Thursday, January 30, 2014

CAS-ual Fridays- over the edge

Happy Friday everyone!
This week CAS-ual Fridays challenge is about using elements over the edge or base of your card. I decided to use my alphabet dies and came up with a thank you card . sentiment on the painted card itself...shocked? yeah me too..still recovering from it!lol!

The person who is getting this card invited us for tea and during our time there, she showed me her beautiful yellow teapot. I thought of painting her one as a keepsake and sent her this thank you note. Stamping a sentiment on the card would have taken the attention away from the focal point. But it was tough..... for me a card starts with a sentiment!

This week CAS-ual Fridays stamps is sponsoring the prize, so don't forget to play along!

a closer look....

Stamp by Clearly Besotted-my cup of tea

Thanks so much for stopping by today.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Hand Lettering- Yasutomo Niji

 Hand written letters seem to be such a lost form of communication these days. Rarely do I receive a handwritten note!

My handwriting is not something that would pass the calligrapher's test but it's pretty decent, if I may say so myself. It was not always like that, in fact way back in school, my writing was often in the limelight ..for all the wrong reasons ..of course!

We used to have Cursive writing books and an entire class would be devoted to writing practice and mistakes were just not permitted in the workbook, one mistake and we had re- write the whole sentence 10 ..10 mistakes....well you know the math!

 So with all that practice, my handwriting turned out ok by middle school, but I feel it started to look even better once we started using fountain pens. But I still need to practice and better my hand and hopefully, someday be good enough to do Calligraphy !

For now I fill sketchbooks!

Today I thought of sharing my sketchbook with you all, it's my lettering journal . I try to practice everyday and jot down a quote that catches my eye!

For more ..stop by the Niji Blog today!

Disclaimer: The quotes in this post are not my own  and  have been gathered from around the web and books, I do not know the origin or source of the quotes to give them due credit . If anyone knows, do leave me a comment below and I will add the due credits.

Thanks for stopping by!


Saturday, January 25, 2014

Papertrey Ink January Blog Hop

 This is my second post for today, for my Crafter's Companion post click here

Roses anyone?

As promised am back with more flowers and this time I have some pretty pink roses for you! It's Papertrey Ink's January Blog Hop and today it's all about pinks, hearts, chocolates and Valentines!

The challenge this month is to create a card  using just the color pink with the option to use neutrals (such as white, cream, gray, black or kraft).I love such challenges !

Using a limited color palette can be so liberating at thinking about colors nor's all done for you! I chose brown (Kraft) as my neutral with pink and  just a tad of grey for the darks.

 The floral stamp is by PTI - The Sweet life and the sentiment -PTI

The roses were stamped using watercolors.

 The details..

 Thanks so much for stopping by today to hop now!


Love Blooms !

I simply can't wait for Spring!

I am trying my best to stay positive and have been assuring myself that this winter shall pass and soon! It's been over 7 years since we moved from warm and sunny Georgia to the super cold Illinois and this year has been, by far, the coldest of them all. As much as I love cold and prefer cooler temps .(not much of a summer girl! )... this is way above my limits too! It's been ' painfully' cold, if you know what I mean..simple tasks like setting the trash out and mail pickup without layering oneself has become really dangerous and I am saying that from experience!

But spring has already arrived on my blog, I have been sketching flowers and painting bright greens and pinks and have been planning all kinds of pretty flowers for our garden this year! In fact I have another post coming up later today with some pink roses.

For now I have Magnolias for you! Last year I saw some beautiful pink/purple magnolias at a friend's place. I thought Magnolias were always white and was pleasantly surprised!

I have used Crafter's Companion stamps and the flowers have been  colored using Spectrum Noir markers. The background is done using watercolors.

the detail...

If you love coloring then do stop by the CC Facebook page where you can find tons more inspiration by the rest of the DT.

A closer look....

Crafter's Companion Stamps- Sheena Florals, Crisalis Classics-Wedding Day-Sentiment
Spectrum Noir- PP1, PP4 PP5,PP6, Blender

Thanks so much for stopping by today ..will be back soon with another floral card!


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Nuts About You !

I am so glad you'll enjoyed my previous post, I have another stepped out card  for you today.......

 I have used Clearly Besotted  'nuts for you' set and here is how I approached this card...

 Since the pictures are pretty self explanatory, I will not bore you with the details, but if you have any questions, please leave me a comment!

 If you observe closely, the pics above show the squirrel way darker than the below pics and the final card, that's because after I sketched in the background, I felt the squirrel was a bit dark and 'jumping off the page' relation to the I went over the entire image part by part with a wet brush and lifted off some color. I think it looks much better now!

A close up.......

 I hope you like it !

Sharing with Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge-Let's have a laugh
and Clearly Besotted challenge-Love

.......and now to announce the Niji Splash Ink giveaway winner......


