Blog: Buenos Aires

Pre-Pandemic Letters – Art Journal

I love old letters. When I find them at a flea market I pick them up and use them for collage or background purposes later. It is always a spark in the moment when I pick them up and find a word or sentence jumping out to me. I had used some other parts of this letter before but had not read the whole letter and when I was cleaning up my workspace this jumped out to me: “Spending an evening with you. An evening did I say. I should have said every evening.” And while Oscar was really romantic my first giggle thought was “well that was a pre-pandemic letter”.

I am almost tempted to find more sentences in old letters and make a series hahaha- we shall see if I find more.

For my art journal page I sprayed with MTN acrylic spray paint over the Buenos Aires Stencil, then layered the Santiago stencil on top and added some acrylic paint over it here and there.

I also tested a new liner brush I recently purchased (Princeton Aspen Acrylic brush part of a set) and used Holbein black acrylic ink on deli paper for the sketch.

I cut the sketch out and pasted it along with the letter part with Liquitex Matte Medium.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

Comments (1)

  • Rebeccab


    That old handwriting is gorgeous.


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Order in the Chaos – Art Journal

“We adore chaos because we love to produce order.” – M.C.Escher

This is another spread using a piece of artwork that was part of the sold out Artist Almanac calendar (the 2023 version is in the works so sign up for my newsletter here for first news about that when the time comes). And although the 2022 calendar is long gone, the original painting from the page I used in this art journal spread (inspired by a trip to Buenos Aires) is still available HERE.

I picked the colors that I used in the original painting – well similar colors – and blocked in the background.

Then using my brush to make blocky marks, I began mixing colors and started discovering some pretty nice color variations and marks. It is a crazy vibrant page!

Just like in the painting, I used some charcoal to make marks and then brushed matte medium on top to seal the charcoal. Otherwise charcoal would be a bit of a problem to use in an art journal that will be closed.

The quote seemed kind of fitting for me as I was thinking about that particular neighborhood in Buenos Aires – La Boca – it seems chaotic but there is order in the chaos.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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Never Too Late – Art Journal

“It’s never too late to listen and learn!” – such a great thing to keep in mind as we strive for better days ahead.

It felt good to just play with stamps and stencils in my art journal while listening to podcasts. Here I used my Buenos Aires stencil and my Mini Motifs and Fanfare rubber stamps. I worked with spray paint and Moonlight Duo ink pads to build us some yummy layers.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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Stencilbop Challenge Prompts 3-4

Here is an overview of Prompts 3-4:

August 3 – Line 

I love using my stencils with markers and create different variations of lines- it is a total zen approach – better than a coloring book in my opinion ;)

Here I used my Santiago Stencil and some Derwent Graphik Liners and just lined up some colors  – pun intended ;)

Easy peasy but don’t be fooled …this takes a while.

August 4 – Stained Glass

Watercolor might not be the first medium to use with stencils that comes to mind but I do love the stained glass effect.

For this journal spread I added some watercolor very loosely through the Downtown and through my Buenos Aires Stencil – I didn’t care too much about crisp lines but always started spreading the paint out from the middle of the opening towards the edges of the stencil.

Later I defined the stencil pattern by using a thin black micron pen. 

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

Follow along on the prompt list and on my insta feed!

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Food for Thought – Jennifer Gallagher

Hello everyone – time for a post from my Creative Squad! Today we have Jennifer Gallagher and her upcycled candy box turned recipe box and cards using my Fantastic Large stamps and my Buenos Aires stencil. This month’s theme is Food for Thought – Let’s take a lighthearted look at food! While the culinary world has become an art and a science in terms of preparation and presentation, sometimes it is the simplest foods that bring us the most joy. Simple fare or elaborate family traditions, we all have our favorite foods. What is yours?

This month we are discussing food for thought. Well, I am a southern girl. We take our food and our traditions very seriously. So when I received this month’s prompt, I instantly thought of family dinners, holiday celebrations, and those recipes that get handed down from person to person. This month, I am sharing with you a fun way to recycle a candy box into a recipe box. Let’s get started.

I had been holding on to a candy box left from Valentine’s Day for a while now. I knew I could turn it into something fabulous. I started by applying a coat of white gesso to the box. (It ended up needing two coats.) 

While the gesso dried, I created a series of papers to use for collage. Using just basic computer copy paper, I stenciled acrylic paint through Nat’s Buenos Aires stencil with a mini blending tool.

