Coffee ATCs & Stamp Show Ticket Giveaway!

Edit: the 6 tickets have been awarded for the Heirloom Stamp Show, thanks for playing! Discount presale tickets are still available if you are going and want to save a few bucks. I hope to see you there!

Hi friends! I am delighted again this year to be able to give away tickets to the Heirloom Productions Stamp Show & Paper Arts Festival happening in West Springfield MA May 31-June 1st. My only requirement is that I want to give the tickets to people who will use them so the first 6 people to leave a comment saying “I am definitely going to the Heirloom Show in MA and would love a ticket!” will get one.  So if you are going and want a tick comment now before reading the rest of the post so you don’t miss out! If you do want to go but missed the giveaway you can still preorder tickets at a discounted rate or sign up for classes on the Heirloom Productions website through May 28th. I’m not teaching this year, I am going to play and shop! I hope to see you there! Stamp shows are so much fun! I always meet good people and see interesting products that you don’t see in stores or online. I love the demos and being around energetic, creative people! Every year the folks at Heirloom have an Artist Trading Card contest and I always submit one. This year I made extra to trade! The theme is coffee:

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These were a lot of fun to make! I’m a coffee drinker (I bet you couldn’t tell!) and I have collected quite a few coffee themed rubber stamps over the years! Many were too big for ATCs which must be 2 1/2″x3 1/2″ but that demure size had me stretch my creativity and it was fun! Watch the video to see how I made these and if you go to the Heirloom show and make ATCs find me so we can trade!

Supplies:
Stamps *If ordering from one of these awesome small companies please let them know where you heard about their products! Thanks:)

Other Supplies (affiliate links used)

Remember, the first 6 people to comment telling me that they are going to the show and want tickets will get them. After that, you can purchase advance discount tickets on the Heirloom Productions website through the 28th OR pay admission at the door (it’s cheaper to buy tickets ahead of time.) I am doing it this way instead of a random draw so that I can get the winners names to Heirloom soon and people won’t have to wait around for a name to be drawn and miss out ordering online. I hope that all makes sense LOL! Thanks for stopping by and happy crafting!

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Review of NEW Waffle Flower Water Media Mat & Giveaways!

Hi friends!  I am excited because I have been testing a very special product since December. Some of you have spied it in the background of my videos and asked me about it but I really couldn’t say much publicly about it until now!

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It’s the Waffle Flower Water Media Mat which is a non glare, matte white silicone crafting mat meant for use with watercolor, gouache, acrylics and glue.  The folks at Waffle Flower asked me if I would like to be part of their video hop to introduce the mat and I said “Sure! As long as I can post my full review.” and they agreed! So make sure you leave a comment on my YouTube video if you want a chance at winning a $25 gift certificate to Waffle Flower or a Water Media Mat. After you are done You can check out all of the inspirational designers on the Waffle Flower Video hop! Like this video and leave a comment by 4/15 at each stop along your way for your chances to win the mat! I will also draw a random winner from comments left on my video (on YouTube) for a $25 gift certificate to WaffleFlower.com! Winners will be announced on Waffle Flower Blog on Wed 17th! Open Internationally!

(WATER MEDIA MAT REVIEW)
Finally I get to share a review on a product I have been using almost daily for 4 months. The Waffle Flower Water Media Mat (*Affiliate links used throughout this post) *For the full review watch the video:)

Pros:

  • Non stick
  • Heat resistant
  • Non slip/wont skid across table
  • Waterproof
  • Handy marking for taking social media photos and videos
  • Non glare
  • Protects workspace from spills and messes

Cons:

  • The white silicone stains
  • Can’t be used as a cutting surface
  • Price ($36)

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Supplies:

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I have been using the Water Media Mat for months and I have to say I really like it for reducing eye strain and clean up. If you don’t mind the staining and it’s in your budget I highly recommend it. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Layered Watercolor Resist Technique & A Chance to Win!

Edit: The winner of the $15 gift certificate to Top Flight Stamps is Vicki Kroll!

Hi friends! I have a super fun technique to share with you using stamps, a wax crayon and watercolors! Also at the end of the post I’ll tell you about a great giveaway!

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You can create some beautiful batik like images to use on your next card!

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The technique is simple and fun, Watch the tutorial to see how!

