Hi friends! Carolyn Peeler with you today... As I was trying to come up with a snazzy title for today's post, I decided that I would simply let the title tell you why I think the Art Impressions line of stamps is so special. I kid you not, these stamps totally make you look like you're all that and a bag of chips when it comes to your artistic abilites. We've all been there, had times when you are pressed for time, but want to make something special for a friend, or had days when your artistic inspiration is just. not. flowing. That's where these stamps come in to save the day. Today's project was the first time I have used Art Impressions, and I am a believer.
Something that is totally awesome is that Art Impressions cares that you get a good result using their watercolor stamp sets. On the packaging they have an enlarged image of the stamp once colored in so that you can see the detail and how you could shade it. Then (this is the good part), on the back of the packaging they have numbered steps that you can follow to help you easily figure out how to make your masterpiece. (Please note: Instructions are not provided for every Art Impressions stamp set, they are limited to the watercolor stamps. If instructions are included, you will see it noted on the packaging, and/or in the description of the item in the Ellen Hutson store.)
If you purchase a set with instructions, it will look a little something like this:
As you'll note, I used a different color palette than the packaging. I changed it up as I felt the colors on the packaging were to Autumnal for this time of year. So instead of coloring it to make the pot clay, I colored it in grey to mimic a galvanized metal milk can. Let's jump in, shall we?
First, stamp the pot, using Pumice Stone Distress ink (you can color directly onto the stamp with a marker or ink it with the large or small ink pad), onto watercolor paper. Notice how the bottom left corner of the stamp is not there. That is because, by following the instructions, I learned that I should wipe the ink off that area before stamping onto the paper in order to give me space to add grass to that corner.
Now it's time to add some grass, while you can do this with the AI Foliage Set, I simply used markers and hand drew the grass. I started with using the Brush end of the Bundled Sage Distress marker. As you draw with the marker, try to use upward strokes that taper at the ends - even if not all your strokes are done that way (mine aren't), if the majority are, it will look more like grass.
Your next layer of grass is to use the fine tip of the Mowed Lawn Distress marker and add more blade of grass, like so:
Now we use water and a fine or medium tipped paintbrush to help the two greens blend together a bit. Be careful not to over blend. You still want to see the individual blades, you just want to soften things a bit.
After you've blended the grass it's time to color the can. I used Distress ink in Pumice Stone and Hickory Smoke. I dabbed them onto my Ranger Craft Sheet with the darker color on the top (Hickory Smoke) and the lighter color (Pumice Stone) below. I then sprayed a bit of water beside the ink in order to mix and create my watercolors. Here's a time lapse of the coloring process.
Allow the image to air dry, or speed up the process by heating with a heat tool. After it dries, it will look a little something like this:
Our next steps are for adding the branches and flowers to the top of the pot. Let's start with the branches, which I stamped with Brushed Corduroy, once again you can color directly onto the stamp with a marker or ink it with the large or small ink pad. Don't worry if your branches are hovering a little above the top of the can (like one of mine is) once we add grass you won't really be able to notice. Additionally, you'll notice my branches are not all the same height - even though both were stamped with the same stamp. I achieved this by using a paper towel to wipe the ink off the bottom of the branch on the right before I stamped it, effectively shortening it :)
Now for some color! I used Shabby Shutters and Picked Raspberry Distress markers to add the flower to the top of the can. For ink application I colored directly onto the stamp with the markers, then stamped them.
Next we'll add one more branch using Gathered Twig ink to bring a secondary brown into the piece. And we'll stamp the berry branch that is on the left of my piece using the Bundled sage and Picked Raspberry markers. To finish off the greenery, we'll add grass at the top using the same colors and technique that we did for the grass at the bottom of the pot.
Just like we did to the grass at the bottom of the pot, we'll now use a fine or medium tipped paintbrush to help soften things a bit. You are not trying to blend the lines out, just give them a wee bit of a fuzzy edge. Basically, this means if you simply trace each branch or flower once, that will most likely be the perfect amount.
And with that, your watercolor image is ready to be added to a card!
Most of the assembly is pretty intuitive. The grey striped paper is made by stamping the AWESOME Concord & 9th Stripe Builder background stamp, which I stamped using the same Pumice Stone ink used for the can, onto white cardstock. The greeting is from the "Lovely" Essentials by Ellen stamp set and was stamped onto Taylored Expressions Lollipop cardstock with Versamark ink, then heat embossed with Ranger White Embossing powder.
After the greeting is embossed use a circle die to cut it out.
Finally, It's time to pull it all together. I used Licorice cardstock to ground the card, then mounted it all on a white cardstock that was folded into a card.
Thanks for joining me for today's fun project in the CLASSroom. If you have any questions, be sure to let me know in the comments. In the meantime, here are the links to the products used to make this card: