A Look Back

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 11

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at Distress Inks and Distress Oxide Inks – a fun ink to play with that is very blendable and soft, and also comes in so many wonderful colors. Enjoy this Look Back!


Wow ok first is a card I made and posted about back in 2009!!! So just about 10 years ago. In it I used Distress Inks for the background, and you can see how I was able to make some beautiful transitions between those warm colors. The original blog post is here.

Now we are jumping forward to 2017 and my Artful Adventures Stroll Challenge. Here is an art journal spread I created using Distress Inks in the background and then removed ink with a baby wipe through my Manhattan and Kassel stencils. Then I went in and created a subway scene using my E-Train rubber stamp.

In 2018 I released some new stencils and in playing with them, I created this art journal page. I filled the background with Distress Oxide ink and then used a clean wet ink blending tool through my Broadway stencil to remove some of the ink.

In 2019 my Creative Squad member Tania Ahmed created this card using Distress Oxide inks for both the blended background and to color my Maiko stamp.

Finally, in May of this year as I was playing along with the Stencilfied Journal challenge, I created this art journal spread. I used Distress inks along with my Chicago stencil.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some different things now too.

Here are some of the supplies I used in these posts:

Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 10

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at Pan Pastels – a medium I have been playing with for years and always find myself returning to on occasion. Here’s a look back at some of the ways I’ve used them over the years. Enjoy!


First up is a resist technique I show in a video from 2013. I use rubber stamps, embossing powder, and pan pastels. Check it out here.

Also from 2013 is this art journal page where I experimented with some metallic pan pastels for a little sparkle here and there. 

Jumping forward to 2018, I also used metallic pan pastels – this time with my Versailles stencil on a black background for some real drama :) You can check out the full post here.

Later that year I had a playdate with Kim and we used pan pastels with stencils (here my Downtown stencil) on paper clay for some napkin rings – that was a pretty cool and simple project. See how we did it and check out our gorgeous tablescapes in the original post.

Finally just this past August for my Stencilbop Challenge, I show the simple joy of using pan pastels with your stencils – they make it easy to blend colors and patterns for such gorgeous results. Here I was using my Manhattan stencil and my Kassel stencil.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some different things now too.

Here are some of the supplies I used in these posts:

Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 09

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at Gesso – yes that mixed media essential in my opinion. It has so many fun qualities and uses that it’s time to celebrate the powers of Gesso!!! Here’s a look back at some of the ways I’ve used it over the years. Enjoy!


 

Let’s start with the basics – why I call Gesso a Must-Have. I wrote this post back in 2015 but my feelings haven’t changed. Check out the original post for a really nice overview of the medium and some examples of it in action, as well as why I sometimes affectionately call it Dumbledore!

In 2015 I also shot a fun video showing Gesso and Acrylic Inks working together for background bliss. Check out the original post here to watch me create a textured background that gets layered up with luscious colored inks.

Let’s talk Black Gesso. Wow this is definitely the stuff I go to for BOLD backgrounds. If you want a patterned stencil (like my Exchange Place stencil here) to POP, Black Gesso is your BFF. Check out this post from 2018 for the full art journal spread to see why Black Gesso is just as essential as white.

And then there is Gold Gesso! Who isn’t a sucker for a bit of shiny metallic gold? I love to use it like I have here with my Amsterdam stencil – just a bit of high impact Gold Gesso pattern to adorn this art journal spread from 2018.

Looking waaaay back to 2012 for this one folks :)  I had a LOT of the same kind of black felt letters and decided to spruce them up in this vintage post with… you guessed it: Gesso! Gesso is fantastic for covering stuff up and giving you a nice surface for almost any kind of media on top. In this case, some markers. So thank you Gesso for helping me give these letters new life.

Speaking of covering things up – how about this art journal spread from 2017 where I use Gesso to tone down that extra hot background just a tad to give me a spot for journaling. Gesso is perfect for covering and giving a visual break from a wild background.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some different things now too.

Here are some of the supplies I used in these posts:

Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 08

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at some beautiful stenciled background from my Creative Squad alumni archives. These are some gorgeous and inspiring ideas using my stencils. Here’s a look back. Enjoy!


