Creative Squad

Sing Your Song – Emilie Murphy

Hello from my Creative Squad! Today we are having Emilie Murphy sing with a wonderful set of patterned cards. She is using my Granada stencil, and my Birds, Mini Motifs, and Fan-fare stamp sets along with our theme: Sing Your Song – Everybody has their own voice, their own groove, their own one-of-a-kind personality. What is something unique about YOU that you are proud of? Don’t be shy, Sing YOUR Song!


Hi there! Hope you are doing well.

I really hesitated about what song I would sing to you this month.  I decided to make some cards because that is something that I love to do. Sending personalized cards to friends and family is one of my favorite things to do.

I first used my 8×10 Gelli plate to create some monochrome backgrounds using the Nat’s “Granada” stencil 9×12 and blue acrylic paints. The Gelli plate is a great tool to make a diversity of background quickly. I showed here just one example. If you are not familiar about what a Gelli plate is and what we can do with it, I encourage you to go on the Youtube channel of Gelli Arts.

I started to apply a dark color of blue first.

I right away placed down Nat’s Granada stencil then removed some paint with a piece of copy paper.

Then I applied a mid-tone color of blue and an off-white color to get a gradient of different blues.

Here is what I got:

Then I kept going to get a variety of monochrome backgrounds.

I always have fun playing with my Gelli plate but I have to say that the best part of this project was to play stamping with Nat’s new Mini Motifs stamp set. The possibilities are really endless to make patterns. I also used some Fan-fare stamps to complete my patterns because these two stamps sets go so well together.

Let me guide you now how I made my cards. They measure 4 ½ x4 ½ inches. I used white cardstock as base.

I cut the backgrounds made previously in 3 ¾ x 3 ¾ inches pieces and darkened the edges with my black Moonlight Duo ink pad.

I cut also some 2 ½ x 2 ½ cardstock pieces that are going to be the centered pieces of my cards. I colored them with my Moonlight duo Ink Pads. I just rubbed directly on the paper, both of the color and white parts of the pad, until I was satisfied with the tint of the color I got.

Then I stamped on them different patterns using the Mini Motifs, Birds and Fan-fare stamps set with my Moonlight duo Ink pads.

Following are a few examples:

I also used some embossing white powder for some patterns.

To add some interest I added details and final touches with some Posca pens and a 0.5 Micron pen.

Finally, I assembled my cards. I matted my centered 2 ½ x 2 ½ inches pieces on a 2 5/8 x 2 5/8 piece of black cardstock to have a thin black border.

I finished my cards by adding a black border with a micron pen around the background piece.

Hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and would like to give a try.  These new stamp sets offer so many possibilities to make nice and unique cards in a short period of time.

Have a good rest of the week and see you next month!


Thank you Emilie – love all the different patterns you explored through these! What fun to see the possibilities!

Give it a try: you can find all my Stencils and Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Emilie used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Leave a comment

Sing Your Song – Maura Hibbitts

Hello again from my Creative Squad! Today we have a post from Maura Hibbitts with a simple but elegant project using my Art Deco Fairview stencil along with my Birds rubber stamp set and my Craftsman Motif and Gnarly rubber stamps. The theme is: Sing Your Song – Everybody has their own voice, their own groove, their own one-of-a-kind personality. Sing YOUR Song!


I love music, so to find inspiration for this month, I scrolled through songs I’ve saved, and decided on Lo/Hi by the Black Keys. I really like the rhythm of the Black Keys – I just can’t sit still when I listen to them. The band name makes me think of piano keys, so this led me to working in a simple black and white palette. In the song, there are references to a masquerade, which also makes me think of that color palette. Images of birds in the sky helped me select which stamps to use. Plus, this song reflects a lot of the emotions I am feeling right now, bouncing back and forth between lows and highs, and the feeling of being in a hurricane. Maybe you’ve been feeling like this too…for me, music and art help me get through these times.

