Saturday, March 19, 2016

My First Unmasked Stamped Collage!

Greetings and Happy Weekend to ya! A while back I mentioned that I had over 50 Artistic Outpost stamp sets, and that I should use them more. Since then that number has grown to 61 (plus 3 single background stamps). Remember my Valentine majorette card? It won the February Show Us your AO Art Challenge and the prize was a $15 gift certificate. Yay! Plus, I also found some sets I didn't have at another online store for a good price. Since there are 74 in total, and I have 64 of them, it's now down to the remaining 10 sets, and they don't really turn me on. To any sensible person that would mean, never gonna buy 'em, but me? Give it some time and seeing the "perfect" sample card or two, and I can fall in love quick! (LOL and an eyeroll to moi).

Anyway, one thing about the stamps is they kind of frighten me. They are not your average cutesy stamps for card making. They're vintage-style and made for art as well as paper crafts. They scream "Make a collage out of me!" And I love to collage, but usually a stamped collage means a ton of masking and I have to be in just the right mood for that. When I resolved to use these stamps more, I knew I had to trick myself out of this hesitant feeling, so I came up with the idea of taking a big sheet of scrap paper and printing each stamp from the collection (or collections) I am using, then cutting them all out and using those to arrange a collage. Take a photo, because everyone knows it'll last longer. ;-) Then upload the photo and use that as my guide to the actual collaging. I've since come up with the bright idea to use my 8x8 Post-It sheets as my paper - I then have my masks! But all this happened before I thought of that.

So, here is the first set I worked with this week, Charles & Amelia :
My mission was to make a birthday card for my neighbor (he and his wife are our good friends). He can literally talk an hour about machinery, so I figured this theme would be pleasing to him. I ended up choosing the majority of images from this set, Industrial Backgrounds:
AND I used this set, Secretarial Pool, for the alphas:

It's funny how this card ended up different from how I began it. Before I had the Post-It Note paper idea, I stamped and cut out on white paper the images I liked and here is the collage I came up with that I dutifully took a pic of to use (the sentiment is off to the side because I had not decided yet where on top it would go and I did not want to fiddle with all those loose little letters):
So, at this point, I'm thinking, that paper is the back of an old calendar desk pad and thin as ice but hey, I can color them and glue them down - try it, what could it hurt? At the same time, I was telling myself, wish I'd used deli paper for its transparency. Yes, I had a traffic jam of conflict in my head, so I walked away and took a break. I went to find some pattern paper for the back of the card. Then I spied some deli paper scrap just the right A2 size and thought, my stamps are all still on blocks, go try to stamp an unmasked collage on the deli paper and use that on the card back. So I did, after die cutting the deli paper with a Spellbinders Distressed Edges nestie. And in one of those rare moments when all the stars align, I actually made a cool-looking collage!
Of course, I then had to use it as my card FRONT, right? So, here's my card, what do YOU think, how'd I do for my first time?
I had stamped the collage with Distress Inks and I was able to dump clear powder on the whole page and heat-emboss, because distress inks stay really wet on deli paper. And when you heat-emboss on deli paper, it becomes see-thru one-sided plastic! Coolio!

I used a distress ink variation of a Technique Junkies technique called Colorwash Smoosh (similar to Tim Holtz's Wrinkle-Free Distress tech) on a piece of cardstock and adhered the collage to it. Then using deco scissors I cut around leaving a bit of a border and mimicking the collage border. This was of course after ink-distressing every edge and surface I could.

The recipient is a huge UT Longhorns fan which means his favorite color is burnt orange, so my ink color palette was Tea Dye, Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinges and Gathered Twigs. I scrounged around in my Black Hole of Stash and found some industrial-looking metal domed brads to finish off the front and an orange circles pattern paper for the card back.

And in my usual fashion, as I mentioned last time, I called it done, because I got tired. I had some metal gears and could have continued piling on, but I'll leave those to when I make the layered collage with the white paper images. I'm just thankful I was able to make this! {teehee}

I am entering this card in the March Show Us Your AO Art Challenge , which I enjoy because you have to use only AO images (you can mix sets), so I challenge myself to use as many of the stamps in the set(s) as I can and hopefully I'll make some more collages in the coming months. Lord only knows I've got plenty of sets to choose from! {haha}

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