Tuesday, April 28, 2009

POTM for April

For this card, I used the Project Of The Month stamps from High Hopes! They will be offered at a 25% discount during the month of April if you purchase them directly from their website. There's a few more days in April left on the calander, so there's still time to get your inky paws on them! In fact, as long as this set is advertised on the site, you can order it at the discounted price!
I used the masking technique to put the girl on top of the hay bale and colored the images with Copics. To get the polka dots on her shirt, I used the tip of the colorless blender, and held it down on one spot at a time until the color moved out of that area. Its easy and fun to do!
For the hay, I did not want to blend the colors completely, because I wanted the strands and textures on the hay to show. The shadow under the girl's feet was put on last using the C5 grey color. The secret to making a grey shadow look real is to go with opposite color temperatures. What I mean by that is, if the object is lit in a warm light, the shadows will be cool. The hay looks very warm in the light I chose, and so that is why I went with the cool grey to make the shadow. You can see how it actually looks like her feet are popped up casting a real shadow, but she is completely flat on this card and the shadow is created with color! You can see what I mean in the close-up in the last photo.
The boy is cut out and popped up, however.

Here are the colors used on the girl:

And on the boy:

And the hay:

Closeup for ya:

Thanks for looking today! God bless you!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Leaving White Highlights with Copics Tutorial 1

Amy, one of our fab Divas, asked us to do "Thinking Outside The Card" this week for the High Hopes Challenge! You can stamp on anything but a card this week! You really must see what she did, my jaw just dropped!
If you wish to join us, don't forget that linking a photo of your project onto the High Hopes Blog gets your name entered into a draw for two free High Hopes Stamps!!!
I chose to do a recipe box. I used Mildred, from the new release. She reminds me of my Mom! My mom was known for her great homemade pies. I got the template from Karen, who passed it on to me from Claudia Rosa! Since I have a coloring tutorial with this post, I am going to get right on it...

This tutorial is going to demonstrate how to leave white spaces when you color in order to create a soft blended highlight on the object you are coloring. This is only one way to use the white of the paper to give you a highlight. That's why I titled it with number 1. I hope to show you a second method, which also involves leaving white spaces in the near future!
I am concentrating on the shoe in this demo. I used four browns to color it, as well as the clear colorless blender:
E35 and
I started with E34, not the lightest shade (you'll see why in a minute!). Starting at the outer edge of the stamped shoe, and using light strokes with the brush tip, I colored in towards the middle, leaving the white space as shown. The stroke is called "feathering". Its a fast light flicking motion. You let the brush tip touch the paper firmly at first, and then quickly flick and lift it so that the first part of the stroke lays down the most ink, and by the end of the stroke begins to fade the color as you lift it off the page. Takes eons longer to explain than to actually do! lol

Then I took the next shade of brown, E35, and using exactly the same feather strokes, I colored over my first layer. Notice my strokes were shorter, and did not completely cover over the first layer, but left some of it showing, closest to the white middle.

I repeated this process using E37, the darkest shade, but when it comes to the darkest shades, less is more. You don't need much, in other words. Just a little bit on the very outer edges is all you need.

Then I took the lightest shade, my E31, and using the same feather strokes and starting in the darkest outer edges of the shoe, went over it about three times to blend all the colors together. These are long strokes and I purposely let them creep into the white area, but still left a white patch showing.
If you like the effect at this point, you can leave it as is. It makes for a very stark contrast and the highlight really stands out. That can make an object appear wet or very smooth and shiny. I didn't want that look for her shoe, I was going for something softer, and so, I went to the next step, and used my colorless blender pen to go over the whole thing.

Starting in the white area, and using a circular motion, I blended all the colors together, going right to the outer edges of the shoe. By doing it that way, some of the lightest brown that I had laid down closest to the white patch began to bleed into that area, and give it a bit of color. Now my highlight is not so stark, not completely white, and very softly blended. I recommend this type of highlight for clothes and faces, because those objects rarely reflect light as white and there is rarely a line of demarcation where the highlight begins and ends on such objects. However, on sharper edged or very smooth or wet objects, that is when I would want a very stark contrast on the highlight. I wish to show that to you in a second tutorial that I will try to get to in the near future! (it just so happens that the photo of Avro, right next to this part of the post, shows a very stark contrast on her very wet nose, that demonstrates exactly what I am trying to say!! lol, thanks Avro!!)

All colors used in on Mildred:
on her flesh:
E34 These last two were used to create the shadows on her face

on her kerchief:

on the pie:
C4 Also used these two greys on her hair

Oven mitts:



Small white dots on her cheeks done with a white gel pen.