On a “Hi” note, I’ve been putting together some art gift bags for friends’ children, and one was a simple kraft bag. I thought it would be fun to decorate it for this month’s project. This is really an easy peasy project.

I started off with the Art Deco Fairview stencil and black and white paint. I laid it on the bottom section of the bag, stenciled a layer of white , then a layer of black with cosmetic sponges. Dry and repeat on the other side. 

Keeping with the black and white theme, I stamped the Nightingale in black ink and the Early Bird with white ink on both sides of the bag.

I felt like the birds needed some grounding, so used the Gnarly stamp for them to stand on, and again used the contrasting color of ink.

I wanted to add something at the top of the bag, so chose the Craftsman Motif stamp with its “hi and lo” design, and stamped repeatedly with black ink.  This time, since I was stamping on an uneven surface, I did not mount the stamp on an acrylic block.

Final step was to add a bit of white to the motif at the top with a white gel pen. Have to continue the black and white theme, right?

All that is left is to fill the bag with some white tissue paper and the gifts, and I am ready to deliver them!

This really is a simple project that you could do in any theme. Look through your stamps and stencils for ideas. Make it colorful, or keep it simple with just a couple of colors. Keep listening to your music for inspiration in your art, and sing your song!! Be well, Maura


Thank you Maura – love the simplicity of this and that it will bring some joy to a friend :)

Want to give Maura’s project a try? You can find all my Stencils and my Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop. Here are some of the other supplies Maura used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Leave a comment

Sing Your Song – Jennifer Gallagher

Hello from my Creative Squad! We are kicking off a new theme this month with a fun secret and clever little art journal page from Jennifer Gallagher. She is using my Santiago stencil, my Early Bird stamp, and my Jugendstil stamp. The theme is: Sing Your Song – Everybody has their own voice, their own groove, their own one-of-a-kind personality. What is something unique about YOU that you are proud of? Don’t be shy, Sing YOUR Song!


This month the Creative Squad is singing a song about what makes each of us uniquely us! We all have our own voice and talents. Not many people know it, but I love to sing. I can’t work on an art project or even wash a load of dishes without singing along to my favorite playlists. Don’t tell anyone, but I’m not half bad. It’s our secret. So this month, I’m literally singing my song in this fun art journal page. Let’s get started.

I’m working in my small dylusions journal. I placed Nat’s Santiago stencil down and put Bright Aqua Green acrylic paint through the square designs in the stencil with a makeup sponge. Next, I painted Light Blue Violet acrylic paint through the rest of the stencil design. 

Using a cosmetic sponge I dab a little Ultramarine Blue fluid acrylic paint onto the small squares in the design.

I drew directly onto the page with Marabu Art Crayons in Flesh and Pomegranate and rubbed the color with my finger.

Using a Marabu Art Crayon in caramel, I highlighted the areas around the dark blue square and spread the color with my finger.

I edged my page with a little Payne’s Grey on a cosmetic sponge.

I cut a piece of Grafix Clear Craft Plastic and cut a sheet the same size as my journal page, eight inches by five inches.I attached it to the journal with Dina Wakley Media washi tape.

Using black archival ink, I stamped Nat’s Jugendstil stamp over the green squares. The stamp will slide easily on this material so stamp with care. Also, keep in mind it will take a few minutes for the ink to dry on the plastic so be sure not to smear it.

I wanted to stamp Nat’s Early Bird stamp on the page but the orientation was going the opposite direction that I wanted. So, I stamped the bird onto the “wrong” side of the craft plastic. This causes the image to face the direction that I wanted.

Next, I drew lines from the birds beak and around each dark blue square with a black fine-point acrylic paint marker. The finishing touch is a few stickers from Tim Holtz clippings sticker set.

Well that is it for this art journal page. Stamping with Nat’s stamps onto the craft plastic really gives the page some extra pizzazz. It is also a great way to change the orientation of some of your stamps. I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial. Crack open that art journal and sing your song.


