Find Inspiration in Nature

My art journal pages are often inspired by nature which is why I chose the Flora and Fauna theme for this month over at Art Journal Journey. I had so much fun creating the background and steampunk vibe flowers for this page – I hope you like it too!

Taking inspiration from the beautiful red sunsets we see in nature, I started by covering the page in a mixture of Cadmium Yellow, Cadmium Red and Apricot Liquitex acrylic paint, varying the blending slightly to give different shades of colour. I added some torn book pages using Liquitex matte gel medium and some washi tapes, and then I applied a thin layer of the same acrylic paints over the top using my finger to achieve a translucent look. When dry, I applied some white DecoArt acrylic paint using a brayer and also a circular Worn Rings stamp from Gummiapan, making sure I washed the stamp as soon as I had finished so the paint didn’t dry and ruin it. I then splattered the whole page with black DecoArt acrylic paint using a paintbrush. The flowers are fussy cut from an old flower book that I found in a charity shop (thrift store) and arranged on the page with three stamps from the Vintage Circles Woodware Craft Selection Stamp Set using black Archival Ink. I used Liquitex matte gel medium to stick the flowers in place and once it was dry I outlined them with a black Derwent Graphik marker so that the stamping was incorporated into the flower design.

Both the fussy cutting and outlining took some time to complete and it really made a difference to the flowers as you can see on this before and after photo. The bees and wording which reads “Find inspiration in nature” are both Royal & Langnickel rub-on transfers and I added more detail to the bumblebees using a Derwent Graphik marker. To finish, I stamped some circles of white DecoArt acrylic paint using a bottle cap and added some more splatters of black DecoArt acrylic paint using a paintbrush.

Everytime we visit Garstang we see these beautiful metal flowers and the yellow ones reminded me those on my page today – aren’t they stunning!

I like that they stay in bloom all year round for us to enjoy, no matter what the weather … grin!

Challenges

I’m joining Art Journal Journey and the Flora and Fauna theme with my flowers and bees; there is just one more week to join in the fun (grin!). I’ve really enjoyed seeing all your fabulous creations that you have linked to this theme so far, thank you!

I’m pleased to join Moo Mania and More for their Even More Flowers challenge with my flowery page.

I’m joining Fashionable Stamping Challenges where the theme is Floral, which has been chosen by the lovely Avril, with my Vintage styled flowers, .

I really like the Vintage look of my new Woodware Stamp Set that I used on this page against the mixed media background which also included stamping, so I’m also pleased to join the Backgrounds challenge over at The Artistic Stamper.

Stamping Sensations challenge is Close to Nature so I’m very happy to be able to join them with my “Find inspiration in Nature” page.

I’m joining in the fun over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Use More Than One Stamp challenge as I used more than one stamp to create this art journal page.

My page reminds me of a classical music piece called “Flight of the Bumblebee” by Nikoli Rimsky-Korsakov and I can just imagine my bees flying around my page to this music exploring the Steampunk Style world of flowers that I created, so I’m also joining A Vintage Journey for their Words and Music challenge.

With the stamping I used to create this art journal page, I’m also pleased to join the Craft Stamper Take It, Make It Challenge and their May Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included).

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Cadmium Yellow, Cadmium Red, Apricot)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White, Black)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm, 0.5mm)
  • Gummiapan Stamp (Worn Rings 2 11050601)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Magic Singles (Vintage Circles FRS665)
  • The Oxford Book of Garden Flowers
  • Quality Toys Group (Washi Tape 2544960)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (TIP1642G, Motivate Sentiments #ROY510, )
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
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Hummingbird and Orchids

Inspired by the beautiful hummingbirds that have been featured by some of my blog-friends recently, I created this hummingbird and pretty orchid page for the Flora and Fauna challenge that I’m hosting over at Art Journal Journey this month.

I’ve been overwhelmed with the participation and support shown for my theme over at Art Journal Journey, thank you! There is still time to join in the fun this month and I hope to see you there!

