Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) – Clean, Simple, and Colorful Techniques

So.. My first project for Level 3 of the Altenew Educator Certification Program and I opted to try my hand at Ink Blending & Copic Flicking from the Clean, Simple and Colorful Techniques class.

I have started to appreciate the details that I see people add to their cards in a big way. I love learning some simple techniques that can really add depth and copic flicking over ink blending is definitely one of them. Now… I don’t own any copic markers, but I do own Altenew’s Artist Markers which are equivalent alcohol markers to Copics. With the Altenew Artist markers I love the fact that it’s easy to match many of the Altenew Crisp Dye ink colours as they’re made to match!

I started with the second largest flower from Altenew’s Build-A-Flower: Anemone Coronaria stamp and die set. Then I used Versamark Ink and Brutus Monroe’s Icicle Embossing powder and heat embossed three of the same flower on a panel of Neenah Solar White cardstock.

Then I grabbed my Simon Says Stamp’s Blending Brush and Altenew’s Crisp Dye Ink in Levander Fields and ink blended over the entire flower, except the center. I used a piece of a Post It note to mask the center.

Then I coloured the center using Altenew’s Warm Sunshine Dye Ink and a small blending brush from Honey Bee Stamps.

Then I grabbed my Altenew Artist marker in Lavender Fields and starting at the base of each petal proceeded to do a flicking motion towards the outer edge of the petals with the brush tip of the marker. I repeated this motion for each petal.

I then grabbed the Deep Iris artist marker and repeated the flicking motion but didn’t go out as far towards the tip as I did with the Lavender Fields. After I completed each petal with the Deep Iris marker, I went back over each petal with the Lavender Fields to help. To soften the flicks. In retrospect, I’ll start with the darker shade first.

I repeated for the blending and flicking process on the second flower but instead I used Cotton Candy Crisp Dye Ink for the blending and Cotton Candy and Coral Berry Artist Makers for the flicking detail.

I used the coordinating dies to cut both flowers out and set aside.

I then grabbed an A2 Panel of Neenah Solar White cardstock and stamped the same sized flowers using Altenew’s Evening Grey Dye Ink. I stamped the flowers in the exact positions that I would be adhering the die cut flowers. By stamping the flowers out, I knew exactly where to stamp my leaves in relation to where the flowers would be.

I took a variety of the leaves from the same stamp set and stamped the outline in Jet Black ink, then filled them in with the second layer of the leaf stamps with Firefly Dye Ink. I opted to stamp three leaves as odd numbers are more pleasing, and they help to ground my two flowers and make the overall number of elements an odd number as well.

Once all the leaves were completed, I opted for an inspiring sentiment by mixing “You are Amazing” from Altenew’s ‘Amazing You‘ stamp set and “Dear Friend” from Altenew’s ‘Thinking of You‘ stamp set. I stamped the sentiment using Altenew’s Obsidian Pigment ink and heat embossed using Brutus Monroe’s Icicle embossing powder.

I wanted to have a little bit of a pattern peeking out behind my main panel so decided to use Altenew’s “Elements” mini stamp set and Evening Grey Dye Ink to stamp a repeating pattern on a panel of Neenah Solar White Cardstock measuring approximately 4×5.25 inches.

In retrospect, I really only needed to stamp the outer edge of the panel as the middle wouldn’t be seen. Alternatively, I could’ve also used a shape die and cut out the center of the patterned panel to save for another project.

Then I trimmed down my main panel to be approximately 3.5 x 4.75 inches to allow a bit of the patterned panel to show behind. Then adhered the main panel to the patterned panel and then I adhered my flowers to the main panel using Simon Says Stamp’s Big Momma roll foam tape.

To add a bit more depth to the card (and some shine) I used varying sizes of Studio Katia’s Onyx Crystals. I limited myself to five crystals as odd numbers are more pleasing to the eye and I didn’t want to overwhelm the card and distract from my detail in the flowers.

