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Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Guest Post - A Fishy Tale by Annie Watkinson

Today's guest post is from Annie Watkinson, who has created some very special projects. This is quite a long post,  so please sit back, relax and enjoy.

Products Used
Cosmic Shimmer - Aqua
Dylusions Spray Inks - Fresh Lime, Vibrant Turquoise, White Linen
Staz On - Teal Blue, Olive Green
Memento - Tuxedo Black
DistressInk - Walnut Stain
Promarkers - Orange, Bright Orange, Yellow
Faber-Castell PITT Artist Pen - White 101

My grandchildren have a fish tank, and love to sit and gaze as they swim round and round. Fish are very relaxing! Chocolate Baroque’s lovely stamps, ‘Something Fishy’ inspired me to try and recreate the gentle movement of fish and water. What I enjoy doing when I need inspiration is to create a ‘masterboard’. Put simply, this is a sheet of A4 paper on which I produce a background pattern, and then have fun cutting it up, and seeing how many projects I can make out of it! It is surprising just how many cards you can make with a sheet of A4.

So I started off picking lovely watery shades of spray inks, and randomly sprayed onto my sheet of paper. Before the ink had fully dried, I lightly oversprayed with Dylusions White Linen, then quickly sprinkled a coarse crystal rock salt on top and left it to dry. After scraping off the dry salt, I was left with a lovely watery fish tank, but it was empty!  The weeds were stamped around the edges, alternating with Staz On Teal Blue and Olive Green.

So along came the fish. I stamped and embossed the fish with clear embossing ink, and silver and gold powders. My background was now complete. I had an image in my mind of bright orange goldfish against the lovely blue background. So I stamped the fish onto white card, and then coloured and cut them out and spread them around the board. It is good to get fish swimming off the edge of the card, giving you the sense of continuation.

Now I had my background, I started to cut the masterboard up to see how I could use the various parts on the front of cards. I managed to get four cards and one bookmark out of it. Now I knew the positions of all the pieces, I went over the fish with Glossy accents, which really brought them to life. 

I also stamped and embossed the weeds onto plain vellum with clear embossing ink and silver powder, then placed them around the cards for the fish to have something to hide behind! The angel fish were stamped onto sticky backed vellum, giving them a translucent feel. The shell was stamped onto some patterned paper in Walnut Distress Ink to which I added a stick on pearl and some accents to the fish eyes, bubbles and angel fish with a white pen.

For the main card, I gave the bottom of my ‘tank’ a layer of micro beads to give the illusion of gravel. After matting all the cards on different coloured cards, I laminated the bookmark, and added a tassel.

I think you would agree that using different coloured matting really changed the mood of the cards!

We definitely would Annie. Thank you for your wonderful designs and for sharing your 'masterboard' technique; I'm sure this is something our crafty readers will want to try. If you would like to see more of Annie's work then please take a look at her blog, Serendipity Craft Room, and why not show your appreciation with a little comment or two.


  1. What a brilliant card with amazing ideas. Well done.

  2. I adore this it is so beautiful and relaxing, must look at these stamps

  3. What a lot to see and techniques! Great inspiration!

  4. What an excellent idea to see how much you can create with an A4. Lovely creations.

  5. A gorgeous collection of cards, and I love the idea of seeing how many card you can get out of an A4 sheet.

    Sue xx

  6. beautiful makes - really loving the stamps used and the techniques - fabby xx

  7. Very beautiful & colourful cards inspired by your grandchildren's fish tank. The micro beads look fantastic at the bottom of the 'tank'. Shirleyx

  8. What a great idea to split a sheet into different cards. The fish are a beautiful colour and the mix of different textures with the vellum and microbeads work together perfectly to make some really pretty cards. x

  9. great use of the masterboard - love the colours, really watery! Vellum and microbeads add texture and dimension too - all in all, a lovely set of cards

  10. Wow! Wunder-wunderschön, die Fische und die herrliche Muschel mit den Perlen.
    Ein Meisterwerk!

  11. Wow what a wonderful set. Love the large card with all the extra detail especially the pearl. Love the colours as well - beautiful

  12. WOW these are amazing! Gorgeous background and loving the embellishments.
    Linda xxx

  13. There are so many extras & interesting elements to your main card that it would be easy to sit & gaze for hours finding little new things here & there. I love that little single fish spotlighted within the circle - as if looking out of a porthole into a sea of fish. I must admit the differently background mats really do change the feel of each of the designs.
    Paula (PEP)

  14. Great fish card, I love the background the image and the colours a lot!!!


  15. Wow! Stunning projects. I love the fish tank card - gorgeous colours & the beads on the bottom were a great idea.

  16. Very unusual cards. So striking.

  17. These are amazing. Fab stamping. Inspiring ideas. tfs.
    Florence x


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