First up we have an art journal page from Creative Squad alum Josefine Fouarge. She blended my Toledo stencil down into my Art Deco Wallpaper stencil for a dramatic sky. I love the idea of an ombre effect that uses both color AND pattern! And that cityscape? That’s my Midtown foam stamp set :)

Next we have an exotic touch from Creative Squad alum Gwen Lafleur. She used my What’s the Point stencil and my Lily Wallpaper stencil for this art journal page devoted to adventures. The black, red, and gold color palette definitely transports us somewhere far off and interesting :)

From Creative Squad alum Tina Walker we have this fun background using my Beacon stencil that has me thinking about fireworks. You can reinterpret stencils in so many ways and see different things in the designs.

I absolutely love this colorblocked pattern using my Toledo stencil by Creative Squad alum Cheiron Brandon. Using blocks of color like this across a pattern is a cool way to mix things up with a stencil.

And finally we have this beautiful sunset from Creative Squad alum Michelle Rydell. She used my Toledo stencil with a bunch of spray inks for a gorgeous wash of color that we can’t get enough of!


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my Creative Squad archive and maybe you are inspired to try some different things now too.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:

And hurry into the shop because my Exchange Place ArtFoamie is now just $4!!! Super cool pattern and super great price!

Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 07

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at some stenciling ideas from my blog archives – projects and techniques that make the most of your beloved stencils. Here’s a look back. Enjoy!


This was a cool page I did back in 2013 with my Circuit stencil. I sprayed my stencil with black spraypaint and while it was still wet I flipped it over and rolled it with a brayer. Voila! Reverse printed stencil magic :)

This was a stencil project I did on my staircase when we moved into our apartment in 2013 – and funny enough, now we need to paint over white again as we are moving to our new home soon :) It was a neat idea to personalize the risers of the stairs with a message, but it could be also nice to do a pattern stencil like my Amsterdam or maybe Van Vorst…. Hmmm thinking about decorating ideas lol

Back in this 2014 post a friend surprised me with a piece of handmade pottery, glazed with my Elephant March stencil on it! I am still thrilled with this and love how many different types of artists can use my stencils for amazingly creative things.

In this 2016 art journal page I used a stencil and a baby wipe to remove paint and create a pattern. This is so easy to do and it lets you use your stencils in yet another way.

And finally when you have a really crazy colorful background that needs some toning down and unification, I go for a stencil. Here I used my Art Deco Wallpaper stencil and some gray and white paint to bring this 2014 art journal page together.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some different things with stencils.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:


Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 06

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at foam stamps and some ideas for using them in ways you maybe didn’t think about, even with the help of my March Foam Stamplifier Challenge. Here is A Look Back. Enjoy!


You can use foam stamps in the canvas staining technique – just prepare your canvas staining solution (I used Flow Aid by Liquitex in this 2016 blog post) and use with acrylic inks. The canvas readily absorbs the color in a soft, washy way.

You can also paint directly onto a foam stamp with high flow paints as Cheiron Brandon did in 2016 for my Creative Squad. She spritzed the stamp with water and then got multiple colorful impressions from it on watercolor paper. Each was unique and super fun!

I made a little video here that may inspire you to try some different methods of “inking” your foam stamps. It’s nice to find the way that you are comfortable using foam stamps and in the video I show 3 easy methods.

In another helpful video I made back in 2016 I show how to reverse a foam stamp image using a gelli plate. This is an easy technique that you can use to create mirror images or patterns with a reverse.

If you are looking for a summer project with your foam stamps, here is a flower pot decorating tutorial I made. I used standard clay pots and acrylic paint to give my herb pots that summer a bit more personality.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some new things with foam stamps.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:


Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 05

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

All month I have been posting Nat’s April Patterns videos on Instagram showing how to make patterns with my new rubber stamps. It’s been a lot of fun and maybe you are looking for ways to use these patterns, so this time I’m going to show posts and projects using rubber stamps! Here is A Look Back at some ideas. Enjoy!


