Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Inspiration, Part Deux

Well, I actually made TWO cards today in the loft, but you don't get to see 'em yet, because I have two to show you from Sunday and Monday. I'm actually "ahead" for a change!

Let's get right to it!

The first one was inspired by Amy Westerman of Heartfelt Greetings blog fame. The post that got me going was this one. She didn't give it a specific name, but I decided to call it "Distress Smoosh Resist." Here's what I did with it:

For my card, I used the "En Francais" background from SU and stamped it in Adirondack Archival Black ink on Whisper White. Then I ran an Embossing Buddy over it and stamped the large swirly bird and a couple of other elements from Gel-a-tins' "Birds of a Feather" set in Versamark, embossing with clear EP. (Amy used white on hers, but the card she got her inspiration from used clear, and I liked the script showing through so I went with the clear.) After the embossing was cooled and set, I got out my nonstick craft sheet and made three "puddles" of Distress Ink on it by smooshing the inkpads down onto the sheet, side-by-side but not touching. The inks I used were Fired Brick, Worn Lipstick and Vintage Photo. Then using a makeup sponge, I picked up the lighter color (Worn Lipstick, in this case) and sponged it around on the card face using a circular motion, being sure to leave plenty of white space. After that I got another sponge and did the same with the darker of the reds (Fired Brick). And finally I did some major distressing using the same technique with the Vintage Photo. When I was finished applying the inks, I used a soft paper towel (I use Viva for my paper crafting) to rub over the card front -- this both softens/blends the inks and wipes them off the embossed bits. Then I just matted and decorated it up the way I wanted to! I think it's a really cool tech (it's probably very close to something TJ), and I'll be using it more, trying different colors. I have several Distress ink pads, but I totally need more! Like, all 24! lol Oh -- the other samp I used was from the "A Beautiful Thing" SU set, and I punched it out with the large oval punch, and backed it with a Basic Black label punch.

And then the second of these two cards was inspired by one from Michelle Zindorf's blog, "Freedom in Creating". Michelle's "painterly" style is all the rage right now, and while I know I can't really match her talent, and won't even try too often, I had to try this tutorial.

First, let me tell you that this is a very labor intensive technique. Especially if you're doing it three times to make three "identical" cards. (I started to make four but totally botched the first one.) Second, this is a very difficult technique to do if you have shaky hands! Tracing lines along other lines is not something the trembly of digits dare without much fear and trepidation. But all-in-all, I think I did a halfway decent job on it. So without further ado, here is my attempt:

Of course, I never, ever like to exactly CASE someone's work, so I didn't use the same stamps as Michelle. And, of course, she used EXACTLY the perfect stamps for this in hers. I don't even own the same flower stamp set. So I substituted a different SU one for the flowers ("Stem Silhouettes"), and a different swirl (SU's "Baroque Basics" swirl). And of course it was harder to use those. But, as I said, I'm not too bummed with how it turned out. I think from now on I will probably save the Zindorf techs for special one-of-a-kind cards, though!

On a personal note, things are better around here. I finally poured out my depressed guts to my mom, who is an amazing prayer warrior, and somehow the very next day the spirit of oppression that had been eating my lunch for the past week just really seemed to lift! Things are better with the teenager, and even though Bjorn still has lots to be concerned about (like the fact that the insurance company is going to total his car), we seem to be getting along better, too. God is so amazing. I appreciate all the prayers that have been prayed on my behalf, BTW, so if you've been praying for me, please know that your prayers certainly are playing a part in helping me through this spiritual battle! Don't stop, please! As you well know, it's a never-ending struggle (well, as long as we're on this earth), but I am always SO thankful for the brighter days!

Okay, it's getting a bit late, and I'd really like to get a few more negatives done so I can make some more Bible verse stamps. I don't know if I'll get around to making them tonight, but if I get the negs done, then I'll be ready to go tomorrow (and the ink will be dry so there'll be fewer chances of scratches and smudges on them).

Cheers, and have a great day Wednesday (or Thursday if you're in Australia or New Zealand or along in there!)

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