This tutorial is sponsored by Top Flight Stamps!  *USA orders of $50+ ship free!
Discount code in celebration of Top Flight Stamps 2nd Anniversary celebration: SAVE20 for 20% off all orders over $20 through the end of the month Sunday 31 March.

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Supplies:

Blog Hop & Giveaway!

It’s Topflight Stamps 2nd birthday!  To celebrate, we’ve teamed up with up some of our favorite crafters to bring you a blog hop showcasing some of the fabulous products available from Topflight Stamps.   Please hop along with us all and show all of the crafters some love!

Of course, it wouldn’t be a birthday celebration without prizes!  Topflight Stamps is giving one lucky winner a $50 Gift Certificate, and each stop on the hop has an additional $15 Gift Certificate up for grabs.  To be in with a chance to win, make sure to visit every stop on the hop and leave a comment by April 8th.

Winners will be announced on the Topflight Stamps blog on April 9th.  Good Luck!

1 Topflight Stamps Blog (DONNA) 

2 Sandy Allnock 

3 Jenny Colacicco 

4 Justine Hovey 

5 Toni M Maddox 

6 Kelly Martin 

7 Annette Allen

8 Kymona Tracey 

9 Ashlea Cornell 

10 Josefine Fouarge 

11 Lisa Hoel 

12 Laurel Beard 

13 Ericka Strange 

14 Ingrid Blackburn 

15 Dana Joy 

16 Amy Tsuruta  

17 – Lindsay Weirich (You are here!)

Make sure you visit all of the talented designers on the blog hop for inspiration and leave a comment on each post for many chances to win a gift certificate to Top Flight Stamps! Til next time happy crafting!

Brush Set Giveaway! Chicken Sketchbook Sunday & Tips for Working with Gouache!

Hi friends! I had so much fun playing with gouache in my sketchbook today. I forget how awesome gouache (opaque watercolor) paint is and how fun and forgiving it is to paint with.

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The brushes I used today were perfect for gouache and I get to give away TEN 7-piece sets and winners can pick from the unicorn or mermaid Mythos brushes by Royal & Langnickel. Do to shipping restrictions this contest is open to USA residents only. For a chance to win simply leave a comment saying what state you are from and which brush set (unicorn or mermaid) you prefer. I will draw 10 winners at random next Sunday and you will be notified by email. *You do not need to put your email in the comment, I can see it in my admin, I will contact you by the email you signed up to comment with. Don’t worry if your comment does not appear right away, if it is the first time you have commented here I have to approve it.

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Speaking or Royal & Langnickel I am the Featured Artist on the Month! You can read the article here. I am so thrilled to be featured by a company whose brushes I have used for decades, I hope you give it a read:)

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OK, now on to the Sketchbook Sunday video! I hope you enjoy it!

Supplies: (Affiliate links may be used)

Tips for Gouache:
1. Work dark to light.

2.Work in thin layers (use a light touch to layer or be more aggressive to blend back to previous layers)

3. Use alone or with other media (over watercolor and marker, under pastel and colored pencil)

4. Mat and frame under glass as you would a watercolor.

5. Do not work in thick layers because the paint can crack.

6. Paper or matboard are excellent surfaces for gouache as it can bond well. Avoid using it on canvas or acrylic primed surfaces as the paint may not adhere well.

7. Play, experiment and have fun!

I hope the video give you insight on my process. I think diving in with the dark color can give you confidence and also speeds up the process because you get the dark values established quickly and you don’t have to fight the white paint which can overtake things quickly and muddy things up. If you want more help on your art journey, including real-time versions of 2 sketchbook sunday paintings a month consider joining critique club. You can post your current paintings and get a detailed critique from me and encouragement from other members, so you can improve and reach your artistic goals. Learn more here!

And one more shameless plug for the road…

If you want to paint better birds I have a class on that too:  Texture Toolbox Feathers & Fowl where you can learn how to capture the beauty of birds and the textures of feathers and plumage by following along with four step by step real-time tutorials with patterns included. There is also an archived list of all past bird tutorials I have created in case you are looking for something specific.

Phew! That was a long post! Don’t forget to leave a comment for a chance to win a set of brushes, give gouache a chance and til next time happy crafting!

GIVEAWAY! Color It Refillable Real Brush Watercolor Markers!

8/29/18 Giveaway is closed, here are the 3 lucky winners!

