Saturday, July 12, 2008

7. Oil-pastel & Gesso Cuttlebug Backgrounds

This paisley background was done using an gesso oil-pastel background technique adapted to make coloured cuttlebugged backgrounds. Wish I could show you the texture in person. The gesso looks like weathered paint, but the colour still retains some of its intensity. Fun! Click this picture if you'd like a closer look at the texture:

This is the image that made me fall in love with eat cake graphics: Penelope and kitty Percy flying through the air are so fun to colour & they just give me a giggle. Can you see the glitter scales on the fishy? That's my favourite part.

My markers are getting a workout. The watercolour paper I ordered came just in time to try this. My friend Kim gave me just the kick in the butt I needed to try faux-watercolouring with SU markers (check out Maria's wicked video tutorial.) This rocks! I enjoyed the markers for this even more than watercolour pencil crayons. Thanks Maria!

The glitter
was doodled on with a Sakura clear glitter pen & I added silver zigpainty details to the fishicopter blades. Her glasses have Crystal Effects on them to make them shiny.

The sentiment was coloured with SU markers & stamped on gesso cardstock so that I could add clear embossing powder. It's punched with SU's key hole punch. The brads are from Queen & co.

Oil-pastel & Gesso Cuttlebug Backgrounds:

Technique Summary

1) Cuttlebug your cardstock
2) Add oil pastels to raised areas
3) Gesso it & let dry
4) Sand off as much of the gesso as you like

Step 1) Run cardstock through Cuttlebug in an embossing folder. (I used Naturals White cardstock here & the Perfect Paisley folder.)

Step 2) Add oil pastels to raised areas. No need to worry about little mussy bits, since the gesso will cover it up. :0)

Step 3) Gesso it & let it dry (you can gently heat-gun it dry (or use a hairdryer) & no worries if it curls; it'll flatten out under a book.

Step 4) Sand off as much of the gesso as you like. I found the pastel smudged a little if I sanded a lot (I was sanding in circles with SU's sanding block & lots of pressure.) I liked the smudginess as part of the look, but you could always touch it up with a paint brush & more gesso.

Markers or other colouring mediums should work wonderfully for this.

If you want more or less colour,
you can add layers of pastel/gesso until you're happy. However many times you layer, a good trick seems to be ensuring that the gesso layer & sanding are the last step before you use your new piece. The gesso seems to seal up the messiness of the oil pastel. :0)

Chalk pastels
were something I thought might be an alternative for the oil pastels in this technique, but they seem to get washed out by adding gesso on top. You could use acrylic paint maybe. Chalk pastels do work very nicely on top use the gesso (it's great as a base to give them more staying power.) You'll get a much softer look than the oil pastels give. Applying them with a blender pen will make 'em really stick! I'd love to hear what works for you.

Other card details: Cardstock: Tempting Turquoise, Cool Caribbean, Pumpkin Pie, Basic Black. Scallop mat was cut with Nestabilities (Classic Scallop Squares.)

Hope you're having an amazing day, :0)

P.S. Wait until you see Marie-Josée's gorgeous card with gesso hearts! She even tested out white acrylic stamping to compare. Lovely! :0)

P.P.S. Like Cuttlebug techniques? (200 ways to Cuttlebug & counting)


Paula's ponderings said...

I love this one too!! Just loving what your doing with gesso! Gesso who's going to get some!!

Theresa Momber said...

This is too cool. I am going to have to dig out my gesso and see if it still has some life. TFS!

Cathrine StClair said...

THis is amazing Mel! I likey - just need to find some time to play!

K Hutchinson said...

This is so gorgeous! I love what you did with that image! I have to get out my oil pastels too- have not played with them in ages!

Erin said...

This is amazing! You have endless ideas with this gesso! Rock on!

Jeanne said...

I'm really enjoying what you are sharing! I just need to pick up some Gesso and hole up in my craft room and play! In the meantime, I'll drool over your creativity!

Deb Neerman said...

LOVE this card, Mel!!!

Thanks for another kewl gesso tutorial; you rock the planet, g/friend!


Patty Williams said...

Wow (again) ! You continue to amaze me and leave me drooling with all your great work!

Note to self.... find some gesso!

Sue from Oregon said...

I love the card, I love the colors, I love the layout...I love the stamp! What a great card..I had to look at every Eat Cake Graphics stamp, they are amazing and make me smile, as does this card! That's the true test for me!

Joani McDonald said...

How adorable! I love that image too, it's so cute!
I love to pop in and see what you have up your sleeve! Mel, your on the top of my favorite blogs for sure!

Tracey Lynn 'Fred' Miller said...

OMGoodness, girlfriend! You're killin' me with Gesso. That is soooo cool!!!!! I have been drooling over all your gesso projects!


Anonymous said...

Oh My Goodness.....that stamp is THE most darling!! Thanks for sharing this fun technique!Ann C.

Janine said...

FAbulous!!! I really like this card. Such a great background.

Donna Baker said...

this is so cute, Mel! love that image. the multi-colored cb bg is awesome

Elena said...

What a fabulous idea! You are very creative! I love your card! It is adorable! You are very inspirational! Love your blog so much!!!

arcticgoose said...

Omigosh gotta get some gesso!

Tonniece said...

This card is so cute. Love the image here Mel.

Thanks again for the great tutorials, my ink runneth out at this point. BUT well worth it.

Happy Saturday

Annapurna said...

Love this card. I have used oil pastels for coloring embossing, but never thought about using different colors on different areas. Awesome job! Love the outcome and swapping colors technique.

Patricia said...

And I just gave away hundreds of oil pastels. I sat down and started playing and changed your technique quite a bit, can it be my technique now, please???? I will definately say where the idea came from!!

mel m. m. mccarthy said...

Hi pdunbar9255,

Tried to email you to say SURE, but couldn't... It's all yours! :0) It was adapted from someone else's technique anywho so why not! ;0) Don't you love how things evolve?


Anonymous said...

I LOVE the whimsy look of this card! It is a very "ahhhhh" moment.
Thanks for sharing such a wonderful idea with us... you are so gifted {as I have said B4} - Marilyn

Maria said...

Oooh, I love this card! The image is so adorable and you did a fabulous job coloring the image! I have oil pastels somewhere! I used to do a lot of art stuff until I discovered rubber stamping! All my art stuff are stored somewhere in boxes. You inspired me to bring my art materials and use them!

Thank you for the inspiration, Mel!


Teri said...

What a cute, cute card! I love the colors on the paisley emboss and that image is super cute!!

katemade designs said...

I love this. It's time for some serious play time in my studio and all your gesso ideas are top of the list. This one especially. Finally something to do with those 20 y.o. oil pastels from college days. Thanks for the inspiration.

jenn* said...

love it, love it, love it! you have officially peaked my interest in gesso....

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this fabulous background.