I always enjoy the Muse card challenge, and other ones that involve drawing inspiration from cards. Sometimes my interpretation is quite close to the original, and other times I draw on one or two elements to make something that is more loosely related. Today’s card is definitely the former. As well as being inspired by Jenni Murray’s Muse card I included a few other challenges. CASology asked for the use of frames. City Crafter wanted pencils (I used watercolour pencils). Addicted to Stamps and More challenged us to make our mark. Seize the Birthday asked for a soft and simple birthday card. AAA Cards requested masking. And finally CAS on Sunday wanted a one layer card.
I knew from the start that I wanted to watercolour the card. As it had to be a one layer card I cut down a piece of watercolour paper, scored it well and folded it in half to make a square card base. I then started planning out which stamps I would use. It was actually fairly easy to decide, because I only really have one set of flower stamps! The stamp set is Altenew’s Wild Hibiscus.
I decided I would try and do no-line watercolouring. I picked one of my lightest inks. The one I chose was actually bronze and it doesn’t stamp well, hence being so pale! Even though I wanted a very faint line I had to stamp two or three times per image to get the line visible enough to work with. Good thing I was using my MISTI!
I stamped my flower image first, and masked it off with a mask I had made previously. I try to keep my masks for as long as it is sensible to do so. Not only is it less wasteful but it also saves me having to cut them out again!
The stamp set only has the one leaf stamp (which is actually with a flower). Once I’d masked off my flower I used the leaf stamp at varying positions, masking it as needed, until I had the leaf clusters how I wanted them.
Next I got started with my colouring. I managed to thoroughly confuse myself with regards to where the shadows and highlights would be, but I think it worked out in the end. For the flower itself I used four different shades of blue to get the right depth of colour. I was intending to use yellow for the middle, as the Muse card has, but apparently I forgot! For the leaves I used four different shades of green. I coloured in several layers until I was happy with the way it all looked, then took a damp paint brush to blend the pigment out.
Next I added my frame. As it is a one layer card I drew the frame on. I measured in an equal distance from each edge and drew a line with my darkest blue. I went back over it with the dark blue to soften it, then worked over again with each of the other blues, blending closer to the centre of the card as I went. I then took my damp paintbrush again and blended the pigment out.
Next I stamped my sentiment using a stamp from Altenew’s Super Script set. I stamped it in MFT Black Licorice hybrid ink. This ink is waterproof which is good because after stamping I decided that I actually wasn’t done painting!
I went back in and added a little grey in certain places around the flower to add a subtle drop shadow. I think it perhaps ended up a bit too subtle… But even so it does make a difference to the look of the card.
I’m pretty happy with how this turned out. It’s not perfect by any means and there are a few things I would have done differently. If I had a grey ink I would probably have stamped the sentiment in grey just to soften it a little. Then again the crisp black does pop nicely!