Veni, Vidi, Ventus --
The randomly chaotic and crafty scribblings of a deranged, wannabe artist allowed too many colours in her Crayon box.

Surgeon General's Warning: Some content of "From Pooka's Crayon" may not be suitable for: work, blue-haired little old ladies, the politically-correct, rabid moonbats, uptight mothers, priests, chronic idiots, insurance claims agents, Democrats, children, small furry quadropeds from Alpha Centauri, or your sanity.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Stamping On Tissue

Tissue paper can be fantastic for layering in your projects, but there are certain tricks to make it come out correctly.

In some ways, tissue can be used like vellum, however, most of the time it won't have the same level of transparency. Always test BEFORE permanently affixing it over existing images on your project, because once tissue gets adhesive on it and goes down, getting it off neatly is next to impossible.

Important things first — don't use tissue paper that will bleed. Not only is this important for the inks, but even more important when it comes to applying it to your project. Even gel medium will cause tissue colour to run, even glue stick, so use a stable tissue. While this might be a look you like, when using a stamp on it, it becomes a blurry disaster.

You certainly don't need to stick with plain and boring white tissue. Just check to make sure that the colour you want to use won't bleed by spritzing lightly with water — or purchase tissue that is clearly marked as colour-fast. There are so many options out now, that there are no limits to what you can do. Tissue can even have sparkles, glitter, and confetti worked into the paper itself, and can add some wonderful texture and extra dimension.

ALWAYS put an absorbant surface behind the tissue when stamping. Non-absorbant can cause bleeding and smudges, and the ink WILL bleed through to the surface below.

Permanent and dye inks are the best for stamping on tissue. Pigment inks tend to smudge when applying the tissue to the project, unless you're particularly brave and want to emboss, in which case slow-drying ink is a necessity — tissue is extremely absorbant, and ink will dry faster than you expect.

You CAN emboss on tissue paper, but it's very easy to scorch and burn, and without a static pack, it's pretty much just a mess. If you want to emboss, make sure you dust across the tissue before you stamp with an anti-static pack, or even a dryer sheet. Be careful when removing the excess, and use a fine paintbrush to get stray particles of powder off the paper. In addition, keep your heat tool a good distance from the paper — tissue scorches quite quickly — and don't overheat the embossing powder, or it will melt entirely into the tissue.

Tissue will generally stick to the stamp when stamping, so hold down the tissue with a finger, and pull the stamp up evenly without rocking with the other hand.

All ink colours work, but darker colours tend to give the best results, and are more dramatic. Subtle colours can get lost in the project once you continue to add layers.

If you intend to further colour the image, chalks work well, as do pencils. This isn't always best done after the tissue stamped image is applied, since some adhesives (such as gel medium or decoupage) will make the tissue LESS absorbant. Inks, markers, or paint will run and blur, unless you add these AFTER you've added the image to your project and the adhesive has dried, and even then you may get some running of the colour.

Quick Tips for Distress-Free Distressing

- When distressing heavier cardstock, spritz it with water first. This helps break the surface tension some and will help prevent tears.

- Start in the center of the sheet you want to distress. Form a ring with one hand, thumb and index finger, and leave a hole. Stuff a bit of the very center of the paper into that hole with your other index finger. Then crumple. Again, this helps break surface tension, and helps to ensure fewer tears, and easier crumpling.

- Lightly sand peaks of crumples, then ink them, for darker zones. Leave a few just sanded, or plain, for great variety.

- Don't limit yourself to sandpaper. Nail files work well. When using sandpaper, vary the strength of the grain for different effects -- very fine leaves few marks, and takes off less paper, while medium leaves a rougher grain and takes off more paper.

- While you can use a hot iron to re-flatten your paper for use, you can also heat it up with your heat gun, then press it under something heavy. This will give you more texture, and a less flattened surface to work with.

- Direct-To-Paper inking is great for edges, but can be pretty intense for larger areas. Use a stencil or stippling brush, pounce it on the inkpad, then work it over the larger space for a softer aged look.

- Household bleach is a great way to get a sunbleached look for certain areas. You can also use dishwasher detergents (liquid) with bleach to get an even more varied effect. It's also thicker, and easier to work with, and less worry about splatters on your work area and clothing. Just remember that any bleach product will work differently on different papers, so test it out first.

- If you really like a paper, but the pattern is too bright for your project, and you don't want to wait for sunbleaching, use your scanner! Scan the page in, and adjust the brightness and contrast till you get the faded look you want, then print on your paper choice.

- When doing a distressed look with paint, remember that colour is your friend. Don't use a single colour, use a minimum of two, preferably three. Petroleum jelly, applied in a thin coat on top of your base coat, will leave a wonderful distressed look when your second coat is on. When the paint is dry, just wipe the jelly off. It's faster and easier than sanding!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Movie Review: Resident Evil: Extinction

It did not suck.

Better review when I'm more coherent, hopefully, but it did not suck. If you're a zombie dork enough like me to have enjoyed the first one, you'll like the third.

And Milla's my new hero, right up there with Angelina, both of whom regularly do 90% or more of their own stunts (IE, the stunts that legal and insurance will allow them to do).

HOWEVER ... The CGI crew should be taken out and SHOT, repeatedly, starting from the toes up, for one horrendously overdone effect that you are smacked in the face with time and time again.

Every single close-up of Alice is Photoshop Airbrush in action. After only the second close-up, I was already sick to death of the smudge brush. It's that overdone

Queen Kat Designs -- Challenges With Prizes!

You still have time left to join the celebration party as I join Queen Kat Designs, not only as part of the Design Team, but as one of their new stamp designers!

All QKD clear acrylic stamps and stamp sets are ON SALE AT 25% OFF for the duration of the party, which ends this Monday, September 24.

Come to the Queen Kat Designs Blog to join the fun! Challenges have been posted for every day, and Friday's is the last to be posted. Details on points you can earn are posted in the blog, and you still have until Monday to enter for any of the five challenges posted during the week.

All entries are due in the gallery in their respective albums by Monday, Sept. 24th by 12am PST (midnight).

Winner will be announced Tuesday or Wednesday.

Don't miss out on the grand prize by letting the deadline slip away!