Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Experimenting with Distress Ink

Disclaimer: Yes, I know it's another pet page. I made it for LOAD. Today's prompt was to scrap about a conflict. So I scrapped about whether I was a cat or a dog person. I do love both. Lately though, the difficulties of caring for a VERY senior dog have left me loving the ease of caring for a cat. Both types of animals are great, but for a long time, I thought I would never have a cat. I had been told I was allergic. I am, in truth, slightly allergic to them. However, I REALLY like having cats. A few years ago, we rescued some kittens which I hand raised. Sweetpea is one of those pictured in the page below. We thought at first we would care for them and then give them to good homes. Happily, caring for those little fur babies allowed me to realize my allergies were not all that intense. Now our home is populated with 2 cats and 1 dog.

  This page was quite the experiment for me. I have a few of the Tim Holtz distress inks but really had not delved into using them. I saw a video over at Scrapbook News and Review magazines forum which inspired me to try using them with stamps and misted water. I also decided to pull out a stamp which I had hand carved about a month or so ago. My original intent was to stamp just a little. I ended up covering the whole page. I confess. I was having quite a fun time with the stamps and inks.

Which leads to me the page itself ( Pardon the photo.It's late here). It kind of reminds me of those times you go to the hairdresser wanting something different. It takes you a while to get used to your new haircut.Well, I'm still getting used to this page. I based my design on Paula Gilarde's Ad Inspiration challenge. I liked the grid design that challenge #49 provided. Grids are often  difficult for me since I can rarely measure anything straight( despite quite a lot of tools designed for that purpose). I felt that adding the artsy water color stamp effect might be a nice way for me to keep crooked lines a little less noticeable. Initially, I used a brown marker to make the grid lines. It was too bright, so I diffused it with some white acrylic paint.

Cardstock and alphas: Colorbok; background stamp: hand carved by me;
pet stamps: Basic Grey; ink: ranger; Jewel: Making memories;
 brads: Basic grey and Karen Foster; other: acrylic paint, google eyes

The stamped background added a bit of difficulty in finding the right embellishments for the page. I solved the problem by stamping a cat and dog directly onto the layout. I then used pen to outline the images and added small embellishments like brads, jewels and google eyes. Now my flat stamps had a little more character. I stamped a subtle border of circles with white acrylic paint. I then added some small punched circles to the border. The punched circles are simply made with  ink on photo paper scraps.
   Experimenting like this is not just for fun. It's a way for me to try out something that may become part of my regular arsenal of techniques. I am more likely to use a technique again in the future if I try it out on a page or tag. I don't recommend trying something new out a page with special photos. New techniques, at least for me, are done on pages which, though wonderful to have and part of my story, are not as important as say, wedding photos.
   I am off to submit my page to the Second floor challenge. I've been wanting to try one of these for weeks now. It's a wonderful challenge to try to inspire you to do something new. Check it out at Balzer Designs. If you need a little more inspiration, pop over to Scrapbook News and Review Magazine. Inspiration is posted on the blog weekly.


  1. Love your page. The colors are great and I like the mosoaic style blocking.

  2. Wonderful! I love how you used the stamp and a messy grid is a great idea! Thanks for playing along with the challenge :)