Back in April we ran our very first Spring Art Competition, which was a fabulous success, and we received many wonderful entries. One of the prizes for the overall winner was to become a Guest Designer for a day and to have a spot on this blog.
Our talented winner was Romana Isova and today she takes her place for the very first time. I am absolutely delighted to introduce her to you, first with a little about her and then with a fantastic project. This is a long post but very well worth the read, so pull up your chair and enjoy.
I asked Romana how she started stamping and to tell us how she felt about winning the competition.
'I think it started in 2013. That year I wanted to make some birthday and Christmas cards for my relatives. At the same time I discovered creative videos on YouTube, about paper crafting and art journals and together with it I also found the whole creative world out there. I wanted to try to see if I could also create something like that, so on March 2014 I made my first art journal page. Great thing about art journaling is that the pages could be much bigger than cards, so there is more space to express the creative ideas. And with mixed media techniques, the possibilities really are endless'.
How did I feel about being a Spring art competition winner?
'I need to say, that it was a great surprise. I did not expect it, so I could not believe it for the first time. And then I was so happy and bowled over by it at the same time. And when I read that I should make another piece of my art for a Guest Design Team spot, my head was completely out of any ideas in that moment and I was afraid that I will not be able to create anything like my competition piece. But fortunately, after few hours only it was a pure pleasure...and I really enjoyed this new GDT project'.
And here it is.
Stamp sets from Chocolate Baroque: Floral Mannequins and Haberdashery, Texture Fragments for "textile" patterns, Damask Panel for background pattern and corner stamp from SteampunkButterfly.
for the shop window: mix of Brusho watercolor powders - Scarlet, Crimson, Prussian Blue and Emerald green and Color Burst watercolor powder - Merlot,
for background: mix of Prussian Blue Brusho powder and Merlot Color Burst powder,
for drapery and carpet: Tim Holtz Distress ink pads Milled lavender, Seedless preserves, Dusty concord,
for fabrics: Distress ink sprays Spun sugar, Mustard seed, Spiced marmalade, Twisted citron and Tumbled glass and Distress ink pads Milled lavender, Wild honey, Carved pumpkin, Peeled paint and Broken china and for the haberdashery pieces: Distress ink pads in all these colors,
for brown pieces: Distress ink pad Vintage photo and
for shading of all pieces: Distress ink pad Hickory smoke.
Slightly textured 90 lbs watercolor paper - 24x32 cm for background and shop window,
Canson Mix Media 138 lb for all stamped pieces
Silk (flower wrapping) paper for "fabrics".
1. First I made a colored paper for a shop window. I sprayed watercolor paper with water, added red Brusho powders and a pinch of blue. Then I used a brush to make a first layer of color. Until I had the final color I wanted, I kept adding the water and red powders and also just a little bit of Brusho Emerald green, because it is an opposite color of the red on the color wheel and make the red more dull. I always moved the brush in the same direction (from right to left and back), so at the end I had a texture resembling the wood grain. After everything was completely dry, I used a matt acrylic medium as a sealer. I cut the paper into strips, scored them a little bit for the texture, finished the edges with Jet black Archival ink and used the double sided tape adhesive tape to connect them into the shop window.
2. Next I sprayed my background watercolor paper with water, I added Merlot powder and with the brush made my base flat color layer (quite pink). I let it air dry, so the final color was more vibrant. After that I stamped background stamp repeatedly with clear Versamark ink on the dry page and than sprinkled the page gently with the Merlot and also Prussian Blue powders. With the dry brush I worked the powder into the pattern stamped with Versamark. Than I sprayed the page with water again and spread both colors on the page with brush . The stamped pattern remained darker, but it's necessary to be careful with the water (with too much water the dry pattern will be too blurred and also with too much powders, they are very intense, the whole page will be darker and the pattern less visible at the end. I trimmed the paper a little bit, so it is slightly narrower than the shop window and can be completely hidden under it.
3. I stamped drapery, carpet, mannequins, corners, shop sign and haberdashery pieces on the mixed media paper with Jet black archival ink and heat set it with my heat tool, so I could color them with Distress ink pads without smudging. I cut them out and finished all the edges with black waterproof Faber-Castell India ink marker. For the haberdashery I cut out separate masks (from sticky masking tape I stamped the pictures on) for brown and colourful parts, so I could color them safely without mixing the colors. I used foam applicators and also daubers for smaller pieces.
4. I cut out rectangles from white silk wrapping paper I had from my birthday flowers and I sprayed them with Distress sprays in rainbow colors. I dried it with my heat gun. After that, for every piece I used a darker Distress ink pad color, stamped a pattern on it and dried it again. I crumpled the papers several times so it was easier to work with it and arranged them around the mannequins. I used the colored paper ribbons from my stash and stamped buttons to finished the look of the textiles.
5. Finally I completed the page. For more dimensional look I used also a black adhesive fun foam. I used two layers under the shop window and also the drapery and one layer on the back of the mannequins and lower step of the carpet. So the final layers of the page are - black card stock in the same shape as the shop window as a base for the whole page, violet background patterned paper, one layer of the fun foam frame around the page, upper carpet step directly on the background violet paper and lower carpet step with one layer of the fun foam on the back . Then the mannequins with one layer of the fun foam on the back and the haberdashery on the upper and lower steps of the carpet. After that the second layer of the fun foam around the page and under the top drapery and on the top of it the corners with shop window and shop sign.
For bigger parts I used the double sided adhesive tape, but the mannequins stands are glued with Distress collage medium and the haberdashery with Rangers Glossy accents which I also used (in small spots) under the "fabrics".
I hope you have enjoyed my project and that you might want to try it too.
Thank you Romana for entering our competition and for designing this colourful and inspiring project. I am sure you will all share in our thanks to Romana and hope that we see her again on this blog some time in the future. In the meantime you can always catch up with her on her blog.