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A bit brief – K is for KEYS

Scheduling in advance cause all day today is taken up errands and stuff.

With the challenges, I sometimes catch the sponsored shorts on YouTube (under one minute, bare bones info) and I think to myself Well, that was MY idea for the challenge too – now what will I do? In some cases, really there aren’t a lot of options. Take the J: Jeans one. They used a pocket to put the texture on the plate, almost like an image transfer. So what else is there? I mean I have … two other ideas, but one is going to take a bit of experimenting to see if it will work, and the other (of course) requires an old pair of jeans. Which I don’t have – all bundled off to the charity shop at some point. Should I go buy a pair back??

Anyway, I kinda felt the same about KEYS. I played a bit with using some different things like alcohol ink and pan pastels, but frankly it was all just a key or two or three and not very interesting. So I went another way. A bit like my choice of using an image transfer of Joe EXOTIC for E: Exotic I used an image transfer of typewriter KEYS for this one. Inspired? Not really. It was still just an image transfer, but I do like the look of it. I used Payne’s Grey for the transfer part, and Quin Gold for the pick-up and the contrast is stark.

Just a bit of a close-up:

Sometimes, the amount of detail you can get surprises me!

That’s it for today, short and sweet.

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L: Layers – yeah I am all over the place…

Still trying to catch up and get the house back to normal. My crafty space is getting there, but there are other places that need more attention so it keeps getting a bit of time, the promise of more, then forgotten for a bit.

I have a piece I was playing with and another use for a bit of rubbish. You may recall I showed using some plastic packaging to get a textured effect with acrylic paint.

Well, I had a thought…the fact it is plastic might make it an interesting thing to use with Alcohol inks!

It’s maybe a little hard to explain, but you know when the AIs are kinda more on the dry side and you pounce over them, the ink disperses into little cells? You can get that sort of effect better with the plastic packaging than with the foam pads. Or at least *I* think so. Anyway, this piece had a lot of layers: alcohol ink, mica powders, a few layers or stencils, acrylic paints…

And the final piece I really like.

I feel like this could end up as a tip-in art journal page. I had a further play and made a similar piece with only a couple of layers. What I loved about this was how the mica that was clinging to the edges of the letter stencil transferred and gave me an outline while also kinda containing the alcohol inks! I love it so much and (like happens all too often) wish I could re-create the effect reliably. I plan to play with this a bit more for sure.

I will be at the hospital for the day, but am still hoping I manage a decent WOYWW view of my space tomorrow. Fingers crossed I also manage a full day of visits, before and after a potential knitting mate visit!

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P is for Pastels!

Firstly, the whole window replacement thing was a LOT more mess and disruption than expected. Long days cleaning up 120 years of dust from the sash windows being pulled out, and truly endless cups of tea and coffee took up more time than expected.

Back to the Gelli Arts challenges. I had an idea I wanted to try so I skipped over a few of the ABC Challenge letters to jump right to Pastels. Weird, how we interpret things. When I first read it my mind went to pastel colours – pale, dreamy soft colours, very much not me most days. But I realized it was probably PAN Pastels so grabbed those instead.

I had this feather stencil I got a while back, I think from WISH, and it was a bit big for most things so I grabbed than and a rainbow of colours

I mean, I knew this was going to work in the usual way, obviously, but I also had my pot of mica powder on my desk so…

Both things are dry so I didn’t have a lot of concerns about rubbing the mica over the Pan Pastels, but I still took a bit of care. If I did this again, with this sort of stencil, I think I would take the time to cut out the image to make a mask for the rest of the background, or take even MORE care when smudging on the mica. Still, it turned out pretty cool.

My plate was VERY dirty, so I got a lot of residual stuff pulling up, and yeah, it looks a bit lackluster but, as ever with mica, when you tip it towards the light…

Just not able to truly capture the lovely effect. As ever with these challenges, the first attempts are only ever experiments. But taking what I learn with each one will inform further play.

I have a couple of classes I still need to either begin or finish, and J: Jeans thru O:Oval to catch up on but the house is still not back in order, although the windows are IN. Phew. Probably share a shot or two for WOYWW, where (for the first time in a couple of weeks) I will hope I can fully participate. Might try to squeak in a few visits before then if I can.

Seems weird, sharing such a colourful image on a sombre day. Luckily my important and much re-scheduled Drs. appointment is tomorrow, not today, so it was not cancelled. Phew. Life goes on.


