Thursday, 17 April 2014

Creative Processes For A Spoon Angel By Kim Dellow

Hey Craft Stamper Magazine Blog readers, Kim Dellow here to pick your creative brains... do you ever think about your creative process? How do you go about creating your art and craft projects? Perhaps you are a thinker, you like to think each stage through before starting out? Or maybe you are a do-er and just get stuck in? Or maybe different projects require different strategies? 

As you can probably gather I think about my creative process a lot, perhaps too much, and I thought that it would be fun to share with you some of my creative process involved in putting together the recent Around The House article I made for the March 2014 issue of Craft Stamper Magazine.


I tend to do a lot of my creating to a deadline and creating to a deadline has its own challenges as I'm sure you know. For me I find that spending a bit of time generating ideas for a project, noting them down and sketching them out, usually helps. So my starting place is my A4 work diary/ideas book and some rough sketches and idea generation jottings. Coming up with colour combo ideas for the finished piece at this point also helps me to visualise the piece in my head.


Once I have some ideas sketched out I will start the experimental stage of the process. Just because I have an idea or two it doesn't mean that they are going to be the finished project, so now is the time to do a few trials. Sometimes I will have the experiments fleshed out already and will be working from something that I've tried before and I'm just adapting it to work with the new idea. In the case of the Spoon Angel article, I wanted to work through some of the stages before committing to the canvas.


The perfect place to do some of these experiments is one of my many art journals. I had already decided which stamps I wanted to use but I wasn't fixed on which masks I wanted to use to build up my coloured layers. I also had a basic colour scheme, I knew that I wanted to work in the warm colours and have a cool colour counterpoint but I wasn't sure which colours I wanted to use for which layers or what inks to stamp with. 


The experimental journal page doesn't look pretty and isn't well designed but it does give me a good idea of how I want to go forward with the project, what I want to use, what I don't want to use, and I'm ready to go ahead and commit to the piece. But as with all creative works the piece still evolves and changes as I work through the layers. For example when I started the piece I had not envisioned that I would use black ink on all the edges to bring unity and harmony to the project, but as I got to that stage it just felt right to use the black.


That is all the fun of the creative process, watching how a project changes and develops from that first concept in your head to the finished piece, and I love it!

So what are your creative processes? How do you put your projects together and do you find you have different processes and strategies for when you are working to a deadline compared to when you are just free to play? 

I would love it if you could spend a little time to share some of your creative processes in the comments below or leave a comment on my blog.

Thanks for popping by.



Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Insider Secrets: Texture paste

Design Team member Jaine Drake reviews her favourite stamping product and tells us what she loves about Golden Crackle Paste.



Sometimes I think I've become a bit like a broken record talking non-stop about texture paste. I absolutely love the stuff and I've tried many different types and ways to use it, but recently I gave Golden Crackle Paste a try which I am just so in love with.

I've had crackle paste before which was very thick and heavy, drying to a brittle finish which needed a thick layer before it would crack. However, with Golden Crackle Paste I was pleasantly surprised to find that firstly, it’s so light I can use it on a journal page without it being heavy or distorting the page. Secondly, I discovered it doesn't flake if the page is bent as it’s fairly flexible. 

The cracks really come out when it’s painted or inked over. My favourite method of colouring at the moment is to use Inka Gold rubbed all over it. The cracks stand out under the antique looking shine. Stamping over it also brings out the texture but a light touch is needed for this.


On this journal cover which I made recently for a DT project for 'A Sprinkle of Imagination', I covered the card base with the paste. Once that was dry I added some more paste on top through a stencil. I left this to dry overnight naturally as it’s really not a good idea to use a heat gun to try and speed things up.

In the beginning the cracks weren't obvious but once I’d added ink on top they really popped out. I stamped using a text stamp in a couple of places over the texture. It’s possible to stamp lightly enough so that only the surface of the texture catches the stamping. This looks fantastic with background stamps but when adding the big ethnic stamp I didn't want to risk distorting the image. For this one I stamped onto kitchen tissue, cut around it and glued it down with gel medium. The tissue melts onto the page and only the image can be seen. The tissue does become a little delicate so I had to work with care but the result is so cool. The texture paste can clearly be seen underneath and adds a whole new dimension to the image.