I started by painting the page with Liquitex Acrylic paints; the colours I used were Christmas Green, Cadmium Yellow and Parchment. Once the paint had dried, I added some gold acrylic paint and splattered the page with black and white acrylic paints using a paintbrush. Then I covered the page with some Pébéo white gesso using a baby wipe and also my finger to tone down the colours so the images I added next stood out more. The orchids are fussy cut from a napkin and stuck to the page using Liquitex matte gel medium, once the gel medium had dried I outlined and doodled on them using a black UniPin marker and a white Uniball gel pen to add more definition and detail; this took quite a while as there are so many of them (grin!). The hummingbird and pink flower buds are rub-on transfers from Royal & Langnickel which I layered around and onto the orchids. I added a cardstock sticker which says “Fly Free” and I finished the page by adding some pretty green sequin flowers, using Glossy Accents, to add some sparkle.

Over at Moo Mania and More the theme is Even More Flowers! so I’m pleased to join this challenge too, with the pretty orchids that I included on my page.

We visited a garden centre recently and I was mesmerised by these pretty orchids which are similar to the ones on my page, aren’t they stunning!

We often visit the café at this garden centre and here we are having my favourite – a pot of green tea with a bacon butty/sandwich (grin!). So I’m joining the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday and wishing you all a Happy T Day!

We have some lovely garden centres in our area which have the most beautiful displays – I love this majestic looking stag and large turquoise pottery urn surrounded by all the delicate hydrangeas!

I’m glad this huge snail isn’t real as it would swallow up my garden in one bite (grin!).

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Christmas Green, Cadmium Yellow Medium, Parchment)
  • Colvin & Co Artist’s Acrylic (White)
  • Poundland Metallic Paint (Gold)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • The New York Botanical Gardens Napkin
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (TIP1642G)
  • Little Yellow Bicycle Cardstock Stickers (Fresh Verse PD-140)
  • Poundland (Assorted Sequins)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

The Call of Spring

It’s time for a new theme at Try it on Tuesday which is The Call of Spring …Mood Board:

I can’t wait to see your creations using this photo inspiration and as usual you have the next two weeks to join us. You can find fabulous inspirational creations from my fellow Design Team Members along with guidelines for joining our challenge over at Try it on Tuesday too, so why not pop over and take a look.

For today’s page, I was inspired by the pretty birds, pink blossoms, green foliage and blue skies from the mood board – I hope that you like it (grin!).

To represent birdsong, I started by stamping a Sheet Music stamp from the Woodware Craft Collection onto white tissue paper using black Archival Ink, which was then stuck onto the background using Liquitex matte gel medium. Once the gel medium had dried, I applied Chipped Sapphire, Mowed Lawn and Salty Ocean Distress Inks by applying the ink pad to an acrylic block, spritzing with water and pressing the block onto the page. I also splattered droplets of the diluted ink over the page using a paintbrush and then dried the page with my heat gun before I added some white gesso using my finger to mute some of the colours a little. I used the Chipped Sapphire and Mowed Lawn Distress Inks again to stamp some Halftone Circle stamps from Altenew and then I also stamped some feathers from a Steampunk stamp set by Docrafts using black Archival Ink. The white doilies are from Dovecraft and are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. I distressed their centres a little by rubbing them with a wet finger to remove some of the doily so the background showed through. The bird image of the starling and pretty blossoms is from an old calendar and is stuck in place using a UHU Stic; I ripped and distressed the edges and then coloured them with a mixture of Chipped Sapphire and Mowed Lawn Distress Ink which I diluted with water and applied using a paintbrush. I added the word “Spring” which is a rub-on transfer by Royal & Langnickel and splattered the page with DecoArt black acrylic paint. Then I added some small white dots using a Pentel white gel pen to the starling image so it blended with the background more. I made some pink blossoms using some fabric flowers which I coloured with Blossom Spectrum Aqua marker. I added some yellow pearls gems to the centre of the flowers and melted them using a heat gun to add more texture, curled the petals and then stuck the flowers in place using glue dots. To finish, I added some small green pearls and also some pink and yellow flower rhinestones to the background which added some sparkle.