ABC Challenge – Image transfer

Oops. Forgot the schedule this one… here it is, a bit late in the day…

Today, I: Image Transfer! Well, of course I was always going to play with the mica powder layer under an image transfer for this one cause I really love how it looks, and I have an image I really wanted to use. But I also had to play with my pan pastels to see if it does actually work on the same principle, as Zsuzsa mentioned she thought might be the case. So begin with the expected – smear the mica powder all over the plate in a thin but fully-covering layer:

Roll on the black paint in a thin layer, lay on the image (this one is a laser print, but yeah, magazine images work too) and rub fully but lightly. Remove, add the white paint in a thin layer and pull the print. I have walked thru this a few timesso won’t bore you with a ton of phots of paint on the plate LOL!

Such a funky image LOL! I love the paper used for the transfer too. Very interesting as well.

And it is fun to tilt to see the shimmer and then as it shift to a black image

So I did try the same with Pan Pastels and it does work in a similar fashion but for me, not as well. My rainbow-ish colour choice was wrong, the fuchsia and purple too dark, I think, and possibly the brayer should have been cleaned between black and white layers, but yeah, kinda it works

Wroth playing with a bit.

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H is for hexagon but…

…no hexagonal plate! I considered using a mask to block all but a hexagon shape, but then I remembered my high school Geometry class – it reminded me a hexagon is basically just a series of triangles. And I DO have a triangular plate! Woo hoo!

I grabbed it, some blues and greens, and a stencil, then set about creating my hexagon

For some reason my paint is beading up more than I would like – maybe it is that I am using too much, maybe it is because the brayer needs cleaning or it is the wrong one? I got there in the end but it could have been better.

Then I decided to try a different version. Bearing in mind there are workmen constantly wanting cups of coffee or tea or needing me to move something or have questions, I kept both getting interrupted and rushing to finish, it wasn’t awful, but not my tidiest work. Again, something I will play with again. I men, I know the mica works, but certain colours work better and certain paints work better to pull them off. I think I would love to try some sort of higher contrast version at some point, but not this week for sure!

Th tipped version is more about trying to capture the shimmer of the mica. The next one shows more the stencil patterns and colours.

WOYWW tomorrow. I did not manage a single desk last week and that might be the first time ever I joined but did not comment. I will probably join, if only to show how stark a contrast my room is now to usual but they will be working in there (I think) so time will tell if I get to my desk – or have internet if the server room is shut down. It will be quite a relief to have THAT done as it is one of the critical “business” room in the house, one of many LOL!

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More ABC Challenge, if a bit late and out of order…

Not managing to do the challenge on the day, cause of the chaos. But I did have a go at something I was keen to try, image transfer on fabric. Now, to be fair, my transfer was on the smooth side of a scrap of leather, one that I got in the grab-bag when the local glove factory closed down. It worked pretty much as you would expect it to!

You can see how clear the transfer was.

So the issue might be how waterproof the image is. In this case I tried heat-setting it with my embossing gun, then tried wiping the paint away with a baby wipe. I mean, you aren’t going to toss a leather anything in the washing machine, now are you? The paint didn’t move.

I pulled the image off without adding more paint, so the image is not as dark as I maybe would like, but it works for me.

I think this could work as a patch on a jacket, for example, but I do have a few ideas to also try:

  • will it work on materials other than leather?
  • would it be more permanent if the image was transferred using something like clear gesso?
  • what about gel medium instead? what about sealing it with Fabric Mod Podge?

So yeah, I am thinking this challenge is doing what it says on the tin – challenge participants to push the edges of the envelope and try crazy new things. Love that!

Seems I did I: Image Transfer here but I am not really claiming double days, so I still need to have another go at that with a different sort of technique…

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Gelli ABC PrintingChallenge – day 2

The challenge for the day in Black/Brown. Pretty wide open, that. Considering my supplies, I remembered that I have a lot of Alcohol Inks in shades of brown. I think I used a lot of the old Ranger ones in the brighter colours so what is left is 100 shades of … well, I won’t say. You know.

I collected them all up, and a stencil that worked (ie a nice mix of open areas and lines)

Because the stencil is one I cut myself, I also have the surround, so I used that to contain the colours, although it is probably really hard to see since it is clear!

Loved the print I pulled.

All I had to do was trim it to size, dust the edges with some black ink to set it off, and I was done.

Only Day 2, but so far it is feeling do-able even during the window chaos. Here’s hoping….

WOYWW tomorrow and my windows will look just the same as they are one of the easier ones to sort and I am saving that for the weekend!