I deliberately chose to use this ethnic stamp as the whole feel of the finished artwork was a bit earthy and made me think of dry and parched earth somewhere hot. 


In my second project, while the stencil was still over the paste, I tried adding seed beads into the paste to see if they held. I love this idea just to add even more dimension and texture to it. Once it was dry I coloured the paste with Distress Stain which really brought out the cracks.

To see more of Jaine's work visit: craftydrake.blogspot.co.uk

Golden Crackle Paste is manufactured by Golden Artist Colors www.goldenpaints.com 

Monday, 14 April 2014

Keep in Tone with Georgina - Part 2

Hi! It's Georgina Ford with my first post on the Craft Stamper blog. The project I have to share with you today is a follow oup from my 'Keep in Tone' article in the current (May 2014) edition of Craft Stamper.

For my blog project I have decorated a 20cm x 10cm papier mache icon. I have used a bright yellow and orange toning colour scheme. I also used the same Floral Greeting stamp set by Hobby Art which I used for my magazine projects.



To decorate the icon I started by painting a layer of gesso onto the icon. Once this was dry I added Grunge Paste through a stencil. The stencil I used was Mini Grandma's Doily from The Crafter's Workshop. When the Paste was dry I painted on a layer of Yellow Submarine Fresco Finish paint from PaperArtsy.




When the paint had dried I sanded back the top layer slightly to expose the Paste underneath the paint. Around the edge of the icon  I then added Wild Honey and Dried Marigold Distress Ink with a Blending Tool as shown below.




I stamped the script stamp from Hobby Art's Decorative Backgrounds stamp set with Wild Honey and Dried Marigold Distress Ink onto the icon. Once dried the script is slightly blurred but it still looked good for a background as I added the script to break-up the large plain areas of yellow paint. 




For the flowers I used Hobby Art's Floral Greeting stamp set. I stamped the flowers in Wild Honey, Dried Marigold and Mustard Seed Distress Inks. I also stamped the flowers using a VersaMark ink pad. I then heat embossed these flowers with WOW! Bright White embossing powder. I coloured the flowers using the Distress Ink pads. To do this I stamped the ink pad onto an acrylic block and then added a little water so I could paint with it.




I cut out the flowers and placed them onto the icon before sticking them down. I also stamped a sentiment in Wild Honey. The stamp I used is from Hobby Art's Scene-it Sentiments stamp set. I lightly distressed the edge of the sentiment with Wild Honey, Dried Marigold and Mustard Seed Distress Inks. I added two of the large flowers and the sentiment with foam pads for extra dimension.



Once all the flowers were in place I stamped and cut out three small butterflies. The butterfly stamp is from Hobby Art's Scene-It Sentiments stamp set. To finish I added Glossy Accents to the centre of a couple of the flowers.


Friday, 11 April 2014

Take It Make It April- Inspiration!

Hello!
Are we feeling crafty today?
 It's nearly the weekend so hopefully a little more time to lose ourselves in some kind of arty project!
I've just the thing to inspire you.... the Take It Make It DT have created some more eye candy projects to get you in the mood to join in with our current Bottles challenge!
All the details are HERE....check out the fab prize this month:  four Silks glaze paints in whichever colours you fancy! There is also the chance to be published, and a guest DT slot up for grabs, so why not have a go!
If you click on each artists name, you will be taken to their blog, where there may well be lots more pictures or 'how tos' featuring these lovely creations!
Our Guest DT member- winner of Challenge 7:

Lots of ideas there to play with!
Don't forget, all the info you need to read before entering is on the main challenge post HERE.
Can't wait to see what you all come up with!
Have a great weekend xxx
 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Spring has Sprung

A round up of what can be found for Easter around the internet by Jaine Drake


We’ve had a taste of warmer weather and the coats have been off for a couple of days and for most of us we can safely say the winter is over. All those pretty spring flowers are filling the gardens, little lambs are leaping about in the fields and thoughts are on Easter and …..chocolate!  No, I mean crafting, Easter crafting AND chocolate! Perfect combination.