As T Stands for Tuesday my drink related photo this week is of these pretty cups, the colours reminded me of springtime. I saw them when we visited Gerrards which is our local auction house, for those of you who live in the UK you may have seen this auction house on Flog It! or Dickenson’s Real Deal! It’s such a fun place to visit especially when the live auction is taking place although I need to sit on my hands to stop myself from bidding for anything (grin!).

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs, like Try it on Tuesday, as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Rosie from Rosie’s Bastelwelt who is hosting the Spring challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my snowdrop page!

Over at Moo Mania and More the theme is Colour Effect so I’m pleased to join this challenge too with my background splatters and bursts of Distress Ink colours!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Chipped Sapphire, Mowed Lawn, Salty Ocean)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Pentel Hybrid Gel Grip (White)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Blossom)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Clear Magic Singles (Sheet Music JGS111)
  • Altenew Stamp Set (Halftone Circles 490220)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials Clear Stamps (Steampunk DCE907125)
  • White Tissue Paper
  • RSPB Calendar – old
  • Dovecraft Premium Paper Doilies (Painted Blooms DCDLS010)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Spring Sentiments ~ROY-506)
  • Home Bargains (Fabulous Florals 22803)
  • The Range (Adhesive Pearls SCDOT056)
  • The Works (Flower Rhinestone Stickers)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • Wilko (Sticky Dots)

Valentine’s

To celebrate Valentine’s Day tomorrow I created this art journal page and I used my winter window display as inspiration too as it looks so pretty with the red hearts and white snowflakes (double grin!).

Over at Try it on Tuesday, our current theme is Love is in the Air (think Hearts, Valentine’s Day, Love etc) and there is still another week to join in the fun, so it would be great to see you there!

I started by covering the page in a thin layer of Pébéo white gesso in preparation for the Faber-Castell Gelatos that I added next. Once dry, I graduated the Gelato colours using Iced Currant around the edges of the page then Iced Rosé then Metallic Icing in the centre using a sponge to blend them. Next I stamped some bars of music and a scroll border from Penny Black and also an “I Love You!” stamp by Hampton Art using black Archival Ink. I stamped my favourite circle and heart design from Sugarloaf Inc. using a VersaMark watermark stamp pad and covered it with white Stampendous embossing powder making sure any excess powder was removed using a paintbrush. Once the excess powder was safely returned to its container, I used a heat gun to melt the embossing powder. I swept the gun over the stamped images, taking care not to direct the heat in one area for too long until the embossing powder melted to a glossy finish and became smooth and dimensional. Then I used some silver metallic rub-on transfers from Royal & Langnickel to add the “Forever & Ever” and “Love” wording and also some hugs and kisses. For my snowflakes I used a trio snowflake die from Tonic Studios and some recycled white card. They are stuck to the page using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium and I finished them using some pretty glitter and silver snowflakes and also some sparkly jewel stickers. For the small hearts, I used a paper punch from Tonic Studios and some recycled red card and stuck them in place using the matte gel medium again. The cupid heart and postcard are from a card making kit by Docrafts and are stuck in place using double-sided tape. I also added an “I Love You” sticker to the postcard which is by Graphic 45. The chalkboard heart is a tag and I tied a red piece of leather into a bow and added our initials which are foam sticker letters. I coloured the letters using red Stickles in the centre and then edged them with silver Stickles using a very steady hand (grin!). I added three red hearts, to the focal images, which are punched from the same red card using another paper punch from Tonic Studios and also some more sparkly jewel embellishments to the background which finished the page.

