items that I searched out in a wide-variety of stores I jury-rigged something together that would work for this task. It is that process which has led to the products I am about to introduce to you.
Rotating Magnetic, Self-healing Cutting Mat
I didn't know how to demonstrate the most important characteristic of this mat using still photography. In this photo the surface is lifted vertically to show that the die and paper are firmly attached to the surface. It is completely different then other products in the marketplace in that the surface is essentially a large magnet. You will never have to chase your project around your work surface as you airbrush using your nestabilities and other steel dies again. Your work surface will help keep your project intact. Watch for more to come in the next few months! If you would like to read more about how it is that I have come up with my product ideas please visit my blog simple dreams.
Essentials by Ellen: Art Magnetic Masking Material
That's a mouthful - LOL! I still am questioning what we should call this product, but I felt that the name needed to reflect the primary application. This is the second product we have been researching and are thrilled to introduce it to you today. We are still working on producing a line of basic masks that you will be able to purchase - ready for use, but we felt that to bring you the basic material first would bring a whole new level of creativity to your crafting.
The third product is not yet available, so in it's place we have been utilizing the metal sheets we carry in our store. These sheets have been used as a base material in framed bulletin boards or inchie board projects. The magnetic material sticks beautifully to these sheets. It is EXTREMELY important to note that this product comes with very SHARP corners. It is important to keep it away from small children and to be careful when using it, due to the sharp corners. Fortunately it works extremely well and will "make do" until our "Craft Assistant" is available for purchase. Once the Craft Assistant becomes available you will then be able to use this sheet, together with some 12x12 decorative paper, and make yourself a wonderful little bulletin frame to coordinate with your home decor.
Now on to the exciting possibilities of Magnetic Masks!
The material that we have found for you is SO easy to cut. Using your rotary and guillotine style cutters, as well as scissors, you can easily cut this product to the size you need! It comes in sheets that are 8" x 10" and is flat when it arrives to you. No need to try and figure out how to flatten it upon arrival!
CRICUT, SILHOUETTE and OTHER ELECTRONIC CUTTERS
My first experiment with my new Cricut Expression was not quite what I had anticipated - LOL! I had purchased it late last fall and due to the fact that I have NO time, I have never taken it out of the box. Sadly, when I went to use it... NO POWER!!! Needless to say I was extremely disheartened. Fortunately I am blessed with some of the most amazing customers who live right here in my area and Joella came to my rescue. Joella, thank you SO much for bringing your Cricut down here to my office and helping me when I was up against this last minute deadline.
Joella helped me learn to use the Cricut Expression as well as discovered a few important facts about cutting masks and stencils with the Magnetic Sheets. First - the white surface needs to go face down and adhered to the sticky mat. As you can see we used the large teflon bone folder to adhere it firmly in place. We were then successful in cutting the most basic designs, as well, Joella cut me some of the most intricate beauties, one of which I use later in this post. Thank you again Joella!!!
LOW PROFILE DIES
Next I tried using low profile dies. As you can see I did need to run my product through a second time utilizing the embossing pad. For some reason I could not get the material to cut all the way through with these highly detailed dies unless I first did a pass through cutting and then pass it through again a second time using the embossing sandwich. As you can see I was able to create both a beautiful stencil, as well as masks!
LARGE DIES SUCH AS BIG SHOT, ELLISON, SIZZIX
This next photo showcases a large Big Shot die. Sizzix and/or Ellison dies would work exactly the same. These work fabulously! I went ahead and photographed these put back together after creating my project so that it would make it easier for you to see that you can fit these back together for storage purposes.
I couldn't resist, I had to try some of my favorite punches. I will tell you that at this point I can NOT recommend this with a huge thumbs up, because I do not know how it will impact my punches long term. BUT it was extremely easy to punch through and create a magnetic stencil using my Martha punches. I was SO excited. If I find that I have problems with my punches in the future I will be certain to let you all know.
So now you can see why I am excited!!! Yes, you can use the many tools you already have in your crafting closet to create custom masks!!! So now on to the refining your airbrush skills :)
AIRBRUSHING USING MAGNETIC MASKS
Creating your own decorative paper is so very fun!
In the DVD I demonstrated some of the masking products I have collected in my "masking drawer." Many of the items I shared with the editors did not make it all the way to the DVD and so I will be trying to share them here on our blogs - In Touch, the CLASSroom, and simple dreams. It is my goal to educate you to the many possibilities that will help bring a whole new life to your creations.
As you can see I have utilized a sheet of specialty paper. I have many different types of textured, specialty papers that I have collected from art stores over the years. These work so well to create texture when utilizing the airbrush system OR ink blending tools.
To begin I placed the textured paper down over my white Neenah cardstock and them placed my Art Magnetic Snowflake Mask securely over the top.
To ensure that I do not spray over the remainder of my project I have created two "L" shaped masking pieces. As you can see the magnetic mask held firmly in place as I airbrushed my snowflake with three different colors using my Copic Sketch markers - periwinkle, blue and lavender.
To add additional depth I created more snowflakes from a variety of dies and punches. Simply place these masks in place and airbrush with a new series of light color tones. Remember to test your colors on a piece of scrap paper first AND also remember that it is always easier to go darker, than to go lighter.
As I work I rotate my mat. This helps to provide even coverage within all the little crevices of the intricate designs.
That first peek after spraying is like magic! If you want to add more color simply replace your mask in the same location and continue spraying.
