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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Success? and Failure?

Sometimes we just don't know if something is a success or a failure. And that is where I've been for the last three days.

This is the most recent spread in the Junk Journal. Very much my normal thing. Pretty background. I've gotten to the point where I can get a comfortable blend of colors and then stamp with home made and commercial stamps, until I really like what is there.

Then I added ephemera from the Internet, printed out on my home printer. My Epson printer prints out copies that do not smear. I know that people have some problem with that with other jet printers, but Epson always did have great inks.

I didn't put a smeared border around any of what I added. Or around the page either. That is also my basic style. I am not at all sure I like smeared borders. Or at least not the ones I've done in the past. I need to see if I like distress inks in those areas, but the problem with all of the sprays and inks from Ranger is that none of them are permanent. And I don't really like that they aren't permanent. I've gotten very good at fussy cutting which I did with the roses.

But that was Friday or over the weekend. On Friday I bought a Gelli Printing class that was anything but the normal thing one sees on YouTube. I started doing the actual printing on Monday, and I'm not sure what to say. I learned a lot from Carla Sonheim's class. But I also learned that it is very likely that I can never comfortably do her style of Gelli Printing.

The first two were done on Monday and Tuesday. I was still using my own color pallet, which is mostly bright colors. She suggested that you take card stock and make some masks with it, which I did. Of all of the ones I did with the kinds of masks she suggested this red and yellow piece was the most successful.

The spirals were my idea. She mostly uses circles she has cut, both the positive and the negative. I've gotten very good at cutting spirals.

The tree was my own idea. I used the stencil part of the tree many times, on many different papers. I didn't use the mask part more than once, and none of those were all that successful. Here I used it twice, once in an almost white and once in a darker color, over a very colorful background.

I think it is interesting that the two most successful pages out of the 16 or 17 I did in the three days were done on the first day in a bright color scheme.
 Here is another tree but in the muddy, dark colors I was using on Wednesday. Not anywhere as successful as the Monday/Tuesday ones. I've decided that dark, muddy colors just aren't for me.

Over all, I'm glad I took the class. It was only $25, and it was short. She has a second one for $35, but one advantage to the fact that she broke the two classes up instead of selling them for $60 as one class is that I'm going to have some time to digest what I've learned, and put it into practice before I go on to additional techniques, if I choose to take the second class too.

So what have I learned?

I also cut a tulip stencil out of card stock. Having multiple broken sections on the bottom of the stencil, which this one has, makes it very difficult to take it off the plate and almost as difficult to just put it on properly. So stencils, even card stock stencils cut out with scissors without drawing first, need to have solid bottoms.

I've also learned several Gelli Plate techniques that I've never seen before on YouTube, and can infer several additional ones. I've done a bunch of masking, not just the trees and tulips, circles and spirals, but the wavy lines you can see most clearly in the bottom photo, and I know I'll be doing a lot more of that. There are at least two paint techniques that will become a permanent part of my toolbox. I don't feel I can explain them here because they are a basic part of her course.

Take care all.


  1. Expecially loving that first print with spirals and 'stones'...great colour combo and aesthetic!

  2. Very cool projects. I've never liked muddy colors either, no point in working with what doesn't inspire you.