Next, I cut some shapes out of the stenciled paper. This is one of my favorite ways to push my stencils and stamps to get more out of them. 

Using matte medium and a small brush, I glued down the cut out shapes in a pattern that was pleasing to me. I followed this pattern around the entire side of the box.

I painted the top of the box green. Once it was about half way dry, I dabbed the paint with a baby wipe to give the top texture and a distressed look. Then I dabbed a little dark grey acrylic paint along the edges of the top of the box.

I cut out three more shapes from the painted paper and glued them to the top of the box. I added doodles around the designs with a black posca pen. I liked it so much I did the same around the sides.

Now we need recipe cards. I started by stamping the Solid Fan in one color onto copy paper and then stamping another color in the Fantastic Large designs over that. I used archival inks for this process. I cut each one out, modified it slightly with scissors, and glued it to my blank 4×6 inch recipe card. I added a little doodling with a black pen and wrote in my recipes.

Saving our traditions to pass down to others is very important. I have so many cherished recipes that not only help me keep those traditions alive, but remind me of people that have passed and good times that are now memories. I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial. Remember, play along with us and share your creations!

Thank you Jennifer! I love how you cut up the stencil design to pull out some cool shapes. You can find all of my Rubber Stamps and my Stencils in my online shop. In addition to a candy box, here are some of the other supplies Jennifer used:

If you are working on something yourself that you’d like to share, please do!  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“.

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The Stencilfied Journal – Prompt 15

My wonderful friend Tina Walker is at it again – she invited several people to join her Stencilfied Prompts. The prompts are music related and each week she is posting a song. You can be inspired by the lyrics, the video, the album cover or anything related and the only restriction is that you have to use StencilGirl Product Stencils. Here is my take on Prompt 15

This week’s prompt was Say Something by A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera. I’ve definitely heard this song before but it’s not my typical style of music. BUT… that doesn’t mean it can’t be a jumping off point for creating :)

I had fun sketching the figure with pencil and Inktense blocks by Derwent – I love the transparency I created with a wet brush afterwards.

Let’s not forget about the background – I used my Buenos Aires stencil with spray paints and then added a stamp from my Small Hex set and a stamp from the Fan-fare set. I’m super happy with how they work with the stencil.

Here are the supplies I used:

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Doin’ My Thing – Maura Hibbitts


Welcome to a post from my Creative Squad! Here we have a project from Maura Hibbitts, who is using my Buenos Aires Tile foam stamp, Small Circle Jumble rubber stamps, and my Actually I Can rubber stamps to create a couple of stunning bookmarks. Maura was inspired by our theme this month: Doin’ My Thing – We all have a unique artistic style and way of working with supplies. This is the time to rock it! Be yourself. Do your thing.

One of my favorite things to do throughout my life has been to read. I remember riding my bicycle into the village to visit the library as a kid, and filling my basket up with books to bring home. I always try to read every day, often early in the morning with a cup of coffee, and late at night before I go to sleep. So, I thought making some bookmarks would represent something I love to do.

I pulled out my small 6×6 gelli plate and squirted on some Titanium White, Pyrrole Red and DIarylide Yellow, then blended it somewhat with my brayer. I stamped into the plate with the Buenos Aires stamp to pick up the paint and transferred it to the black paper, and repeated the design to cover the paper.

I thought Emperor’s Gold would be a good choice for my design, and stamped the small Park Boulevard stamp onto the plate, and then stamped it where the designs came together.

When I looked at my black, red and gold design, it reminded me of some of the traditional colors in Eastern art and fabrics. I decided to add the Maiko image and stamped her in gold onto black paper, and sped up the drying time with the heat tool. Note: be sure to clean the stamp right away when using paint.

I wanted to add a bit more red to my background design, and added in some marks with the red paint and the eraser on a pencil. I dried this with the heat tool, then cut the paper into strips for the bookmarks.

I decided to add in a few highlights to Maiko’s outfit and stamped the fan onto gold paper with black ink, and the belt onto the red paper I was using. After I cut out the belt and set it in place, I decided it needed to be outlined in gold, so I used the gold pen to do this.

I layered the cut strips onto the red card stock after I edged them with the black ink. Then, I added Maiko. Next, I used a small oblong punch at the top, and finally tied on some red or gold sari ribbon along with some special red and yellow thread I purchased at a Hindu temple in India.

I love doing my own thing, and hope I can always find time each day to do a little reading. A special bookmark to hold your place makes reading extra fun.

Thank you Maura! I just love how that Maiko stamp looks in gold! You can find all of my foam stamps and rubber stamps in my online store . Here are some of the other supplies that 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“.

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Never Stop Dreaming – Jennifer Gallagher


Today we have a post from Jennifer Gallagher from my Creative Squad. She is sharing some really nifty paper doll inspired cards that use my new Millie and Actually I Can stamps. This month’s theme is:  Never Stop Dreaming – This month we’re sending a message of confidence and empowerment to all those in the world (near and far and maybe even you!) who have been told “You can’t”, “That’s not possible”, or “Not you”. Actually we can and we will! And we’ll never stop dreaming either :)

This month we are creating with positive affirmations and the idea of female empowerment in mind. While pondering a fun way to use Nat’s new Actually, I Can stamp set, I was reminded of all of the fun I had as a child playing with paper dolls. I would spend hours as a child daydreaming of parties with ladies wearing fancy clothes and shoes while changing the outfits on my paper ladies. This stamp set takes me right back to those days. I was inspired to create an encouragement card that plays on the idea of a paper doll.

I began by stamping the Millie stamp in the center of a 4 x 5.5 inch ivory card base with black archival ink.

Next, I brayered out a mixture of Dina Wakley Media Acrylic paint in cheddar and magenta onto my 5×7 gel plate. After placing Nat’s Buenos Aires stencil down onto the paint, I pressed my stamped card face on top of the stencil and pressed evenly across the surface.

I pulled up the stencil to find what is referred to as the “ghost print”. I laid a second card base down to pull that leftover paint off the plate.

Once the gelli print is dry, I colored in the image starting with the skin using a Posca Pen in light orange. Her hair, dress, and shoes were also colored in with various posca pen colors. You can really have a lot of fun with this step adding stripes, polka dots, etc. I finished off the front with the “Actually, I can” stamp in the upper left hand corner and a stamp from Nat’s Small Circle Jumble stamp set in the lower right corner.

I took a few extra card bases and cut them in half. Then I stamped the Millie image on the front of each one. Next, I fussy cut around the edges of her dress and colored them in with my Posca paint pens to create a few changes of clothes for Millie. Once dry, I placed scor-tape on the back of the dresses and added them to the insides of my two cards.

I took a Sakura Gelli Roll pen in black and drew a clothes hanger for Millie’s dress. Later, when I send it I will write in an inspirational quote for the recipient beside of her new fancy party dress.

I hope you have enjoyed my paper doll inspired cards. Be sure to check back each Tuesday to see more from Nat’s Creative Squad.

Thank you Jennifer! These are so fun and I know who ever receives them will love playing with Millie’s wardrobe :) You can find my new Millie and Actually I Can stamps, along with all my products, in my online shop. Jennifer also used some of the following supplies:

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“.

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All Shapes and Sizes – Tania Ahmed


Welcome to a post from my wonderful Creative Squad! This week we have Tania Ahmed and her super cool tote bag project using my Buenos Aires and Broadway ArtFoamies stamps. I love using these foam stamps on fabric and Tania shares a video with us that shows just how easy it can be to get a great looking result. Tania was inspired by the new theme this month: All Shapes and Sizes – Circles and squares, big and small, let’s mix it up and play with different shapes and sizes this month. Just because things are different doesn’t mean they can’t look great together!

I have had a love for block prints all my life and have grown up wearing colourful prints with handmade patterns. Nat’s Art Foamies are perfect for creating backgrounds and patterns and are so very easy to line up.

The challenge this month was “All Shapes and Sizes” and I was inspired to create a repeating pattern on a canvas bag that I had been saving for a while.

I made my own fabric paints using some fabric medium that creates paint that is the perfect texture for stamping on to cloth. Plus it makes it more durable.

Watch the video below to see how I decorated the canvas bag:

Thank you Tania! There are so many ideas for this one – spiffing up those shopping totes, maybe a new summer beach bag, or even a tote for summer library books. Here are some of the supplies that Tania 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“.

Comments (2)

  • Tracy Evans


    Fantastic project , colours and step by step video. Thank you. Tracy x


  • maura


    Awesome bag, Tania! Love the colors you used, and how you left part of the bag natural. Maura


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