Saturday 29 March 2014

Darcy Journalling Month 3 {with Eclectica³ Ellen Vargo & Lin Brown Stamps by Darcy Wilkinson}

Hi Everyone, Darcy here, back with another journalling page for you to try out. But first a huge thank you to everyone who took part last month. I loved looking at your journal pages, I was seriously impressed with the amount of work that went into those pages. they were complicated pages, and you all did brilliantly, so well done!

Winner of Month two is Krafty Pieces - Carol please contact me to choose an A5 stamp from any of my Eclectica³ Darcy UK collections.

This month is a bit easier.As in, not so many techniques, but it is a bit wild and funky!

 Usually when I do a page, I have an idea of the final focal image. that is my starting point, once I have that in my mind I work back over and come up with a background that will set off my focal image. Of course things change along the way, but I usually have an idea of the direction that I am taking. Well that didn't happen this month. I love Ellen Vargo's new stamps, but as there is no focal image I was a little lost as to how to begin. So I threw caution to the wind and just got stuck in. I figured the paints and stamps would dictate what happened. 

This is what I came up with. It is my Alien Terrarium. How I imagine plants would be grown on a spaceship or on an alien planet...ok  so maybe that is just me lol

I started with texture. I glued in some book pages, but I did not add glue right to the edges. once the glue was dry I was able to peel up the edges and rip part of the book paper away. This does 2 things, it softens the text and also creates wonderful raggedy edges. Rip away any parts that are loose. 

Now to add some colour. I knew I wanted to play with Lin Brown's new paints. they looked so yummy, but the colours are so different to ones I am used to, so where to start?

Firstly, I pulled out some translucent colours that i thought might work well with Lin's paints. I painted little squares as you can see. This gave me a great indication of what colours would look good next to each other. 

Now I had this range of colours, all translucent, I needed to know how they would mix. So I made this chart, mixing each of Lin's paints with all the other colours that I had pulled out. For me Chartreuse comes out as a winner, as it blends so nicely with all the other colours. 

Using my paint chart, I mixed up Chutney with Hey pesto, and also with chartreuse. I used these three to colour the bottom part of the pages. At the top I created mixes of Chartreuse and Tikka, and also Chartreuse with London Bus.

Keeping the theme of light side and dark side, I used Lin's stencil PS001. On the dark side I used a mix of Snowflake,Chartreuse and Tikka. on the light side I stencilled with just Chutney.  I then inked up Ellen's sketchy circle from EEV02, and stamped it over the larger stencilled spots. 

Next I used the triangle stamp from EEV01. I wanted the size and shape but not the lines, so I stamped in snowflake and then filled in each shape. 


Once these were dry I painted some with Beach Hut and some with South Pacific. When I had the depth of colour that I liked, a couple of coats on some of them, I then stamped each one again with black archival. This is such a bold border it is not needed all the way around. 

You might think that involved unnecessary layers, why do the white layer I hear you ask? Great question. These are translucent colours, and as such they do not cover up what is beneath. If I had used the blues straight onto the page , this is what you would have seen. The spots underneath are showing through, and the blues look dark and lifeless. By using the snowflake layer we create a great base for the blues, making sure they are true and vibrant.  

Of course you could do your blue triangles onto white smoothy card, cut them out and glue them in, but knowing how you can block out a base layer with Snowflake before adding a translucent is a handy thing to know. 

At this point I loved it, but of course it needed something in the middle. To create a base for that I used a brayer to add a little snowflake. Not heavy or solid, just light strokes. You can see how the white picks up the edges of the book paper. To tie in the border, I added some white dots around the triangles. 

This is where it started to look like an alien planet to me!

How would aliens grow plants? or how would we grow them on a spaceship? I figured they might be in in glass tanks/terrariums. So with that slightly bizarre thought in mind I created a frame. I used the square stamp from EEV01 in a repeating pattern, though where the frame crossed over the blue triangle, I masked them off. 

Now to fill my frame with flowers. I began with stencil PS002. My first layer was Chutney, I dried this, then replaced the stencil and shifted it ever so slightly and added a layer of snowflake. Again I dried this layer, replaced the stencil and shifted it to the side again before adding Charteuse and Hey Pesto. By shifting your stencil from side to side only by a couple of millimetres you can create light and shadow in your colours. 

I used my finger to add a little Eggplant to the inside of the frame, then I filled in the blank areas with 2 layers of text. First I stamped a text stamp from ELB06 in Potting soil, I immediately wiped this back with a dry baby wipe. then I restamped the text using Watering Can. 


You can now see 3 layers of text. First the book page, way in the background, then the smudgey brown text and finally the grey text . It looks blurry in this close up, but in real life the brown creates a good shadow. I also edged the leaves with a sharpie fine pen. I did not want the text to be bold, which is why I used the brown and grey and not black. 

Now to add a little depth to the frame. I painted a piece of smoothy card with Chartreuse, then I stamped the square from EEV01 lots of times with a mix of Chutney and Eggplant. I cut out just the centre section of the squares, and positioned them over the black squares that are already in the book. 

I now had a decision to make, do I cut around the bit where the new square will cross the blue triangles? or do I cover it up?

I decided to cover it up. This creates some strange layers, the black square is behind the blue triangle, but the Chartreuse square is on top.. Of course if you are going for a realistic look, this simply wouldn't work, but I like the contradiction. However it is something to consider when you are layering up items. You will see my leaves go over the frame aswell. If it truly was a glass frame this would not be possible, but we are artists and therefore anything is possible.. yes?

Now to add another layer and more dimension. I mixed some Grunge Paste with Chutney and stencilled through PS005. While the paste was still damp I stamped into it with text from ELB06. Once dry I painted the flower with snowflake. Again we are messing with the laws of perspective, by having the large flower come over the frame. 

I coloured the flower with Beach Hut and South Pacific, then added Treasure Gold Ltd Ed2 and White Fire. It need a stem, so I used the stem and bud from PS003. I painted that with Chartreuse and Hey Pesto, then added Treasure Gold in Olive Bronze. As a final touch I added more white dots. 

I then moved to the left page, I have no idea why I did the right side first? I used exactly the same techniques to create a second frame. 

I stamped a black frame using the long bar stamp from EEV03. I then stencilled and painted the leaves from PS006. 


Again I outlined the leaves with a fine Sharpie pen. 

I then added the coloured part of the frame, again cut smaller than the black layer and glued on top. 

I created the top layer in this frame using stencil PS004, grunge paste and fresco paint.  I stamped into the flowers with text from ELB06, and finished them with Treasure gold Onyxite and White Fire. The right of the frame looked bare, so I brought back the very first stencil from the background, PS001. I used Grunge Paste, followed by Treasure gold in Royal Amethyst and White Fire

Again we have the contradiction, some bits of the frame are behind the blue pods, the flowers from inside the frame, are actually outside it... It shouldn't work, but it does. 

how many of you use Treasure Gold, hands up, don't you just love it? but, how many of you forget to go back and polish it after it has dried?

Don't forget! just look at the shine on those seed heads. 

I created a small frame at the top of the left page, this time I used the skinny border from EEV03, done in Seaweed and South Pacific, it ended up looking like danger tape lol.. maybe that is fitting for our spaceship? 

I added the text from ELB06, and filled inside the frame with SM15 and Watering can Archival ink.

SM 15

I finished by adding a few more white dots here and there, and filling in some of the background with SM15. 

The left side me this is like looking through a window to an alien land beyond.. do you see it?

the right side finished. 

Not having a direction with this page was frustrating, and at times I felt it was fighting me, or I was fighting with it lol but it all turned out ok and I like my freaky alien/spaceship plants. 

Ideas for you to explore this month:
  • using ripped book paper as texture
  • Grunge paste, tinting and stamping into
  • Masking off areas with scrap card 
  • Using mainly translucent paints
  • Mixing translucent paints to create new shades
  • Using a white pen to highlight
  • Shifting stencils from side to side  to create shading when adding colour
  • Glueing in stamped images to add a layer
  • Using Treasure Gold
  • Create a paint swatch/pallette to choose shades from
  • Create a window/frame to a view beyond
See you next month, Darcy x

P.S next month I will be using Ellen's stamps,with Jo Firth Young's paints and stencils, if you would like to play along. 

If you would like to join in then please link up how you were inspired by the techniques presented above using the linky below (this is a separate link to the weekly PA challenges). This journal challenge will remain open for a month, and will end the day before my next journal page. 

Please follow the guidelines below, and enter your journal page to be in with a chance of winning one of Ellen Vargo's stamp plates PLUS a Lin Brown stencil.

  • This challenge is to show how you have been inspired to action by this month's example make sure in your blog post you explain what part or technique prompted you to create a page of your own. 
  • Make sure you have your journal page entry linked up by 5pm (London time) April 25th 2014. 
  • Winner will be announced the following day.
  • There will only be ONE draw, ONE winner. You may link up as many times as you like but each name will only go into the draw once.
  • Please don't feel you need to copy the example exactly.
    You are also welcome to use any stamps/ products / substrates you have to hand, we do not expect you to exclusively use PA products - but of course it is lovely when you do!


