Monday, April 24, 2017

Color Throwdown #439

Color Throwdown #439
A gracious good Monday morning to you, everyone! I apologize for the chipper beginning to this's early, I know! :-) Today's card is for Color Throwdown's weekly challenge #439. The lusciousness of yellow, orange, purple and red screamed watercolor!! So that's what I did for the background and then, using white cardstock, I cut out PTI's Quatrefoil cover plate and added the sentiment from Graceful super quick and easy!  Have a great start to your Monday and thanks for stopping by!!


Saturday, April 22, 2017

One-third and Counting!

Make It Monday #281: Patterns Behind Window
Happy Earth Day and 1/3 of the year gone. That's right folks, one-third of the year is almost behind us. Time to shop for Christmas!! Lolol! Seriously, next week is Administrative Assistant's Day, and I am already behind schedule with this, Mother's Day, and birthday card making. To try to make a dent in the card-making frenzy, I created this card for my husband's assistant after watching Dawn McVey's tutorial for Papertrey Ink's Make It Monday #281. I plan to add this card to a nice gift to show our appreciation for all that Jeannie does. The world truly would not turn without our trusted assistants running the show!

Thanks for stopping by!

Card Recipe [All PTI except for 'dictionary entry' as pattern]:
Stamps: Bold Blossoms & Mix & Mat Scallop Die
Inks: Pale Peony, Simply Chartreuse, Spring Moss, Classic Kraft, Burnt Umber, Raspberry Fizz
Paper: Vintage Cream and Heidi Swapp Vintage Chic Textbook

Friday, April 21, 2017

100 Days of Watercolor #1

Day 16--third attempt
TGIF everyone!! Hang on! It's just a few short hours away from the weekend. :-)

I wanted to take a moment to update my Watercolor Wednesday #6 post. In that post, I discussed failure as a necessary ingredient for growing and learning. Immediately after that post, I continued on my #100daysofwatercolorexercises journey for Instagram. Folks, nothing I painted with water, paper, and pigment worked. All of them...complete disasters...the entire day. I made four earnest attempts to produce a decent post, but after the last attempt, all I could do was put it out there for all to see!

Day 16--Cactus, take one
In a way it was freeing. It is one thing to state a's quite another to live it and own it. Well, I own it. The posted photos are my "best" worst failures for Day 16. Moving forward to Days 17 and 18, I was able to rebound from that experience. And when I say rebound...I mean in my "Mary Had a Little Lamb" level of watercolor painting rebound!

Day 16--Cactus, take two
This is what I learned:

  • Sometimes I need to let the paint dry
  • Sometimes I need to walk away and just stop
  • Sometimes I need to have a plan and maybe sketch first
  • All the time, I need to accept small steps forward. 
The 'take two' cactus actually shows texture and shading. I wasn't really going for that when I started. The pad in the foreground has depth and a curve to it. I've not been able to create 'roundness' before in my painting. And finally, the pad in the foreground has texture. So although it looks like a cactus from a Walking Dead episode, it's not that bad!

Thanks for stopping by, and until Wednesday, have a great weekend and paint your heart out!!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

WCW #6--Just Do It!

My favorite from the past week: Feather-Day 13
Hello and happy Watercolor Wednesday to you! This week's post is all about jumping in and taking risks. The nice thing about keeping a watercolor journal is the opportunity to explore. Self-criticism is my number one talent, and over the years I have had to tame the nasty voice again and again. I haven't mastered it yet, but I have told myself that if I will commit to trying new things, I can always go back later and try again to make it better. That seems to have quenched the growling for now.

Day 15: Brush Techniques
So, I've been practicing brush and water control for the past few weeks, and it occurred to me that I really don't have to wait until I feel like all of that is under control. I can have fun with the process and just dive in! We really don't learn anything without failing. The following is my list of crucial ingredients for learning:
  • technique
  • practice
  • application
  • failure
  • repeat the process all over again until you have achieved success!
The photos in this post show paintings where I combined technique and practice with application. The feather above was created after watching a video on Skillshare. If you don't know about Skillshare, it's a community of learners and teachers who share what they've learned with you. The lessons are in YouTube format, and yes, you can probably find everything you need for free on YouTube. However, for a small amount monthly, you can explore all sorts of classes that go into more depth and break down the steps to ensure success. You have an opportunity to upload your work and have the instructors give feedback. The feather above and a few other pieces were created after watching Peggy Dean's 10 Easy Watercolor Projects. Click on the link to get a free class, if you'd like to see what it's all about:  Skillshare 10 Easy Watercolor Projects. You will have to sign up to get the free class. Now on to this week's projects:

Although Skillshare is a great platform, you really don't have to pay big bucks to learn how to watercolor. There are plenty of demos to be found on Instagram, bloggers, company websites, and YouTube. The piece below was inspired by a @hello_worldpics on Instagram. I love following them as they have the most vibrant, colorful pictures from all around the globe. The window does seem to be a little unbalanced, but that really is how it looked to me. Life is a little off, right folks?!! 

Day 11/100 Window in Columbia
The cute lady bugs were also painted after watching an Instagram quick clip by @weilis.whimsies. The technique is wet-in-wet blending and line drawing on top of the circles. This was so much fun to create, and it turned out swell, too!

