Blog: Fanfare

Hope – Art Journal

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –

-Emily Dickinson

I painted the background with acrylic paint and a big flat brush. Then I layered the Art Deco Wallpaper stencil on top and sprayed with MTN Acrylic spray paints – using lime green, brown and white colors.

I added some marks with a thin brush and sepia acrylic ink and then used one of my Fan-fare stamps and brown Versafine ink to add some more marks. I layered the stamp up without going for a full image each time and I really like how it looks. I’m definitely using this stamp again for mark making.

It was simple to put together but I like it – simple is ok – not every page has to take ages 🙂

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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Produce Joy – Art Journal

I used four different colors of acrylic spray paint to layer up over the Art Nouveau Wallpaper stencil. I flipped the stencil right over to the adjacent page – more about that page later – so that I could get a nice print of the surface as well.

I used some Versafine in black and grey to stamp with one of the Mini Motif rubber stamps and one of the Fan-fare stamps into the solid fan areas.

For my journaling I used the tissue like stripes with a thin Posca pen.

This was a very fast but fun page. I love spray paints – they have such an instant effect and if you are using the low odor ones with a mask and in a well ventilated room, you can create forever using your stencils and layering them up, or mixing them as I did with stamps. Just as Walt Whitman says “Do Anything, but let it produce joy.“

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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Creative Squad: My Kindred Spirit – Maura Hibbitts

Hello from my Creative Squad! Today we have a fascinating post from Maura Hibbitts using my Floral Tile Large and Fan-Fare rubber stamp sets and our new theme: My Kindred Spirit – Animals are often symbols of qualities that we humans identify with, so let’s take some inspiration from them this month. Do you have an animal whose characteristics you identify with? Maybe it changes depending on your mood or what life throws at you. Who is your Kindred Spirit in the animal kingdom today?

My kindred spirit animal is a bear. I’ve known this for many years. How do I know this? Well, the bears told me…in a sense. I’ve had a number of encounters with both black and grizzly bears in my life, up close and personal, and from a distance. One of the most memorable meetings took place about 3 in the morning as I headed to the outhouse (we were tent camping in the Beartooth Mountains in Wyoming). Well, there was a grizzly bear about 20 feet away from me at a picnic table – that stopped me in my tracks. I think we were both surprised, and thankfully, it turned and walked off. Luckily all worked out in my favor. I figure they keep meeting me to tell me they are my kindred spirit animal. They send me messages in the dreams I have of them. Somehow, they have worked their way into my psyche.

I love to work in an art journal to tell stories with my art, so that is where I headed to begin this project.

Begin by brushing on some luminous paints – lemon, yellow and orange (or neon) leaving open areas. Take some white gesso and add a bit of water to create a whitewash. Apply this in some areas. Once dry, brush on luminous opera in a random fashion.

Apply some luminous Violet paint to the gel plate and use a brayer to smooth out. Stamp into this with the Versailles Positive stamp from Nat’s Floral Tile Large set and “ink” on the pages in a grid fashion. Note – be sure to clean the stamp right away so the paint doesn’t dry on it. (I use a baby wipe to do this.) Then, mix white gesso with the luminous violet on the gel plate, brayer smooth, and stamp with the Versailles Negative in the open spaces on the page.

Stamp across the center of the pages with the Hamilton Negative stamp and Cadette ink color (blue).

Next, use the Fan-Fare rubber stamp set and Pearfection ink (green) to randomly add some images to the pages.

Sketch out an image of a mama bear and a baby bear, then transfer these to the art journal by tracing around the shapes with a graphite pencil.

Now, mix a “whitewash” with black gesso and water. Paint this everywhere on the pages, except inside your images. Let partially dry, then wipe back some areas of the background with a baby wipe.

Use the Fan Fare stamps and luminous yellow paint to add a few “stars” to the dark background.

Outline the bear images with a black Posca paint pen. Draw swirls inside their bodies. Write across the bottom of the pages with a teal Posca pen (I walk with the spirit of the bear each day), and sketch a bear paw print.

I chose to represent my animal with both the mother and cubs. I drew the cubs to represent my two sons, and like the mama bear, I will do anything to protect them when needed. Just like the bears, my family is happiest in the natural world. And yes, in winter I feel like hibernating too, lol.

