Friday 4 August 2017

Watercolour! - A Vintage Journey August 2017 Challenge

Hello Everyone and Welcome

Its great to see you all again. Today we launch our new Challenge over at A Vintage Journey and this time I will be your host for our 'Watercolour' challenge. Here are the details
' There is so much versatility in watercolour, making it possible to create art that can be gentle , washy and light or bold, full of colour and with definite lines and it comes in a variety of guises: pans, tubes, sticks, inks , markers, crayons. So for this challenge we would like your projects to include some form of watercolouring or watercolouring techniques and be in keeping with our favoured styles: vintage, shabby, mixed media. art journaling, industrial, timeworn or steampunk .'

I guess my arty/ creative roots began with pencil drawing and painting, watercolours being my painting medium of choice and I have been wanting to revisit those roots for a long while now but have kept putting it off, shying away from it due to self doubt in my ability, I think, so I saw this challenge as a golden opportunity to rekindle my much neglected love of drawing and painting. I dug out my watercolour paints and brushes of yesteryear and combined them with some of my more modern day crafty mediums/ supplies to create a more contemporary watercolour painting with a mixed media twist.

Alot of watercolour artists often work from photos/ pictures to develop , hone and practise their skills especially if they aren't, for whatever reason, able to paint 'live' so given it had been so long since my last endeavours and not wanting to knock my confidence I decided to do just that so the image is sketched and painted from a picture I came across in one of my 'art inspiration' files.

I began by stretching my paper (300gsm) onto a drawing board. This gives you a tough, resilient surface on which to paint and helps the paper remain flat both during and after painting. I'm sure all you artists out there know how to do this but for for those of you who don't here's how:
1.First soak the paper in water. After 5/10 mins tip the paper to drain off as much water as possible 2.Lay the paper on a drawing board , making sure the paper doesn't buckle or fold.
3. Using Gummed paper tape (not masking tape) adhere the paper to the drawing board keeping it flat and smooth whilst adhering.
4. Leave to dry
Note: craft watercolour cardstock didn't take kindly to being stretched . It buckled at step 1! Worth bearing in mind when choosing your watercolour substrate .

I was then all prepped so gathered my pencil, watercolour paints, brushes and some artists masking fluid and set to work.

I sketched out the image in pencil and then painted the Artists blue mask in any areas I wanted to remain white once the painting was finished. The mask rubs away very easily by finger. Its the first time I have tried this product and have to say I was impressed. Tim Holtz distress glaze, I'm sure, would do a very similar job.
The deep red lips/ mouth show off the use of the masking fluid very well.

I used tones of blue throughout the painting with subtle hints of purple here and there. I have a deep love of eyes . They are without doubt the 'windows to the soul' and for me they speak volumes . Though I have pencil sketched eyes before I have never really tried painting eyes so this was my first attempt and I have to say I wasn't too disappointed with these baby blues....

Once I'd finished painting I added some texture around the focal image using Ranger Opaque texture paste through Tim Holtz dot fade stencil. I blended distress ink over the textured stenciling and around the edges of the paper

before adding a touch more detail using stamps with archival ink

I mounted the painting first onto card stock and then onto a 8x8 canvas which I'd delicately coloured around the edges with a watercolour paint wash.
Bead topped hex nuts helped finish off two of the corners

and I added a few 'words' all thanks to a Tim Holtz small talk sticker adhered to the reverse of a quote chip.

I am pleased I have tried my hand at watercolour painting again, whether I worked wonders with them, well, I'll let you be the judge of that but at least, after almost 25 years ( hangs head in shame) I have taken the first step and rekindled the fire.

I hope my mixed media watercolour painting along with all the fabulous projects created by some of my Fellow Creative Guides , which can be seen here at A Vintage Journey will inspire you to go create yourself and join us in our Watercolour Challenge .
As always at the end of the challenge there will be one lucky winner chosen by Random. Org who will receive our Sponsors Prize which this month is a £20 Gift card , generously donated by
Craft Obsessions

The Creative Guides also choose 3 Pinworthy Winners who will win a Pinworthy badge to display on their blog and an invite to join us as a Guest Designer for a future Challenge.

