Jun 6, 2015

Freehand Watercolor Condolences

Hellooo there Sweet Stamp Shop fans! I'm here to share with you a fun technique for today.  I think the hardest cards for me to make are condolence cards. I never seem to be able to find the right image I want to use. Well, I love the Sweet Stamp Condolences sentiment set but its just that, only sentiments. Well have no fear, enter in freehand watercoloring! I think there are so many great sentiments within the set that can be used and I kind of like knowing that I can now choose whatever image I want because its actually really easy to freehand a water-colour card. Let me show you what I mean.

Here is my final card. Because it is a condolence card I wanted it as SIMPLE as possible. No bells or whistles on this one, but still beautiful.

First, I feel like flowers are a very appropriate and safe image to use for condolence cards, but considering it is a sensitive time, it still has to be just the right flower image. I google searched 'flowers' and of course a whole slew of images came up. It didn't take me long to find one.

It spoke to me in just the ways I wanted it to. It said two things: 1."I'm an easy shape that you probably can't mess up" and 2. "Paint me!"

Now let me preface this by saying, in a very very serious tone, that I in NO way consider myself to be a person who can draw. True story, cross my heart, I never tell a lie. And that is exactly why this technique can be done by anyone. If I can do it, so can you. Promise! Also don't forget, water-colour is very forgiving so it doesn't have to look perfect to be lovely. Now, that's my kind of art :)

Ok, so I just kept my googled image close to me and traced it out with a pencil as best I could. This is when picking an image with very few lines is really really helpful.

After I got it how I wanted it, I picked some Distress Ink colours and a aqua brush and set to work. Remember, Distress Inks are formulated to work with water so its like having water-colour paints in your ink pad. I just smoosh them onto my craft mat (you can use an acetate sheet or even a plate) and add some water to them.

I started by having the light source hit the top of the petals, but as time went on I changed how I wanted it to look. I will show you that a bit later. First, a few tips for watercoloring: 1. Be sure to water-colour sections that don't touch each other because unless the sections are dry you will get some bleeding. And you definitely don't want that! 2. Run your clean water over the section you want to paint first. This will help the color spread and not be so concentrated. Just how water-colour should be. 3. If you are impatient like I am, heat up each section after you are done painting. It dries faster that way. Plus you can add different colors without too much bleeding if you want heavy shadows.

After doing the lighter wash, I went back in and added darker shades and different colours. Especially to the sections where the light source would cast a shadow, like where each new petal overlaps another petal. 

Also, you can see in this picture that I changed the light source to the left side of the flower, but only after I had painted it already! I did this by rubbing around a fair amount of clean water and lifting up the color with a paper towel. You can do that trick over and over until you get it as light as you want. That is the beauty of water-colour!

After it dried, it was just a matter of trimming down the panel and adding the sentiment. Simple but beautiful.

I also added a few rainstones to help pull the focus to the sentiment a bit more and adjusted the water-colour panel to be down in the bottom left corner which helps shift the weight as well. When putting a card together be sure to step back from it a bit to get a feel for the balance of the card. This can help you be sure it looks just right.

And that's it for today! Thanks for joining me. I hope you learned something new today and found some confidence to try this technique for yourself. I would love to see what you create so if you do try this out, be sure to leave a comment so I can come check it out! This was intimidating to me for the longest time, but once I tackled it I felt so much better! I hope you do too.
Also, check out the Sweet Stamp Shop Facebook page and also Instagram for so much inspiration your eyes might pop out! 

Until next time,

1 comment:

Miriam Prantner said...

Wow! Your flower look AMAZING and you can definitely draw, this is just stunning!

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