Category Archives: Challenges

Watercolor background with alcohol ink

I love the look of watercolors, but I also just love using my copic markers – which are alcohol based. Both have a place in my craft room, but I often wonder, can I get the vibrancy that I get with copics by using watercolor, and can I get a soft watercolor look from using alcohol markers?

Well, yesterday I tried a little experiment…and I am thrilled at the way it turned out!  When I use my copic markers I always have a problem with getting a nice soft background and often I just either sponging some color on, which I usually end up hating, or just going without any type of colored background, which sometimes makes the card look unfinished.  I wanted to get a watercolored background look with my copic markers – so here is what I did.

EDITED:  The video tutorial for this can be found on this post HERE.

I stamped my image on copic x-press it paper using memento tuxedo black ink. I filled my aqua brush with copic colorless blender and scribbled some dark blue color (B69) on my craft sheet. I picked up the color from the craft sheet with my aqua brush and began coloring the background – starting from the center of the image and working out. I continued picking up color and working my way around the image,  Because the aqua brush is adding the colorless alcohol you can get a nice variation of color – and if you want more intense color just add a bit of color to the tip of the brush. I love the look it created.  Just a note:  if you want to devote one aqua brush for alcohol just mark the brush with a label so that it does not get mixed up with other brushes that are filled with water.

So, then I thought…that colorless blender from copic is rather expensive, what if I use just plain rubbing alcohol?  Would I get the same, or at least as good results?   I figured what have I got to lose?   So I just poured some 70% Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol into another aqua brush and went to work,   I used the same image stamped on the same paper , same copic color (B69), and used the same technique.

Here is what I learned:

-Both the colorless blender and regular rubbing alcohol worked and provided a watercolored look,  However, using the plain rubbing alcohol I noticed that it caused the color to change.  With the copic blender the color stayed true to the shade of blue, although less intense because there was much more colorless liquid involved.  Using rubbing alcohol the color was not as intense and had more of a purple hue than blue.  This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing except if you were really looking for a blue color.  Here are the two pieces side by side  so that you can see the slight variation of color.

-Using an aqua brush  – I found the aqua brush very easy to work with doing this technique and on this paper (copic x-press it)  I merely had to pick up color from the craft sheet when I needed it.  I will have to try this technique on other cardstock and on watercolor paper in the future to see how they react.

-Copic Colorless blender costs about $11 for a 200cc bottle (at Oozak).  200 cc is about 6.8 ounces.  A bottle of 70% Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol, 16 ounces costs about $2.20 at Walgreens. In my area the colorless blender is not available in local stores, only online.  So there is a significant difference in price and that may be a determining factor for you.  In my test the plain rubbing alcohol changed the color and its intensity. This may or may not be a good tradeoff – it all depends on your personal preference.  You can use the rubbing alcohol and test colors ahead of time to see how they work.

Now that I was finished with my experiment it was time to make a card!  I used the piece I made using the colorless blender for the background.

 

Once I colored the background I worked on the flowers – these are paperwhites and are a winter bloom.  In order to get some dimension I used grey copics (C1 and C3) for shading, Y08 for the centers, and YG03 and YG63 for the leaves.  The rhinestones used were already a light green, but I needed them to be darker so I colored them with  a YG97 marker.  The ribbon is a silk ribbon from May Arts and is absolutely luscious!  If ever I was limited to just one ribbon it would be these silks from May Arts.  They are expensive and I hoard my supply using them only for very special cards (this card will be going to my mom).  The scallop was done with an EK punch.

Because I used a “winter bloom” on my card, I am playing along with Power Poppy’s Winter Blooms Power and Spark Challenge. Details can be found HERE.

Thanks for stopping by today!

 

bird of paradise

Bird-of-par-gif

I’m feeling a little tropical today – probably due to the very humid weather we are having!  And today’s card is a perfect fit.  I inked up this image, from Local King Rubber Stamps, and needed some color inspiration so off I went to google-land in search of photos and came across this beautiful painting (shown above) by artist Patti Bruce.  I really can’t due justice to her work so I will just thank her for inspiring me!

Bird of par 1

I colored the image with many different copics.  The leaves were done in the YG series – YG21, 23, and 25. The flowers were done with Y00, Yo2, Y08, YE02, YR04, YR68 and B000, B21, B24.  I  sponged memento summer sky and bahama blue around the edges.

The small blue panel underneath the main image was stamped with a palm image from Alextamping and versamark ink.  The green background paper is from Memory Box (I think) and I was finally able to use those square orange rhinestones I’ve had in my stash for years.

Thanks for stopping by today!

bright poppies

I’ve always loved the bright colors of poppies.  When we lived in California each spring some of the hillsides would be covered with pretty orange poppy blooms and we would  drive up the coast to take in natures splendor.  Those orange poppies set against a bright green field of grass was so pretty, but many people know poppies only in bright red.  I made this card for a recent sketch challenge at SCS.

The poppy image is from Technique Tuesday and was colored with copics.  The designer paper is from Basic Grey’s Indian Summer line – my favorite line of from them.  I only have a few sheets left and will be sad when it is gone!  The sentiment is from Papertrey and both it and the poppy were stamped with Memento Rich Cocoa.  The red cardstock is from Bazzill and the white from Neenah.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Clean and simple Monday – background builders

Hello friends – I hope your week is starting off well.  It’s the fourth of July week and everything seems to be decked out in red, white and blue around here!

I’m playing along with the CAS challenge at SCS – this week we are to use the colors navy, olive and white.  I also decided to let my stamps do extra duty by creating the background on this card – no it’s not designer paper – just stamps and ink!

I love the versatility of this particular set – Medallions Background Basics from PTI.  It contains two long images – I stamped on in blue and the other in green (both Memento inks) to create the pattern.  The colors have a nice masculine feel to them.  The sentiment is also from PTI and was stamped in the same blue ink used in the background – which is another great reason to use stamps to create a background – instant coordination!

Because this card was so easy to pull together, I decided to make another one – this time with much softer colors.  Here is how it turned out.

I used Palette’s Toile Pink ink (because the Memento Pink I had was just too bright) along with Memento New Sprout.  New Sprout is a close match to SU’s Celery color.  I used celery paper and ribbon on this card.  The sentiment was stamped in a slightly darker green – Memento Bamboo leaves so that it would stand out more.

So – a couple of stamps used in a similar manner but by changing the ink colors I ended up two different looks.

Thanks for stopping by today!

 

 

clean and simple monday

It’s been awhile since I participated in the CAS challenge over at SCS, but today is one of those clean and simple days!

Up here in Northwest Florida it looks like we are going to dodge the Tropical Storm Debbie bullet as it seems the worst of it will be east of us.  Here is hoping everyone affected by this storm is doing ok.  We’re just getting into the start of hurricane season here and it is always touch and go when these storms come our way.

So – a little  easy coloring and clean and simple sketch is in order.

 

I stamped the image on Copic X-press it paper and colored with copics.  I used the same image with versamark on the base card.  The patterned paper is from Memory Box and the ribbon is really seam binding.  I think the cardstock is from SU – its just something I pulled from my stash to go with the colors in the patterned paper.

 

Thanks so much for stopping by today.