As you can see I want you to realize the power of magnets and their importance in holding your airbrushing projects firmly in place. In the second picture you will notice that this is one of those plastic mesh designs you find at Michaels or Hobby Lobby in the needle work section. Start looking at things around you that have "holey" patterns in them in a new way - think about the type of pattern it would create when used as a mask. You will be AMAZED at the resources you already have at your fingertips!!!
To continue I wanted to share how I use my Nestabilities and low profile dies with the airbrush system. First I cut out the selected design and emboss it. I then drop it on to my rotating magnetic, cutting surface and spray. A whole new look is created so simply!!!
The possibilities as to what you can create with the pieces you cut out is not limited only to masking. I want you to begin to realize that it is actually only the "tip of the iceburg" so to speak.
In the picture series above I have utilized the same snowflakes as in the first project, in an entirely different manner. I began by first laying down a half-sheet of the magnetic material on my Big Shot platform. (I apologize for not having my sandwich written down - I will need to come back and compile a list of sandwiches for the most popular machines - it didn't dawn on me until writing this article that I needed to provide that information.) I then positioned my cut out masks on this surface and placed a sheet of Neenah cardstock over the surface. The tan embossing mat and then the final clear acrylic plate was added to this sandwich before running it through my Big Shot. Voila - your very own custom embossing folder. The possibilities are amazing!!! How many dies, punches, electronic cutters do you already own? Yippie - new uses for old products!!!
To draw the details out at a greater level and to achieve a more rustic look I stamped the surface with my Aged Sheet Music Scrapblock. Then using an Ink Blending tool, I added even more of a distressed look to this piece.
Letterpress - it's all the rage. It has been a look that has been sought after for high-end invitations for many years. How can you achieve a look similar without the mess and expense? It's simple - Art Magnetic Masking Material and your Copic airbrush system!
As I stated above Joella was amazing! Look at this exquisite flourish she cut for me using her Cricut Expression!!!
Paper choices can make all the difference. I highly recommend the Arturo line of papers we carry for a letter press look. These Italian manufactured beauties are made of a high quality moulded material and they emboss exquisitely!
As you can see in the first photo you have options. I selected the flourish mask to emboss the detail in to the paper in a manner almost identical to the snowflakes above. It was the "coloring in" process that I changed up.
The beauty of creating your own masks is that you get a stencil along with the mask!!! It's a two for one value experience :) Yes, Ellen and her value conscious mind at work again - LOL!
As you can see I placed my stencil precisely over the relief that was created first. Due to the heavier weight of this paper I find that it is necessary to add additional magnets to the finer points of these designs. Therefore it is important not to create such intricate and delicate designs that you have no room for additional magnets.
I then had over 300 options of colors that I could select from to achieve my "letterpress look. I simply selected my YG93 and YG95 Copic Sketch markers and sprayed within the confines of my stencil. Cleanup is quick and easy. Just a little colorless blending solution or rubbing alcohol and my masks are as good as new! No inky mess :)
This is yet another sample showing a variety of masking techniques and different paper selections.
Lasercut papers are exquisite when used with the airbrush and the good news is that you can use them over and over again. The large heart stencil was cut using the Cricut. Again I want to point out that when utilizing multiple layers you may need to add some additional magnets to your points to keep your project firmly attached to the surface so that air bursts do not lift the corners.
Rotating the project as you work will provide even coverage and a beautiful result.
STAMPED MASKS AND STENCILS
To create stamped masks I prefer to use Palette Ink and my Heat It Craft tool. To create this mask I stamped my Chintz Butterfly and then quickly set the ink using my Heat It tool. Sorry we are currently out of this product, but it has been so sought after that we have had trouble getting our orders filled (insert sad face - hopefully soon we will have them back in stock.)
To cut out my butterfly I used my Fiskars Craft Knife to cut along the straightest edge. Then I switched to my tiny scissors because I have better control when using scissors. It is a personal preference probably due to the fact that I cut out fine details a lot - LOL! As you can see in the photo on the left I created both a mask and a stencil. I also stamped my image in Tuxedo Black on Neenah cardstock for my project.
I then placed the magnetic mask over my stamped image and sprayed a soft yellow glow around my butterfly.
As you can see the results are beautiful. I didn't have to chase my project around the room either - insert big happy grin. I LOVE magnetic masks - LOL! Now what to do with the reverse image or the stencil? Shadows! For some shadows are hard to understand and create and so this will provide you with a new, easy method. Simply replace your mask atop your stamped butterfly. Then position the stencil as shown in the photo on the right.
Spray your image again with W4, remove your magnets and voila - the perfect shadow is created!
Don't limit yourself by the possibilities that I have laid forward for you today! Think outside the box and experiment! Exlore your own creativity! I can't wait to see what you come up with. It is a thrill to plant the seed and watch it sprout and grow. I will do my best to water it, fertilize it and care for the weeds - I want to watch as each of your plants mature! I am SO excited to see what each of you create in the future with this little seed I have planted.
Let me know your thoughts, what more you would like to learn, what do you think... Leave us a comment below to be entered in to a drawing for your very own Copic Airbrush Starter Set, as well as the COPIC Airbrush Systems Vol.1, ABS Papercrafting DVD. Deadline for being entered in this random drawing will be Monday, September 21 at 9:00am.
I look forward to this new adventure in creativity!
Thank you so much!