Elephantastic Birthday

I pushed my comfort zone a bit with today’s card. I knew I wanted to use this adorable elephant, and was planning on keeping the colouring fairly simple. But then I thought hey… that candle would be casting light around, right? So I decided to play with the look of cast light on my elephant. I’ll admit adding the bright yellow onto the elephant was a tad scary, and the candle probably wouldn’t cast quite as much light as I ended up with, but it was definitely fun to experiment with!

I started with the Baby Elly’s Birthday digi-stamp from Sasayaki Glitter. I coloured the cake first, with the idea of it being a chocolate cake. I used my darkest browns (I have these markers) to colour the icing, then some lighter browns for the cake itself. (As I was writing this I realised that my shading on the cake is all wrong, given the light is coming from above… I coloured it before I decided to have the candle as the main light source, and forgot to go back and fix it!) For the decorative flowers and the candle I used some purple. I then coloured the flame of the candle with yellow and a touch of orange.

Next I added in my areas of cast light to the elephant. (I later went back and added them to the icing too.) I spent quite a light of time puzzling out which areas would be most hit by the light, and I’m not certain I got it right, but I tried my best! I then coloured the elephant with my yellow greys. I worked over it a few times to make sure the yellow highlights were realistically blended in. I then went back to the glow around the candle and added more yellow to really brighten it up.

I coloured the elephant’s hair with the same greys as her skin, then chose some greens for her bow. I used the darkest green that had been on the bow to colour the heart on her foot.

After finishing the colouring I really wasn’t sure I’d done the right thing by adding the yellow to the image… I showed husband and he pointed out that, well, of course it wouldn’t look right with all the white around it! So I fussy cut the image and as soon as the white was removed it looked heaps better! I looked in my stash of card bases that I had premade and found a dark brown one and decided to use that as it would be a bit warmer than black, and would coordinate well with the chocolate cake! The lighting definitely looked better on the elephant once I’d laid it against the card base.

Though I was happy with the card base I felt like something more needed to be going on behind little Elly. After some contemplation I decided to die cut a circle of yellow vellum to put behind her. Before die cutting I backed it with double-sided adhesive so that I would be able to easily adhere the vellum to the cardbase. I then stuck it down, and popped up Elly with foam tape on top of the circle.

As a final touch I white heat embossed a sentiment just below my image. Yesterday I had received the Heffy Doodle stamps that I had backed on Kickstarter, and the elephant set (Elephant of Surprise) was on the top of the pile, so of course I decided to use a sentiment from there!

I’m really pleased with this card. The elephant is so cute, and the sentiment matches beautifully. I really like how the yellow vellum enhances the impression of the light coming from the candle. Though it was daunting to do I am definitely glad that I decided to play with the cast light on this card.


Lady Joyful

Challenges included:

AAA Cards – Creatures Great or Small

Sasayaki Glitter Challenge Blog – Brown (edit – where it was picked as one of the top three!)

SheepSki Designs Challenges – Feature a Creature

Sweet Stampin’ – Heat Embossing

16 thoughts on “Elephantastic Birthday

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