You might be making cards, decorating your table or simply trying to keep the kids happy in the holidays and if you're looking for something to finish off your project, maybe this will help.

Chocolate Baroque always have absolutely gorgeous stamp sets and new for Spring they have some absolutely gorgeous Spring Fairy stamps out. The plates feature spring flowers, butterflies and fairies of course and to go with them are some beautiful border designs too. Each stamp plate is crammed full of pretties which will be a delight to colour and glitter. Simply gorgeous.


If it’s cute chicks and bunnys or country scenes you’re looking for Hobby Art have them all.  There’s a cute set of hens called "Cockadoodledoo" which feature cocks, hens and little fluffy chicks and to add to the spring theme they also have some gorgeous Spring Daffodil stamps.You can find Hobby Art here at the Craft Barn.

For Spring inspired projects you can't go wrong with spring flowers and Imagination Crafts Decoupage stamp sets include Crocus and Snowdrops alongside all the other beautiful botanical, collage style stamps they have in the range. Beautiful for spring cards.


Personally I'm partial to a birdie at springtime and if birdies are your thing too you're going to love the new stamps from Dina Wakley which include a plate of four Scribbly Birds. I found these at The Artist Trading Post along with the other stamp sets in her range. They're going on my wish list.


Maybe it's spring/Easter themed dies you're looking for? Well at the moment Sizzix are having one of their mega sales and among the dies on promotion are a Framelits Die and stamp set (658698) which features a cute chick, eggs and sentiment, a movers and shapers MiniBunny and Bow Set (657486) and a Framelits Die set of 10 Egg dies (658691). The offers are well worth checking out with some at 60% off.

I think my favourite Easter/spring themed stamps have to be the Viva Décor Springtime and Easter Bunnies set sold by Cuddlybuddly.  I love them especially the rabbit shapes filled with flowers. There are other Spring/Easter sets too but I just love this one.


Finally if the kids start giving you trouble, just look for a Hobbycrafts near by and get yourselves down there. The website will tell you where your nearest store is. They have everything from card making to sewing to keep the little ones happy this holiday but if you can't get to one, there is now a Hobbycrafts blog where they have projects and inspiration.

Have a good Easter break and hopefully there'll be some good weather to enjoy too.

Jaine Drake

Friday, 4 April 2014

Take It Make It Challenge- April!

Hello!
I am very excited to announce.... *cue drum roll*..

The brand new April Challenge!

We loved all your monoprinting entries last month, we can't wait to see all the projects featuring this months theme!
What Can You Win?
For the April challenge, we are delighted to be sponsored by Artist Trading Post!

http://www.artisttradingpost.com/

Artist Trading Post are UK suppliers of a huge variety of products, all the stash you could ever want for altered art, art journalling, mixed media, scrapbooking and cardmaking!
The prize for the April challenge is four pots of Luminarte Silks Acrylic Glaze!
http://www.artisttradingpost.com/new-silks-acrylic-glaze-1oz-jars-431-c.asp
Silks are gorgeous iridescent and semi transparent acrylic glaze paints in a variety of shimmering colours. They can be used on paper, wood, fabric, papier mache, acrylic and other plastics, canvas, clay and much more. These paints are used by some of the most prominent mixed media artists in the business!
The best thing is, the prize IS NOT ( necessarily) the colours pictured above! The winner gets to choose which four colours they get...and with 72 to choose from, that could be a difficult decision!

PLUS:The Design Team will have a look at all your gorgeous work, and choose their Top Three..... and the overall Winner will get published in Craft Stamper magazine! Yes, the winning entry will appear in the UK's number one stamping magazine!
AND: The Challenge winner will be offered a Guest Designer spot for an upcoming challenge!