Day 12: Ladybug Fantasy
And finally, after I finished the Ladybugs, I used the paints on my pallet to create the mosaic below. I didn't have a plan, I just started with the colors, painted shapes, and continued on until I ran out of room, basically.
Day 12, too: Mosaic
I hope you have enjoyed this week's post. Please leave a comment below...I'd love to view and comment on your work as well. Be sure to leave information...Instagram tag or blog I can find you.

Until next week...paint your heart out!!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Anniversary Card & Flowers!

PTI-Create Along With Us
Happy Easter Sunday everyone! I hope your day was filled with family and fun! We certainly enjoyed the Easter egg hunts and fellowship with family. I apologize for the photo...looks like the yellow took over!! :-)

Grans Garden progress

Today's quick post is for Papertrey's Create Along With Us. I was inspired by Nichole's countdown card using the new Gran's Garden stamp set. It's a gorgeous floral, so I pulled out my 2016 Anniversary set to play along. I love the Kraft cardstock on white with the white pen lines and sentiment. My version added a few more hand-drawn lines to set off the flowers and sentiment. Now it's off to get back into the routine for the upcoming week!

Thanks for stopping by!!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Hoppy Easter!

Easter Card for Nieces & Nephews
Hello everyone! I hope everyone is having a great Easter weekend so far! I made the card above for my great nieces and nephews. They are getting to the age when receiving a card snailmail is a big deal. The stamp is So Sweet from Papertrey Ink. I do like how this card turned simple with the repeated background.

I'm also playing along with Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge: Hip Hop. There is still time to join the fun! Happy Easter!!


Wednesday, April 12, 2017

WCW #5--Washes

Rainbow Wash
Happy Watercolor Wednesday to you! This week's post is all about the wash! The wash above was an attempt at a rainbow wash ROYGBIV style...however, I didn't think about that when I started, so I'm out of order :-). With the wash above, I was actually practicing my dry brush strokes so that's why it isn't as smooth as it should be, in my opinion.

Permanent Rose, Cad Yellow Pale & Cad Red Pale
The next two photos demonstrate more of a wet-n-wet technique where blooms and color mixing on paper was encouraged. I decided to stay with a warm/cool color combo on both, but I did add yellow to my cool colors instead of incorporating green. One thing I would have done differently would be to relax and let the colors do their thing more. The temptation I always face is 'helping' the process along which results in a more 'mixed' look as opposed to a 'bloomy-natural-flowy' look.

Cad Yellow Pale, Ultra Marine, and Cerulean     

So, practice, practice, practice is in store for me! I like to watch and follow along with the video below. Meredith, at The Witty Gritty Paper Co., models and describes the process beautifully, and I remember the very first time I felt like I got it 'right'! She has several easy-to-follow, beginner watercolor videos over on You Tube that will help demystify the medium.

Palm Sunday Post on Instagram
After painting a few washes, I like to experiment with things I think I've learned. The photo to the right is a representation of that. This week many are celebrating Holy Week, so my Instagram post for Sunday represents the beginning of the week. Although not a true wash, you can see elements of the wash technique. I purposely painted blue stripes with a 1/2" flat brush, but I also went back and forth to lighten the dark strokes and darken light strokes in true watercolor wash style. I used a light paper--Canson Multi-Media paper, so honestly, a true wash wasn't going to happen anyway. I do like how the background turned out, however, and I think I'll use this technique to make backgrounds for my cards.

Thanks for stopping by! Please comment below and let me know how you like to approach your wash techniques. I'd love to hear from you!!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Hello Friend!

Wet-in-Wet Watercolor Background
Hello friends! I hope your weekend was a fabulous one...mine was...but not long enough! My crafting list is longer than my laundry list!! Today's super quick post is for two challenges: Color Throwdown #437 and Little Tangles #79. The colors for CTD #437 are aqua, red, yellow and green. I thought, as long as I'm careful, I might be able to pull off a nice watercolor background with the colors. To keep the complementary colors from turning grey or brown, I decided to strategically place them and use green as an accent color. Yay! It worked!! Next I used Scandinavian Prints to stamp my flowers and cute sentiment.

There is plenty of time for the Little Tangles Challenge, but the Color Throwdown window closes at 6:00 p.m. tonight. Have a great Monday!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

WCW #4: 100 Days & More

Project for Skillshare: Gestural Flowers
Happy Watercolor Wednesday to you! When I began this series, I was hoping to focus on one aspect of my watercolor journey. As I am diving in, however, I realize that there is so much content I could cover that it's making these posts long. My apologies...I'll work on that. In the meantime, I'd like to review the past week and a new commitment I've made.

The photo above is a painting I created after taking a Skillshare class by Victoria Johnson--Exploring Paint: Learn to Create Gestural Flowers. I loved this class, as it was quick, easy, and the demonstration was spot-on. After the class I was able to at least follow along and create and Instagram-worthy post. It was a lot of fun.

In other news, the #30DaysofBibleLettering came to an end on March 30th. Below is another attempt at painting a watercolor wreath. I do like how this one turned out. Leaves are a sticking point, but I am determined to build up to 5 or more styles by the end of April.

And finally, on Instagram yesterday, I began a 100 day challenge to work on something specific. I am posting with the hashtag: #100daysofwatercolorexercises. I hope to begin my watercolor journey in earnest by committing to daily practice. My plan is to explore shapes, patterns, brush strokes, washes, etc. Why not commit to a project of your own and join me? Leave a comment on or tag me in any of your posts to let me know your journey, and I'll keep up with your progress, too!

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Thanks for stopping by, and leave a comment below about your watercolor journey and discoveries you've made.