Wednesday, September 30, 2009

GCSP1: Once in a Blue Moon Challenge - Combo Time

Once in awhile, there are 5 Wednesdays in a month. Instead of having you miss out on a new challenge, we'd like to introduce the "Once in a Blue Moon" challenge!

And now for something a little different...the challenge is to combine 2 or more of our previous challenges to make a new creation.

We've had quite a few challenges over the last 6 months! To make life easier for you, here's a list with links to what's gone before.

Chestnut Theme Challenges

GC06: Gardening
GC12: Journeys
GC18: Happiness
Spicy Supply Challenges

GC13: Tags
GC16: Ribbon
GC19: Chipboard
GC22: Bling

Color Challenges

GC17: Citrus
GC20: Rainbow
GC23: Black, White & Silver

Random Redhead & Inspiration Challenges

GC03: Purse
GC05: Poetry
GC07: Inspired by Reading
GC10: Provence Tablecloth
GC24: Stars

The usual rules apply. Your creation can be any type of papercrafting or mixed media project. Post your creation to your blog or online gallery with a mention and link back to this post, then leave a comment on this post with a link back to your entry. Need more info? Check out our Challenge FAQs.

As this is our last September challenge, it comes with yet another unmounted Stampsmith stamp as blog candy!

Enter for a chance to win this pretty image. A winner will be chosen at random for the qualifying comments.

This challenge will end on October 27, 2009 and the winner of the blog candy will be announced on October 29, 2009.

Can't wait to see all your combinations!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sharon Briss: Picking Papers with Photo-Style Stamps

All this month, we have featured Stampsmith stamps which are primarily photo-style. While we've dealt with how to get great impressions from photo-style stamps before, we thought we would pass on some more information on using this type of stamp.

Did you know that the paper you pick for your image can really make a difference in your image?

Rather than drone on and on about how the papers are different, I thought I would just show you the results. All images were stamped with Memento Ink and the image is from the Stampsmith.

The first picture shows the image stamped onto standard cardstock.

The second shows the image stamped onto low-gloss cardstock. There is definitely more visible depth, clarity and detail on this one.

The final picture shows the image stamped on high-gloss cardstock. The details are finer and more clear.

Choosing the right image for your creation is always a hard choice. Hopefully, choosing the right paper for your next project using photo stamps will be a little easier now that you have seen how the different types of paper can produce different looks.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Alison Manning: Inchie Master Board Technique

Sharon did an awesome Master Board Tutorial in May. I decided to follow up with a slight twist on this technique that I've called Inchie Collage. It can be used to create small pieces of art, such as inchies, twinchies or even ATCs. Each inchie is created from a master board, but there's plenty of scope to decorate each one individually to make unique pieces of art.

Here's the card I made using this technique:

Let's get started. Using black ink, stamp a few large images
in varying directions onto a 8 1/2" x 11" piece of vanilla c/stock.

Fill in all areas with medium and small stamps - do not leave any gaps.
This is going to allow lots of detail on the inchies.

Sponge stripes of ink onto the master board.

Cut the master board into 1 1/4" strips.

Create pleasing compositions using the 1" square punch as a guide
and create as many inchies from each strip of master board as you can.

Lay out your master board inchies onto a piece of white c/stock.
They are ready to use in your projects.

You can decorate each one individually or use them in grouping as I did on my card above and this little accordion folded book.

Thanks for stopping by Gingersnap Creations!

Stamp credits: Non Sequitur and Cornish Heritage Farms.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Reasons to Stamp in October

At Gingersnap Creations, we aim to keep your creativity flowing. So, if you run out of juice during October, here are 31 reasons to make a card or project.

1- World Vegetarian Day

Viva la veggie! There are some amazing images out there featuring amazing vegetables. Use the upcoming harvest season to spark your creativity and send a note to your favorite vegetarian.

2 - Farm Animals' Day

Local farms are such an important part of communities all over the world. Why not use today as inspiration to add chickens, roosters, cows, pigs and sheep to a creation?

Artwork by Ali Manning

Artwork by Debby Boltman

3 - World Card Making Day

Is there another cardmaker that you know that deserves a wonderful handcrafted smile in their mailbox? Celebrate World Card Making Day with them!

Artwork by Ali Manning

4 - National Dessert Month

What a sweet reason to send out a card! Stressed is just desserts spelled backwards so why not turn someone's stressful day around with a vision of tempting treats?

Artwork by Laura Liddell

5 - World Teacher Day

Don't wait until the holiday season or the end of the school year to send a little note of thanks to a teacher. Don't have children in school? All teachers count! Give a special note to your fitness instructor, your stamp demonstrator or drop a note to an influential teacher from your past!

Artwork by Debby Boltman

6 - Mad Hatter Day

One of the sensational ideas that eminated from this beloved literary character was the idea of unbirthdays, long celebrated in my household. Why not send an unbirthday card to a favorite friend? Mad Hatter Day also inspires cards with hats, tea or some of the wonderful Alice in Wonderland images out there.

7 - World Smile Day

What better way to send a smile long-distance than to send a hand-crafted creation across the miles?

Artwork by Paula Whittaker

8 - Tag Day

Tag, you're it! Celebrating the childhood game of tag, this day inspires me to think of favorite childhood memories and playmates. Why not "tag" an old friend from your childhood with a great card?

9 - World Space Week

What an out of this world inspiration for a card! Have fun with all sorts of space images - suns, moons, stars, planets or fun aliens and spacecraft. Your creation can travel the spectrum from silly to sublime.

10 - Universal Music Day

If music be the food of love, play on! Shakespeare really captures the beauty and richness that music can bring to life. Why not capture that beauty in a card?

Artwork by Paula Whittaker

11 - National Stamp Collecting Month

Postage elements can certainly add an extra dimension to our creations! From adding a single stamp, as demonstrated beautifully by Joanne's sample below, to creating a whole postal theme to creating fun "postoid" people, so why not dip into your own collection of stamps to make a fun card?

Artwork by Joanne Wardle

12 - Thanksgiving in Canada

Thanksgiving is always a great time to express to others the blessings of friendship and family. If you can't go home for the holidays, why not send a sweet message in a beautiful hand-crafted card.

Artwork by Ali Manning

13 - Family History Month

Why not include some old family pictures or keepsakes in a creation this month? Been putting off making that heritage album? Here's a great incentive to get you going on a project that will become an instant heirloom.

14 - Winnie The Pooh published this day 1926

One of the world's most beloved bears has his literary birthday today. Why not salute this childhood favorite in a wonderful piece of papercraft?

15 - P. G. Wodehouse's birthday (1881 - 1975)

P.G. Wodehouse had a fabulously wry sense of humor. Why not pay homage to the creator of the most famous and amazing butler, Jeeves, by making a wonderfully droll card and making someone smile. Of course, Wodehouse could also be just plain silly so that's great too!

16 - Dictionary Day (Noah Webster's birthday)

Here's a great reason to create a piece of art that centers around a single definition! Have fun with words today! Noah Webster certainly did.

17 - The Sweetest Day

Sweetness is the word of the day! Add something sweet to your art and send it to your sweetie!

Artwork by Debby Boltman

18 - World Rain Forest Week

It is estimated that from 40% to 75% of the species on Earth are indigenous to rainforests. Why not celebrate these amazing places with some amazing art?

Artwork by Lynn Stevens

19 - Evaluate your Life Day

Think big thoughts today ad let your art take you where it will! Why not make a goals journal?

20 - National Reading Group Month

Do you share your love of reading with a Book Group? Why not share your love of stamping and papercrafting with the same group by making a literary-based creation?

21 - 1879 - Thomas Edison invented the electric light

Thomas Edison's great idea is now the icon for great ideas - the light bulb! Have a great art idea? Make your idea a reality just like Edison!

22 - National Color Day

Use color to sweep you away today! Celebrate the use of color in your creations!

Artwork by Debby Boltman

23 - Popcorn Poppin' Month

Hey, it's popcorn! Do you need more inspiration than that? Why not make your own artistic popcorn bag or popcorn-themed card?

24 - United Nations Day

Make a global card today. Break out all those fabulous travel stamps and take your own artistic journey!

25 - Pablo Picasso's Birthday

Celebrate the father of cubism with a cubist creation! Not into that look? Why not emulate Picasso's blue period with your art?

26 - Mule Day

Include this fun animal in your art in some fun way or use the idea of stubbornness, burdens or hard work to inspire your creation! If you are very adventurous, make some art which brings to mind the old days of the Erie Canal.

27 - Navy Day

Honor our men and women in the Navy today with a fabulous card!

28 - National Chocolate Day

Today, your assignment is to not get distracted by chocolate but to include an image or sentiment about chocolate in your art. Why not use this wonderfully rich color as the base of your card? Have some fun and make a candy bar wrapper too!

Artwork by Laura Liddell

29 - Red Cross Founded Today in 1863

The American Red Cross and the organizations it works with world-wide have had a huge impact on the world with its focus on emergency and disaster relief. Why not make a card for a Red Cross volunteer who could use a smile today?

30 - Frankenstein Friday

What better way to get ready for Halloween than to have some fun with one of fiction's most recognizable monsters? Have some fun with some Frankenstein art!

Artwork by Lynn Stevens

31 - Halloween

Spooky fun will abound today! Why not get into the fun and get make some hauntingly beautiful art?

Artwork by Debby Boltman

Artwork by Laura Liddell

Thanks to our wonderful Design Team for their beautiful samples this month.

Still need more inspiration? Check out our weekly Wednesday Challenges!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Collage Corner: Sign of the Times

I love to make wall hangings and signs. Most are a bit smaller than the one I worked on today but it sort of evolved and just went with it.

I have had an insanely busy few weeks so I decided to have some fun but simple with paper today. I started out by picking out a fun collage image from Enchanted Mercantile of a vintage advertisement for an old Mary Pickford movie, My Best Girl. I love old movies and I always loved the silent pictures with Mary Pickford. She's Canadian, eh, just like me.

Even though I originally pulled out my Screen Sirens collage sheet to work on a movie star collage, I decided instead to be inspired by an idea in the movie. I especially like Mary in this movie because she is a plucky stock girl - a modern working woman albeit modern circa the late 1920s. I decided to run with the idea of "the working woman" retro and give it a modern twist.

From there, I turned to my collection of "Girl Friday" papers and embellishments from Cosmo Cricket. I figured out which ones I wanted and seemed to settle on office related images - telephones, staplers and scissors. I cut out a few blocks from the Girl Friday Elements page.

I worked out where I wanted to fit the main bits and pieces - the border quote, the collage image, the telephone and the shoes. Once I got that in place, I checked out the Girl Friday sticker sheet again and added some more office elements onto a black strip from that collection. To finish off the black strip, I used my spiral punch to give it that "office look".

From the papers, I chose a nice salmon loose-leaf paper pattern on the flip-side of the Girl Friday Monday paper and a quote from the Girl Friday Borders paper.

I put the border down first and then trimmed one edge with some salmon ribbon.

I then adhered my collage image, paper elements and sticker strip.

It still looked a little bare so I added a vellum quote that I liked and a couple of dimensional stickers as well as a heart-shaped paper clip. To finish off, I also added rhinestones to the left edge.

Here's the finished hanging:

Not Your Average Girl
Collage Image: Mary Pickford from Screen Sirens (Enchanted Mercantile)
Paper: Monday, Elements, and Borders from Girl Friday Collection (Cosmo Cricket); Number paper from Studio Basics 101 (Creative Imaginations)
Cardstock: generic black; poster board for base of hanging
Other: sentiment from Nature and Inspiration Vellum Quote Stack(DCWV); office element stickers from Girl Friday collection (Cosmo Cricket); heart-shaped paper clip; Paper Bliss tulip dimensional adhesive accent (Westrim Crafts); one of a kind epoxy sticker from Narratives line (Creative Imaginations); adhesive rhinestones from Marcella by K line (K & Company); 2 hot pink eyelets; salmon ribbon from Morning Meadow collection (sei)
Tools: Crop-a-dile; Spiral punch (Stampin Up)
Adhesive: Glossy Accents (Ranger); Tombo; double-sided tape (Stampin Up)

What I love about collage is that it is such an organic process for me. I can start with one picture which brings to mind some embellishments or some interesting patterned paper I have lying around and it can all come together into a piece that is a surprise even to me at the end.

So have some fun today and let your art take you on its own journey!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Redhead Review: Smooch

In honor of our salute to all that sparkles, I decided to check out Clearsnap's latest painting product, Smooch. Now, everyone is talking about this product which generally means that I stay away until the fervor dies down to see if it will be a staple or a fleeting trend. This time, I couldn't resist checking it out.

The nail polish-stye packaging is just adorabe but I have never been good at weilding my own nail polish brush so I was a bit apprehensive. I needn't have worried! The slender brush and the easily held handle make detail work a breeze.

You can produce very small dots of color or broader brush strokes depending on how you angle the brush.

In reviewing Smooch, I wanted to see how many ways I could use it. I started by painting some of my silver charms. I love charms, but I am an earth-tone lover so silver doesn't always work for me. I started with a simple ribbon charm and some Siren Smooch.

The charm was easy to transform from silver to red with this versatile little brush.

Okay, it did a single color very easily, but can it do two? I tried it out on this small silver sun charm using Gold Lame and Pumpkin Smooch.

I started by applying a base coat of Gold to the sun.

I then added pumpkin highlights to give the sun a more fiery demeanor.

Now, I am notably an impatient person so the key for any product I use is low or no waiting time. I decided to see if I could do several colors at once on a charm without having to have any drying time. I also wanted to see the level of detail I could achieve with the Smooch. My last charm was a silver crown with lots of fun details.

I did another base coat of gold and then I added some ruby details with my Siren Smooch. You realy can just "kiss" whatever you want to paint. I was able to easily just touch each of the raised details lightly to create a jeweled effect.

After finishing off the red details, I added some emerald accents with some Green Apple Smooch. I followed up by adding Sugarberry Smooch to the garlands and the top jewel.

The final result had a lot of detail that I would not normally get on a charm and no waiting time in the creation process. So now that we have found out that Smooch is totally charming, what next?

With such a pretty crown on hand, of course, I had to make a card!!

I started off by stamping a Stampsmith image of my favorite movie star, Audrey Hepburn, with Tuxedo Black Memento on low-gloss cardstock. I then added some distress colors to "colorize" the photo a bit. I used Ranger's Inkssentials Cut-N-Dry pen nibs but you can also use pointed cotton cosmetic applicators availabe at most pharmacies. For the skin tone, I lightly applied Rager's Tattered Rose Distress Ink. I also used Broken China and Shabby Shutters Distress Ink for the rest of the picture.

Audrey is wearing great jewelry in this photo so I decided to give Smooch another test and give her bling some shine with some more Gold Lame Smooch.

So Smooch can brighten up charms and pictures. What about paper? I added some extra shadowing to this pieces of gorgeous K & Company paper for a little extra dimension.

I finally put it all together into a card using some Olive and Blue cardstock and a piece of gold Shimmer Sheetz for extra bling.

On the whole, I really enjoyed using Smooch and I was very pleased with the control I got from the brush. I did learn that although I could layer this lovely paint without waiting for drying times, it was a good idea to let charms dry completely before handling them or adding them to a card.

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I played with Smooch. Come back next month for another Redhead Review!

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