Virginia Staib from Hawaii, Rachel from Alaska and Madelyn Wolfin from New York

All the winners have been contacted by email and I replied to their comments below in case there are multiple people with the same name from the same state. Thanks for playing everyone, I can’t believe how many people signed up!

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Today I am reviewing the new refillable Color It watercolor brush markers and refills. A set contains 24 watercolor brush markers in a reusable zippered case for $29.99 and refill inks are available for $5.99 per color.  I will be giving a set of these markers away to 3 lucky readers. To enter the prize draw leave a comment below telling me what state you are from and what your favorite color is. I will draw 3 winners in one week and amend this post with the winners name and email the winners. This giveaway is open to USA residents.

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Color it products can be ordered on Amazon or on the Color It website. Watch the video to see them in action!

Supplies (affiliate links used)

The Review!

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Refillable pens
  • Reusable case
  • Colors blend well with each other and water

Cons

  • Only 24 colors
  • If you purchase all the refills at once it can be expensive

Color it watercolor pens are the only refillable option for a real brush marker pen that I know of and they are easy to refill. One $5.99 bottle of ink refills a marker 15 times so it is way cheaper than buying 15 markers. I think these markers are as good as any of the other real brush markers I have reviewed. The ink flows smoothly and they feel good in your hands. The tip is slightly larger than the Zig Real brush pen but smaller than Arteza. To be clear I find all of these markers to be comparable but an advantage to Color It because they are refillable and you can buy the refill inks as you need them. The fact that no refills are available for the other brands out there has always bothered me because unlike a felt tip pen the bristles are not going to wear out so you would be tossing away a perfectly good pen. I am so glad these exist. As for there only being 24 colors available I think that’s fine because with watercolor markers you don’t need as many to blend like you do with alcohol pens and you can scribble the marker on a tile and pick up the ink with another pen to mix and it won’t harm the tip like it may with a felt tip pen. If you desire more than 24 colors that these won’t be for you. I love sustainable products and I am so happy to partner with Color it for this giveaway! I love to shout out companies actively try to do right by their customers and the environment.  Be sure to leave a comment if you want to go in the prize drawing, good luck and til next time happy crafting!

Let’s Paint a Beautiful Long Hair Cat PLUS 25 Watercolor Pencil Tips & Giveaway!!!

Howdy friends! I have seen bursting with excitement to share this project with you today! I have had a lot of requests lately to use watercolor pencils more. Watercolor pencils are versatile, portable and you can get an almost endless array of colors from just a few pencils! Today I will share a real time tutorial for painting this lovely long-haired cat (I think it’s a Maine Coon Cat) and share 25 tip to improve your watercolor pencil paintings!

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Grab your supplies (or a nice cuppa) and enjoy the show!

Tutorial
Sponsored by Amazrock! Amazerock is giving 3 lucky viewers a set of 36 watercolor pencils in a beautiful fabric storage roll. Click here to enter their giveaway!

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Here is the product page where you can learn more about these pencils and purchase them on sale (there is even an extra coupon you can get if you scroll to the bottom of the page!)

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Supplies:

25 Top Watercolor Pencil Tips!

  1. Use watercolor paper or a robust mixed media paper for best results.
  2. Choose the right surface for your project. Hot press paper is smooth like drawing paper but will withstand lots of water and aggressive techniques. Use this paper for botanical, portraits or any time you want a smooth line and lots of detail. Cold press paper is the most common paper with a bit of tooth or bumpy texture. Choose this if you want to add lots of layers. Rough paper is the most textures (as the name implies) and it great for landscapes and other subjects that have lots of rough texture where you want a more grainy or expressive look.
  3. Tape your paper down to prevent warping and it will give you a beautiful white border when you are done if you paint to the edge.
  4. You can tape your paper to any drawing board you have or use the cardboard backing from an old paper pad or use inexpensive lightweight foam core board for a lightweight option. You can also use plywood, Masonite or a free recycled paneling sample like I do! The plywood/Masonite boards are also good if you prefer to work at an easel as the extra weight will keep your painting from rocking as you work!
  5. Always test out new techniques or colors on a scrap of paper (use the backside of failed painting or cheap paper you want to use up for this!
  6. Start with an accurate sketch. Watercolor pencil (like watercolor) is transparent so you can’t simply cover up mistakes and erasing on your watercolor paper can damage it so you want to make the mistakes and corrections on your scratch/drawing paper. After your drawing is good you can transfer it to your fine watercolor paper with graphite paper or a lightbox/window.
  7. Make a palette for your watercolor pencils by sanding a cheap plastic  palette. Color the pencils on the plastic and then wet the swatch of color with a brush and paint. You can also save broken lead on the palette and add water to make paint. No more tossing broken points in the trash!
  8. Alternatively you can pick up color from the tip of your pencil with a wet brush and create wet washes and watercolor effects that way.
  9. Remember anytime you wet the pencil lead you weaken it and it will break more easily so let it dry before trying to sharpen it.
  10. Sharpening tips! For a sharp point for drawing details use a handheld or electric sharpener. Turn the sharpener, not the pencil, to avoid breakage. To conserve lead for painting large areas use a craft knife to whittle away the wood and leave the lead intact for painting.
  11. Texture tips! You can add beautiful texture to watches you create with watercolor pencils, you can spray water in a wet wash,
  12. Add salt to a wet wash or
  13. Grate dry watercolor pencil lead into a wash.
  14. For a dark like thinner and darker than you can get with a pencil try scraping into the wet paint with the edge of a cut up credit card or gift card. Great for fur, hair and veins on flowers!
  15. Try not using water! You can draw and color with dry pencils on dry paper for a traditional colored pencil look! Try the hatching technique for fur, cross hatching for shadow or scumbling (aka scribbling) for textured effects.
  16. For darker details that won’t easily dissolve with water try drawing with a sharp dry pencils on wet paper, that’s called dry on wet.
  17. Use a wet on dry technique for stippling. Simply dip the tip of the pencil in water and dot on details (like the dots on the muzzle the whiskers protrude from.)
  18. You can also draw with a wet pencil on wet paper for bold expressive marks that will not easily dissolve.
  19. Build depth and dimension with glazes! Simply layer up veils and veils of color and shadow for realistic paintings full of depth and interest.
  20. Details are best on dry paper with a sharp pencil.
  21. Burnishing can be used to build up colors and create a smooth glassy look. To do this in watercolor pencils I suggest coloring dry on dry and liquefying the pigment with water. Then after that first layer is dry keep coloring with dry pencils until the grain of the paper is full of pigment and the color is rich and vibrant.
  22. Create highlight by scratching off the top layer paper with a craft knife. Just be careful not to cut too much paper away or cut through your paper! And don’t cut yourself!
  23. Mix your media! A white paint (or gel) pen will make quick work of bright elegant highlights!
  24. You can also add traditional colored pencil over a watercolor pencil painting as a final layer but be aware that watercolor pencil will not stick over traditional colored pencils.
  25. When your painting is done and it is time to remove your tape peel it back flat at a 45 degree angle to discourage paper tearing or heat the tape with a hair dryer to make it easier to remove.

I hope you enjoyed these 25 watercolor pencil hacks and apply them to your next watercolor pencil project! If you liked this be sure to share it with a freind or pin it on pinterest using one of the handy sharing links at the bottom of this blog post. 😀 Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Heirloom Winners!

Hi friends! I am telling you, I am such a ding-dong this month. With so much going on between my regular videos and blog posts, classes and the kids end of the school year stuff (my son started drivers ed, yikes!) I have been running in many directions! I completely forgot to announce the winners of the Heirloom Productions Stamp Show Tickets! They are: Karen Stevens, Debra Graham, Monika.Buzsy, Mary Nieb, Kris Storts, Betty Wlazlo, and Donna Birney. Please check your inbox for an email from Nikki at Heirloom containing your tickets! See you at the show! If you didn’t win you can purchase tickets to the show on the Heirloom Productions website for $6 through 5/27/18 which is cheaper than at the door ($8/day or $14 for both days) but if you are taking a glass you get your admission to the show free.

I love attending the Heirloom Productions Stamp Show in W. Springfield MA, there are so many good vendors and I love seeing folks in person that I chat with here and on YouTube. People are so friendly and it is so nice to meet online crafty friends in person. I do hope you will say hello if you see me at the show! Last week I was notified that the Loose Watercolor Bouquet (Lilacs) class was nearly full but I do have spots open in the Loose Watercolor Roses class if anyone is interested. The past years I have taught at Heirlooms my classes have sold out so if you want to paint with me on Friday June 1st be sure to reserve your spot here.

 

I’ll be back tomorrow with a fun cardmaking tutorial with a sneaky die cutting hack! Til then happy crafting!

 

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