Voila! This is definitely a technique I will try again, as I really do like the detail it adds to my flowers.

Altenew Stamps:

Build-A-Flower: Anemone Coronaria

Elements

-Thinking of You

-Amazing You

Altenew Crisp Dye Inks:

– Firefly

– Cotton Candy

– Lavender Fields

– Jet Black

– Warm Sunshine

– Evening Grey

Altenew Obsidian Pigment Ink

Tsukineko’s Versamark Ink

Other Supplies:

– Artist Markers : Cotton Candy, Coral Berry, Lavender Fields, Deep Iris

– Studio Katia’s Onyx Crystals

– Neenah Solar White cardstock (SSS)

– Ranger’s Glossy Accents (SSS)

Brutus Monroe’s Icicle Embossing Powder

Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp Big Momma Foam Tape (SSS)

Tools:

Crystal Katana Jewel Picker (SSS)

– My Sweet Petunia’s MISTI Stamping Tool (SSS)

Tim Holtz Mini Comfort Trimmer (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Acrylic Blocks (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Grid Transparency (SSS)

WOW Dual Speed Heat Tool (SSS)

Spellbinders Platinum 6 Die Cutting Machine

– Anti-Static Powder Bag

Tom Holtz Tonic Glass Media Mat

Therm-O-Web Purple Tape

– Simon Says Stamp’s Blending Brushes

– Honey Bee Stamp’s Blender Brushes

Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) – Beautiful Details

Alright – the Beautiful Details class for me was the most intimidating and challenging class in the Altenew Educator Certification Program to date. I’m not a really good artist and I don’t sketch or use coloured pencils and this class has a lot of that in there. I’ve been on a vellum kick as of late, so I opted to give this card a try with Vellum.

I started off with Altenew’s Flower Garden stamp set and stamped the largest flower along with a few leaves using Tsukineko’s Versamark Ink on a piece of Simon Says Stamp Vellum. Then I used Brutus Monroe’s Icicle Alabaster Embossing Powder and my WOW Dual Speed Heat Tool to heat emboss the images. I made sure that my heat tool was really hot before applying it to the vellum to shorten the time it takes to melt the powder and to avoid warping of the vellum.

Then I cut around the images to make them easier to manage one at a time.

I started off with Altenew’s Artist Markers in Frayed Leaf and Bamboo to colour the greenery. I flipped my image over to colour on the back of the vellum as colouring on the front with the heat embossing could damage the tips of the markers. Starting off with Frayed Leaf, I coloured the center of the leaf and flicked the tip of the marker outwards. Then I coloured the edges and flicked slightly inwards. This gave pretty good coverage of the leaf with the lightest colour.

Then I grabbed the Bamboo marker, and did the same, except I didn’t flick out as far with the colour. Then I went back over the same area with the Frayed Leaf to help to blend the colours better – this helps to add some depth to the leaf.

Then I grabbed my Staedler Watercolor Pencils, as interestingly enough I don’t have any regular coloured pencils….so…you know…use what you’ve got! I grabbed a pencil that was the closest in colour to the ink I had already put down and then essentially did almost the exact same thing as I did with the markers. I used a very light hand and focused most of the pencil colour along the centers vein of the leaves as well as the base of the leaf, flicking upwards.

I repeated this process on all of the leaves and then moved on to the flower.

For the flower, I wanted a bright colour, so I grabbed the Rouge and Crimson markers. I did the very same technique as I did on the leaves…I started with a more all over colouring of the Rouge on the flower.

Then I went in with the Crimson marker and flicked the tip along the outlines of the flower, focusing more colour in the center and along the base of the flower.

Then I blended the colours back out using the Rouge marker. Then I grabbed the coloured pencil colour that most closely matched the colours of the flower and added some more detail to the sections of the flower. I focused on the center and the sections of the flower that should naturally be darker like the undersides of the petals as well as sections of petals that are tucked beneath another petal. I continued adding a light touch of colour until I felt like the flower had enough detail.

Then I fussy cut the flower out as well as all of the leaves. I cut them out just around the edge of the embossing.

I wanted a bit of detail on the background without it being distracting, so I grabbed Altenew’s Dotted Swirls Debossing Cover Die and ran it through my die cutting machine. It’s a very detailed yet subtle image and perfect for my background. I trimmed the panel down to approximately 5.25×4 inches and adhered it to an A2 sized card base of Neenah Solar White Cardstock.

Then I arranged the flowers and leaves on the panel until I was satisfied with the arrangement. Then I adhered the arrangement to the panel using some clear vellum tape runner. I only applied a very small amount of the adhesive to the center of the flower to allow the edges to be loose for some dimension. Then I added the adhesive to just the base of the leaves to allow them to ‘float’ and add some more dimension.

Then I heat embossed “Thinking of You” from Altenew’s Thinking of You stamp set using Brutus Monroe’s White Alabaster Embossing Powder on Simon Says Stamp’s Black Cardstock. I cut the sentiment strip down and then adhered it onto the bottom portion of the card using Simon Says Stamp Big Momma Foam Tape.

Then I added a few of Studio Katia’s Majestic 3mm Sequins to brighten the card up and add a bit of shine. Then I stamped one of the smaller flowers on the corresponding envelope using Altenew’s Crisp Dye Ink in Rouge.

I think the card came out really nice. It’s definitely a technique I plan to practice more often. There are also some other techniques in this class that I plan on trying out as the results are absolutely beautiful!

Altenew Stamps/Dies:

Flower Garden

Thinking of You

Dotted Swirls Debossing Cover Die

 

Inks/Pencils/Markers :

Altenew Artist Markers – Crimson, Rouge, Frayed Leaf, Bamboo

– Altenew Crisp Dye Ink – Rouge

Staedler Watercolor Pencils

Tsukineko’s Versamark Ink

 

Other Supplies:

– Neenah Solar White cardstock (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Black Cardstock.

Studio Katia’s Majestic 3mm Sequins

– Ranger’s Glossy Accents (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp Vellum

Brutus Monroe’s Icicle Embossing Powder

Brutus Monroe’s White Alabaster Embossing Powder

Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp Big Momma Foam Tape (SSS)

 

Tools:

Crystal Katana Jewel Picker (SSS)

– My Sweet Petunia’s MISTI Stamping Tool (SSS)

Tim Holtz Mini Comfort Trimmer (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Acrylic Blocks (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Grid Transparency (SSS)

WOW Dual Speed Heat Tool (SSS)

Spellbinders Platinum 6 Die Cutting Machine

– Anti-Static Powder Bag

Tom Holtz Tonic Glass Media Mat

Therm-O-Web Purple Tape

Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) -Magical Marker Techniques

Alcohol Markers….well….yeah.

I’m in no way an ARTIST especially with markers and/or crayons. I can’t draw, sketch or colour to save my life! I can do some really basic things with these mediums, so I was nervous when i started Altenew’s Magical Marker Techniques class. But It’s part of the level 2 for the Altenew Educator Certification Program that i’m determined to finish, so I pushed play.

Now … it wasn’t nearly as scary as I thought it would be, but it definitely opened my eyes to ways to embrace alcohol markers. I have the full set of Altenew Artist Markers (Full 60 Count), which yes I realize may seem silly considering I don’t know how to use them well lol, but…I purchased them with the intention to try to use them….so here we are. I’ve used them a handful of times up to now, but after taking this class I definitely think i’ll be whipping them out more often.

As I was thumbing through my Altenew stamps, I was drawn toAltenew’s Build-A-Flower: Fuchsia stamp set and I decided to do an encouragement card.

I’ve always loved the look of vellum on a card, so I opted to use the marker on vellum technique from class. I started off by stamping both flowers, the bud and both leaves on an A2 panel of Simon Says Stamp Vellum using my MISTI Stamping Tool and Gina K’s Jet Black Amalgam Ink. Using a MISTI (or other stamping tool), always you to restamp in the exact same spot if needed and with the vellum I thought it might be a good idea as it doesn’t typically take ink well.

