Wednesday, 25 April 2018

WOYWW #464: Image transfers with the Gelli plate

Hello to all my WOYWW friends and other lovely people visiting! I'm here again for another round of desk share. Before I get started though, I must relay some news from Shoshi, who can't take part in WOYWW today. She's asked me to let you all know that she had to go back into hospital due to an infection last Monday. Hopefully, she's back home by now. Please send some healing thoughts her way for a speedy recovery! Get well soon, Shoshi!

Moving on to my desk: here's a photo I took yesterday, though the activities mainly took place over the weekend. I had just discovered a technique involving magazine image transfers with a Gelli plate after reading my bloggy friend, Lynette's recent post. She shared a video by Gelli Arts that I somehow managed to miss earlier.  When I first saw this technique, I literally had to drop everything and try it! This was the aftermath of my frantic printing session and it looks like Oreo got bowled over as well:

This technique works remarkably well under the right conditions, though sometimes it's a hit and miss affair. Luckily, some of my "fails" resulted in some exciting grungy textures. Images from a Vogue magazine worked best for me, but I didn't get good results with book pages. I've also tried transferring laser and inkjet prints but that didn't work at all. I think it's all about how the ink in the original image interacts with the paint on your Gelli plate. 

Here's an image imprint left on my Gelli plate, after I had applied a thin layer of dark paint and pulled it off with a magazine page. Some of the paint gets left behind and at this point, you should be able to see whether you will get a good transfer. Then it's just a matter of pulling the dark paint off with a lighter layer. (Please refer to the original video for full instructions.) The orientation of the final print will be the same as the original image, which is important when you want to transfer text. 

Here are a few other prints I pulled, mainly of people, but this technique can also be used to transfer other images (buildings, landscapes, objects, etc). I've found that high contrast images with a light background work best. 

And here are some of my fails that resulted in grungy textures. You might still be able to tell what the original image was. I will use these for backgrounds rather than focal points - in a way, they're more exciting and versatile than the successful image transfers! I might just have to create more fails on purpose!

I have a few more photos to share today. We built a huge fire at the bottom of  our garden on Saturday as we had a lot of garden waste to burn. This is what it looked like when it all burned down to ashes, just smoldering away, quietly - it was kind of magical in the setting sun - something I call a perfect moment, when everything is right with the world. The silly selfie with my son was taken half an hour earlier before the lights faded and later we had to run back to the house when a thunder storm erupted. It was all very atmospheric and I'm so glad I documented it! 

I'm off to work in an hour but I'll be around later in the week!
Thanks for all your visits - I always try to get back to everyone who comments!
Have a lovely day! 

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

WOYWW #463: Playing around with resin and other stuff

Two weeks have just zoomed by - I was going to take part in WOYWW last week, but ran out of time. I haven't been doing anything groundbreaking, but I have been trialing a few purchases, so I'm here to show those.

First off, those of you who are familiar with my desk will spot the elephant in the room immediately - two of them, actually:

I'm using 'elephant' figuratively, of course - I'm talking about those two rainbow drawer units sitting on my desk. I actually now have four of them - long story, short: I ordered two from Ryman's but they got misrouted in transit (twice!) and arrived all bashed up 10 days later, both units broken in several places, though still usable. When I complained, they sent me another set - so now I have four! They're very useful for storing bits and bobs, so hopefully my desk will be tidier from now on - yeah, right, who am I kidding?

I also managed to get my hands on a set of Pebeo Mixed Media colour resin pack in the half price sales at Hobby Craft. I really just wanted to try it but found the £15 price tag for the trial pack a bit steep! £7.50 is more palatable, especially that my first batch ended up in the bin. The resin just wouldn't set - I must have got the proportions wrong. My second attempt was more successful.

I used a silicon mould from China to make pendants. I don't wear jewellery but I do like little dangly things on journals, tags, etc. This is what I made with 10 ml resin and 5 ml hardener:

I also bought some more paint that I didn't really need, but that never stopped me! I used them on these tags:

I also got a few Sizzix dies from Amazon, which was my reward and motivation for working those extra hours over Easter:

The gift card bag was particularly good value, considering that it includes a full stencil alphabet.I find the Thinlits dies generally good value for money. 

So that's it. Not very creative, but hopefully I will have more time now that I'm back on my regular hours at work. In case you've been missing Oreo, here's a short video of him chasing a pheasant, not very successfully:

TTFN! I'll be around on Thursday, most probably.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

WOYWW #461: Fake gem stones

I'm pulling my act together and preparing this post a day ahead of WOYWW.  I expected to have some more free time, but I was asked to work more hours, which pretty much ruined my Easter weekend - boohoo. To be honest, I would have needed my time more than the money, but because I'm still on probation I felt obliged to accept. Well, at least I'll have fun spending the extra money, right? In fact, I already have, LOL!

I still managed to fit in some crafty time on Sunday and create a terrible mess as shown in this desk shot:

I can't remember what inspired me initially, but I decided to make some gem stones with cabochons and metal charms. I started out with one of the teabags that were on my desk from last week. I painted it gold, stuck a word on it and a clear glass cabochon on top. The glass magnifies the print, so even a small word cut from tiny book text shows up quite well. This is just a prototype - I'm planning to make some more. I'm sure I can use them in various projects later on.

Then I remembered that I had some of those fancy Pebeo Moon and Prisme paints lying around. I bought them more than a year ago and never used. They're really fun to play with - I don't know why I haven't tried them earlier! First, I used some in a metal pendant I found in my stash and never knew I had - I dripped two colours together (Turquoise and Emerald Green) and swirled them around a little with the back of a paintbrush. This is what I ended up with:

Next, I tried dripping some paint on the back of a large oval cabochon - I used Apricot and Carmine, if I remember correctly. I'm pretty impressed with the results, but it was difficult to take a good photo to show it to its best advantage:

I've also experimented with the Pebeo paints on top of metal charms. There's a difference between the effects the Moon and Prisme paints create. The Moon variety is the swirly one and the Prisme creates the dotted/mottled effect. I haven't tried mixing the two yet, but I think you can do that too. Here are a couple of photos of my further attempts: 

While I was looking for tutorials about the use of these paints, I bumped into a video about making fake gems with a piece of kitchen foil and alcohol inks. Since I had all the ingredients available, I had to try this technique immediately! It works really well and it's so easy! You have to crumple a piece of kitchen foil and then smooth it out. Drip some alcohol inks on the surface and allow them to blend, adding some clear alcohol to facilitate the process. Once it is dry, stick some clear glass cabochons on top and cut around them: voila, you've got your gems! I only had two cabochons left to try this - I must buy some more! Aren't they pretty and they look even better in real life!

So that was my little play over the weekend. It felt really good to be back in my creative space. Next, I will try making my own cabochons from resin. 

I'll leave you with this funny photo I took of Oreo staring down the neighbour's moggy, who we  affectionately refer to as 'Fat Cat'. He's also known as 'Perimeter Cat' as he likes to walk around the perimeter of our plot, though Oreo doesn't always take kindly to his territory being invaded and we have had to break up a couple of fights. This particular encounter ended peacefully when I took Oreo in and Fat Cat wobbled away. 

Happy WOYWW! Thanks for visiting today - I'll be around as soon as I can!