First is an art journal spread from a couple year ago where I used watercolors to color the rubber stamped cityscape I built. I love how easy and quick it can be to add color to stamps in this way. Here I started with my Stroll Through the Hood 1 and 2 stamp sets and then added bright hues that make me happy.

When I was on that same kick of creating neighborhood scenes with rubber stamps from my Stroll Through the Hood 1 and 2 stamp sets, I tried something different in this art journal spread: I colored them using fluid acrylic paints. You have to be a bit more careful to stay in the lines, but it’s a much bolder effect.

In 2017 Kim and I had this playdate where we used rubber stamps on white ceramic pieces – flower pots and vases. Here she is using stamps from my Cardboard set and from my Embroidery set. You can find a lot of plain white ceramics online that are just begging for a little personality.

In 2018 Kim and I got together for this playdate to use rubber stamps as a pattern for embroidery. Here is my Craftsman stamp from the Stroll Around the Block set getting an embroidery treatment on a t-shirt. It’s fun and relaxing and you get a really unique clothing item in the end.

And finally, from back in 2016, Creative Squad alum Michelle Rydell used embossing powder to make this rubber stamped bird really pop on a black background. Using embossing powder with rubber stamps is fun to begin with and once you add a dark background – wow. I love it!


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some of the rubber stamp techniques I shared.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:


Comments (1)

  • julie

    |

    I loved your art journal page with the gold gesso years ago! I bought some and the jar was broken and a hot mess but had fun applying it to everything in sight. This year I tried the clear gesso on top of an IOD transfer on a journal and it was very nice indeed to watercolor on. Thank you for the reminder to dig up those old tools and make them new again.

    Reply

Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 04

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m looking at scale – and using the same patterns and designs in different scales to make magic happen in your work. Here is A Look Back at some ideas. Enjoy!


First up is using my Large Circle Jumble stamps along with my Small Circle Jumble stamps together in an art journal spread. The effect creates a depth to the background. Pretty fun way to create a little 3D environment for my Millie stamp.

From way back in 2016 I combined my Manhattan Border with my Manhattan Positive Negative foam stamps in this background. You can see in the finished art journal page here how this makes a complex but cohesive background to build on.

A year later I again used two of my Manhattan designs in different scales for another art journal background. This time it was the Manhattan 9×12 and Manhattan 4×4 stencils. I love how this gives the background more energy than if it were all just the same.

In this art journal page I combined my Santiago stencil with my Santiago foam stamp for a more subtle push and pull in the background. It shows that even a slight difference in scale can have a cool effect.

And finally, from Creative Squad member Maura Hibbitts, we have a collaged photo along with my Adirondack Chairs stamp to show how repetition in different sizes can provide emphasis for a subject matter.


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try playing with scale in your artwork.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:


Leave a comment

A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 03

A Look Back – a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)

This time I’m going to show posts and projects using one of my favorite tools – stencils! Here is A Look Back at some ideas. Enjoy!


First up is a classic – use your stencils with acrylic paint! But wait, there’s more: in this Art Journal spread I chose to use 2 different stencils that have the same pattern but in different scales: my Amsterdam 9×12 and my Amsterdam 6×6 stencils for an all over background. It is a subtle variation that gives more push and pull in the background.

How about taking your stencils and using them on fabric items? I did that here (in 2013 wow) with my Elephant March stencil, some acrylic markers, and acrylic spray paint on what we Germans call a “Heel Porsche.” Stencils are a great way to personalize everyday items.

Embossing paste is another fun medium to use with stencils. In this art journal spread again from way back, I used my Circuit stencil and some shimmery gold embossing paste to start the page and then added and subtracted inks overtop. You can gently wipe away the inks on top and reveal the embossing paste. And it has nice texture. Win win.

How about a little subtraction? Here I created a pan pastel background and then used my What’s the Point stencil and erased through it for some nice dots here and there. I love the softness of this technique.

And then I took the same What’s the Point stencil and embellished onto it with some acrylic markers for this art journal spread. Once you have the stencil pattern down you can jazz it up in all sorts of ways. So many options!!!


I hope you enjoyed A Look Back through my archive and maybe you are inspired to try some of the stenciling techniques I shared.

Here are some of the supplies that were used in these pieces:


Leave a comment