Wednesday, 1 July 2015

And then it was July!

Welcome to July although I am afraid I am still wondering where both May and June went.  We are in the midst of winter here in Australia and I think many of us might be wishing we were all holidaying somewhere warm and sunny and as beautiful as this gorgeous Greek location.  We can dream can't we?

So perhaps this lovely image might inspire you to scrap some holidays photos, or it may remind you of another exotic island somewhere.  Perhaps you are inspired by the architecture or the vivid blue and white of the buildings and the Mediterranean location ... whatever the inspiration we would love to see your work in our gallery during July.

Our team has some wonderful takes on the inspiration this month.  This is team member Heidi Williams last month with us.  We have loved having her as part of the team and are all a little sad to see her go but wish her all the best in whatever and wherever her future takes her.

REGINA
I was inspired by the colours in this month's challenge. Although Santorini is on my wish list to visit, sadly I have not got there yet! I have just got some of our old slides printed and this one of me and my daughter was on the must scrap list! Looking forward to all your entries and seeing how you interpret this month's challenge.

HEIDI
This months colour were perfect for this holiday picture.  I did lots of stamping and inking this month.  Hope you can join us in this fab challenge.

TONE-LILL
 
It was the roof tops that caught my attention on this months inspiration picture, and the feel of holiday too.   So I found a photo from last year end of summer, when I took my American cousin to see the top of Bergen when she was visiting us.

PHILLIS
I was drawn to the blue and white in the inspiration photo. I also wanted to do circles on my page. I used some patterned navy blue paper and added white gesso "circles" with my stencil. I layered paper and embellishments under my photo.

KAREN
The dry Australian landscape is a long way from the iconic domes of Santorini! I was immediately drawn to the bold architectural shapes, which inspired my choice of background paper. It also occurred to me that this scene was framed in portrait, whereas it is typically photographed in landscape. (Do a quick Google search for 'Santorini' images and you'll see what I mean!) So I did the same with the photograph choice on my layout - I used a scenic shot of what would typically be framed in landscape, and framed it in portrait instead, which does provide quite a different perspective, I think.

JANE
I couldn't resist pulling out some very old photographs and scrapping another location in Greece my dh and I visited many years ago.  I have used a similar colour scheme as the inspiration photo (white, blue and ochre) although not in such a vibrant fashion.

DI

 This month, I've used the colours of the inspiration photo and the peep of the sea, to paint a seascape on A3- sized watercolour paper. To this I've added a photo, taken by my son, of a seagull perched on a sea wall at Ballina. This was enlarged to A4 size and then cut out.

LYNNE
I did something really different this month; the inspiration photo made me think of Bible times, so I portrayed the first Christmas in a card....the stark contrast of the bright blue and the white inspired me as well, and other than a bit of silver (which unfortunately doesn't photograph well) I stuck with just those colours. A bit early, but we've all heard of "Christmas in July", right?? Hope you like it-have a great week :)

NOW IT IS YOUR TURN ...

Please upload the DIRECT link to your actual entry to the link tool on the LEFT by 11.55pm on July 31st.

You are welcome to submit traditional paper layouts, art journals, divided page protectors, smash books (etc). Digital entries are welcomed and encouraged.  All entries must be new for this challenge and no back-linking please.

  I am happy for you to combine with two other challenges but the essence of the Pixels and Paper inspiration must be clear in your work. Combining with a sketch and technique/product challenge would be preferred. Please include our inspirational picture as well as provide a link back to Pixels and Paper on your blog post and don't forget to tell us how you were inspired. International submissions are welcome.

This year we will have two main prize packs - one will be selected by Creative Team vote and the other purely by random draw - so anyone could be a winner, no matter your style or your level of experience.  All these prizes will be available to anyone, no matter your country of residence.  We will also offer one entrant a chance to guest with us for the following month and they will also receive a small prize.

Please come back on the 8th when we will announce the winners for June.



Monday, 22 June 2015

June team training ...

Welcome to our June edition of Team Training brought to you this month by wonderful team member Phillis Walrath.

