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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Craft Swaps / Re: Return of the TM Patch Swap: Rd 1(SU-March 3-24;SO April 21/18) on: March 17, 2018 11:16:29 PM
I'm in! Cool

2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Easter / Re: Tiny Bunny Shrine on: March 14, 2018 03:32:00 PM
I love the picture of the basket - without that, it's hard to accept that it's really as tiny as it must actually be. It doesn't look that small in the photo.

I'm intrigued by the use of the wax pencil (what I would call a China Marker, I assume) to place the pearls. Do you just kind of press the tip into them till it sticks a bit, then lift them into place? This sounds like a brilliant thing.

3  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Craft Swaps / Re: Return of the TM Patch Swap: Rd 1(SU-March 3-24;SO April 21/18) on: March 08, 2018 04:56:16 PM
I should watch that Teesha Moore YouTube video again. It's been years, and I remember it was wonderfully to-the-point (as her videos always are) and made you feel "I could do that!" It's in four short segments (as was the nature of YouTube back then.)


4  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Craft Swaps / Re: Return of the TM Patch Swap: Rd 1(SU-March 3-24;SO April 21/18) on: March 06, 2018 04:04:20 PM
For me, March is the busy month this year. April is always filled with with annual time-consuming STUFF and I just take it in stride, but March is usually fairly quiet. Not in 2018. Angry

5  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: Paper and Mixed Media Craft-Along on: March 05, 2018 04:30:32 PM
Is there a brand you recommend?

Golden is certainly the most readily-available and has the widest range of colours. But any of the others, Winsor & Newton, etc., would be equally good.

6  Craft Swaps / ACTIVE SWAPS WHERE SIGN-UP PERIOD HAS CLOSED / Re: Woodland Creature and Enchanted Forest swap 2018 on: March 05, 2018 04:20:45 PM
Aggghhhh! I go away for a couple of months and the moment I get back, all the best swaps appear! I know I can't do them all, so I'm going to have to choose. It's too painful Cry

7  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Re: The Purple Chairs of my Dreams on: March 04, 2018 04:21:52 PM
Oh, well done! It's not easy to find bright colours of wood stain, and even harder to make it go on evenly.  So great to learn about the Unicorn SPiT stains - and even better to find that they're available in Canada!

8  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: Paper and Mixed Media Craft-Along on: March 04, 2018 07:16:16 AM
If it's any help, AIMR, I've noticed that Michael's prices with a 50% off coupon are about the same for art supplies as the un-discounted prices at art supply stores. That may be a local thing, but it's worth shopping around if you're buying paints. Stores near universities or art schools usually have the best prices, and if when they have sales (often at the start of the school year) you can really save.

And thanks, CLM, for the heads-up about the two annoying stamp pads. I have some of those non-drying ones too, and they're really annoying. I haven't tried heat-setting the ink, though - that sometimes works. The embossing pad whose ink can never be removed is much worse. Have you tried alcohol to clean it off? If water or oil don't work, it may mean it's shellac-based, which will only dissolve in alcohol. Rubbing alcohol will work, or if you don't have that, vodka will too. (Keep some for yourself in case it's still a gummy mess.) Grin

I've pretty much given up on those Pilot white pens. They don't last, blob terribly, dry out, and there's something in the formula of them that draws the white pigment down into the paper as it dries, so they may start out nice and clear, but as they dry the marks just fade away. I much prefer the UNI Posca watercolour markers, though they're a bit harder to find. Much more opaque, and they work over every kind of paint and on any surface. The enamel paint markers that taggers and graffiti artists use are great too, but they're pretty expensive and tend to dry out if you don't use them all the time.

9  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Craftalongs / Re: Paper and Mixed Media Craft-Along on: March 04, 2018 05:51:23 AM
CLM - I've never done any gelli printing, so I can't give any advice on technique, etc., but looking at your prints, I think the problem might be your paints. Not that they're cheap per se, but that the colours are already muddy before you put them on. The colours in your prints do look exactly like the colours in the bottles, which don't look very bright in themselves.

As you know, paints are only as good as the pigments used to make them, and cheaper types of paints (sold for crafts, children or students) are made more affordable either by using less pigment (so they do not cover as well) or using cheaper pigments that usually lack the vibrancy of the more expensive ones. Also, the colours are never a single pigment, but usually a blend of several (or many) that can produce an inherently muddy colour if it's no done well. This is also why artists acrylics can be blended to produce good colours, while similar-coloured craft paints when mixed will be greyish - there are too many different pigments in the craft paints to mix cleanly. Buy some small tubes of artists acrylics at an art supply store like Curry's and see if it makes a difference in the result. Note that some colours may be much more expensive than others - this is a sign of good pigments.

Even if each layer of printing is fully dry before the next is applied, so you can be sure the paints aren't mixing, they can still become visually muddy by the juxtaposition of too many contrasting colours on top of/beside each other. Again, paints with purer pigments will do this more cleanly than colours that are already a bit muddy. Limiting yourself to two or three colours at most will help, and try working within a segment of the colour wheel so that the colours blend rather than clash. The prints that I've seen that use contrasting colours best (red on green, blue on orange, etc.) are ones that use large, distinct areas of colour rather than finer, all-over patterns that blend the colours more in your eye.

And finally (this comment has turned into a lecture, which I hadn't intended) your choice of paper may be affecting it a lot. I don't know what the surface of your del paper is like, but I bet it isn't very vibrantly white. If you put it against a sheet of very white paper, you'll probably see that it's rather grey. This can affect the colours you put on top quite a lot. Try printing the same paints onto bright white printer paper and see if it makes a difference. Or else, prime your paper with a smooth layer of gesso first to give it a nice, white surface to start with.

10  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Craft Swaps / Re: Return of the TM Patch Swap: Rd 1 on: March 03, 2018 04:33:28 PM
Yay, Ludi! If you're in, I guess I can't pass it up either, even though I was determined to limit myself to only one swap to start back with. I'll send in my questionnaire shortly.

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