Thank you Jennifer – love the Grafix trick and loved learning your secret love of singing :) 

Give it a try: you can find all my Stencils and Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Jennifer used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Leave a comment

Rubber Stamp Inspiration from my Creative Squad

Today I have some lovely cards, envelopes and a tag to share with you from Creative Squad member Judi Kauffman. When Judi received her rubber stamps in the mail, her super creative mind went right to work and I just love the results!


What a treat to get Nathalie’s new stamps in the mail – her signature style in a petite and very versatile size! I reached for a stack of envelopes, my go-to with all new stamps, got out some colorful inks, and when I looked at the finished batch I was shocked to see how my worry about covid-19 had taken over. The triangles I’d stamped on and around the Nightingale looked like masks and on most of the envelopes the birds looked like they were practicing social distancing.

I stamped three business cards for the tag, this time using white ink to paint tight-fitting masks on the birds. It really is scary how our subconscious takes over. I set out to make something spring-like and happy! But the cosmos had other ideas.

I love ‘Far Out’! In fact, I love all of them. It’s a new thing to have the petite size and I think that’s a feature worthy of attention.


Thank you Judi! It is funny how what is pressing in our minds can come through in our artwork. Regardless, these are a wonderful abstract use of the stamps and in any other time would just be really awesome compositions!

Here are some of the supplies Judi used:

Comments (3)

  • Marilyn

    |

    Love the designs. I am one of the lucky friends of Judi to receive her “bird” envelop. She always amazes me with her creativity and now more so using her subconscious thoughts. I am a firm believer that our actions are a result of our inner thoughts.
    Kudos to Judi!

    Reply

  • Kimberly O.

    |

    I love the combination of the stamps you used! The bird stamps are awesome!!

    Reply

  • Denise M. Krueger

    |

    Love these!! So much vibrant color and the birds are awesome stamps.

    Reply

Leave a comment

Nice to Meet You! with Keren Tamir

Hello and welcome to a blog feature I call Nice to Meet You! From time to time I learn about some amazing artists out there who are working with my stamps and stencils and are creating some pretty fun and exciting projects. It’s always inspiring to see what others do with my designs and sometimes they even introduce me to a new way of seeing the pattern or a new technique to try on my own. Today I’d like to introduce to you Keren Tamir!


Please introduce yourself to our readers:

I live in Thornhill, Ontario which is in the suburbs of Toronto, Canada. I’m a true suburban girl and I love it. I live with my husband and two kids; one 16 year old teen and one 10 year old girl. Although I love to travel, I’m a true homebody and love spending time at home.

How do you make time to be creative?

I make some time every day to be creative in my studio. I have a few hours to create after I drop off my kids at school, I love working in the morning as it gives me a few solid hours to design and create a project. Although I would love to create every minute of every day, weeknights and weekends are mostly spent with my family. Of course there are also those days where I do have to do some computer work and social media sharing. Those days might not be creative days but without them I would not be able to do what I love!!

What are some of your favorite n*Studio stamps / stencils?

My favourite n*Studio products are the foam stamps. I specifically love the BirdElephant and Urban Scribble sets. I’ve used all three sets in several projects and I just love how the stencils and stamps combine so nicely together.

Bird Foam Stamp Set

Elephant Foam Stamp Set

Urban Scribble Foam Stamp Set

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do you love to use them?

I love experimenting and trying new techniques with the stamps. I’m always trying to find ways to use them differently than the norm. I love using them with other mixed media mediums, not just paint and ink.

What is your favorite medium to work in?

I love all mixed media mediums but if I had to choose just one then it would have to be gel medium. There’s just so many ways you can use it and so many techniques to experiment with. Of course that without the other mediums like gesso, paint and texture paste it can be limiting. I love the formulas, mixing and combining mediums together. Makes my heart so happy!!

What inspires you to be creative?

I love thinking out of the box, I like being original. I love creating pieces that have movement and that inspire others. Everything that I make, I make from my heart and soul and so that’s why I originally chose the name of my blog to be called: “Expressing from my heart and soul”

Do you have a favorite artist?

All kinds of artists and styles inspire me. I find inspiration from the masters and also from artists who have just begun their journey. I truly find inspiration everywhere as every person who creates from their heart inspires others and so I get inspired from them all.

How did you get into art-making?

I always loved art, since I was little. I used to always doodle during class and draw things on my notebooks, I took some art classes in high school but never pursued it after that. I tried painting, sculpting, watercolors in my 20’s but It wasn’t really my thing. Then in 2003 I started scrapbooking just for fun and it opened up my world to so many products. Scrapbooking lead me to Mixed Media and I started combining art products with scrapbooking. Finally I felt like I found my calling, as if I found what brings my heart joy and then I never looked back. When I found mixed media it’s as if everything in my soul became alive.

In three words, how does art-making make you feel?

Peaceful, Happy, “Full of Light” (pretend the last one is one word, LOL)


Thank you Keren for sharing your story and the wonderful ways that you’ve been working with my foam stamp sets! I hope everyone will watch Keren’s videos to see some of the super cool techniques that she uses :)

Leave a comment

Inspiration From Around the Globe! January 2017

This Tuesday we’re taking a short break from our Creative Squad (they will be back next week with a new February theme to play with!) to bring you some amazing projects from around the globe. My stamps and stencil designs are available for purchase online and maybe even in your local craft store, so crafters and mixed media artists and art journalers from around the world are using them. I am always excited to see how YOU use my products in your own projects. I am even more excited to share some of the beautiful and creative examples of these projects with you today. Enjoy this inspiration from around the globe!


Mary Beth Shaw had some fun with my NEW Lady Liberty Cling Rubber stamp in her art journal in Missouri, USA.

From Virginia, USA, Dana Tatar created this fun mixed media board using my Bird Foam Stamp set and she cleverly used the trouser stamp from my Fashion Dame Stamp set to create the purple stripes in the background.

Gunvor Andersson Storck in Sweden brings us a really cool Happy New Year card using my Urban Scribble Foam Stamp set.

From the USA, Cindy Gilstrap has created a cute pencil case using my Typewriter stencil.

Mary Thoma from Oklahoma, USA has used my Art Deco Wallpaper stencil to create a background in this beautiful mixed media piece.

From the Netherlands, Jacqueline van Zuiden created this uplifting mixed media piece using my Bird Foam Stamp set and my Urban Scribble Foam Stamp set.


Finally, Kristie Taylor shares this amazing underwater shrine with us and in the video above she shows how she used my Crackle stencil to create such gorgeous texture.


Join us again next Tuesday for another great project from one of our Creative Squad members! They will be working with a new theme for February. And in the meantime, share with me what you’ve been working on with my stamps and stencils. I would love to feature your project in an upcoming post!

Try some of the above techniques for yourself with these n*Studio supplies:


Leave a comment

Another YAWP Art Journal Page

yawpnatkalbach

I love this quote by Walt Whitman so much “I sound my barbaric YAWP over the roofs of the world”

I mostly used my Masks and Stencils which are part of my Bird Stamp Set for the background and kept it pretty simple. I printed out a photo of myself and painted it over with acrylic marker and pencil.

Hope you are sounding your YAWP out today as well !

Comments (2)

  • Nancy Faulls

    |

    Love it Nat

    Reply

Leave a comment

I have a song or… In My Art Journal Today

ArtJournalBirdDoesntSing01

“A Bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song” Maya Angelou

Such a beautiful quote! I used my Bird Stamp Set and my initial bird that was the start of my stamp design.

ArtJournalBirdDoesntSing02

I created a background using the masks and stencils in the Bird set, and then used the patterned foam stamp and painted inside with brush.

ArtJournalBirdDoesntSing03

I played with overpainting areas and revealing them again as well as shadows.

ArtJournalBirdDoesntSing04

I really love the outcome .