Each month one of our team will inspire you with a little tutorial, tip or trick to help you in your scrapbooking pursuits. 



Working with Gesso by Phillis Walrath

Sometimes I want to add something to my background paper to make it stand out or to give it some depth.  Today I am going to show you some easy ways to  add some depth to you background paper.  

I have been using Gesso on my pages.  Gesso is  a white paint binder that you can use as is or add color to it.  You can add it thick or thin to your page.  I often use it with a stencil as seen below.  I put my chevron stencil on my paper and then just apply the Gesso, with a paintbrush,  on top of the stencil.  here I used white Gesso on my white paper.  It adds depth to my layout.
If you don't have a stencil you can make your own or use ordinary materials you have around the house.   I usually put the Gesso on in random places with.   For the layout I worked on recently I used a toilet paper tube, an old prescription bottle and a straw.
I poured some Gesso onto some plastic that I had left from a paper pack.  I dipped the tube in the Gesso and then randomly added circles to my purple paper. 
I then used the open end of the bottle and finally the straw.  Use the biggest object to the smallest object.
 Once these dried I added some pink paint to more Gesso and mixed it with my straw.
I used a stencil and with my paint brush I painted with a stencil.   It has  neat effect if you put the stencil in different places on your page and sometimes overlap onto some scrap paper as you will see below.  You do not need to cover the whole stencil and as you may have different thicknesses of Gesso on your page.
 
If your stencil moves a little that is also ok.  you will have a blurry effect, which you will also see on my page.  You can also just brush the Gesso onto your page.

Here is my finished page!  If you don't have Gesso just go ahead and use your paint.  Get messy and have a some fun!


Wonderful techniques Phillis - can't wait to give this a try.


Don't forget to have your entry in for our challenge this month.  Some lovely prizes on offer - one prize by vote, another completely by random draw and a guest designer spot with RAK to offer one lucky entrant.  You have until 11.55 on the final day of the month to have your submission linked.




Monday, 15 June 2015

Hello to our June Guest ...

This month we welcome Deb McCleary as our guest designer with her wonderful layout based on her interpretation of our image this month  ...


- can you guess what inspired her?  ....

I took inspiration from the wonderful, rainbow-coloured hot air balloons in this gorgeous photo.  I wanted to scrap a marvellous photo a friend took of a rainbow that seemed to have it's end right on the roof of my house.  Despite much digging, I am yet to find any pots of gold...

My name is Deb, I turn 41 at the end of this month, and I'm from Melbourne. I've been married to a wonderful man for nearly 15 years, and together we have two pretty awesome children (Master 12 and Miss 10), as well as a pair of norty-torty sister kittens who are nearly 3 years old.

I've tried all sorts of papercrafting: I started out scrapbooking 10 years ago and then I discovered stamps and card making a few years back. So now, I am primarily a card maker and stamper, with a very clean style. However, in entering these wonderful blog challenges, I am starting to get back into my scrapbooking a lot more again, and I'm enjoying experimenting with mixed media. I love attending classes to learn more and more mixed media techniques, and I've discovered that I love getting messy!

Most of the cards I make are donated to assorted charity organisations such as Combat Cards, the Caring Hearts Card Drive, Westmead Children's Hospital in NSW, as well as to the fundraising team at my children's school.

I would love it if you would check out my blog http://www.handmadecardsbydeb.blogspot.com.au/ and say g'day!
Here are some more examples of my work ...

 

Thank you so much for joining us this month Deb and being part of the team during June. 

You have until the end off the month to play along with our Pixels and Paper challenge.  We'd love to see how you are inspired by our photograph.  Thank you for your continued support.

Next week we have something special to share with you from a member of our design team.  Please call past on the 22nd for some Team Training.


Monday, 8 June 2015

Marvelous May winners ...

Thank you to those who played along with us for our May challenge.

We were working from this photograph ...


While two of our monthly prizes are selected by creative team vote, one of our monthly prizes is completely done via random draw so anyone, regardless of style or years of experience can be a winner here on Pixels and Paper - you just need to have an entry in :)

Our MAIN winner for May is Helene Bogren with this truly gorgeous layout.  

We would like to ask Debi Clark to guest with us for July and will send her a small prize for her efforts.

and our random draw winner is #5  Anna U

Ladies, please email me with your address and I will make sure your prize gets away to you.

Please pop back on the 15th when we introduce you to Deb McCleary, our guest designer this month with her take on our challenge image.

And don't forget you have until the end off the month to play along with us with our challenge.  Details can be found on the left sidebar. We'd love to see how you are inspired by our photograph this month. 

Monday, 1 June 2015

Welcome to June ...

This month we are going outdoors to the wide open spaces with this delightful photograph.  


There are many things here to inspire you.  The colours of the balloons, the balloons themselves or the feeling of space and light and freedom they may evoke.  The sense of country or of farming, wind, clouds and flat grassy plains, trees and grass, early morning and the stillness of those first few hours of the day.  Whatever the inspiration we would love to see your work in our gallery this month.


Our team have some very different yet individually inspiring work to show you ...


LYNNE
My June project is an art journal page and I was inspired by the balloons, their colours, and the feeling of freedom they gave me-to be yourself and FLY!!

DI
I've used the inspiration photo quite literally this time, and have interpreted it using paper and stamps, to do a a layout without photos.  I've used Iris Folding and Venetian Folding to make two of the balloons. The other one has been made with strips of paper glued to a cardboard template. This has been over stamped to create the impression of rising up behind trees.  I've also used a number of the colours that are present in the photo inspiration.

HEIDI
My photo of the party balloons worked perfectly with the inspiration this month and all the lovely bright colours.  I made the hot air balloon by printing out one then colouring with my pens.
Hope you can join us this month - can't wait to see what you come up with.

TONE-LILL
 My best friend has birthday in June so I decided to make a card for her. It was the air balloons that inspired me from the inspiration picture and I up cycled an old coffee paper filter, decorating both sides and using the filter bag to keep the tags.

We would love to see your paper creations and we accept all kinds in our challenge, Digital pages are most welcome as our challenge are for those of you who like to create with pixels as well as paper :)

 JANE
 
 I was instantly drawn to both the colours in this photo and the hot air balloons.  Initially I planned on doing a rural Australia scene but changed my mind when looking through my photo packs deciding to showcase these images of my dd and her bf on the Sydney Tower Skywalk.  This seems to capture the essence of freedom and living life to the full.

REGINA
 The image really screamed Aussie outback to me, so I was inspired to scrap a page from our trip through the red centre on the Ghan late last year. Use lots of texture on this page, chipboard barbwire and balloon, hessian and corrugated cardboard to support my theme. Looking forward to seeing how you all interpret this month's image.

PHILLIS
I was instantly drawn to the rainbow colors and the hot air balloon. I used mist to create a rainbow from top to bottom on my paper. I wanted to use a photo that had lots of color and so chose our family photo from last Fall. I've had this hot air balloon and wanted to add that. SO I then added the white gesso to give texture and to add the "In the clouds" feel to the page.

KAREN
I was inspired by the windmill - such an iconic sight all around Australia. I have LOTS of photographs of windmills and scenery which I took on our recent trip to outback Queensland, so it was just a matter of choosing which one to scrap!


NOW IT IS YOUR TURN ...

Please upload the DIRECT link to your actual entry to the link tool on the LEFT by 11.55pm on June 30th.

You are welcome to submit traditional paper layouts, art journals, divided page protectors, smash books (etc). Digital entries are welcomed and encouraged.  All entries must be new for this challenge and no back-linking please.

  I am happy for you to combine with two other challenges but the essence of the Pixels and Paper inspiration must be clear in your work. Combining with a sketch and technique/product challenge would be preferred. Please include our inspirational picture as well as provide a link back to Pixels and Paper on your blog post and don't forget to tell us how you were inspired. International submissions are welcome.

This year we will have two main prize packs - one will be selected by Creative Team vote and the other purely by random draw - so anyone could be a winner, no matter your style or your level of experience.  All these prizes will be available to anyone, no matter your country of residence.  We will also offer one entrant a chance to guest with us for the following month and they will also receive a small prize.

