Saturday, June 29, 2013


I got up early today and went to Stampfest Orlando a rubber 
stamp/scrapbook/paper arts show that visits the Orlando area annually.  
This is one show that I usually don't miss...I love to see 
the hottest new products and check out the new techniques 
even though I am no longer into making cards with rubber stamps.   
I do, however, use a lot of the same supplies in my mixed media art 
and you never know what you might find that would prove to be useful.

This year there were 26 vendors and a guest visit from Tim Holtz.
Tim demonstrated many of the same techniques that he shows 
on the Ranger web site so nothing new there.  
The only new products that I noticed this year were the Wink of Stella Brushes 
and a lot of different variations of Liquid pearl type products.  
I came home with three new Tombow markers, 
three stamps for the back of the ATC's that I will be making and 
two Signo Uniball pens, one gold and one silver. 
Now I am ready for a cup of coffee and a nap!  I'm pooped!!!

Before I sign off...I drew a sunflower and painted it with TombowMarkers 
for a friend that is going through some difficult times.  
I hope that it cheers her up.  Five of the ladies in my Art Group are
doing the same so I hope that this will perform it's magic!!!

Until next time!


Wednesday, June 26, 2013


I have never made an ATC!!!  No never!!!!  I really don't know why...maybe because I see the small size as limiting or the thought of trading art work with other artists never occurred to me...or whatever was stopping me is not stopping me now.

If you have been following my blog for very long you probably know that I have taken every single one of Joanne Sharpe's on-line classes.  Yes, all of them and I am not have many others.  And...after a while, you become pretty good friends with the other artists and become inspired and even influenced by them. That's how I became involved in ATC's.  One of the artists in Joanne's class started a closed FaceBook group to trade ATC's.  So....I thought that I would give it a try! "Nothing ventured, nothing gained."

To get started I cut up scraps of watercolor paper to size, grabbed my Tombow markers and various other pens and pencils and got to work making ATC's. Whenever I get stumped for ideas of what to draw, I always turn to faces.  Faces are the most comforting to me, especially when you are not trying to draw anyone in particular.  And...because of the small size of the ATC's, I thought that I would draw just part of the face and feature the hair by painting it bright colors like blue, green or pink.  Here is the first of six that I made.

And this is how I made them.

I used:

Strathmore 300 Watercolor paper
Tombow watercolor markers
Prismacolor pencils
black Pitt pen, fine
Acrylic Paint marker, Painter's
Signo Uniball white pen
Koi waterbrush
White charcoal pencil

Lightly draw the girl in pencil.

Note:  Use a good quality watercolor paper because the Tombow markers will not blend on an inferior paper.

Using the Tombow markers, color areas of the paper.

Do not color the area solid as we are going to move the color around with water from a water brush or paintbrush. This will give it a nice watercolor look.

Be careful not to let the areas touch while wet unless you purposefully want the colors to blend.

I wanted the purple and turquoise to blend for the background but I did not want them to mix with the green hair. One way to avoid one color from bleeding into the adjacent color is  to let each section dry before you paint.

Blending the colors with a wet paintbrush or waterbrush.

Wet the areas of the Tombow paint until it starts to flow and then push it around to cover the desired area to be painted.  If you have to scrub with the paintbrush, you may not be using enough water. At the same time, be sure to get rid of the hard edges.

This may look a little watermarked or splotchy.  If you don't like the way it looks, re-wet the area and push the color some more.  This takes a little practice but also keep in mind that watercolor is supposed to be watermarked. Also, don't worry too much about a smooth background because it will be covered by the lettering.

See how the purple and turquoise is not completely mixed together?  I was striving to blend the hard lines but still allowing both the purple and turquiose to maintain their true color.  I was not trying to obtain a new color by mixing the two.

Leave some white paper showing in the area of her nose and chin...areas that you wish to come forward.  The areas to recede are darker in color.  This gives the face its rounded shape.

Now to add detail.

I used a medium purple Prismacolor pencil, Violet 1008, to start outlining the features of the face and to streak the hair.

I used a deeper green prismacolor pencil and a white Signo pen to add additional streaks to the hair.  I also added shading to areas of the hair that would appear under her face or scarf.

I added color to the eyes, lips and scarf with Tombow markers.  

In this step, I have deepened the shadows with prismacolor pencils and used a black Pitt pen for detail.

I used the Pitt pen to draw the stripes in the scarf,  accentuate the facial features and necklace, and draw a border around the edge of the card..

I added a dot of white highlight to the eyes and bottom lower lip and added more hair streaks with the Signo pen.

The red stripe on the scarf is Tombow marker.

The final step is to add the lettering.

I used a white charcoal pencil to draw the placement of the letters.  This later erases beautifully using a kneaded eraser.

Next, using a fine tip paint pen, draw the letters.

Once the paint is dry, outline the letters with a Signo pen.

Once all pen work is dry, erase any visible charcoal lines.

I hope that you enjoyed this tutorial and give it a try!!!  I welcome questions!


Here are a few more ATC's using this technique.