Sharing my passion for handcrafted jewelry, paper making, and living a creative life.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Digital printing on handmade paper

My friend's daughter had a baby so I used my new digital grounds and mediums to create some artwork for her little grandson.  I love the Golden Digital Grounds.  I used the Digital Ground for Non-Porous Surfaces on the steam locomotive piece I did here.  For this project I used the one for porous surfaces since I was using my handmade papers.

I first prepared the papers by brushing on digital ground and letting it dry.  Then I printed my photos onto the prepared pure stinging nettle paper using a regular inkjet printer.  I glued more handmade paper (a mixed fibre and recycled paper blend) onto the 6x6 cradled boards with matte medium and then glued the photos onto the papered boards after the ink on the photos had dried.  I finished both pieces with  Golden Gel Topcoat  in a semi-gloss finish with a UV protector.  The lighter paper was good for printing the photo but next time I think I would use a darker paper for the background.

I'm looking forward to mounting some of my flower photographs using these same techniques.  I'm trying to take some of my flower photos with a light background so that more of the handmade paper shows through in the printing.  Lots of fun to come!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Studio Tour Door Prize Winner!

The winner of my door prize, a set of 4 handmade paper note cards, chosen by random number generator,
 is Lady Mudwerkes!  Congratulations, Margarete!    If you send me a convo at LizAnnasOnTheLake with your mailing address, I will get those cards to you in the mail right away.

I've really enjoyed everyone's comments so far.  I'm glad the list is going to be up for a while because I have so many more studios to visit.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Melange 'Antique' Challenge

The prompt for this month's Melange Team mixed media challenge is 'Antique.'  The monthly challenges are open to everyone so please feel free to join us any time!

My friend, Donna, surprised me with a few antique store finds this spring...some great old books to use in my mixed media.  Inside one of the books we found a wonderful bonus;

this old negative of a steam locomotive

So I scanned it into my computer and used it to create this mixed media piece.

STEAM LOCOMOTIVE :  Mixed media on cradled board, 6x6"

I cut a map of Canada out of a 1950's Canadian atlas, mounted it on card stock, and washed it with titanium buff fluid acrylic paint.  Then using a two step crackle compound and a gel stain, I created the antiqued finish.  When this was all dry, I applied digital grounds for a non-porous surface.  After drying the grounds overnight, I printed the locomotive onto the antiqued map.  I used my handmade stamps to embellish the surface and added black ink around the edges for a smokey, aged look.  I painted the cradled board black before mounting the piece with heavy matte gel.  A satin varnish was sprayed over the surface.

I debated about adding other elements but I didn't want to detract from the locomotive itself.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Join the party!

It's time for the 2nd annual "Where Bloggers Create" party, hosted by Karen Valentine from My Desert Cottage.  Hang out here for a bit and take a tour of my studio.  I have to admit that I spruced it up a bit for the party.  I hope you pick up a few ideas for your own creative space.
This is what I'm pretending my desk looks like when I'm working on my art.

Please come back and visit after the tour.  At least once a month, I'll offer another free art or craft tutorial.  I enjoy a wide range of interests and I love to teach so it felt right to use this blog to share what I've learned .  I don't anticipate running out of material for quite some time.  And in between, I'll share some other bits and pieces of my world.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Make Your Own Paper from Plants

I have been making paper for over 15 years and I love every step, from wandering around outdoors scoping out the plants to removing the finished sheets from the drying rack. It is so satisfying to use something free and renewable to create something beautiful.  Collecting plants for papermaking opens your eyes to more of our world. The desire to learn more, naturally follows as you seek to identify species suitable to the craft.

Collecting iris leaves about 15 years ago.
I first made paper in a weekend workshop taught by an instructor through an Emily Carr College outreach program .  We used cotton linters, abaca, and Japanese Kozo fibres.  Before the weekend was through I was already thinking about local plants that I might try on my own.

Swamp grass:  collected dry in late fall on left, dried fresh in summer on right

In this step by step tutorial, I'll take you through my process of making plant fibre paper, from start to finish.  See the bottom of this post for a list of supplies and materials.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

My Etsy Shop is Open!

After a 6 week 'Vacation,' my Etsy Shop, LizAnnasOnTheLake, is open for business.  I had some local card sales that depleted my stock and we just started a local Artisan Centre so I had some replenishing to do.

I'm going to try to be a little more creative with my backgrounds.  My little Nikon Coolpix takes pretty good pictures but it's hard to gauge the colour balance because each computer monitor is different.

I've tried adjusting the colour on my home computer to get it closer to the real thing but when I look at the same picture on my work computer, it is way too garish!  So for now, I'm not adjusting and I just hope that what you see is what I hope you see.

I've heard other people say that it's very hard to get a true purple.  They tend to look very blue which is especially problematic when so many of my pressed flowers are purple.

There have been some great posts on the Etsy forums about photographing pieces so I just keep trying to absorb as much as I can.  I really appreciate all the generous tips from fellow Etsians.  Any feedback is welcome!