Do you have a kindred spirit animal? What’s the story behind yours? Have you had real life encounters or found them in dreams? I am grateful the bear chose me. Maura

Thank you Maura – loved hearing about your connection with bears and the resulting spread is both powerful and tender… just like that mama bear :)

Give it a try: you can find all my Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and in addition to gelli printed papers from her stash, here are some of the supplies Maura used:

Looking for more projects? Follow the Creative Squad on Instagram here.

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Come Visit – Art Journal

“Come Visit” – and then some journaling reminiscing about how little I knew a while ago how much I love to say those words. I miss my friends in Germany and further away. Two little words – so much weight.

The “come visit” were a leftover from an old letter that I had used as collage material and the two words were in different sentences on top of each other and it was like a sign (wwahhhahaa – insert glorious music and sunshine here ;) ).

The background was stamped with my Mini Motifs and Fan-fare rubber stamps. Then I added a piece of deli paper on which I had “cleaned” a stencil that had spray-paint on it from an earlier page, creating a nice textured print of the Versailles stencil. I adhered it over the background with liquid matte medium and then sketched the lady on top.

I actually liked her better in pencil but was afraid it might not be visible enough so I added some color with acrylic paints. I am not too happy with that, as I did not think about how the acrylic paint would be taken by the glossy side of the deli paper. Oh well, it is what it is and a good reminder to think ahead sometimes. Or… just go with it… I can revisit this another time ;)

Here are the supplies I used:

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Pattern Monday 20 – Ledger Video

Sometimes Mondays just feel like a Monday and that is definitely how I’m feelin’ after this Pattern Monday in my big vintage ledger.

I was using my Fan-Fare rubber stamp set, one of my favorite go-to sets, but I am the first to admit that this is one of the worst patterns ever. As you might see in the video I dropped the ink pad right at the beginning and then there are so many mistakes… I wasn’t going to give up but it is also zero zen LOL. And that is why you get a super sped up version of this one. Let’s get this Monday over with.

Here is another look:

Here are the supplies I used:

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Is It Over Yet – Art Journal

Is it over yet? Hanging on a thread…  I created this art journal page at the end of December.

I began with a background that was from cleaning off different colors. I used black spray paint over my Chicago stencil first, then layered up my Santiago stencil and sprayed with white. My Mini Motifs rubber stamps fit perfectly in the stencil design (smile!).

And I added one last detail to my pattern with one of my Fan-Fare rubber stamps.

I added a bit of coordinating collage paper and my journaling with a white Signo pen. Hang in there everyone!

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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Masked – Art Journal

It’s Halloween… Are you wearing your mask? Not just your spooky costume mask, but also that PPE? I hope so – as we know it is one of the most important things we can all do to help stop the spread of the virus. It’s been on my mind a lot lately, so I took it to my art journal.

I started my background with some new soft pastels that I have been playing with lately (link below for those), mixed with fluid matte medium. Then I used my Versailles stencil with blue water based spray paint. To highlight the design more, I added a Posca marker outline and my Fan-fare rubber stamps. 

I sketched the skeleton lady with acrylic ink on deli paper and also added in my You are my No. 1 Priority stamp from the #keepyouposted set because that is the whole point right? I am wearing my mask to help protect everyone around me :)

I hope you have a happy, safe Halloween.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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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“.

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Keep Calm – Art Journal

Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands! – I guess I was inspired by the new normal, which has always been good advice.

For this one I want to share with you a Shapebuilder tip – how to use several of my rubber stamps to build cool patterns and shapes.

To make the pattern here I combined the following stamps: the Hex Set Small, Solid Fan Small, and two stamps from the Fan-Fare set. It is reminiscent of a peacock or art deco fan. I could imagine mixing up the colors for all different versions. Fun to play with the possibilities.

For my background I used the stamps and Moonlight duo ink pads to create the shape, also Arcylic Gouache and acrlyic paint. For my quote I used a Posca super fine black marker and a White signo pen.

I sketched the figure in ink. She looks calm… hoping to channel that vibe :)

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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