Friday 28 April 2017

Image Transfers On Metal

Hi guys, it is out Creative Team tutorial day again!
This is a bit special moment for me - as you know I was able to spend some time with my super talented and cool CT Member, John, during my travels last month! This is truly an unforgettable experience as John is simply so easy going and it is so fun to be around him... he will simply put a smile on everyones' faces! We were both teaching during Art Is You in Santa Rosa and Minneapolis and I had a chance to look over his shoulder a bit during that time... what happened next? Just see below, enjoy!

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Recently I was teaching at the Art Is You Retreats in Santa Rosa CA and I had the pleasure of having Anna (the incredible Finnabair herself!) sit in on one of the classes that I was teaching.
It was a two day workshop that used many of the Finnabair line of products in creating a dimensional collage piece. The class that I was teaching was in the evening and Anna had asked if she could come hang out in class with me and the students and of course I said that she was more than welcome to join us.

While the students and I were working on our projects, Anna happened to see one of the projects that another student had been working on earlier in the day and she was stunned at what she'd created. Anna showed me the piece and I told her "Oh that – it's just a photo transfer with some resin thrown on top to finish it" and Anna was amazed at the clarity of the finished piece.
So I simply explained how we made the photo transfers and Anna told me that I had to make this into a tutorial after I showed her how I create photo transfers.
For some of you this may be a little bit of a repeat because Anna mentioned that this was shared on the blog a few years ago now but in a different way – and you know what they say, what's old is new again. =)
I absolutely love transferring images onto metal because it reminds me of the antique tin type photographs.

I've created a step-by-step video of how to make your own photo transfers.

Creating photo transfers onto metal is a simple and quick process that doesn't require many supplies at all!
First you'll need to have images to transfer that are toner based, meaning images that are either printed on a laser printer (NOT inkjet) or color copies of your images from a copy center.
And keep in mind that if your selected images have text in them to have the images printed/copied in reverse so that when the transfer happens the words will be facing the right way and not backwards.

The other two main ingredients for this project are Soft Gel (I prefer Matte but you can use Glossy) and metal to transfer the images onto.
With a brush, apply a thin layer of Soft Gel onto your metal surface and a thin layer onto the image you'd like to transfer.
With the image facing upward, place your metal piece (Soft Gel side facing down) onto the image.
I like to place my metal down onto the image so that I can move the metal piece around.

Flip over your metal piece so that the image (paper) side is facing up.
Using a silicone brush (or similar), brayer out the excess Soft Gel from between the image and metal. This will also ensure of a more successful image transfer and hopefully remove any major air bubbles.

Once you have brayered your image, allow it to dry completely – the longer the better.
I've found that it generally takes at least 5 minutes to air dry but can take longer depending on your climate.
You can speed up the process using a heat tool but I've found that the best results come from patience.

After the transfer has dried completely, submerge the image into water and allow to soak for at least five minutes in the water. I use a shallow plastic bowl for allowing my image to soak and I’ve found that warm water works best.
Allow the image to show through the paper (as seen below) before proceeding to the next step. Again, patience!
Remove the transfer from the water and GENTLY begin to rub away the paper from the transfer.
If you have a heavy hand or long finger nails you may find it easier to use a sponge for this part of the process.
Continue rubbing away the paper until the image is fully visible. After removing the paper, I like to let my transfers to soak again for a few minutes to ensure that I’ve removed all of the paper.

There are a couple of different ways that you can finish your transfers once they’ve dried completely.
The first is to simply apply a couple of coats of Soft Matte Gel over the top of the image, which will seal your work and protect the image from becoming damaged (left) or for an amazing finish seal the image with ICE Resin (right)! By adding a thin layer of resin over the image, it gives the transfers an increased depth and makes the images POP!
Before adding resin to my images, I love to create "frames" around the images and add texture to the borders.
You can quickly add texture and color to the images.
For example, you can add a couple of different colors of Metallique Paints (upper left) to the edges before adding the resin finish.
The new Patina Pastes (upper right) makes the perfect frame and texture for any image transfer.
For a quick and easy splash of color, add a quick coat of Heavy Black Gesso around the edge and add Antique Wax (lower right). If you create resin jewelry, the Wax finishes become even more stunning under resin because it amplifies the metallic properties in the wax.

I hope that this has inspired you to create your own amazing image transfers to incorporate into your next project!
Don't forget to share your creations in our Finnabair & Friends Open Studio facebook group! See you there...

Thursday 27 April 2017

Few Things I Did When I Wasn't Here... and a Giveaway!

