Winter Robin

When we were visiting family in the South of England we discovered some new walks at a local nature reserve, where we saw lots of wildlife including robins which is one of my favourite birds.

I started by painting diluted Ground Espresso and a little bit of Hickory Smoke Distress Inks onto the page by stamping the ink pads directly onto an acrylic block and picking the ink up with a wet paintbrush. I concentrated the colour around the edges of the page and used the paintbrush bristles to add texture. Then I applied the Hickory Smoke ink again using a blending tool through a retro stencil from That Special Touch of Mica Masks by Creative Expressions. I stamped some small snowflakes from a BoBunny stamp set using Rich Cocoa Memento Ink. With some new dies and my Big Shot I got to work creating some green and red paper branches using Garden Greens Sizzix Thinlets by Tim Holtz; they are stuck to the page using a Zig Memory System glue pen. I was also very excited to receive some die sets from my lovely friend Astrid yesterday, thank you so much! I wanted to use them straight away (grin!), so I selected some square dies and used them to create some pretty edges on a recycled Robin Christmas card and also some patterned papers from Docrafts. I edged them with a grey Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and stuck them to the page along with some other paper embellishments from the same Docrafts pack and a robin image from another recycled Christmas card using some double-sided tape. To finish the page, I added the wording which are letter stickers from the same Docrafts pack.

Here’s one of the beautiful robins that we saw on our walk at the nature reserve (grin!).

If you are interested, here are some facts about robins:

  • This robin is a European robin (Erithacus rubecula), which here in the UK is known simply as a robin or robin redbreast and they are renowned for their friendliness.
  • The term robin is also applied to other birds of a similar appearance, such as the American robin which is actually a thrush and also the Australasian robins.
  • Even though the film Mary Poppins is set in London, the robin that lands on Mary’s finger during “A Spoonful of Sugar” is an American robin instead of a European robin.
  • Nowadays in the UK, robins are synonymous with winter and especially Christmas cards because in Victorian times, our postmen were known as robins due to their bright red uniforms and they delivered cards on Christmas day.
  • The robin often tops the polls for Britain’s favourite bird and has been adopted as a nickname for eight UK football (soccer) clubs who play in red.

We saw the robin while we were walking through woodland. It was a lovely place to explore with its ponds, streams, marshes, grassland, reed beds, hedges and woodlands and it was a haven for a variety of wildlife too. We saw so many birds in the hedgerows and trees.

It was a sunny day when we visited too and we walked for miles enjoying both the scenery and wildlife.

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 Erika N, also known as BioArtGal, who is hosting the New Year, New Adventures challenge over at Art Journal Journey with my page inspired by our new walking adventure and created with lots of new crafting goodies!

I’m joining Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge and their Birds of a Feather challenge with my Winter Robin art journal page.

I’m pleased to join the fun over at Country View Challenges and their Anything Goes challenge.

As I’m using new dies, my new Big Shot die cutting machine as well as the Docrafts paper pack and Creative Expressions stencil which are new craft goodies, I’m also pleased to join the Ring in the New challenge over at Mixed Media Monthly.

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 (Ground Espresso, Hickory Smoke)
  • Tsukineko Memento Ink (Rich Cocoa)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Cold Grey IV 233)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Retro Christmas)
  • BoBunny Stamps (Snow Day #13705563)
  • Paper Pack from local craft store
  • Recycled Christmas Cards
  • Docrafts Papermania A4 Ulimate Die-cut & Paper Pack (Festive Fauna PMA160949)
  • Sizzix Thinlets Tim Holtz Alterations (Garden Greens 661206)
  • Spellbinders Die Cut Systems (Marvelous Squares, Unknown)
  • Zig Memory System 2-Way Glue (The Dual Action Glue Pen)
  • Docrafts Stick It! double-sided tape
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Hot Chocolate is like …

Hot chocolate is top on my list of warming drinks this time of year and with it getting colder I thought I would create a winter themed page with a warming mug of hot chocolate and a lovely quote I recently found.

I started by covering the page with a piece of tissue paper with circles on it which had been in my craft stash for a while; the circles were stamped using an old cardboard tube with some leftover blue/green acrylic paint from another project. I stuck the tissue paper to the page using a UHU Stic. Next I stamped hearts into the centre of each circle and also a circle and heart design stamp onto the background using black Archival Ink, both stamps are from Sugarloaf Inc. I added Milled Lavender, Peacock Feathers and Salty Ocean Distress Inks and left the page to dry. Then I covered the whole page with a thin layer of white gesso using a baby wipe. Next I used four different stencils and blue inks to add layers of patterns; this included a stencil called Moroccan from the That Special Touch of Mica range by Creative Expressions using Salty Ocean Distress Ink, a Heart Cluster mini stencil from Creative Expressions using Blueprint Sketch Distress Ink, a cross stencil from Craft Sensations using Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink and a Swoosh stencil from Creative Expressions using Summer Sky Memento Ink. The snowflakes are stamps from a Winter Woodland stamp set that was free with a magazine, they are stamped using the same Salty Ocean, Blueprint Sketch and Chipped Sapphire inks. I also used the snowflake stamps again to stamp white acrylic paint which I applied to the stamps using a brayer. With the background completed I added the quote using some black Label Letter stickers by Tim Holtz and edged them using a Poppy Red Derwent Inktense pencil and a black Uni Pin marker. The quote pays homage to how I feel about hot chocolate it reads:

Hot chocolate is like a hug from the inside.

Then I selected some glittery red paper from a Designer Paper Pack and punched out some snowflakes using a Woodware paper punch. I also punched some black paper snowflakes too which I offset under the red snowflakes to provide a shadow. They are stuck to the page using a UHU Stic. Next I drew a mug on the same red paper, cut it out and edged it using the same red Derwent Inktense pencil and a wet paintbrush.  Before I stuck the mug to the page using double-sided tape, I drew around where it was to be placed on the page and used an Ink Black Derwent Inktense pencil to create a shadow under it so it stood out more. I embellished the mug using a black snowflake, a white glitter foam snowflake and three red gemstones. To finish, I added two smaller red foam glitter snowflakes and some red gemstones to the background and then I edged the page with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker.

It’s been sunny here of late but very cold too, so when out walking with our friends we have been going to a local café on the beachfront and having a hot chocolate! As T Stands for Tuesday I’m pleased to join the T Gang and wish you all a Happy T Day!

As you can see we enjoyed a toasted teacake with our hot chocolate too (grin!). For those of you not familiar with toasted teacakes, here are some facts you may find interesting:

  • Teacakes are a sweetened yeasted bread type roll which usually have dried fruit in, and it is usually split, toasted, buttered, and served with tea.
  • Teacakes originated in the North of England and are very popular in Lancashire where I live.
  • Teacakes have regional differences for example in East Lancashire, certain areas of Yorkshire and Cumbria a teacake is plain unless you ask for a “currant teacake” and this plain teacake is a specialty of the area and is still split and served toasted with butter and also sometimes jam (jelly).
  • Sometimes the plain teacakes are confused with English Muffins however they are not the same thing. An English Muffin here in the UK is the same as in the US and is usually a breakfast item often served as Eggs Benedict or with smoked salmon.
  • We often have toasted teacakes with a cuppa mid morning for elevenses.

Here’s the pretty view from the Waters Edge café over the beach – beautiful!

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:

Hot chocolate and the quote I used ties in nicely with the  “101 Ways To Keep Warm” challenge over at Art Journal Journey which is being hosted by the lovely Chris.

I was inspired to use the four different stencils to create this page after seeing the design teams artwork over at Country View Challenges which they had created for their “Stencils” challenge.

As I used stamps and the hot chocolate quote, I’m also pleased to join a new challenge today over at The Artistic Stamper where this month’s creative challenge is “Use a Quote”.

It makes me happy to be able to join the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their “Food and/or Drink” challenge with my hot chocolate inspired page.

With my colourful blue and red page I’m pleased to join the lovely design team over at Try it on Tuesday and their “Colourful” Challenge and I’m also just have enough time to join in the fun over at Moo Mania & More and their “Put A Stencil On It” challenge too.

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, Peacock Feathers, Salty Ocean, Blueprint Sketch, Chipped Sapphire)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Summer Sky)
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White)
  • Derwent Inktense Pencils (Poppy Red 0400, Ink Black 2200)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.3mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Sugarloaf Inc. Anita’s wood mounted stamps (Heart Tile 26631, Hearts & Circles 26645)
  • Creative Expressions That Special Touch of Mica Masks (Moroccan, Swoosh)
  • Craft Expressions Mini Stencils (Heart Clusters CEMSHEART)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Winter Woodland Clear Stamp Set – free with Craft Beautiful Dec 2017 magazine
  • White tissue paper – stamped with circles
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology (Label Letters #TH93072)
  • The Works Designer Paper Pack (The Night Before Christmas HCPAP003X15)
  • Leon (X-Large Coloured Paper Pad)
  • Woodware Craft Collection Paper Punch (Large Snowflake SL120118)
  • Poundland (Christmas Craft Pack)
  • Docrafts Papermania Eleganza Adhesive Stones (3mm Red PMA351607)
  • UHU Stic
  • 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

Alphonse Mucha Exhibition

Whilst we were in Liverpool recently, my hubby treated me to the Alphonse Mucha “In the Quest of Beauty” Exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery. Mucha is one of my favourite artists, he is famous for his Art Nouveau artwork and the exhibition was amazing!

To match the pretty colours of the exhibition poster and booklet I started by covering the page with Watermelon, Guava, Peach, Butter Cream and Caramel Faber-Castell Gelatos and smudging the colours with my finger which I wet with a baby wipe. I applied two layers of gelato colour to achieve a brighter intensity of colour and then I used Earl Grey gelato around the edges of the page to frame it. Next I stamped a series of art nouveau designs over the background using Pistachio Memento Ink; this included a wood mounted circular design by Dovecraft, a scrollwork design by Royal & Langnickel and a flower design by Craft Sensations. I added the cream art nouveau border vertically on down each side of the page which is an outline sticker and then I covered the whole page in a thin layer of watered down Liquitex Matte Gel Medium using a paintbrush to fix the colours and stamped images. As Mucha always added beautiful flowers to his posters, I stencilled a flower design from Craft Sensations using Pébéo modelling paste, I used the stencil several times to build the image allowing the modelling paste dry between each application. I arranged some pretty paper flower blossoms on the page, sticking them down using double-sided tape and foam tape. I layered and curled the petals to give them more volume and used large pearls and clusters of pearls from Trimcraft, for their centres. Then I stuck the Alphonse Mucha exhibition booklet onto the page using double-sided tape and added a piece of lace trim along the bottom and a paper flower.

The lace trim is secured around two of the larger pearls so that it can be unfastened on one side to allow the booklet to be opened. I outlined a circular vintage die cut shape with a moss Spectrum Aqua marker and stuck it to the page using double-sided tape; I liked that it had text on it as we learnt so much from the exhibition information that was alongside the artwork. Then I added a butterfly from the same die cut pack using double-sided foam tape which finished the page.

We really enjoyed the Alphonse Mucha Exhibition, it was so informative and the artworks were breathtaking. As many of the artworks on show were originals no photos were allowed and in fact the lighting was subdued in the exhibition to preserve the art pieces. For photos and more information about this exhibition click here.

If you are interested here are some interesting facts we found out about Alphonse Mucha and his beautiful art:

  • Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939) was an artist and illustrator who was born in Czechoslovakia. We were surprised to find out how much he travelled throughout his career between Prague, Paris and America.
  • He rose to fame in Paris in the late 1890s with his advertising posters for the famous French actress Sarah Bernhardt. The first poster he designed for her was in 1894 for her production of “Gismonda” and it was so desirable that people stole the oblong panel prints from the hoardings. Following the success of the first poster, Mucha created a further six theatrical posters for Bernhardt. They were to revolutionise poster design with the use of the long narrow shape, the subtle pastel colours and the full-standing figure of the actress placed in a raised shallow alcove.
  • Following the success of theatrical posters, in 1896 Mucha created some 80 poster designs over the next five years for the publisher F.Champenois to advertise their products. We found out that the advertising posters reflected the modern rich Parisian life in La Belle Époque (The Beautiful Age) with a female figure central to the composition, flowers and beautiful decorative motifs.
  • Mucha’s fame also lead him to receive commissions to design product packaging and ornamental objects as well as advertising posters. We saw intricately designed perfume bottle boxes and labels as well as biscuit tins, labels and box wrappers at the exhibition.
  • Mucha had a long-lasting friendship with French Sculptor Auguste Rodin, who Mucha called Master (maître). There were many photos of them together as Mucha was a keen photographer too, in fact he also used photography to capture the female models he used for his posters.
  • His work inspired the then emerging Art Nouveau style and is easily recognisable with his distinctive graphic designs; he has inspired generations!

On exiting the exhibition I had fun trying on the different flower headdresses, which one do you prefer, we have spring, summer, autumn or winter (grin!).

Challenges

With the circle designs of the stamps, outline stickers and die cut, I’m pleased to join the “Circles” challenge over at Try it on Tuesday.

Mucha is well-known for his central female figures and elegant artwork, so I’m also joining in the fun over at Moo Mania & More for their “Make It Feminine” theme.

As my flowers design includes stencilling using modelling paste, I’m pleased to be able to join the “Stencils” challenge over at Country View Challenges.

I’m also happy to join the “All Creatures Great And Small” Simon Says Stamp Monday 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:

  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Watermelon, Guava, Peach, Butter Cream, Caramel, Earl Grey)
  • Tsukeniko Memento Ink (Pistachio)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Moss)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Dovecraft Wood Mounted Stamp (DCRS99)
  • Royal & Langnickel Clear Choice Stamp Set (Ornate Scrollwork Mini-CCS123)
  • Craft Sensations (Clear Stamps CR0274/16R1)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Alphonse Mucha Exhibition Booklet – Walker Art Gallery
  • The Range (Crafting Lace CR0546)
  • Docraft Anita’s Outline Stickers (Delicate Lace Borders White ANT8101510)
  • Trimcraft Fall in Love (Adhesive Pearls LCDOT002)
  • Dovecraft Collections Back to Basics III (Paper Blossoms DCBL005)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Vintage Die Cut Shapes)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • The Range double-sided tape & double-sided foam tape

Heart of Patina

Having visited Liverpool recently for my hubby’s birthday, I was inspired by the beautiful patina of the bronze statues that can be found around the city. The most famous statues of this sort, and also my favourite, are the Liver Birds which sit atop the Royal Liver Building along the riverfront of the Mersey. I created a patina effect heart as part of my design and also used a quote from one of my favourite poets, I hope you like it!

I started this page by crumpling up a piece of white tissue paper a number of times to create creases in it, then covering my page with glue using a UHU Stic I stuck the tissue paper on top whilst trying to retain the creased texture. When the glue had dried I added Milled Lavender, Salty Ocean, Peacock Feather and Black Soot Distress Inks using a blending tool. Then I applied the same Distress Ink colours to an acrylic block and dragged it across the page which coloured the peaks of the tissue paper creases with intense colour; I love how this highlighted the texture. Next I stencilled Pébéo modelling paste around the outside edge of the page using a patterned stencil from Craft Sensations. I also applied some white gesso with a palette knife around the edges of the page and heated it with a heat gun so it bubbled to add more texture.  Once the modelling paste had dried, I dripped on some diluted Peacock Feather Distress Ink drying it with the heat gun again. Then I applied Midnight Sparkle and Silver Grey metallic lustre around the edge of the page with my finger, which highlighted the beautiful texture from the gesso and modelling paste and darkened the edges of the page. I then added the gold flowers and circles which are peel-off stickers. To create the small hearts I covered white paper with gold leaf using Annie Sloan Gold Size and used a heart paper punch by Tonic Studios to cut them out and coloured them with the Peacock Feather Distress Ink. I then drew around the heart shapes on the background where they were to be positioned with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush maker smudging it with my finger and finally I stuck down the hearts using a UHU Stic.

To make the patina heart, I used a heart-shaped gift tag and covered it with modelling paste using the same Craft Sensations stencil. One dry I applied the same four colours of Distress Inks that I had used on the background and some gold leaf using the Annie Sloan gold size. Then I covered the heart with a thin layer of DecoArt Media crackle glaze and once it was dry I applied some diluted ink from a black Faber-Castell Big Brush maker wiping off the excess with a baby wipe to highlight the crackle. To add more shine, I applied more gold leaf around the edges of the heart. For the quote, I used paper from a Design Pad by Craft Sensations and stamped the words using black Archival Ink and an alphabet stamp set by Dovecraft. I edged the paper with a black Faber-Castell Big Brush maker and some gold online stickers, and then I stuck it to the page using double-sided tape; this finished the page.

Have you heard of Atticus before? He is quite a new phenomenon and is very well known on Instagram for his poetry. He is a young writer from Canada and it’s hard to find out much about him as he is quite mysterious and prefers to stay anonymous. He wrote a book of poetry called “Love her Wild” which is amazing and you can find more of his work on his website, Facebook and/or Instagram sites.

The Royal Liver Building is home to two fabled Liver Birds, one watching over the city and the other out to sea. Legend has it that if these two birds were to fly away then the city would cease to exist. “Liver” in this case is pronounced “live” as in “alive” and “er” – “live-er”.

The Royal Liver Building opened in 1911 and is one of the most recognisable landmarks in the city of Liverpool. It’s located at the Pier Head and along with the neighbouring Cunard Building and Port of Liverpool Building and collectively these buildings are known as the “Three Graces”.

This building is privately owned, so we popped into the reception area to take a peek and we discovered the most amazing marble entrance hall (grin!).

Here’s my hubby’s birthday treat, at Rococo café which you may remember from a previous post of mine. My hubby had a Malteser (malt ball) slice and I had lemon cake with our green tea and also cucumber or mint/lemon infused water – delicious! We also had a sandwich, but had eaten it before we remembered to take pictures!

As T Stands for Tuesday – I’m saying a big hello and welcome to the T Gang and wishing you all a very Happy T Day!

This black cat was adorning the window at the café – Happy Halloween!

I’m posting my page a little earlier than usual so I can join in the weekend fun with Yvonne from Meggy’s Way. You can enter any project to win some fabulous napkins and Yvonne is very kindly providing us with this wonderful Halloween treat!

Challenges

I’m pleased to join Elke from Meerwolkenleben who is hosting the “Landscape of the Soul” challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the wonderful quote I used.

I’m also pleased to be able to join the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their “Anything Goes” 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:

  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Milled Lavender, Salty Ocean, Peacock Feathers, Black Soot)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Craf-T Products Lustre Rub-ons Color Kit #4 (Midnight Sparkle, Silver Grey)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.5mm)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • DecoArt Media Crackle Paste
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Poundland Design Pad (Vintage Chic Creations CR0701/PL4)
  • Wilko (Luxury Gift Tag)
  • White tissue paper
  • White paper
  • Gold leaf
  • Tonic Studios Paper Punch (Classic Heart 858E)
  • Elizabeth Craft Designs Peel-off Stickers (Gold 0442)
  • Annie Sloan Water Based Gold Size
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape

Contemplation

I had fun creating this page and it is a great reminder of a lovely area of pools and fountains we discovered in Liverpool last week. We were there for my hubby’s birthday and this space was a welcome respite and such a peaceful and relaxing place that you could easily contemplate life from there. It had a beautiful lunar pool and a row of nozzle water fountains, so I got creative and created my page of contemplation. The design is also inspired by some blog challenges with its circles, glass and blue monochrome palette.

For the background I chose pages from an old Pear’s Cyclopaedia which detailed information about the universe and planets to match the lunar pool that we saw; I stuck these pages down using a UHU Stic. To depict the water I chose blue colours for this page and also circular patterns, so I stencilled a circle mask by Dutch Doobadoo using Chipped Sapphire and also Mermaid Lagoon Distress Ink with a blending tool. To soften some of these colours I spritzed the page with water and dabbed the ink with a piece of kitchen towel. Next I added strips of a blue dotted paper washi tape from The Works, ripping the edges so it faded into the background more. Then I stencilled the large circles using the same Dutch Doobadoo mask and coloured their centres with Aqua Dolce, Snow Cone and Boysenberry Faber-Castell Gelatos smudging the colour with my finger which I wet with a baby wipe to make it easier to blend.

I wanted to add lots of dimension to these large circles so I started by defining the edges of them using the Dutch Doobadoo mask again to apply some modelling paste. When the paste had dried, I painted it with white DecoArt arcylic paint so the circles stood out more and then covered them with glossy accents. While the glossy accents was still wet, I added white, dark blue and light blue glass beads into the gaps of the circle design to add more interest. I also covered the whole of the dark blue circles with glossy accents so they had a lovely shine; I think they look a bit like glass. I covered the background where I planned to place each of the quotes with a thin layer of white gesso using my finger and once dry, I added the three quotes which are rub-on transfers by Royal & Langnickel. These quotes seem to be perfect for contemplation:

“Worry not that no one knows of you; seek to be worth knowing”  –  Confucius

“Seeing yourself as you want to be is the key to personal growth”  –  Anonymous

“Thinking is the talking of the soul with itself”  –  Plato

I added some lines around the quotes with an old gift card using Teal and Navy Spectrum Aqua markers so they stood out more. I arranged some pretty blue mini gel stickers on the page with some small white flowers substituting the gem centres for blue gemstones to match my blue monochrome theme. To finish, I coloured some of the paper washi tape and also edged the page using a Navy Spectrum Aqua marker, smudging the ink with my finger.

This tranquil space can be found at Chavasse Park, across the road from Albert Dock next to the Liverpool One Shopping Centre. It’s a beautiful sight with the water, mature trees and grasses. The open pools take on a rippled effect that simulates the water of the nearby docks and the lunar pool remains still, reflecting the surrounding urban environment during the day and the sky at night; it symbolises the impact of the moon’s cycle on the tides.

These nozzle fountains display a wave pattern that emulates the ebb and flow of the tides.

Here I am behind the nozzle fountains trying not to get wet while hubby takes my photo (grin!).

Challenges

My contemplation page with the positive quotes is perfect for the “Landscapes of the Soul” challenge over at Art Journal Journey so I’m pleased to be able to join Elke from Meerwolkenleben who is hosting this month’s challenge.

All the circles on my page ties in nicely with the “Circles” challenge over at Try it on Tuesday.

I also chose my favourite colour, blue, as it seemed appropriate for the water and stayed true to this colour so I could join the “Monochrome” challenge over at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge.

With the glass beads and glass like effect I created with the Glossy Accents, I’m also joining in the fun over at Mixed Media World and their “Anything Mixed Media Goes with a Twist (Use or Imitate Glass)

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
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Chipped Shappire, Mermaid Lagoon)
  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Aqua Dolce, Snow Cone, Boysenberry)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Teal, Navy)
  • Pébéo Modeling Paste
  • Dutch Doobadoo Dutch Mask Art A5 (Geometric Tiles 162478)
  • Pears Cyclopaedia 2007-2008 Edition
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Sentiments (Positive Quotes #ROY554 Rub-on)
  • The Works The Craft Place (Spotted Paper Tapes)
  • Brighton Bead Shop (Glass Beads)
  • Home Bargains (Mini Gel Stickers 30287)
  • Home Bargains Special Occasion (Mini Decorative Stickers 22740)
  • B&M Craft Goody Bag (Turquoise)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic

Thank you flowers!

We always enjoy walking with our friends and their dog, who is called Chase. Last weekend we were lucky enough to look after Chase while our friends were away – she is amazing and such a joy to be around! I received some beautiful flowers from her as a thank you (grin!), and they have inspired my page.

The flowers have a very vintage look and feel about them with the beautiful old-fashioned roses and the pink, green and white colour scheme so my page colour and design is inspired by this. I started by covering the page with Pébéo White Gesso and once dried I applied Topaz Spectrum Aqua Marker and Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker by scribbling the inks onto an acrylic block, spritzing them with water and dripping and pressing the ink onto the page. I stamped cogs from a Steampunk stamp set by Docrafts using Pistachio Memento Ink and then I added green borders to the top and bottom of the page which are rub-on transfers. Next I collaged pink paper doilies and also some torn pieces of pretty rose design paper from a Design Pad by The Works. I edged the torn papers with the Dark Sepia Big Brush marker and stuck them all to the page using a UHU Stic. I used rub-on transfers from the same set to add the rose and butterfly image onto the papers on the far left-hand side of the page. Then I arranged a collection of different elements which included: two square rose images are stickers from a Botanicals Docrafts Papermania sticker set which I edged with the Dark Sepia Big Brush marker and then stuck to the page; a die cut shape with a postage stamp mounted on top with double-sided foam tape and embellished with a gold border outline sticker; and a tag and “Chase” name plate which are handmade as detailed below.

The postage stamp is from my hubby’s childhood stamp collection which he kindly gave to me for Art Journalling (grin!). It’s from Hungary and dates back to 1970, and it details a Peugeot Vintage car from 1894. The scene is beautiful and the colour scheme matched the page wonderfully. If you look closely it even has a little dog on the far left-hand side (double grin!).

To create the tag on the bottom left-hand side of the page, I cut some pink card from Docrafts Papermania and also some green paper from a Craft Asylum Paper Pad into a tag shape. I then stamped the green paper with a paw image by Stampendous using Pistachio Memento Ink and stuck it on top of the pink card using a UHU Stic. I added a gold border using outline stickers and a white dog Designer Vinyl from Craftime which I outlined with a black Derwent Graphik marker. I also stamped the paw image using Emboss ink onto some pink card and covered it with white Stampendous embossing powder. I shook the excess powder onto a piece of scrap paper and tapped the card against the table to make sure I’ve removed any stray powder. 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 image until the embossing powder changed to a glossy finish becoming smooth and dimensional. I cut the paw out in a circular shape, stuck it to the tag using a UHU Stic and once the glue was dry outlined it with the black Graphik marker and a white Pentel gel pen. I punched a hole in the tag, edged it with a circular gold outline sticker, added the white cord and stuck it to the page using double-sided tape. To finish the tag I added a pink paper rose that I recycled from a gift tag. For the “Chase” name plate I used the same green paper and paw stamp, added a border that I cut from a sticker set by Docrafts Papermania and stuck on some gold alphabet outline stickers, it is stuck to the page using double-sided foam tape. To finish the page I added a green cameo, lace flowers and rhinestone flowers using Ranger Glossy Accents.

Seeing the flowers everyday and having a great companion like Chase was good for the soul so I’m pleased to join Elke from Meerwolkenleben who is hosting the “Landscape of the Soul” challenge over at Art Journal Journey.

With my pink inspired page I’m pleased to be joining a new challenge blog today called Allsorts Challenge Blog and their “Think Pink” theme.

 I’m also joining in the fun “It’s a Dogs Life” challenge over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with my man’s best friend inspired page.

As I always enjoy using different stamps and stamping techniques to create my pages, I’m also pleased to join the “October Challenge: Anything Goes!: (stamping MUST be included)” over at Craft Stamper.

Here are the flowers that inspired my page; the pink, green and white colour combination is very elegant and the vintage looking roses have a wonderful fragrance.

The flowers fill our room with a lovely scent and look so beautiful

Chase is a Northern Inuit, she is such a beauty and has the most gentle and loving temperament.

Here she is sitting in the garden in the sunshine after her lunch and a long walk along the beach, she loves the sea!

She looks really cute when she is sleeping too! Actually I think she may be peeking (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:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Topaz)
  • Tsukienko Memento Ink (Pistachio)
  • Tsukienko Emboss Embossing Stamp Pad (Clear)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Dark Sepia 175 B)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm)
  • Pentel Hybrid Gel Grip pen (White)
  • Stampendous Embossing Powder (Detail White Opaque)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Steampunk DCE907125)
  • Stampendous wood mounted stamp (Tiny Paw AA017)
  • Dovecraft Collections Floral Muse (Paper Doilies DCDLS004)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Design Block)
  • Docrafts Papermania Botanicals (Label Stickers PMA157234)
  • Docrafts Papermania Mini Cards & Stamp Set (Capsule Geometric Mocha PMA105306)
  • Craft Asylum 6×6 Paper Pad (Into the Woods 480326)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Natural Die Cut Shapes)
  • Postage Stamp – Hungary 1970
  • Poundworld (Rub-on Transfers 54743)
  • Craftime Designer Vinyls (B/W Boy & Girl PBDV02)
  • Anita’s Outline Stickers (Straight Line Borders Gold ANT8101016, Modern Alphabet ANT8101000)
  • Recycled rose from gift tag
  • Lace Flowers
  • The Works (Rhinestone Flower Stickers)
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Cameo Embellishments)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents
  • UHU Stic
  • X-Press It double-sided tape
  • The Range double-sided foam tape