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Let the chaos begin! But still creating….maybe

Well. This week we will be all about the prep for the window replacement. NOT looking forward to it on the one hand, cannot wait on the other. Clearly, with the sharp increase in heating costs, new double-glazed windows should offer great savings but time will tell. BUT I need to clear my desk in front of the window and in fact all of the window areas need to be cleared. Ugh. The Hubster’s office and the server room will be the biggest challenge, but no room is completely challenge free. I mean, you have seen my desks, right? And this tight shot doesn’t reveal the whole picture either.

I am hoping I will have my main desk in some reasonable shape, and if so I can do a small thing every day. The plan is the #ABCPrintingChallenge #GelliArts (and yeah, I don’t do hashtags and Insta, really, so not sure how that will work, adding it in here) because it looks fun and I am enjoying gel printing again.

I did the A: Alphabet one on the first so will add that here:

Yep. Vaseline Resist thru a stencil + Distress Oxides on the small round plate. The resulting print, which was on vellum (got a lot, need to use it up!) was mounted to a book page then cardboard to create a cover for a book that will house all the samples. More on that at some point.

I kinda had the idea I might detail the technique I use on the back of each sample, so it becomes a reference book, but I’ll have to see if that makes sense. Just reviewing the list reveals not a lot if surprises, to be fair. I could use my first sample for C: Circles, R: Rainbow, and L: Layers. I already have an idea for B: Black/Brown that would also do for S: Stencils (Handmade) so the challenge will be to shoot for innovation or something NEW. Again, I have a few ideas, looking ahead, but we will see if they bear fruit.

Just as an aside, my track record with WOYWW visits has been awful lately. I get busy, and the limited time I have gets spent crafting. I can’t give it up, ‘tho, and still do my best to get round the desks, even if it takes me a week to manage it. What I really need is a time-management method LOL! Although, stopping in my tracks every day for the Mom&Maddie Movie Meet-up every afternoon all summer has seriously eaten in to my desk time. Excuses, excuses. I know. Must do better….


Revisiting DI and Stencils with Vaseline Resist

I was playing with this the other day when it took me off in a new direction and I played with deli-paper to create translucent collage elements. But I made some sample with this play that I felt would maybe work for the cover of the double flag book. The process is the same as I did way back when but to refresh your memory, smudge Vaseline or other petroleum jelly product thru a stencil onto coated cardstock or photo paper. WARNING: HP photo paper DOES NOT WORK but virtually any other one I tried, including cheap £ store versions, work great

In the past, I smeared the Distress Oxide inks on something slick like a page protector or a tile and spritzed with water then dragged the paper thru for a more mottled look. This sample is with vellum (which also works) but the effect is so pretty.

For these samples, I smeared the inks on to a gel plate then spritzed that with water. It gave me more defined areas of colour, IYKWIM.

Once you buff off the Vaseline the DI gets brighter and the piece is sealed.

I think these will work very well as elements for the cover of my double-flag book and once I put that all together I am going to call it DONE and move on!

But will I move back to the card-box? humm……

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Deli paper, Vaseline + Distress Oxides for the win!

You may recall me doing a play session using Distress Oxides, Vaseline and stencils over coated cardstock and photo paper.

Tons of fun, lovely pieces in the end, and I then did it using stamping with Vaseline too. Well. I have been thinking of best ways to get the DI over the Vaseline and it occurred to me that the Gel plate might offer some interesting options. For example, previously I just smeared the DI on to my glass mat or a tile or something like that, then added the water and dragged the paper rhtu it. The effect was more … scattered ink, which was lovely, don’t get me wrong, but it was always pretty wet and took a while to dry so you could get to the buffing part. This was the same technique on tracing paper/vellum, which really highlights the scattered ink effect.

I also had the idea, being that I seem to be playing with collage a lot, that deli paper might also work. I love the translucency of it and the collage options so…

As the last time, Vaseline thru the stencil, but the DI added to a gel plate then the ink misted with water to get it moving

Once the ink is more liquid, press the plate over the Vaseline from the stencil

Without looking back, you may find it hard to tell that there is much less ink on the deli paper than what my past experiments with smeared-on-glass/time efforts. And it was OK to blot LIGHTLY with a piece of plain paper to remove some of the wet ink so you can buff off the Vaseline sooner.

Another stencil:

You can even add a bit more Vaseline (or any generic petroleum jelly product) and buff it but even if you don’t, the jelly you originally pushed thru the stencil will be enough to make the piece resist water and allow you to collage it, the matte medium will not smear it.

I like the distinct line of colour with this method, just a different effect than the other. Two more tricks to add to your gel plate play and collage! I have been playing with this, trying to develop the cover focal points for my double flag book. A couple of samples speak to me. Not shown here, cause it was photo paper not deli paper, but, yeah, should work. Nearly done…