Category Archives: Spectrum Noir Aquatints

Use them or lose them #10 project #2

So this year I have decided to challenge myself to make a set of cards, scrapbook page or journal layout using each of my stamp sets as I know I have some I rarely use!

This week’s stamp is Handcarved and I used it with Brushos and inks to created a pretty and multicoloured background on Sunday.   Today I decided to use some inky backgrounds up and created this card using the stamp in black with a digital image as the focal point.


I am pretty sure that the background was made with spectrum noir aquatints but it could have been Dylusions? ?? Who knows!  There is a bit of pattern through a stencil but it is not very good.  So instead I added the handcarved in black ink.  This made the background far more graphic and funky.  The Tiddly Inks houses I had printed out a long time ago and so they were to hand. I added the bit of colour to the image using Promarkers then layered it all up.  The sentiment was from a random magazine set.

I do love the handcarved stamp and need to remember to use it more often… but it is not going anywhere.  This is defintely a stamp I am keeping!

Happy crafting!


Tally so far for Use them or lose them… 
Keepers = 6
Losers = 3
Undecided = 1

Happy Birthday Finlay from Fabulous Auntie Catherine

Here is a card I made, and handed over well ahead of time for once!  I don’t see my family who live in Sheffield very often so last month when I saw them I handed over lots of cards and presents for birthdays past and forthcoming.  This card was made for my eldest great nephew, Finlay.  I hate the thought of being a great Auntie so have always renamed myself a fabulous auntie instead! 

I used a Spectrum Noir Aquatint background and some fab funky stamps to create the card topper.  Love how it came out.
Hoping Finlay has an awesome birthday.  Sending him loads of love!


Entering this into the Papertake challenge of anything goes.


Happy crafting! 


Aquatint splodge makeover


Guess who was chosen as one of the top 5????

Only little old me and my little (quite big 7″x7″) card! 

A few weeks ago I was testing out Brushos versus Aquatints to see if I could get similar results.  The answer was… Not quite.  They are fluid and so less control over the amount of pigment…or at least that’s how I find them.  Brushos are easy, aquatints I think need more practice to get control.  Anyway I did end up with a panel I thought I could make something of…

I used the clarity stamps and created this scene using the splodge background I created with aquatints. I also flicked some water on it to create the mottled effect and then mat, layered and embellished with card candi.  No sentiment as yet but a nice piece of art I think. 

Entering this into the Anything Goes challenge over at Claritychallengeblog … First time I’ve joined in with this challenge. 


Happy crafting! 



Time to reflect… Continued! Treesday!

Back in December, before I made the no challenge statement for 2015, i reflected on how my blog had developed during 2014. Here is the post… Click here . Now in that post I mentioned the tree set I had bought and not used at all. I did pickup the set shortly after that post, but still didn’t use for anything for last Christmas. Well I have been reflecting again. (Yes I know this is usually dangerous! Ha ha!)

Now this is linked to the Use It Up Saturday post a couple of weekends ago, and is to remind myself of how many tree stamps I actually own to try and prevent myself from buying anymore… No matter how fab they look… So here goes promise number two!


So from now on, all tree stamps will get an airing, and creations with said stamps will be on a Tuesday, hereby to be known as Treesday!


So it’s not exactly a challenge, but then I can’t really say it is just me crafting however I like… It gives some structure to my blog… So you know and I know trees will be featured, one way or another on a Tuesday! But I’m not promising frequency you will note… I have learnt that lesson!

And my first offering…


A very simple card… Used my Spectrum Noir Aquatints to create a background on a panel of card and sprinkled water to create some texture in the pigment displacement…. Very posh sounding term for where the Colour sits on the cardstock! Goodness knows if it is the right term or not, but it sounds good!

This weeks tree, is the branches with birds stamp from Serene Silhouettes stamps from Stampin Up. Added the sentiment, and edged the panel using a SU marker in Pacific Point as it worked with the colours of the background and then added to a white card blank.


I had of course to add some decoration to the envelope too… This is a definite aim of mine for the year to not forget the envelope. I started this off last year and I really think it finishes the project off properly. I won’t always remember to do this I know, but it really does help the whole card look gorgeous if the envelope matches too!

So here is to not challenging myself this year, but to using the stamps already I own (in plentiful supply) and stopping the hoarding!

Happy crafting!


Art journalling… Gesso to the moon… With Fairefoxes

Hi there.