I love our Valentine’s window display this year; it looks extra special with the lovely winter decorations that I made and the beautiful “G” and “J” initial decorations that were bought for us for Christmas.

The red hearts and white of the decorations and snowflakes look lovely together and the snowflakes seem even more relevant as we have snow forecast for this week too (grin!).

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m also sharing his and hers hot chocolates – normal  hot chocolate for hubby and white hot chocolate for me (grin!) – Happy T day!

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs like Try it on Tuesday as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join in the fun over at Moo Mania and More and their Valentine’s challenge.

As I included red on my page, I’m also joining the Roses are Red (use the colour Red) challenge over at The Artistic Stamper.

I’m pleased to be able to join Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their It Must Be Love challenge with my Valentine’s inspired art journal page.

I’m also pleased to join the Photo Inspiration challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Faber-Castell Gelato (Iced Currant, Iced Rosé, Metallic Icing)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Tsukineko VersaMark (Watermark Stamp Pad)
  • Script Metallic Pen (Silver)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Sugarloaf Inc. Anita’s wood-mounted stamp (26645)
  • Penny Black Stamp Set (Clearly in Love 30-009)
  • Hampton Art Studio G clear stamps (VS4911)
  • Tonic Studios Christmas Trio Die Set (Falling Snowflakes 17920)
  • Red and white card (recycled Christmas cards)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Kisses and Hugs Silver #ROY790SV)
  • Docrafts Papermania 6×6” Decoupage Card Kit (Victorian Valentine PMA169102)
  • Graphic 45 Cardstock Stickers (Place in Time 4500617)
  • Tonic Studios Paper Punch Accent (Hearts Sider 830E, Classic Heart Sider 858E)
  • The Works (Chalkboard Heart Tags, Christmas Embellishments, Jewel Stickers)
  • Trimcraft Alphabet & Number Stickers (Glitter – Gold SCSTK013)
  • Ranger Stickles (Christmas Red, Silver)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Falling Snowflakes

With the sleet and snow we had last weekend, which is rare as we live by the sea, I was inspired to create this journal page to remember the falling snowflakes that we saw!

I started by stamping a Script stamp from Kaisercraft and a Serpentine Background stamp from Art Impressions onto the page using black Archival Ink. Then I covered the page with a small amount of sea green and blue acrylic paints and also some white gesso using my finger. While the gesso was drying, I chose three decoupage papers which I folded a number of times to make them thicker so I could die cut them using my Big Shot and a trio of snowflake dies from Tonic Studios. They were quite fiddly to separate as the decoupage paper is so thin and delicate; it was well worth it though as I love the way they look layered on the page using Liquitex Matter Gel Medium to stick them down. Next I added some red border rub-on transfers from Docrafts Papermania and then I stamped the quote onto white tissue paper using the black Archival Ink. The quote is stuck onto the page using a UHU Stic and is by Aristotle, it reads:

“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold”.

The pretty Winter Time lady is a sticker from Graphic 45 which I thought matched the quote perfectly. For the birds, I stamped a Winter Woodland stamp onto white tissue paper twice using black Archival Ink and then I covered them with black Papermania embossing powder. As you can see I reversed one of the images, which you can do when using tissue paper as the ink goes straight through to the other side; you need to act quickly though when covering it with the embossing powder. I shook off the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper although I wasn’t to worried about stray powder or coverage as I wanted to depict snowfall obscuring the visibility of the branch and birds by using the stray powder. I heated the stamped images with a heat gun, taking care not to direct the heat in one area for too long as the embossing powder melts very quickly on tissue paper. Next I ripped around the edges of the embossed images and stuck them down using a UHU Stic. I also sprinkled a little of the black embossing powder directly onto the page to enhance the snowfall effect. To finish, I applied some white DecoArt acrylic paint along the tree branches using a paintbrush, then to the snowflakes using my finger and finally to the whole page by using the paintbrush again to add white paint splatters.

