Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Wishing Anniversary Card

Here is a card I made for my parents' recent 50th wedding anniversary. I colored the main image with Copic markers, then added some Stickles to the stars. I was rather proud of how the hair turned out. I printed the sentiment on my computer, stamped the heart circle and stars, watercolored the blue background, and colored the stars with Copics. I added some Spica glitter (clear pen) to the stars but it doesn't show up in the photo. I cut out the circle and lace design behind the sentiment with Nestibilities - ditto for the main image.

By the way, I almost always cut out my cards and envelopes with my Sizzix dies. Usually I use the Movers & Shapers Pro Dies Card A7 and Envelope A7. I like these larger cards (5x7) especially for Magnolia images since they take up quite a bit of space (a bit too much for A6 sized cards - which are closer to 4x6).

Monday, June 25, 2012

Copic Certification Class

I took the Copic Certification class on May 11, 2012. (The class was held in Michigan; I visited family while there. My sister also took the class! Thanks for driving Jen!). Marianne Walker was our instructor. She is listed as a "Copic Product Specialist" - and that she is! She could even rattle off the Copic marker number equivalent when talking about a particular color (like the wall color in the class room). She also wrote the manual for the program. The class was packed full of information. There was a lot of hands-on coloring stuff as well, including air brushing. Some of the topics covered included information about alcohol inks, choosing papers and inks (e.g. for rubber stamping) that work best with the markers, the meaning of the marker numbering system and how it relates to the color wheel, basic coloring techniques, and the aforementioned airbrushing.

Here are a few examples of what I did in the class. We went over a lot more of course - this is just to give you an idea of what was covered. All the images here were given to us in class. They were printed on high quality card stock. The brush end was used for all the coloring in these examples.

The circles on the left were colored with two or three colors each (sorry I can't remember!) and blended smoothly to create shading. (There were actually three circles on the card stock sheet she gave us but I didn't color the other one so I cropped it off.)

We also did some feather blending. This was tricky. I think I'll have to practice more to get a smoother transition. I used darker colors for a challenge - it is easier to work with the lighter colors.

We used the feather blending technique to color this pretty set of flowers too. (I just noticed that I didn't color the centers, doh!)

Here is an example of blending from a palette. The palette used here was simply a piece of acetate. A craft sheet would work too but the advantage of the acetate is that it could be put over the top of white card stock so you may see the colors better (as well as where they are on the sheet - some colors are too light to see on the acetate if it isn't over a light surface). The darker color was applied to the acetate and the lighter marker was used to pick up some of the color. This gives a sort of watercolor effect as it is painted on. Don't worry about the darker color staying on the tip of the lighter marker; if there is still some on it when you are done, just color on a scrap sheet until it is gone (it comes off pretty easily).

 I used the darker green to shade areas on the pineapple.

Another technique is called tip-to-tip blending. Just use the lighter color marker to pick up the darker color directly from the marker (or possibly from some slop around the cap) then color from dark to light. In the image on the left, I picked up the darker green (G28) with the lighter green marker (YG01), started on the bottom left then colored to the right. Note: marker may be easily cleaned off non-porous surfaces with alcohol - this includes the marker body and cap, as well as acetate and craft sheets.

Below are some examples of how to add texture with the colorless blender. The pocket images below were colored using one blue marker (B95). On the top, I squirted some colorless blender on a paper towel and pressed it briefly onto the image. I used the colorless blender marker on the bottom left image to make some shapes. (I used the chisel tip to do the lines and dashes.) For the image on the bottom right, I just went over the image with the colorless blender marker (brush tip) until I was satisfied with the look (kind of an acid-wash).
To sign up for Copic Certification classes go to the Copic Website or search for a certified instructor in your area.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Copic Watercolor Background

I like the look of watercolor for the background on some of my images. I wanted to get this look with my Copic markers. This is what I ended up doing; I think it turned out pretty well! For the background below I used B63 and B60, as well as the Colorless Blender 0. Don't forget to use a backing sheet. I usually color on my Ranger Craft Sheet. It can be easily wiped off with alcohol. Love it!

I start with my darker shade, in this case B63. I dot around the image, overlapping as I go.

I let it dry and go over some parts again to give it more depth.

Next I start adding the lighter color, in this case B60. Again I overlap the dots, as well as mix into the darker dots.

To get a little more seamless blend, I use the light marker tip-to-tip with the darker marker and add more dots, smearing around as I go. I also add more darker dots close in to the subject since they begin to lighten as the lighter layers are added.

Finally, I go over the whole background, working from the outside moving in, with the Colorless Blender. I usually do this with more of an S movement to get a brushed look.

Below is another example of the "watercolor" look using markers with a little more blue in them.