Monthly Archives: May 2012

Steampunk Swap



I really like the steampunk aesthetic, but i had a real brain block when it came time for this swap. These are a tryptic. I made a larger drawing and then cut it into 3 ATC’s. i used metallic markers on these. It was al little tricky because the colors I liked were wide. I also used gel pens for the metallic effect. It all came out darker than I liked, but since these were my 4th attempt to come up with something, I just didn’t have time to re-do them. I think they came out alright. I just felt like I could have done better if I had an extra month or two!


Buttons ATC swap


The buttons ATC’s were for an April ZIA swap. I got out my buttons tin and used them for inspiration, but added tangles to many of the buttons. The two ATC’s covered with buttons  drew on a larger piece of card stock and then trimmed them into two ATC’s. What is a two-part version of a triptych called?

Buttons ATC

Fairy Postcard Swap


Fairy Postcard Swap

We had a postcard swap this month. This is a 4×6 piece of card stock. This fairy ended up having a pensive look, but I guess that is OK. I just hope the recipient liked it. Once again, I used markers and micron pens. I used the aqua brush and blending pen with this one.


Quilt Pennants


Quilt pennants

If you follow my blog, you can see that I am in a pennant swap each month. For April the them was quilts. Many of the tangle patterns are the same as, or similar to quilt designs. I tried to use some quilt patterns and some that look like fabric designs. I used micron pens and Stampin Up markers. I want to get more marker colors, but I have to budget them in.

Try, try again


Borrowed the idea from the book Time to Tangle With Colors by Marie Browning

from oscillate by Sandra Strait

I made these on Shrinking film (remember Shrinky Dinks?). I had some technical trouble with these. Even though the person who is hosting this swap sent excellent instructions, I didn’t read them again when it was time to work with them. I didn’t start them until a couple of weeks after I received the blank disks. I sanded them, but I didn’t have the proper sandpaper. I was warned the Micron pens don’t dry on these, but online, it said they would work if I sanded them first. I should have listened to the swap host. The micron pens smear easily. I tried waiting 24 hours for them to dry, and I even used my hair dryer on them. I didn’t use my heat gun because it would have shrunk the film and we had to send them to the host so she could shrink them. Probably a good idea, because most of us have not used the shrink film before.

I also tried Stampin Up markers, but they smear easily and didn’t dry after 24 hours. I carefully wiped off the Stampin Up pens, even though the colors blended beautifully. I ended up using Bic Ultra fine markers and Sharpies. Now I know it is better not to use the two together. I had some colors in the Sharpies I liked and some in the Bics, but together, the Sharpies kind of melt the Bic colors. IAM pleased with the results. I sent them back to the swap hos tand she will shrink them. I will get two disks back from other artists. I would like to make more of these, and I have a whole package of Shrink film that I have been a little afraid to use up until now. I think I want to cut it out with the Cricut and then color them. I would like to try colored pencils because I can shade in the colors. I really like the dark blue and greens together, though. I will have to add the shrink film to my stack of projects that are waiting for me.

The one thing I did do right was drawing the design on white paper and laying the disks over the drawing. I traced them with the markers and then colored them in. If you use pencil on them, the pencil lines will show through.


More flowers for Swaps


I made a total of three flower ATC’s for the May swap. For some reason, I had a drawing block this month. Maybe it was my daughter’s wedding at the beginning of the month. I just felt tired and had a hard time coming up with ideas, even though drawing flowers is one of my favorite things to do. I think I feel conflicted because I am drawing for a Zentangle Inspired art group, and I am afraid I won’t use enough tangle patterns instead of just making up a lot of my own doodles. I used a pattern called Lupe by Christina Vandervlist. I really like the look of it. It is the one in the dark orange with the yellow and brown centers. My aqua pen is totally worn out and I use it all the time. 😦 I will have to pick up a new one when I get paid. I tried a bunch of old brushes I have, but I could get the accuracy I do with the aqua pen. I used some colored pencils along with the markers on the one with all the orange square flowers. The purple and green design is called h2o by Luz Adrianna Villa and it is one of my favorites. It came out a little darker than I would have liked, but I still think it came out nicely.

H20 tangle pattern and buttercup pattern are two of the main patterns. Marker and some colored pencil

ATC with markers and micron pens