Today has been a long day so I sloped off to bed early… Stopping by the craft room to finish a journal page off quickly!

Rae’s challenge this week was to use gesso … In which ever way you want. And then she provided the quote I used on my page.

So I forgot all about process pics as I was crafting in a tiny space in snatched moments when the spare room was not occupied. (It is about to be occupied again… But only for one more night and then it becomes my craft room again!). As a result it is a written talk through instead.

I started by giving the page a rough addition of some gesso. I did this by scraping it with a credit card, and not covering it all. This provided a nice contrast between the base paper (absorbent) and not (chalky finish).

Then I added some gesso thickly through the stencil to create the leafy branch in the bottom right hand corner. That was one session … Then left it to dry.

Next session I added colour using some of the Spectrum Noir Aquatints. I tried to be sparing and careful in adding the colour to not add too much. This provided a nice contrast for the gesso and not gesso areas.

I then used two die cut circle waste pieces to create some circles to the colour. I used SU ink and some sponge to add the colour and then outlined one side of the circle with the faber castell big brush. Just realised it might help if I add the photo! Doh!


Next it was time to add some pearlised shiny paint. I added some through the same stencil over the gesso leafy branch. You can just make out that I didn’t line it up very well at the top … I am not bothered about that, it just looks like there is more than one of the branches swaying in the wind of something equally poetic! Lol

I then created the moon. I used the same circle to add the paint. First the mother of pearl paint, then white acrylic and then some pearl paint again. This made it a more texture finish. Next I added some silver paint quite thickly to add some more texture round the edge, smudging it with my finger.

Then I drew some lines to add the journalling, and of course finished with the little footprints on the moon.

My main love in this page is the difference the gesso makes when adding the spectrum noir aquatints… Love this versatility that gesso can provide.

Happy crafting!


Art journalling … Pop up quick challenge… With Fairefoxes

Yes another art journal page… I am full of them at the moment.

This time it was another pop up challenge from Rae… We had to do the page in ten minutes with what we had to hand… No thinking!

Well I had my Spectrum Noir aquatints out for another project so dropped some on to a page I hadn’t even added gesso too… As you can imagine with the rubbish super porous paper that this sketchbook has, it soaked right through so I ended up having quite a few sheets of paper behind to stop it going through every page. Ah well… Blue and green blobs on quite a few pages to contend with in the future.

I let it dry for a few minutes (I didn’t count that in the ten minutes as I was actually busy tidying up… Yes I know unheard of normally but I tend to do it with wet items likely to spill like the Aquatints!) and then grabbed a stamp of a moose I had carved and still had on my desk (he makes me smile). I use some mother of pearl paint… It was in the basket of paints to my side at the time, and used some cut and dry foam to add the paint to the stamp… And plonked him down in the middle of the still damp aquatint splodge. I also tried to add some splodges using the Gorgeous Grunge stamp and some Crushed Concord ink but they don’t really show up.

Next I grabbed the Festive Flurry snowflakes… Strictly speaking they were on the shelf… But could grab them without standing up so they still count as to hand! I stamped two in Whisper White craft ink, and one in Soft Sky ink. Then I rummaged in the paint basket and found a decoart liner dimensional paint thing I have had for ages. It wasn’t best quality but worked for adding some silver dots around the page. Then the Andy Skinner stamps … Which were out with the intention of using them on another project I was waiting to dry whilst I did this… Thought that the Dream Big sentiment worked. I outlined the moose with a fine liner pen and checked the time… Nine minutes (excluding the few minutes drying time). The page was still damp when I took the photo in fact… Wonder what it will look like tomorrow when actually dry?!?


Happy crafting!


More notes of thanks

Some more thank you notes were created as we were well and truly spoilt … Plus in a slightly selfish thing, this was my first play with one of my Christmas presents… Spectrum Noir Aquatints!



Both panels were created using the Aquatints and adding salt to the panels as they were drying. Love the way the colour and texture is created using this method. Have already fallen in love with the Aquatints, and only tried one method with them so far!

I then added the stamped images on the top… To the first I added the Simply Sketched leaf image and I added some additional colours using the SU markers. To the second I used the same image as on the other thank you cards created a couple of days ago (because it was out and to hand). Both panels I added an edge using a SU marker to make it standout when affixed to the white card blank.

Both cards then had the same stamped image added to the envelope in matching colours to the cards… Again just finishes the project off in my opinion!

Happy crafting!