After letting the vellum and ink dry for a while, I placed a bit of scrap white cardstock behind the vellum so I could see the colours properly as I was applying them.

I started off with one of the flowers and the Altenew markers in Puffy Heart and coloured in the entire lower portion of the flower with it. I tried not to touch the black in too much as I didn’t want to smudge it.

Then I added a bit of Purple Wine marker around the edges of the flower section to add a bit of depth to the flower.

Then I added a smidge of Cosmic Berry marker for a little more colour. Then I went back over a few sections with the Puffy Heart marker just to blend it a bit. Now…blending doesn’t work well on vellum as it doesn’t absorb the ink well, but I didn’t want harsh lines on my flower, so I just touched it up a bit with that lighter colour.

On to the greenery…I used Frayed Leaf, Bamboo & Parrot, following the same technique as I did with the purples. I started with Frayed Leaf all over the greenery sections.

Then I went over the edges with the Bamboo marker as well as the stamen on the bottom. Then I added just a smidge of Parrot on the top of the greenery for a little bit more depth.

I repeated the same colouring technique on the smaller flower, and then just the greens on the bud.

 

For the leaves, I used the Bamboo all over the leaves, then added a bit of Parrot colour down the center and along the edges for some depth of colour.

Then I grabbed the coordinating dies and cut everything out using my Spellbinder Platinum 6 die cutting machine (use whatever machine you have).

Then I grabbed an A2 sized panel of Neenah Solar White cardstock and stamped the branches using Simon Says Stamp’s Acrylic Blocks. I dry fitted the flowers and bud to see exactly where I wanted the branch and stems to go. I stamped using Gina K’s Amalgam ink in Jet black again. Then I placed the sentiment as well to the bottom right. I used a beautiful sentiment from Altenew’s One Day At A Time stamp set and more of Gina K’s Amalgam Jet black ink. I used the Gina K ink as it holds up well against alcohol ink.

Then I wanted to add a bit more colour to my panel, so I used the splatter technique from the class just for a subtle splash of colour. Essentially, you scribble your alcohol marker(s) on to a craft sheet or a glass surface, then add a bit of standard rubbing alcohol (allows some movement of the ink). In the class, they used a stipple brush, but I don’t have one, so I grabbed an old paintbrush, dipped it into the alcohol ink solution and then just tapped my finger on the brush to get some splatters. PLEASE be careful not to get this all over the place…you could always use a box to catch excess splatter. I added splatters of Cosmic Berry, Parrot and Jet Black.

I also added a few splatters of Nuvo Aqua Shimmer pen. I squeezed out a little bit of the ink on the craft sheet, and then just dipped the tip of the pen in it and again tapped on the pen to get a few splatter dots – this adds just a touch of shimmer to the card.

I cut my panel down to approximately 3.75×5 inches and then adhered it to a panel of Simon Says Stamp’s Cardstock in Slate that measures approximately 4×5.25 inches. Then I adhered everything to an A2 cardbase of Neenah Solar White Cardstock.

Then I used a bit of vellum taperunner (hides a bit better behind vellum than some other adhesives) and applied it to each of the vellum pieces and then adhered everything down to the panel as I had previously dry fitted them.

I stamped another one of the fuchsia flowers to the bottom left corner a coordinating envelope using Altenew’s Crisp Dye Inks. I used just the outline and third layer of the flowers (I skipped the second layer) to keep it a little more artsy looking. I used Altenew Obsidian Pigment Ink for the outline, then Altenew’s Crisp Dye Ink – ParrotAltenew Crisp Dye Ink – Bamboo & Altenew Crisp Dye Ink – Cosmic Berry for the colouring. It didn’t match perfectly, mainly because I used the markers on vellum instead of cardstock, but it was close enough for me to go ahead with it. And my card is complete.