Thanks for looking today! Hope my tutorial helped!

God bless you!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Distress and De-stress, volume 2

Had to do another one for the distress challenge! This one is showing one of the new releases, hot off the press! You can see all the new releases from this section of the catalogue at High Hopes. Just type in "hotp" in the long white box, click on the go hippo and all the new releases will come up. I couldn't link it here bcs I made up this post ahead of time, before they went into the catty.
The butterfly and flower are separate stamps. Actually, the flower is a single that I just repeated. I colored everything with my Copics and used brown dye inks along most of the edges to add that aged and distressed look that I love! I was hoping to channel Rach when I did this card (how did I do, Rach?) because she is one of the most inspiring card artists I have ever seen!
This card is bigger than I normally make, but I really wanted to show off that pretty paper from "Dena's Closet" (a pad I got on clearance at Mike's). I think it is six inches across by seven high. I had to use tabs to hold the back to the front. I didn't want them as part of my design so I adhered them to the inside.

Thanks for visiting my blog today! God loves you so much!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Distress and De-stress!

This week's challenge is brought to us by our lovely Diva Divine, Kim Reid! She wants us to distress (our paper!) and de-stress (by being creative!). I love distressing the edges of my layers, whether by scraping it with a metal ruler or sponging with brown dye ink. Both ways are fun! Create along with us, link up a card to the High Hopes Blog, and your name will be entered in a draw to win two free stamps!
I used Copics to color my Norman Goat image and inked the edges with Chestnut Brown Distress Ink. Norman is from the Feb. release. DP by Basic Grey. Balloon Martha Stewart Punch on glossy cs. I had previously colored on the white glossy cs with a pink Copic marker and then added droplets of clear blending ink to give it an alcohol ink effect.

Thanks for looking today!
God loves you!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Day 3 of High Hopes Hullabaloo!

We're in the home stretch of the High Hopes Hullabaloo! Its almost time for the unveiling! Here is another sneaky peekie for ya! I hope you're having fun so far!
I actually took some inspiration from last quarter's guest Diva Nicole for this card. Its almost a direct case, at least of the sketch. I am sketch challenged so I either do up a plain card, or copy someone's!
I colored the image with my Copics. I have had a lot of people ask about the highlighting I do. It really isn't hard, so I think I'm going to plan a tutorial for sometime in the near future. As you can see, I have a nice highlight on the mustard bottle, among other things in this picture. It is a matter of leaving an area completely white and blending with the blender pen afterwards. I'll show you when I get time to do up a good tutorial with photos.
Check out the other projects the Divas have been working on for more sneak peeks!

More cards coming on Sunday!
God bless and thanks for coming!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Day 2 of Hullabaloooooo!!! Woo-hoooo!

This is the second day of the High Hopes Hullabaloo, and if you don't know what all the hullabaloo is about, its the upcoming new release of rubber goodness, slated to be revealed in the early morning hours of Sunday, April the 19th EST! That's when Tina and Bethany will start filling up the catalogue with all the new images. Until then, you are getting teased with sneak peeks from me and some of my fellow Divas!! Here are links to their blogs (allow for time differences, so if you don't see anything right away, check back a little later, k?)
Nikki's four yr. old daughter Danni (ok, not a Diva, but must be included!!)
And Nikki's older daughter Zoe has a sneak peek sample card too!

I created this card awhile ago and forgot to take a pic of the colors I used, sorry! I do remember a few from my head: I know I did the gopher 's fur using E 71, E74 and E77. I used a very light rosey shade for his cheeks and used the colorless blender to blend it in. Other than the yellows on the hat, I also used a cool grey to make a shadow on the left side, I think C4.
The jeans are B21, B23, B24, and I think B97 in the darkest shadows. The ground is a mix of E's, with a splash of blue and red on a few of the pebbles for some color. That's all I can remember folks, I'll try to keep track next time!

Tomorrow will be another preview of the release so stay tuned!
Thank you so much for taking the time to visit and comment!
Bless you!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

High Hopes Hullabaloo surprise 2nd peek for today!

I was not planning on doing this, but yesterday's sketch challenge at SCS was too good to pass up! So you are getting another sneaky peekie from me today, so suprise!
The flower and bee are separate stamps. I cut out the darker flower and bee and pasted them overtop the first lighter flower I had stamped and colored. I used Nestability Deckled Rectangle die to cut out a piece of cardstock and used that as a mask for the edges of the main image. I sponged the purple color using the edge of that mask, just laying it along the side. Some guesswork involved there, to get it even all the way around, but it worked out ok.
I used a purple gel pen to do the doodling.
Scroll down to my first post from earlier to see the links to the other Divas who are showing off the peeks for the upcoming release (Sunday!).