 Although we had sleet and snow, it was too wet for it to settle. The temperatures have been colder though so I’ve taken my Prague hat out of storage to keep me warm on our walks. This is the first UK winter I have been able to wear it, as normally it’s just not cold enough (grin!).

Here’s my hat on one snowy evening in Prague a few years ago (double grin!).

Both these snowy photos were taken in winter time in The Old Town Square where you find the most amazing Christmas Markets. The imposing church in the background is called the Týn Church or Church of Our Lady before Týn, which is a gothic church dating back to 14th century, isn’t it beautiful (grin!).

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to be able to join the lovely Erika N, also known as BioArtGal, who is hosting the New Year, New Adventures challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my snowy adventure!

As I layered lots of die cut snowflakes on top of stamps and paint, then layered the quote and bird images that I stamped onto tissue paper I’m so happy to join the Layer It Up challenge over at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge.

I’m joining in the fun over at Country View Challenges and their Anything Goes challenge.

I enjoyed using all the different stamps to create my page so I’m pleased to join the Anything Goes challenge over at The Artistic Stamper.

As I used some new crafting goodies (snowflakes dies, Rub-On Transfers and Graphic 45 Stickers) and techniques (die cutting decoupage paper) to create my Falling Snowflake page, I’m also joining the Ring in the New challenge over at the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Swedish Blue, Christmas Green)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Papermania Embossing Powder (Black PMA4021006)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Art Impressions wood mounted rubber stamp (Serpentine Background T-2773)
  • Winter Woodland Stamp Set – free with Craft Beautiful Magazine (Dec 2017)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Tonic Studios Christmas Trio Die Set (Falling Snowflakes 1792e)
  • Poundworld DécoTime (Patch Paper DS9454)
  • White tissue paper
  • Docrafts Papermania Rub-on Borders (First Noel PMA822103)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic

Happy Holidays!

I created this page to wish all my friends here in blog-land Happy Holidays and, if you celebrate, a very Merry Christmas too!

I started by using some relief sticker surrounds to add detail to the page. Firstly using them as a stencil by sticking them down and applying Festive Berries and Peeled Paint Distress Inks with a blending tool.  I also used the blending tool to add a circular pattern with the Peeled Paint ink.  I then wiped the ink from the relief stickers with a piece of kitchen towel, removed them and reapplied them to different areas of the page to add more depth and interest. I love the white against this red and green colour combination. As the Distress Ink reactivates when wet I added some water droplets with a paintbrush and used kitchen roll to dry them which removed some of the ink. Next I added the snowflakes which are glittery Wall Stickers and the “Happy Holidays” writing and baubles, which are rub-on transfers from Royal & Langnickel. The little reindeer are Christmas decorations which I spotted whilst out shopping which I couldn’t resist buying them as they looked so cute (grin!). I stuck them to the page using a UHU glue pen and also a gold Brad; I did this by punching a hole through the page and wrapping ribbon around the brad before fastening it. I also covered the back of the brad with a piece of masking tape to protect my next journal page. I added red Stickles on one of the reindeer noses and Dovecraft 3D Black Pearl Effects on the other reindeer’s nose and also their eyes. A stitched ribbon tag which says “Merry Christmas” that I stuck down using double-sided foam tape finishes the page.

Every year I make a Christmas cake, I love baking and always make my own almond paste (marzipan) and fondant icing as well. My cake decoration changes each year and this year it is decorated with white stars and poinsettias (grin!).

I always make a light fruit cake rather than the traditional rich fruit cake. My recipe is a take on a Dundee Fruit Cake and contains no citrus/mixed peel and has dried sultanas, currants, pineapple, dates, apricots and cherries in it which are soaked in brandy for a week before I make it so they are nice and plump – yum!

We always cut our cake the week before Christmas and it’s lovely with a cuppa for elevensies! So I’m pleased to join the T Gang over at T Stands for Tuesday – Happy T Day! Wishing you all Happy Holidays and a very Merry Christmas! Jo x

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Sheila from Orange Esmeralda who is hosting the “Let’s Celebrate” challenge over at Art Journal Journey – Merry Christmas!