ArtJournalBirdDoesntSing05

It was a good song :)

Here are some of the supplies I used for this art journal spread – some are affiliate links:

SuppliesCJS


Hope you have a gorgeous day!

Comments (2)

  • Joi@RR

    |

    Yes – I agree with Janet! Thank you Nat for singing your song to us today through your bright and happy pages. You have started my day off with a smile. Xj.

    Reply

  • Janet

    |

    Love this! Thanks for singing a song this morning!

    Reply

Leave a comment

Say Yes to New Adventures – Michelle Rydell

CS August Say Yes

It’s Tuesday and time for my Creative Squad to share a project with you with this month’s theme: “Say Yes to New Adventures”. Throughout the month of August, the team has been using any of my n*Studio Stamps and Stencils they would like to use to interpret the theme. Here in the northern hemisphere, summer is coming to a close and it’s about time to seize the days and go on a little adventure before hibernation! With this in mind, the team has created something that celebrates the spirit of adventure.

This week we bring you Michelle Rydell and an art journal page all about her adventures with love!

—————————————————————————————————

Michelle August Headshot

As soon as I heard that the theme for this month was “Say Yes to New Adventures,” I knew I wanted to do a colorful, many-layered page, to represent the many adventures I’ve had with my hubby Michael! I also thought it would be a great opportunity to make the creation of the page an adventure in itself, by letting it develop organically, instead of having a set plan before beginning…

Here’s how it went…  I opened to a page in my journal that already had the background painted, and a few random collage elements pasted on. I set up my table with a bunch of Dylusions acrylic paints, and foam tools, and got to work…

Rydell Adventure 1

The first stencil I used was the one from the Fashion Dame set, which I applied randomly around the page with turquoise paint…

Rydell Adventure 2

And then added some white doodling with a paint pen.

Rydell Adventure 3

Next I used the Batik Stencil, with Pomegranate paint for contrast. I applied random bits of it in the “empty” spaces…

Rydell Adventure 4

I kept up the same process, adding the stencils from the following foam stamp sets: Bird (in pink), Elephant (in yellow) and then Urban Scribble (in orange), adding doodling here and there along the way…

Rydell Adventure 5

Rydell Adventure 6

At this point, I printed out a 5 x 7” photo from our wedding, and gently set it where I thought I wanted it to go, outlining with a Stabilo all pencil.

Rydell Adventure 7

I removed the photo (so as to not get it dirty) and activated the water-soluble pencil with matte medium to make a nice black frame for contrast. After that I realized the page was needing some drippage! Over to the spray station it went, and high flow paint was added along the top edge, spraying with water to increase the dripping effect.

Rydell Adventure 8

Looking at the page without the photo gave me an idea – that frame would be a perfect place to put the quote I had in mind! Busting out the stabilo pencil again, I created the journaling lines, and then used a paint pen to create the background and lettering. I stepped back and took a look… I felt like it was complete! No photo needed! Here’s how the final page turned out…

Rydell Adventure 9

—————————————————————————————————

Michelle’s art journal page was an adventure in creation and I love the outcome with all those layers and that quote.

She used the supplies listed below (some are affiliate links):

SuppliesCJS


Maybe you will even play along with us -I would love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

See you next Tuesday for another project from the Creative Squad with a brand new theme for September!

Comments (4)

  • Marit

    |

    That photo is so cute but I too love the page with the quote… just ‘knowing’ that it represents that particular photo makes it complete. Great page Michelle!

    Reply

  • Joi @RR

    |

    Well, Michelle – I just have to say that I adored your page before you added the drippings. However… I like the end result because it is unique and it makes you happy too! Love how you added the sentiment. FUN and FUNKY!!! j.

    Reply

  • Sue Clarke

    |

    Lovely page Michelle.
    Thanks for sharing your techniques.

    Reply

  • Julie Tucker

    |

    This is gorgeous! LOVING the colors and that quote!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

Leave a comment