High Hopes Hullabaloo! April Release Sneaky Peekie!!

I told you it was coming!! The High Hopes Hullabaloo is here! For the next three days, you will get to see sneak peeks by me and some of my fellow Diva darlin's for April's brand new release! Check out more sneak peeks at the following blogs:

The whole release will be unveiled and uploaded into the High Hopes catalogue in the Hot Off The Press section starting just after midnight, in the early morning hours of Sunday April 19th!!
I couldn't wait to show you this card I made. It is rather dear to my heart and I'll tell you why... Back in February, one of our guest Divas, Nicole, broke her leg. She wrote about it on her blog and we were all feeling very badly for her. I was in the middle of working on this release and was drawing some bugs. I knew I wanted to do a stamp in her honor, to cheer her up from having such a trauma, and to let her know we were all thinking of her. I suddenly got this idea to show a centipede who had broken one of his many legs. Not to make light of her pain, but to find a way to identify with her in it, and at the same time, make her laugh!
I sent her this card weeks ago, but told her to keep it a secret, as it was for this release. I was happy to learn that she did feel very proud that a stamp was made in her honor! And she loved this card too! This little guy's name is Cole.
I colored him with Copics and added highlights with white acrylic paint. Sorry, I can't remember the name of the papers I used, my bad. The sentiment is hand written (obviously). Here is the list of Copic colors:


And a close-up of my coloring:

Stay tuned for another installment of the High Hopes Hullabaloo Friday!!!
Thanks for looking and for visiting my blog today! God bless you!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Hopeful Ant

I actually made this card for last weeks HH challenge 25, which was the sketch challenge, but I see that I also used piercing on it, so it also counts for yesterday's Pierce It! Challenge, 26! heh-heh.
This was a stretch away from my usual style. I wanted to do something a little different. It did make up faster than my other cards, that's for sure! I enjoyed sewing the sandy hills. Got that idea from Jeanne (one of our Divas) who also gave us the sketch to work with. Thanks Jeanne! (waving!)
I illustrated this ant which is similar to the High Hopes ant Logo that Tina illustrated awhile back. She asked me to do my own version of it because many HH customers spoke up saying they wanted her cute ant logo as a stamp. But a logo is a logo and has to stay that way. So Tina thought that if I did my own version of it, it would be slightly different, but close enough that people would feel satisfied (I hope, anyway!)
If you go to the High Hopes website and look under "About Us", you can read Tina's story and find out why she chose the name "High Hopes" and what the ant with the rubber tree plant has to do with all of this! Its truly worth the jog over to read (I think it will touch your heart)!
I stamped Hopeful Ant on Aquabee's Artist Marker Pad paper using Memento Tuxedo Black Ink by Tsukeneko. To color, I used Copics (pictured below) and the image is cut out and popped up on foam tape.
I made the button from Sculpey and I found the covered brads at the Dollarama.

Inside view:

Close-up view:

Copics used:

Hope you had a great Easter weekend! God bless you!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

HHC26 Pierce it!

Before I get into it, I just want to remind you that a new release is just around the corner!! The next High Hopes Hullabaloo takes place starting this Thursday, April 16th, and will run every day until the release date, Sunday April 19th. I will be posting a card on each of the days leading up to the release, and will also post a link to the Divas that will also be participating. I'll give you a teeny hint about this next release: girly girl and bugs galore, and I'm not saying anymore... you'll see!
It was my turn to choose a challenge over at the High Hopes Blog, and I decided to encourage you to use piercing on your project or card! If you want to join in the challenge, you could have a chance to win the Party Cow and the "moosic in me" sentiment I have used on this sample card! Just link a photo of your card/project on the High Hopes Blog on the "Pierce it Challenge" (uploaded by around 10AM EST) to get your name in the draw!
I colored her with the following Copic markers:

I used my sewing machine to do the piercing. I have a needle that is extra thick to go through leather and such, and it does a good job. I did it from the back side so that it would look like distressed piercing, and then I swiped my brown ink pad over them to make them stand out even more.
The black layers are Core'dinations paper that have pastel colors on the other side. By using a piece of sandpaper after I Cuttlebug'd them, I revealed some of the soft colors underneath. Hint: swipe the cardstock with a dry kleenex or two afterwards to get as much of the loose black dust off as possible. At first I didn't do that, and black smudges began to appear on everything I touched! I also pierced along the outer edges of these panels, again from the back side, to really bring out the core color in the paper and make them stand out a bit more. The two CB folders I used were Swirls, and Distressed Stripes (thank you Janette!) I also used Some new Spellbinder dies I am so blessed to now have in my inky paws!
I used a Fascinator stapler to staple the ribbon on. It was a stroke of luck that I got it on straight enough (for me!) as there is no guide, its all guessing as to where the staple will end up. I love the fancy shmancy staples all right, but using the thing is a headache and a half! I usually go through three or four staples before I get it on right.
I glittered up her hooves for that true disco look. lol

Here is a look at the inside:

and a close-up of the colored image:

God bless you and Happy Easter everybody! May you come to know the One who rose from the dead and who loves you endlessly and passionately!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Two Are Better!

This is just a fun friendship type card I made and had a lot of fun with, using the Feb. release stamps. I stamped Party Pig, Party Cow, and Better Than One sentiment onto Manga drawing pad by Canson, using Tsukeneko Memento Tuxedo Black ink. I colored the images with Copics (see photo below for a list of colors).
I made the buttons with Sculpey (so fun!) distressed some of the edges with a metal ruler (works best for me) and used a Spellbinders Curved Rectangle die for the sentiment and Spellbinders Flower Creations die for the flowers inside the card. I got them at one of my fav. stores, Scrappin' Great Deals. If you haven't ever checked them out, do so. They really do have a ton of stock and their sales are fabulous! DP is Basic Grey. Raffia from Michael's.
Here is a look at the inside:

Close-up of my coloring (you can see I used some Glitter Glue to accent the cow):

Copic colors used:

Saturday, April 4, 2009

HHC25 Fur texture with Copics

This week's challenge is a sketch, brought to us by the lovely High Hopes Diva Jeanne Streiff. I looooove sketch challenges, because I am basically "sketch challenged", in that I find it really difficult to know how to put the various elements of a card together. So if somebody else can map it out and show me what goes where, all that thinking is done for me and I can relax!
Well I don't have my Nesties circles yet, and so I pulled out my old faithful Fiskar's shape cutter and circle template to do the circles on this one. I've ordered some Nesties and so they are on their way to my house from Scrappin Great Deals. I looove that store! They have great weekly sales too. I signed up for their e-mail notices, so every Wed. after closing I get an e-mail reminding me of their weekly specials (that last til closing Friday). I ordered my Nesties at 20% off!! Saved a bundle!!
I used Copics to color my images. I stamped Bunny With Tulip and Easter Basket using Memento Tuxedo Black ink by Tsukeneko onto Artist Marker Pad by Aquabee. These stamps are from the latest release (February). I first colored the bunny grey, but didn't like it. I was going to toss it out, when I suddenly thought I would first try coloring over the grey with brown. It worked out pretty good and I was happy with a brown bunny! And the greys I had initially laid down only helped with the shading. It actually turned out kinda cool, I think!
When I was all done the coloring, I dabbed a bit of blender solution on an old terry cloth rag and pressed it onto the furry areas (press it down on the image for about three seconds). It gave a soft mottled appearance. I tried to avoid dabbing it on the pot, flower and ribbon. In hindsight, I should really have done the dabbing before coloring the other items.
The ground is a series of dots of various colors. I also dotted the clear blender pen on it too, which gives a neat effect.
I made the pink bg paper using clear white glossy cs, a pink Copic marker and Copic blending solution. I just colored the page loosely, using the chiseled tip of my RV23 Pure Pink, not covering the whole page, and not worrying about having lines or streaks. I then dripped the blending solution onto the page and watched the "magic" happen as the ink moved and pooled.
The green bg dp is Basic Grey.
Little x's in the bottom left are sewn on with pink embroidery thread and a darning needle, but I first punched the tiny holes with my paper drill from Lee Valley Tools.
The Easter basket is popped up on foam tape, and I dotted around the perimeter of the white circles with a pink gel pen.
Don't forget there is a weekly draw for two free High Hopes Stamps that you can be eligible to win if you make a project for this challenge and link it up onto the High Hopes Blog! Check out Jeanne's card that will be posted mid morning Sunday (EST) to see what stamps will be given away!


Here is a close up of the bunny where you can really see the effect of using the blender solution on the terry cloth rag:

NOTE: I forgot to put the colorless blender in the following pictures, but it was used throughout the entire coloring process.

Colors used on the Bunny:

Colors on tulip and pot:

Colors on ground:

Colors for the basket: