Tag Archives: Online Card Classes





I had an idea for a card, and I ended up making three iterations of it, to see which was the most freaky and surreal:


ATC Eyes


This weird little eye stamp is from an NBUS Inkadinkado Stamping Gear set called “Doodle Fun.”  I had the idea to stamp it several times, and just color one in.  I got this technique from one of the Online Card Classes.  You can see the first card I made with this technique here (my old blog).

I started with the card on the top left: I was going to color the whole thing in, but I started with the iris, and thought just having that colored, looked striking.  You can’t really tell in the picture, but I also covered it with Glossy Accents to give it shine.

I then tried coloring in the whole eye, the card on the top right.  Then, coloring in all of the irises, and leaving the rest uncolored.  I wasn’t sure which would be best.  I don’t have much formal art training — one class in high school — so I don’t know much about composition, color theory, or any of that.  I work intuitively, I just go with what feels right.  I move elements around on a page, change colors, until I get that feeling of balance and completion.  I don’t always get it right. But often I do, I think.

In the end, I think I like the first one best — that that one pop of color, a sliver of a higher reality, peeking through into our drab and monochromatic plane.

But I will keep them all. I will catalog them as a series, and call it “Eye-llumination.”  I know it’s stupid, but I do have a fondness for lame puns as titles.

Which one do you like best?




SYS2 – Graphic Stamps


The next lesson in SYS2 is on graphic stamps.  Here is my attempt at Debby Hughes’s card:




This stamp is from the Altenew set Socatoah.    The ink is an Inkadinkado pigment ink stack that I have had for a while. Shades of blue, like this:




I always wanted to do a project where I used all these ink colors together, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity.  In retrospect, I would only use one of the two lightest shades; they’re so close as to make no nevermind between them. Obviously I didn’t use the white ink either.

I added a birthday sentiment — we can all use more birthday cards. It’s from Fresh Squeezed Stamps — it’s the set that has the “You Color my World” sentiment, I found it again.

The little glossy triangles are from Basic Grey. They’re like enamel dots, but — not dots. Enamel shapes, I guess.  That I had them, and in that color, is just one of those happy accidents.

The stamps and the enamel dots — er, shapes — are NBUS.  Happy that this class is helping me dig into my stash.


SYS – Outline Stamps


This is my attempt at Debby Hughes’s stamping and coloring on wood project, and it is not great:




The wood here is birch veneer, and it is very porous — even the VersaFine with which I stamped the image bled out.  Why did I stamp and emboss in black instead of white? I dunno, just habit I guess.  The birch is darker than the balsa wood Debby used, so I used brighter colors. Not sure that was a good call.  I used my cheapest alcohol markers, the American Crafts Chromatix.  (Which are not good markers, I do not recommend them.)  You can see where the purple bled out really badly.

The sentiment says “Simple joys,” and it is a Tiny Words Dazzle peel-off sticker.  It was silver, but I colored it black with a Sharpie.  Damn, maybe I should have left it silver!

The little buds or berries on the stem are filled with Key Lime Liquid Pearls.  Because Liquid Pearls is good at that, and I have so much of it, I need to use it.

The birch veneer and the Liquid Pearls are NBUS.

I was planning to leave this as an Artist Trading Card, but it occurs to me just now, that if I stick it on a card with some busy patterned papers, its deficiencies might not be so evident.  I don’t know, I have to think about it.

SYS Background Image 2



One of the techniques in Stretch Your Stamps 2 is using Perfect Pearls on a “Reverse” background stamp — one that has a lot of solid area.  Turns out I don’t have many stamps like that , but I did find this one that has some solid area, in a way —




This background stamp is called “Gradation,” from Impression Obsession.  I love those Cover-a-Card stamps — they really do cover a card! 🙂   As you can see the dots go from more thickly clustered at the bottom to more spread out at the top.

I had to completely re-do this card from the get-go, because I had screwed up the measurements the first time, and the stamped and mounted panel wouldn’t fit on the card base!  I couldn’t figure out any way to cut it down and use it.  But it’s OK, because I think the stamping and the Perfect Pearling came out better this time.  Also I didn’t handle it as much, and I sprayed the Pearls with a fixative, so when I was done it wasn’t as smudgy as the first.

The Perfect Pearls colors I used are Perfect Gold, Perfect Copper, and Heirloom Gold.  The sentiment is a Dazzles peel-off sticker. It was originally silver but I colored it gold with Staz-On metallic gold ink.  I messed up the placement of the sticker a little, but I ended up liking the whimsical nature of it.