I’m joining the “Twinkle, Twinkle” fun over at Try it on Tuesday as my glittery snowflakes twinkle on the page – Merry Christmas!

As I created this page to celebrate and wish you a Merry Christmas, I’m also joining the “Christmas” Challenge over at Moo Mania & More.

The challenge over at Country View Challenges is “Christmas with optional Reds, Greens and Rust” so my page matches this theme perfectly – Merry Christmas!

Over at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge the theme is “Stitch It” so I’m pleased to join them with my stitched Merry Christmas embellishment – Happy Holidays!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Festive Berries, Peeled Paint)
  • Crelando Relief Sticker Set (Christmas 12 Sheets IAN289011)
  • Home Bargains (Wall Stickers 16221)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Retro Christmas Trees #ROY1666)
  • Melinera (Christmas Decorations IAN288732)
  • Docrafts Create Christmas (Stitched Ribbon Tags PMA157921)
  • Craft Sensations (Brads CR0550/A)
  • Ranger Stickles (Christmas Red)
  • Dovecraft 3D Pearl Effects (Brights – Black)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Glue Pen
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Discover the Magic

We recently went on a beautiful circular walk up to Rivington Pike summit which has the most breathtaking views. This walk took us through some amazing woodland and terraced gardens and we had such a wonderful time that I created this journal page to remember the magic that we discovered there!

For the background I used Milled Lavender, Cracked Pistachio and Tea Dye Distress Inks as well as a Charcoal Spectrum Aqua Marker by applying each of the inks directly to an acrylic block and holding the block over the page I spritzed it with water until the ink dripped onto the page. I also pressed the block onto the page in places and then I repeated the process again with each colour. I used the Milled Lavender and Tea Dye Distress Inks as well as black Archival Ink to stamp a Script from Kaisercraft. As a reminder of the woodland I stamped a tree bark stamp from BoBunny using Ground Espresso Distress Ink and to depict the ferns that we saw in the terraced gardens I also stamped a fern image from Royal & Langnickel using Cracked Pistachio Distress Ink. The page was then splattered with black acrylic paint using a paint brush. Next I tore pieces of music sheet and a turquoise blue decoupage paper into strips, to represent the waterfalls and pools that we saw and heard on our walk; they are stuck to the page using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium. I also tore a Penny Black sticker and added the shards to the page to add further texture and colour. Once the gel medium had dried I outlined the paper and sticker pieces with a black Uni Pin marker so they stood out more. The words are rub-on transfers, these represent the wonder and magic that we discovered during our walk. I added some gold outline stickers to represent the sunshine and autumnal gold colours of the leaves in the woodland. As we discovered lovely brickwork throughout the terraced gardens I stencilled a brick design using Pébéo modelling paste and a stencil from Craft Sensations, as well as a stencil made from a piece of plasterboard/drywall tape. Once the paste had dried, I coloured them with Cold Grey and Sanguine Faber-Castell Big Brush markers.

Then I stamped a bird image from Craft Sensations using black Archival Ink; I like the way the bird is looking out across the page as we did towards the views whilst on our walk. For the autumnal leaves, I used some leaves that were leftover from a previous project. The large oak and maple leaf images are from a stamp set by BoBunny and the smaller leaves are from a stamp set by Crafter’s Companion; they are stamped using black Archival Ink on a white medium weight paper. The paper is sprinkled with Scarlet, Yellow, Orange and Dark Brown Colourcraft Brusho powders and spritzed with water to react the bright and colourful Brusho colours. I fussy cut the leaves and then added more colour to them using Mustard Seed, Spiced Marmalade, Fired Brick and Seedless Preserves Distress Inks and a blending tool. Once dry I covered them with DecoArt Media Crackle Glaze, varying the thickness over the leaves and left them to dry overnight. I used a russet metallic lustre wax from Craf-T Products to accentuate the crackle patterns and I stained the edges of the leaves with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck them to the page using matte gel medium. To finish, I also stuck some paper flowers, with sparkly gem centres, to the page using the gel medium again.

The circular route up to Rivington Pike started off in style with a beautiful tree-lined avenue leading up to the woodlands.

The woodland path leads to the Rivington Terraced Gardens that are situated on the hillside below Rivington Pike; they occupy 45 acres in total. They were originally created between 1905-1922 for soap magnate Lord Leverhulme as a spectacular venue for him to relax in and entertain. Here we discovered woodland paths that crisscross and link stone bridges, archways, pavilions and water features; they are all currently undergoing restoration.

After exploring the terraced gardens we came across this beautiful archway leading up to track which leads to Rivington Pike, isn’t it beautiful!

Rivington Pike is hill summit which is 1,191 feet above sea level and is a prominent local landmark, the earliest record of this hill dates back to 1325. The building at the top is Pike Tower which was built in the eighteenth century as a hunting lodge.

The view is amazing and on a clear day you can see Blackpool Tower, the Isle of Man and the Lake District fells. At the summit we stopped and sat at one of the benches and had our pack lunch whilst we admired the views (grin!).

We walked down a different trail heading back towards the terraced gardens and discovered this four-storey building which is Pigeon Tower. The top floor was Lady Leverhulme’s sewing and music room and the second and third floors housed dovecotes.

There were some lovely views over the countryside from the tower.

This is Lever Bridge and its design is based on a bridge that Lever saw in Nigeria. It’s also known as Seven Arch Bridge as its large arch is crossed by six smaller ones.

Being a warm sunny day, it was lovely way to see the last of the autumnal colours and discover the stunning views and scenery – what a wonderful place it was to visit (grin!).

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

As walking keeps you warm on crisp sunny autumn days, I joining the lovely Chris and her wonderful “101 Ways to Keep Warm” challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

With two types of stencilled brickwork, I’m pleased to join Country View Challenges with their “Stencils” challenge and also Moo Mania & More with their “Put a Stencil On It” challenge.

I’m joining in the fun again over at Fashionable Stamping Challenges and their “Nature” challenge as I enjoyed using my stamps to create the leaves, background and pretty bird for this page.

I’m also pleased to join the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their “Tear It Up” challenge with the torn papers and stickers that I used for my background.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Milled Lavender, Cracked Pistachio, Tea Dye, Ground Espresso, Mustard Seed, Spiced Marmalade, Fired Brick, Seedless Preserves)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Charcoal)
  • Liquitex Artist Color Acrylic (Ivory Black)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233, Sanguine 188 B, Black 199)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Colour (Scarlet, Yellow, Orange, Dark Brown)
  • DecoArt Media Crackle Glaze (DMM16)
  • Craf-T Products Lustre Rub-ons Color Kit #4 (Russet)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752)
  • Royal & Langickel Clear Choice Stamps (Pressed Leaves MIN-CCS102)
  • BoBunny Stamps (Rough It Up #12105155, Falling Leaves #12105154)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CRO274/16R1)
  • Crafter’s Companion Signature Collection by Sara Davies Autumn Morning Stamp Set (Rustling Leaves S-AUT-ST-RUS)
  • Poundworld DecoTime (Paper Patch DS9454)
  • Bosworth Violin Studies music book
  • Penny Black 2010 Stickeroos (Petals & Poetry 10-207)
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (Motivate Sentiments #ROY510 Rub-on)
  • Letraset transfer (Helvetica Bold Condensed 5mm RDC0251)
  • Magenta Style outline stickers (Daisy Gold 93326G)
  • Poundland (Accessories Pack 60911, Gem Florettes 117128)
  • 151Adhesives Plasterboard & Drywall Tape
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium