Sunday 11 March 2018

2018 #4 Whimsy: Cubes with JoFY {by Chris Cresswell}

2018 Topic 4: Whimsy

This is a lovely idea from Chris taking 'whimsy' to wood cubes! It can be a wonderful challenge to move onto a 'different' surface to those which you most commonly turn to first, what have you got in your stash to head into a 3D world? ~ Leandra

Hi everyone it's Chris Cresswell from with you today, and I'd like to share with you my interpretation of the Whimsy theme using old and new JoFy stamps: Altered Blocks. 

This theme really appeals to me because it's often my style of art journaling. I'm a great fan of Kate Crane's techniques (, an example of which featured last Sunday in Darcy's introductory post. I also enjoy creating mini art, so decided to use these wooden blocks/parts from I bought them as a set, but they are available individually too. The largest is 10cms x 10cms x 10cms. I am very much a process crafter, with no actual picture in my head of the final result. However, this often results in various U-turns and changes of direction as was the case here.

Once I had glued all the sides and assembled each block, I applied a base layer of gesso as I intended to paint all the backgrounds.

After spending a considerable amount of time and using many, various paint colours, I soon realised that painting the backgrounds directly onto the wooden surfaces just wasn't working. I love bright colours and i just couldn't achieve the effect I was after. This called for a change of direction!

So, out came the Gelli plate. I love using Fresco chalk paints on my Gelli plate. I really like the pastel, chalk finish which doesn't lose any of the vibrancy of the colours. I used different colour combinations for each cube. 

For the largest block I used; Blue Oyster, China, Wisteria, Lavender and Purple Rain Fresco Chalk paints. For the middle sized block I used: Cerise (love that new colour from Tracy Scott's new set - FFTS2), Bubble Gum, Cherry Red and Prawn Fresco Chalk paints. And for the mini block I used: Zucchini, Slimed (from FFTS2) and Limelight Fresco Chalk paints. 

I used a mixture of PaperArtsy Stencils and Carabelle Studio Art Printing plates. These are designed specifically to use on the Gelli plate.This was great fun and produced interesting backgrounds in no time. It certainly beats all that dry brushing directly onto the cube! If you haven't yet used a Gelli plate, I highly recommend you do. The PaperArtsy stencils I used were: PS001, PS023, PS026 and PS034.

The next step was equally enjoyable. I had selected together a variety of old and new JoFy stamp sets and set to work stamping out some fun images which I felt would create some whimsical scenes. I deliberately stamped using Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black as I intended to use Copic Ciao markers to colour the images. I think these markers complement Fresco Chalk colours very well. See if you agree.

I used one of JoFy's new stamp sets: JOFY 61 - I just adore those mushrooms - and added various images from some of her earlier sets: JOFY 15, JOFY 24, and JOFY 33. Her stamp sets complement the Whimsy theme so well, which is probably why I have almost all of them! 

Once coloured in to complement the backgrounds, I resisted adding some doodling which is what I would do if these images were on a larger journal page. Here I didn't think the blocks needed any further embellishing. I merely used a Sakura Pigma Micron pen to draw around the images to help make them pop.

I just love this owl from stamp set: JOFY15, and I really love the doodling around the flowers and leaves on the new stamp set: JOFY61. I think you can tell that I love the leaves!

I had great fun creating these little scenes. You might have noticed that I have cut into some of the images, changed them a little and/or turned them upside down. I am going to give this to one of my grandfairies, who will be four years old on the 10th of March. She is having a woodland birthday party, so this will be a perfect little gift to complement the birthday theme. The photo below features my two favourite images of this project. I'm off to make a couple of birthday cards and a Mother's Day card for my dear 94 year old mum, using the left over stamped images. I will post photos of these on my blog post linked to this post. I would love you to pop across!

I do hope you are enjoying all the Whimsical projects you have seen so far. Many of the PaperArtsy stamps lend themselves so well to this theme. I also hope you will consider dabbling in some altered art as I have here, taking a simple wooden block and transforming it into something fun. Until next time!
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Helen said...

Your blocks look great, I am sure they went down well at the party with your grand-daughter!

Mac Mable said...

Lots of fun and such a creative and wonderful project. Thank you for the inspiration x

Kirsten said...

These are gorgeous!!

Miriam said...

Fabulous project your blocks.

Hazel Agnew said...

Wonderful Gelli plating, great idea to decorate the cubes. Lovely birthday present for your little Grandfairy. Love your project Chris. Xx

Etsuko said...

Stunning block art Chris!! Lovely work with Jofy's fabulous stamps and bright background. I love this. Surely your grandson would have been pleased this!1 xx

geezercrafter said...

Fab creation Chris, looks like you had lots of fun with the blocks. The gelli prints are a great way to decorate them. Love the birdy sat on top, looks really cool. The Copic markers go really well with the Fresco's.

Julia said...

A lovely colourful project. Those Gelli plate prints look really good on the blocks with the Jofy images. This is full of happiness, I love it.

Artmadnana said...

Thank you everyone for these lovely comments. My little Grandfairy loved it!

Keren Baker said...

Wow! So much work. I love your backgrounds and the cubes look awesome! Fab project x

Corrie Herriman said...

Great stuff !

Lucy Edmondson said...

This is great, Chris!

Lucy x

kksb said...

Magnificent boxes of Whimsy!