I would love to win this. I saw them at a store and haven't made up my mind to buy them yet. If I won, then I can use them immediately. I love your example. I am still trying to master your watercoloring technique.

Please email me with your address and I shall forward it to Niji . Thanks everyone who left a comment on that post!

Thanks for stopping by today.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Life Is Beautiful !

After repeated requests for a tutorial on how I go about  watercoloring, I have finally remembered to take pictures as I work ! I assure you a video tutorial is definitely in the future of this blog, until then I will try to share some stepped out pics to help you get an idea of how I work on a typical card.

The other day I received a mail appreciating my work and also asking why I call these small pieces of art as cards and not a painting! The reason I don't term my work as paintings is because I use stamps and that makes my work not original enough  to be termed as a I believe!

  Stamps- Image- Crafter's Companion, sentiment by Papertrey Ink

Here is how I typically work....I am no trained artist, just sharing what I have learned through trial and error...and I am still a student !

I like to choose a stamp which has ample scope for coloring. Here I have used  a Crafter's Companion   stamp . It's by  Sheena and the collection has some  wonderful line drawings which are a colorist's dream!

Stamp the image and sketch the scene around it very lightly with a pencil.
Contrary to the common belief that one should use waterproof inks,I almost always use waterbased inks, I prefer the stamped image to not have a strong outline and blend into the rest of the scene and that can only be achieved when one uses waterbased inks. I sometimes stamp using watercolor itself.

 Color...the fun begins !
Remember with watercolor , your highlights are the white of the paper, so save them if you need them! Either go around them or use masking fluid to protect the whites

Keep adjusting values...

 Dampen the sky area with a wet brush and drop in the blue and blend while wet to avoid hard edges

Watercolor dries lighter ....

 Add the darks and look for visual balance. you want your eyes to go directly to the focal point this case the bicycle. It always helps to keep the edges a shade darker the center, this prevents the eye from jumping all over the painting.

I was truly overwhelmed by the number of tutorial requests. I almost felt guilty for not sharing more and sooner, but the single most reason being that I like to work at night and taking pictures in such low light, defeats the purpose of a tutorial!

Hope this helps, leave me a comment if you have any questions!

Thanks so much for liking my work and stopping by today. For more inspiration check out Crafter's Companion FB page!


Friday, January 17, 2014

CAS-ual Fridays- Color block

 stamps- CFS- brickworks

Happy Friday everyone and welcome back to a brand new CAS-ual Fridays challenge!

Every time I get a new set of colors, I make a little color chart, in fact I include every little detail of where, when and how it came into my hands and also how much I paid for it..all the little titbits which make my sketch book even more interesting to look at as the years go by !

 For my birthday last year, as  I mentioned in this post, I received a set of watercolor crayons and for  the color chart , I thought of using the stamp by CAS-ual Fridays to make the chart look more streamlined and of course..... hubs did make my day !

This week's CAS-ual Fridays challenge is about color blocking and we have the wonderful CFS sponsoring this week!

..a closer look......

Don't forget to stop by CFC blog for more inspiration! Thanks for coming by today!


Monday, January 13, 2014

Yasutomo Niji- A Splash Ink giveaway

 Blown Ink!
...sounds interesting doesn't it?

I guess we have all tried this technique long before it was even called a technique! Haven't we all blown watercolors through a straw as kids. I used to do it all the time and really enjoyed coming up with new forms and shapes. Lately it's becoming extremely popular in abstract art . Sometime back I had tried this with watercolors and created a is a link. Today, I thought of trying this with Splash Inks.

I have a stepped out tutorial over at the Niji blog today..chek it out!

Also, I am having a giveaway and the prize is a set of Splash Inks!
..these acrylic inks come in a set of 4 and can be mixed to create a huge range of colors. Here is a link if you would like to know more about them.

To be entered to win...

Like our Yasutomo and Niji  Splash Ink FB page,

Leave a comment on my blog,

Follow my blog ( optional! )

  You have until Jan 17th  to leave a comment and  one lucky winner will be announced on January 20th 2014 !
Good Luck!

Thanks so much for stopping by today!


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Just Be !

I hope you'll are enjoying your weekend, our weather here has stabilized a bit, after all the negative single digits, we are finally into some decent numbers to close the week! In fact it was raining last night which turned into freezing rain and I guess we shall be seeing snow today....well that's normal...that's Illinois!

Today's card over at the Crafter's Companion FB page  was colored completely using the Spectrum Noir markers  and the scene was set with watercolors. I am really loving the way these two mediums work together. 

The watercolor paper adds an additional dimension to the whole image.

A closer look....

 Stamps- Crafter's Comapnion - Crisalis Classics-The Rehearsal
Spectrum Noir -BT1,BT3,BT4,BT5
Watercolors, Sentiment-Stampabilities

Don' forget to stop by our CC Facebook page for more inspiration. The DT will be sharing a post every single don't want to miss that!
Thanks so much for stopping by today and have a wonderful weekend!




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