I really love the look of the markers on the vellum as it gives everything a nice ethereal look to it, which I especially think works well with this encouragement card and that delicate font.

Altenew Stamps:

One Day At A Time

Build-A-Flower: Fuchsia

Inks/Markers

Altenew Artist Markers (Full 60 Count) – Cosmic Berry, Purple Wine, Puffy Heart, Frayed Leaf, Bamboo, Parrot, Jet Black,

Altenew Obsidian Pigment Ink

Altenew’s Crisp Dye Ink – Parrot

Altenew Crisp Dye Ink – Bamboo

Altenew Crisp Dye Ink – Cosmic Berry

-Gina K Designs’s Jet Black Amalgam Ink

Other Supplies:

– Neenah Solar White cardstock (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Cardstock – Slate

Simon Says Stamp Vellum

Nuvo Aqua Shimmer pen

Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue (SSS)

– Vellum Tape Runner

– Rubbing Alcohol

-Paintbrush (cheap)

Tools:

– My Sweet Petunia’s MISTI Stamping Tool (SSS)

Tim Holtz Mini Comfort Trimmer (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Grid Transparency (SSS)

Simon Says Stamp’s Acrylic Blocks (SSS)

WOW Dual Speed Heat Tool (SSS)

Spellbinders Platinum 6 Die Cutting Machine

– Anti-Static Powder Bag

Tom Holtz Tonic Glass Media Mat

Therm-O-Web Purple Tape

 

Anniversary Card for a Wife

So… I was asked to make a nice card for someone’s wife on their 40th wedding anniversary. Now… I went through elaborate card design possibilities… Inlay dies, watercolour, ink blending, etc., but ultimately I settled on a simple die cut with a stencil detail. Here’s the kicker… I used alcohol markers! Now… I NEVER or rather Rarely whip out my markers. I struggle so badly with colouring using alcohol markers, but I thought it’s a simple stamp design, why not?

So I started off by stamping Altenew’s beautiful Lady stamp on scrap Neenah White cardstock using Gina K’s Amalgam black ink. This ink is great for your stash as it’s compatible with other Inks, watercolour and alcohol markers and its a really nice crisp black.

Then I grabbed my alcohol markers and got to it. Unfortunately I didn’t take any in process shots as I really wasn’t confident it was going to come out properly :/

I tried all the fancy colour blending techniques (kind of). But really only used 3 colours for the flowers (purple shades) and two for the greenery. Than I ran the image though my die cut machine using the coordinating die.

Then in to the background. I gtabbed Altenew’s Elegant Swirls stencil, picket fences life changing blender brushes, and Altenew’s Buttercream crop Dye ink. I taped the stencil down to my panel using purple tape and then lightly brushed the colour on starting in the top left corner , gradually darkening the colour as I moved towards the bottom right corner.

I stamped ‘for my Beautiful wife’ using bits and pieces from the Beautiful Lady stamp set.

I trimmed my sentiment panel down to approximately 3.75x5inches and adhered my die cut flower using foam squares for some dimension. I cut down a panel of Simon Says Stamp’s white glitter cardstock to approximately 4×5.25 inches and then adhered my floral panel to it. Then I put everything onto an A2 card base.

For a little extra Sparkle, I added a few jewels. That’s about it really! Not bad for a non marker person I think 🙂

Products Used:

Altenew Stamps:

– Beautiful Lady

– Elegant Swirls Stencil

Altenew Crisp Dye Inks:

– Buttercream

– Altenew Artist Markers

Other Supplies:

– Neenah Solar White cardstock

– Simon Says Stamp’s White Glitter Cardstock

– Ranger’s Glossy Accents

– Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue

Tools:

– Krystal Katana Jewel Picker

– My Sweet Petunia’s MISTI Stamping Tool

– Tim Holtz Mini Comfort Trimmer

– Simon Says Stamp’s Acrylic Blocks

– Simon Says Stamp’s Grid Transparency