That little coin doo-dad is just a piece of swag from an ephemera pack from SEI, from their Mirelle line.  Fixed on with Glossy Accents.  The little gold dots are Hero Arts Metallic Decor.

Except for the black and copper foil cardstock and the Perfect Pearls, everything else on this card is NBUS.  Darnell would be proud of me!

I’m pretty pleased with this one.  I think it would make a good birthday card for a man who doesn’t like too much of a fuss on his birthday.

Stretch Your Stamps 2 — Background Images



The first kind of stamp we were working with in the Stretch Your Stamps class was background stamps.  Fun!  I think there’s two kinds of stamps a cardmaker can never have enough of — background stamps and sentiment stamps.

This card is uses a version of Tasnim Ahmed’s technique of fussy-cutting and using portions of larger background stamps.




I cut out and layered progressively smaller sections of this background stamp.  I didn’t raise them up on dimensional adhesive — this stamp is so elaborate, I thought it would be too much.  I added a little dot of Avocado Green Liquid Pearls to the center of the medallion, to finish it, and bring the color of the outer portion into the center.   I always add a gem or pearl or glitter glue, or something, to the center of a medallion to center and ground it.

Those of you have been following the blog for a while may recognize this stamp as the Basic Grey Spice Market stamp I bought when I won a gift certificate on the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge blog. (I did a haul video, heh.)  First time I used it.  Looking at this card, I think this stamp is so elaborate, I could just stamp it all by itself on some different colored cards, and it would make a nice set of all-occasion note cards for a gift.

The paper is from a DCWV 6×6 pad called “Weathered Aspect.”  There is a nice tone-on-tone distressed quality to the papers that it turns out you can’t quite see under this elaborate stamp, but I still like the soft colors.

Oh, I stamped it with VersaFine Onyx Black, to get good coverage and fine detail.

CASEing and cheating



LOL, this is my first card for the new Online Card Class, Stretch Your Stamps 2, and it is pretty much a total cheat.  Only the sentiment is a stamp!




The stamped piece Kristina Werner made for her first cards, an intricately colored background stamp, reminded me strongly of a sheet of patterned paper I had in my stash. So I decided to just use that paper!    Because it fit, and I wanted to contribute something, but it’s late, and I don’t have the stamina tonight for a session of intricate stamping and coloring.

This card is similar to Kristina’s second card, which had a wide strip of the stamped and colored sheet, and a black die-cut sentiment.  I don’t have any die-cut sentiments (yet), so I used a strong sentiment stamp instead.

The patterned paper is from Basic Grey, and the stamp is Technique Tuesday.  Both are NBUS.  The blog is “Crash Your Stash,” right?  🙂

I am working the late shift all this week at work, so I may not have a chance to do much for the class until the weekend. But I wanted to do something.

Watercolors: Embossed Resist 2


Another less than successful attempt at watercolor resist.



Here I black heat-embossed a background stamp onto the watercolor paper, and painted it in a mix of green, orange and brown shades.  I was going for a more masculine presentation.

I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of trouble with black heat-embossing.  If you heat an embossed image too much, the embossing powder overheats and sinks into the paper, leaving a flat, blurry line instead of a raised, shiny one.  This seems to happen double-fast with black powder — probably because it is black and thus absorbs energy more and faster than other colors.  For me, it happens more often than not, and it happened here too — half the image is over-embossed and flat.  It is so fractured an image, it was hard to tell what was embossed and what wasn’t while heating it. (The stamp is an Impression Obsession Cover-a-Card background stamp called Distress.)

Given that half the embossing is overdone and sunk into the paper, it didn’t pool the watercolors very much.  Well, I mounted it on a kraft card, added a sentiment and called it a day. I sponged the edges of the panel with Tea Dye Distress ink, because I felt it needed something to separate it from the kraft, but didn’t want to go to the trouble of cutting another panel to mount it on.

I guess it looks OK. Like Jennifer McGuire often says, you may not like a certain card because it fell short of what you were envisioning.  But the person to whom you give it only knows that you hand-made a card for them, and they are perfectly happy with it. I’ve found that to be true.

UPDATE: I am entering this card into the Craft Hoarders Challenge, as the challenge is to use metal or glass. The sentiment on this card is metal, and it is really the focal point of the card, so it seems appropriate.  I was just checking up on everyone in my blogroll, and found that challenge — so why not?