Hi again my dear creative souls!
I'm almost back... well, physically I'm back but I can't tell m on the top of everything after being for 4 weeks away from home. There are piles of things which are waiting for me here and I'm trying to go through them all, one-by-one. It's not easy, but I will make it, eventually!
So what I was doing when I wasn't here? I was quite busy you know...

I was visiting some of the coolest stores in this universe - Scrappy Chic in Livonia, MI, Clipper Street  in Vancouver, BC and The Paper Bunny in Las Vegas... some serious projects were done!

Scrappy Chic
Clipper Street
The Paper Bunny
In between I was visiting Prima headquarters with my secret mission... don't you think it is high time to play with some new goodies? Keep your eyes open!

During this month I was also teaching for Art Is You - really amazing, life changing art retreat where you have a chance to meet the most beautiful, creative people... both teachers and students! If you will ever have a chance to join the event - I promise - you won't regret!
During my whole trip, I was creative - both in the classroom and outside! I was able to teach some of my favourite classes - check out some of the samples I created in the classroom!

And in a spare moment (!) I was even able to work in my Art Journal, the very same I started this year as my ongoing "Travelling Journal" project. I used some of the supplies I found in my friend's studio - it was a breath of fresh air, moment for myself - I really needed that!

Next thing which was on my plate during this month was working on the schedule of my Summer 2017 Tour in USA. Some of the dates and places are already posted here, in my "Live Classes" Tab, so check it out and see the date!

There is one more thing which happened when I was away... My 3 new sets of Mechanicals - Winter Trinkets, Vintage Snowflakes and Metal Lotus were officially released! I was waiting for them for so long - and now they are here, you can get them in your local stores and online!

To celebrate this fabulous news I have a small giveaway for you!
You can win a set of 5 packs of the new Mechanicals - (2x Winter Trinkets, 2x Vintage Snowflakes and 1x Metal Lotus) if you will answer 1 question:
What is your favourite mixed-media technique and why?
The Giveaway is opened till Saturday night ( 29 April 2017) - midnight! 
I will announce the winner in my next blogpost - on Monday :)
Good luck - I'm waiting for your answers impatiently!
huge hugs!

Monday 24 April 2017

Hearts (Hurts) To Remember

Hello my Friends!
I love Athanasia's creativity and the new piece she is showing today is a real treat - on more than just one level! :)
I'm sure many of you know the feeling (I surely do!) when the piece you're creating is making you feel frustrated and disappointed right in the middle of the process.
That's when the crucial moment happens - the point when you should not let yourself give up and get discouraged.
Athanasia's sharing her own story and a very simple hint how to save a 'ruined' page. :)
Enjoy and happy creating!

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Hello dear friends!
I love making pages in my black journal and today I want to share my newest one.
I think this is my first page themed with hearts in this journal. I usually enjoy making and painting butterflies and dragonflies...
I'm not really a 'hearts' or 'flowers' person and that's why I think I didn't like this page at first.
But I really wanted to try to save the page, so my good friend Heavy Black Gesso helped me to fix everything and turned this page to be one of my favorites.
I started by covering the page with Black Gesso as I always do in my black journal.
I used a plastic sheet to cut some hearts and glued them on the page as masks. Then I started working on my page.

I picked the Cobblestone stencil and one of the Stone Effect Pastes to create texture on the background. I love that it dries very quickly and you can work on it immediately after that.
You can still see the amazing texture these pastes give to the project, even that now they are covered with Black Gesso!

My idea was to paint inside the pattern of the stencil with different colors of the Sparks acrylic paints. I took my favorite shades and used a heatgun to dry them.
When the page was dry, I removed the mask hearts and... then was the point I started to not like the page so much... I tried to work a little bit more with white pens but nothing happened. I still didn't like it.
So, without a second thought I grabbed the Black Gesso and painted everything black.
I had nothing on my page but the texture of the Stone Effect Pastes and that was good enough to start creating a new page.
I also had aside the hearts I had removed off the page before. Thank God I didn't put them in the trash. ;)
They had on them all the beautiful colors of the Sparks I used before, so I glued them down and voila! The half of the work was done!
To decorate the page a little more, I added Art Stones and Mini Art Stones with the 3D Gloss Gel, some thread and made splashes with the Sparks here and there. 
I also used two chipboard words I had in my stash to title the project.

You can see in my video below how I built two pages into one. :)

I really love how this page turned out even if I had to make it twice.

I think the most important thing is to trust yourself and not to give up even when you think that you have reached a very dissapointing point.
There is always a way to fix things in life, especially a page in your journal - this is the easy part, right? :)
I wish you all a happy crafty day!

Products used:

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