So, to recap....A 'choose your own colours' set of 4 Luminarte Silks Glazes, publication AND a Guest DT spot? Sounds good to me!

Now for the Challenge details!  
We want to see how you lovely lot tackle a technique showcased in Craft Stamper magazine.
France Papillon has a wonderful project in the May issue, using recycled glass bottles. The free cover stamp this month also features bottles, and this gorgeous design by R Maria Sabina has been used to great effect on pages 41-3. So, we would love to see your creations using  
 BOTTLES

We would love to see:
  •  Creations featuring bottles or vials as a main feature
  •  Altered bottles
  •  Projects featuring stamped images of bottles
  • Wine bottle covers, labels or tags
Your project can be of any theme or colour.
 Don't forget, we also MUST have real stamping on each entry, this is a Craft Stamper challenge after all!

Along with some of the regular Craft Stamper DT, the Take It , Make It DT have created some fabulous eye candy using bottles. If you click on the artists name, it will take you to their blogs, where there may well be loads more pics of these gorgeous creations! 

From the May 2014 issue: France Papillon
From the May 2014 issue: R Maria Sabina
                                                                  Elizabeth Robinson


     WOW... now THAT'S what I call Design Team inspiration! 

 Have we inspired YOU to have a play and enter? Yay!!!
All you need to do now is have a read through the boring (but essential!) rules and guidelines, then upload your entry using the Linky tool at the end of the post! Can't wait to see what you create!

Do you love our challenges as much as we do? Feel free to grab the button and display it with pride!
 Guidelines for Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge
  • Entry dates: Friday April 4th 2014 -  midnight Wednesday April 23rd 2014
  • Winner to be announced in a blog post here: 9am Friday April 25th 2014
  • All entries must feature bottles, in one of the ways detailed above.
  • All entries must contain stamping.
  •  No digi stamps please, unless combined with actual stamping.
  • The winning entry MUST be posted to the magazine for photography before it can be published. Please keep hold of your entry, we cannot publish in the magazine images sent via computer.
  • Entry is via the linking tool at the end of the post. We are very sorry that we can't accept email entries to this challenge. Please provide deep links to your actual project post, not just a link to your blog (to do this, click on the title of the relevant blog entry and copy/paste the URL in the relevant box when uploading your entry). The DT will not go searching your entire blog for the project we want to see!
  • No backlinking.
  • New work only please, not work previously published anywhere else.
  • Entry is welcome from anywhere in the world.
  • Multiple entry is fine, as long as each piece is original and fulfills all the entry requirements.
  • Entries can be combined with other blog challenges
  • An obvious link back to the Craft Stamper Blog must be included in your blog post.
  • The May 2014 challenge will be announced here on Friday May 2nd 2014, at 9am.
PLEASE consider turning off word verification on your blog. It is very difficult for the DT to comment on as many blogs as we would like to when word verification slows us down!


Competition rules: Competitions/giveaways are open to all (including overseas readers) except employees of Traplet Publications Ltd and their families; regular contributors to any of Traplet Publications’ magazines; employees of our printers; or anyone connected with the prizes offered. By entering the competition you accept that your project may be printed in the magazine. All entries must be received by midnight on the specified closing date. There are no cash alternatives and prizes are non-transferable. We reserve the right to use the winners’ name/work in any Traplet-produced literature including, but not exclusive to, our website and marketing materials. Judges decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Our Stamping Contrasts Guest Designer is.....

Hellen of Ellie's Cupboard
Hellen30 March 2014 09:44 Just seen this so thought I'd have a go - an avid stamper I thought I'd show you a tag card I made recently for a friend - http://www.elliescupboard.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/tag-group-number-2-march-2014.html. This one uses a number of techniques and Heartfelt Creations stamps. Thanks for looking.

Congratulations Hellen - please contact me at cs@traplet.com and we'll get your stamps sent out!
Thank you to everyone who entered - what an amazingly high standard! Keep your eyes peeled for next month!