Saturday, November 28, 2009

Watercolor (a tutorial of sorts)

So I ventured out to the stores today...I had to. My niece has a birthday in a few short days and I needed to get a gift. And I'm working on a "December Daily" album ala Ali Edwards. I needed a few more window sheets for that. It wasn't too bad. I think the worst of the "Black Friday" stuff is over. (wink) Now it's just the usual Christmas madness.

I'd like to share some pictures I took while making this card I posted a month or so ago for KLSNS Snowflake challenge tutorial. Over a year ago I took a watercoloring class at my LSS from Dave Brethauer of Memory Box Stamps. This is one of the basic background watercolor techniques.

Stamps: Stampendous SILENT NIGHT SNOWMAN
Paper: Basic Grey ESKIMO KISSES
Ink: SU! Bermuda Bay, Rich Razzelberry, and Melon Mambo (re-inkers)
Accessories: Deb's Crystal snowflakes, EK Success border punch, glitter pen, aqua pen, glue pen, glitter, and Souffle pen.

I use 140lbs cold-press watercolor paper. Mist a section of paper with water until shiny. Wait a few minutes until the paper absorbs some (not all) of the water.

In the LSS class, Dave had us use Twinkling H2Os for coloring. It's a great look with the shimmer of mica, but here I used SU! re-inkers. Water them down a bit. A little color goes a LONG way in watercolor.

Use a aqua pen or paint brush to drag a bit of color back and forth in a block. Start in one corner and don't lift the brush. The water on the paper will draw the color "down". Flip the paper 180-degrees and drag a second color into the center to meet the first color. I used a very little of the Razzelberry at the very top.

Then using pure color you can add a 1/2 drop in the corner. Let the water draw the ink down. If you need a bit more water, mist gently.

Dry the paper completely. If you leave it to dry naturally, the colors will mix very subtlety. But you can also use the heat gun to speed the process. The colors will stay a little more separate with the heat gun. When completely dry you can stamp directly over the watercolor in permanent ink. I always use Archival Ink for this because it will stay "on top" of the color.

Using solid colors, you can then highlight the image (lower left along the bottom & the hat/scarf - not visible in this picture). And a final highlight of Souffle pen and glitter - because well it's GLITTER! (GRIN).


  1. this is sooooooo awesome! Love everything about it!

  2. Another great incentive to dust off those re-inkers! Thanks for the step-by-step photos so I can be brave enough to try this technique; the results are stunning. Beautiful northern lights kind of effect!!

  3. what a great tutorial! I have learned a lot from Dave even though I didn't take the course...I've leared it through you!!! You can be sure I'll be trying this!!!

  4. What a great card! Love the image and how you did the colors. :o) TFS!

  5. I absolutely love this card!! Love the colors, the Eskimo Kisses DP, the scalloped edge behind the snowman image and the glittery snowflakes!! Oooh, it's so pretty! :) Great tutorial, too! Thanks for sharing it with us.

  6. Wow, love the way you did your background, it's gorgeous! Pretty colors & card! Thanks for showing how to do it.