Helen said...

Darcy, how could you think we wouldn't like this? It is gorgeous!! Love all the layers and the colours work so well together. Can't wait to get started.

Janet said...

congrats Carol on your win

Wow !!! Darcy two more fabulous pages can't wait to get started

Dana said...

FANTASTIC inspiration Darcy!!! I can't wait to get going!

Julie Lee said...

I really love your work, Darcy and this is no exception! I adore how you create so many layers yet manage to bring it all so wondrously together: you are a most talented artist! Julie Ann xxx

PaperArtsy said...

Gorgeous. Love this Darcy! My fave so far. Lots of details and great composition. How nice is that texture!

Deborah Wainwright said...

Loving all the layers and vibrant colours Darcy and love how the blue flower ties it all together xx

Anonymous said...

Darcy, that's an incredible page. There's so much going on & yet it all works. I love the blue around the edges & the flower on the right hand page, but the entire page is fantastic.

Kathi said...

This is fabulous. I love all the layers and details and how you played with broken planes and perspectives.

Lots of inspiration here.

Thank you!

craftytrog said...

Looks really cool! I love it Darcy! Might have to paint in a little tardis through my window! Lol! xxx

ionabunny said...

Congrats to Carol. Love these pages. The frame is fantastic and the spacey plants. Great background colours and textures.

PaperArtsy said...

Oooo this is cool and funky, like how you used Ellen's stamps.


craftimamma said...

I agree with Helen having seen your tweet wondering whether we would like it. Darcy this is fabulous and I am neither a journaler nor generally do I use bright colours but I do love your pages...........a lot!

Lesley Xx

Colleen said...

Oh my this is amazing! I just love everything about it. I can't wait to give it a try. Of course I don't have all the same stuff yet I will be rummaging around to see what I have that may work. Thanks for the great directions.

Jay said...

What a awesome idea..when in doubt go in full force huh..worked out good.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic pages Darcy! Love how you've framed your plants on both pages. Sue C x

massofhair said...

Best pages so far Darcy, loving your Alien terrarium. Enjoy seeing your process. So inspirational once again. Thanks for such detailed instructions.

You are a fantastic ArTisT, so clever and am glad you are so full of genius and creativity:-) xxx

Words and Pictures said...

Wowzer - what amazing pages... so many ideas and possibilities sparked off by this post - thank you!
Alison xx

Lucy Edmondson said...

This is absolutely gorgeous, Darcy!

Lucy x

Gina said...

I did not know you were supposed to buff treasure gold after using it! I found one lonely pot of it at michael's once and now I have a better idea how to use it :) Your terrarium is very creative!

Johnna Moore said...

I didn't know you were supposed to buff treasure gold either LOL! Thank you Darcy lot's of inspiration. Just need to break out your flamingo stamp on this one!

Cocofolies said...

Two great AJ pages again, and what a fabulous artist you are. I love all the ideas and directions you suggest that we explore further, thank you Darcy!!! Hugs, Coco x

Etsuko said...

Great great work Darcy! And this is really an alien planet, that's world wonderful. Thank you for so many techniques and colours combo. xx

Kezzy said...

Wow wow wow absolutely awesome journal page, love it. Kezzy :-) xxx

Quirky Shepherd said...

I have never done any journal pages but this makes me WANT TO!!!!! I will definately have a go.

craftytrog said...

Loved making this page Darcy, & look closely...there's a little blue box flying across my page! ;o)
Alison xxx

ionabunny said...

Hi Darcy, once I got over my block and started LOL I really enjoyed this. My view beyond remains as of yet empty as once I added my pop of orange I found I really liked this and am a bit afraid I may add more and ruin it. Maybe I'll do some tissue stamping to see what shapes/colours work. Really want to use the flowers from PS007 but can't decide on bulrushes or mad spiky flower. Oh, just moved my moth to bottom left and had a flower in/out of the frame revelation. Will work on that later. Off to round up some more sheep. The lambs are spronking all over the place......

Unknown said...

I liked the use of book pages, that's a great idea. I'm wondering about using newspaper or magazines to do something similar. I really love the look of text in art work, but can't stand my own handwriting!

ionabunny said...

Hi Darcy, thanks for popping over and the idea about using snowflake. Not so good with a brush but have often used a cocktail stick so will give it a go. Have a few white pens, satisfaction highly variable, but will try and find a posca since a few people have mentioned that recently. Hugs