I would like to enter this into the following challenges : 
Stamps and Stencils: Technique School  
Technique- stretching the watercolour paper
Thats Crafty: Anything but Cards
The Craft Stamper TIMI Challenge:August , Anything Goes Stamping Challenge
background stamping detail 

I hope you have enjoyed your time here today - thank you so much for stopping by.
I really do appreciate all your visits, comments and follows.
Wishing you all a lovely weekend
Take care and keep on the happy side


  1. Well Amanda, in my eyes you certainly have created wonders! This is absolutely amazing!!!! So glad you revisited your roots, - what an incredible face! And the mixed media work with those blue tones looks fantastic as the background.
    Good tip about the quality of the paper, - I have had many pieces snap off the board in my early water colour days....

    Thank you for a great challenge, this was fun and will hopefully make me dig out my water colours a little more often again in the future....

  2. Amanda, I definitely have to check off the 'worked wonders' box for this beautiful mixed media watercolor and superb sketch!!! Big applause on using that mask for the first time! (Hopefully that did not smell as bad as my WN friskit!) Your woman's eyes are captivating! The lightly shaded texture and subtle stamping draws the eye in toward this magnificent portrait! Well done, you! Hugs!

  3. Oh my goodness Amanda, your watercolour face is stunning, I particularly love the eyes and lips - what a talented lady you are!! I too, really enjoyed this challenge, it took me out of my comfort zone, but in a good way! Hugs, Anne xx

  4. Lovely to see you revisiting your roots. Fantastic drawn image and amazing detail too. I love the watercolour around the face too. Fantastic textural elements also. Tracy x

  5. She's amazing, Amanda - so glad you dusted off your watercolour skills to produce this stunning portrait, and I hope you'll be doing lots more of it. The haunting expression in those glowing eyes is so captivating, and I love all the mixed media texture you've used to frame her. Fabulous!
    Alison x

  6. oh jeeze louise - that's just stunning!

  7. Happy Dancing to see you drawing and painting again xx I love the baby blue eyes and your whole composition! THIS IS STUNNING!!! Have a lovely Sunday xx

  8. This is very nice. Thanks for the watercolor tips for those of us who are not familiar with watercolors.

  9. What a beautiful piece of art Amanda, I too have a love for eyes and I can see how much you have enjoyed creating this. Thank you for sharing your wonderful creation with us over at That's Crafty and joining the challenge. Best Wishes Tracey.

  10. My goodness Amanda - what a beautiful face you drew and painted! She is gazing right out at me off the canvas - a wonderful challenge creation!! Julia xx

  11. Wow - I love this Amanda. What a fabulous piece of art. Your watercolour and artistic skills are top notch. The details on the eyes and lips are wonderful and I love how you have kept white space to make the face even more dramatic. A stunning creation xxxx

  12. A really great sketch and gorgeous coloring Amanda! I just love your chosen theme and your great way of mixing media with traditional watercolor here - amazing! Hugs, Autumn

  13. A stunning piece Amanda xx I love that stunning face and then the texture around it x Thank you for sharing the step out and your tips too. I have not created a watercolour painting since at school.....too many years ago to mention. A great challenge theme

    Sending my best wishes to you
    Annie xx

  14. Wow, this is fabulous Amanda, gorgeous face and brilliant watercolouring, you are truly an artist! Love the use of the white space to focus all the attention on that amazing face, thanks so much for sharing it! Deb xo

  15. An absolutely stunning piece
    Amanda x

  16. Simply stunning! Thank you for playing along with the Craft Stamper challenge xx

  17. Absolutely stunning Amanda ! I love watercolour but have never taken the time to dip into but your project has definitely inspired me and I love the tip about stretching the paper. Fabulous ! Sue C x

  18. What a fantastic post, I've just started to dabble in watercolour and this is now a pinned post for me. Beautiful results and lots of techniques apart from stretching the paper, love the use of texture paste, a true mixed media creation. Thanks for sharing your wonderful talent at Stamps and Stencils with us Amanda hugs Ruth xxx

  19. This was an amazing post Amanda! Congrats on being in the top 3 picks with us at Stamps & Stencils. Hugs, Autumn

  20. Wow, what a fabulous card Amanda, well deserved your Top 3 too at Stamps and Stencils! Your drawing and watercoloring is amazing, I'm in awe!!!! :)
    Sending you hugs and love,
    Corinne xx


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