Please come back on the 8th when we will announce the winners for May.

Friday, 22 May 2015

It's time for May Team Training ...

Welcome to our May edition of Team Training brought to you this month by our very creative team member Di Hasthorpe - Di always thinks outside the square!

Each month one of our team will inspire you with a little tutorial, tip or trick to help you in your scrapbooking pursuits. 



USING YOUR GARDEN TO MAKE UNIQUE BACKGROUND PAPERS.

This is a technique I've played with and used, fairly frequently. The only equipment you need to start off with, is some good quality paper (laser print paper, thick watercolour paper), a Cuttlebug, Big Shot or similar machine, various flowers and leaves from your garden and  some paper towelling and you're set to go.

* NOTE: I try to gather smallish flowers that aren't too chunky. Remember to think about herbs as well. If flowers are chunky (like dahlias or roses) you can use individual petals. If you are using aromatic flowers or plants (like scented geranium leaves or lavender) you do have an additional bonus (for a little while anyway), of the most delightful perfume on the paper.

STEP 1.
Have your paper of choice an A4 size (or slightly less for a Cuttlebug). Fold it in half (shorter sides meeting) and then reopen. On one side, place a selection of flowers, leaves, grass heads, so that their right side is facing upwards. This can be a random placement or a more constructed arrangement.


Cover  them with the other half of the paper and sandwich between your machine's plates. I use the thick base plate and the 2 clear B plates. There needs to be a satisfying 'scrunch' as you pass the lot through your machine and the feel of some resistance...... like when using an embossing folder.

* NOTE: If the flowers you have used are particularly fine, you will also need some form of shim. You could use the shim plate designed for your machine or just pad up with some thicker cardboard. After pressing your arrangement, just check to see if there is any leakage from the plants you have used... some can be very juicy. Just clean the machine with some paper towelling.

Open your paper carefully and lift away the squished flowers and leaves. Some pieces may not come off at this stage, but don't worry about this, as the bits usually brush off when dry. Set aside to dry naturally. You will notice that you now have two prints to use.


If you feel that there is not enough print on your page, when dry, you can add more flowers, leaves etc. and run them through again. I tend to make sure that I don't overlap the plant material too much, but you can play around and experiment.

Now, what to do with your unique papers. These make the most delightful backgrounds for cards, ATC's, bookmarks, photo mats and of course to make flowers using diecuts or punches.

I've done a selection of cards and a bookmark to show how I've used these papers.

Card 1:

I've stamped directly onto my print and highlighted some sections with pearl pen and dry-brushed modelling cream.

Card 2: 
Direct stamping with highlights in gold ink.

Card 3:
Direct stamping. Some sections painted with dry-brushed modelling cream to enhance colours. Highlights with glitter pen.

Card 4:
Two small panels. One has been left as is with the addition of a stamped and fussy cut butterfly and the other directly stamped and enhanced with modelling cream and glitter pens.

Card 5:

Direct stamping. Enhanced with gold ink and pearl pens.

Card 6: 
This has been left as is and a sentiment added.

Bookmark 
I've used three pieces of the plant printed paper with direct stamping. Colour enhancement  has been done with chalk ink edgers, dry-brushed on with highlights in pearl pen. These have been placed onto another piece of the print paper and the lot matted onto black card.

NOTE: The pearl pens and modelling creams I've used are from the Viva Decor range. Direct stamping was in black Archival Ink.

If you look at my layout for this month, I've used some of my papers to make flowers.



These were diecut and then constructed. Part of this construction meant dampening the papers. I was pleasantly surprised when I found that I hadn't lost any colouration in the process.


I don't know how long the prints will last, as I don't have any pieces more than three years old (and these are doing well, with no signs of fading).  Just have fun with the experimenting and playing around to see what you can come up with.

Just stunning Di and so very creative - amazing work.


Don't forget to have your entry in for our challenge this month.  Some lovely prizes on offer - one prize by vote, another completely by random draw and a guest designer spot with RAK to offer one lucky entrant.  You have until 11.55 on the final day of the month to have your submission linked.