Monday, December 20, 2010

photo-faced snowman card: Last minute Christmas card idea

Do you have friends who have
outrageously gorgeous children?

We do!
and here he is all dressed up as a snowman:

Hayden as a snowman (mel stampz)
giggle! giggle! giggle!
That wee face is so cute, I can never get over it.

How to make your own photo-faced snowman:

1) Scan a photograph or work with one that you have on your computer
2) Using photoshop (or other software) cut & paste a face onto a digital image/clipart.
3) If needed, use the digital eraser to clean up the image (layers in PS are great for that!)
4) Print & colour your image

Not into digital photo manipulation?
Of course you could add a photo the old fashioned way,
with a punch & some glue:

This older tutorial of mine shows you some ideas for how to add photos to snowman treat boxes (and there are free templates there), but that punch method would work for a digital image like this one as well....

baby hayden as a snowman 2010

I pasted Hayden's sweet cherubic little face over this
digital snowman image by Heather Ellis.

You may notice that the image is changed a little, since I wanted a patterned paper sky behind him... I drew the arms on with a permanent marker & put a little sign in his hands...

...and The little bird is from another different Heather Ellis snowman image.
I cut him out digitally, reversed his orientation, printed him,
& cut him out, etc.. :o)


I felt like I got a big Christmas gift when I discovered that some special marker paper I had bought embosses beautifully in the ink jet printer!!!

so..... a bit of rambling under the heading of...

(i'm flipping out about this!)

Digital inkjet Embossing a new EASY way,
with no wet mediums
or potential clogging of markers

baby hayden embossing

WHAT? This image Digitally embossing an image from the ink jet printer... (Which really helps prevents blurring when colouring with markers & gives that lovely embossing feeling & look to your digital images.)

a couple of You have had trouble with my Matte Medium digital embossing method. And what I didn't like about it was the potential it had for clogged copics (You may recall that tutorial with the oh so scary disclaimer?) ;o)

WHY? I'm not sure why (is it your printer brand? your ink variety?
your paper? your matte medium? OR my crazy instructions? ;o) Who can say?)

BUT I found an easier way you just might love--- with no wet art medium, so had to tell you about it right away. After all, you might get a gift certificate for Christmas & want to add this to your list of supplies to try.

WHAT (already)!?!

Borden & Riley #234 Paris Bleedproof 108lb paper for pens
[The new love (commodity fetish) of my life!] ;o)

$ wise: It works out (for me having paid 9.99 here in Canada
at Curry's online) to be approximately 25 cents a sheet.

WHERE? You should be able to find this in most art supply stores--especially those that sell markers. It's also readily available online. In Canada, I found it online here at Curry's (no affiliation) ;O)

Emboss a Digital Image:

Step 1) Have all the supplies ready, so that you can work quickly. (Clear embossing powder, a tray, & heat gun & Paris Bleedproof paper cut to size.)

I like to cut the paper to be about 8 1/2 inches by 6 inches so it comes out of the printer in less time, but it will depend upon the size of the image, and you may find you don't need the extra time.

Step 2) Print the image on the Paris Bleedproof paper:

A) Set the INK JET printer: the highest quality setting should work best, but it will depend on your printer. I've had success with standard (or mid quality setting as well). The aim is to get enough ink on & let the ink to stay wet enough to hold the clear embossing powder.

B) Print the image and....

C) Grab the paper quickly when it comes out of the printer

You can print in black & white (shades of gray) or any colour! (Clear embossing powder will give you embossing in any colour you can print in--even for photographs or multiple colour images.)

Step 3) Hit it with clear embossing powder. As soon as the image comes out of the printer, sprinkle embossing powder on & Heat to set the embossing powder to melt it. I prefer "detail clear embossing powder" since it's more fine and seems to stick better).

You can also experiment with other colours or types of embossing powder, of course.

Please Note: Results may vary with your printer & ink type and even with the humidity levels in your geographical area. (Weird hey?) A little experimenting is always helpful if you're having trouble, please don't hesitate to comment/email. :o)

COLOURING with Copics:

The paper is a favourite of many marker artists, because the ink floats a little on the paper's surface so it is easier to use and get neat effects with. (Though everyone has different taste or preference when it comes to papers & Copic markers, of course, so the bit of "float-ability" might not be your style...) Personally, I adore it. :-D

The beads are stitched on to the berry part of the holly image:
baby hayden beaded holly
The beads look gargantuan here,
but of course they are teensy weensy seed beads. :-)

clickable blogger pics of the card:



I hope that the New Year brings you all the most joy imaginable!
A very Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it. May the year be
full of blessings for you and your loved ones!

P.S. In case you wonder, this post is completely unsolicited
from start to rambling finish. Just schtuff i love! :-D


Dawn said...

totally adorable!!!

Merry Christmas to you, C, and Kitty!!

Kim Etherington said...

What a incredible card and a cute kid! Love love love the card and last years of my girls.

Suzi said...

You should right a book! You have such a way with words. You keep my interest in all the minute details of something I'll never do, like use copics. (I can't color in the lines.)
Merry Christmas! Be well!

Axes DesigNs said...

OMY!! it is so cute!! I Love the idea.. I can imagine my nephew's faces there! Thanks Mel and Merry Christmas!!!

Katarina said...

Glad to see you posting again Mel! I LOVE this picture card, and thanks for the heads up about that paper. I definitely will be trying some as I love to emboss printed images, but didn't have much luck with it myself. Merry Christmas!

Unknown said...

Wow...amazing work, and I love reading what you write too! But I gotta say that I agree...those pic's are just precious! Thanks for the fabulous tips and Merry Christmas!

Holly Young said...

aw, what a cutie! Such a cute snowman card Mel!

Anonymous said...

That is the cutest snowman ever! Thanks for bringing a great big smile to my face. Merry Christmas!

g said...

goodness what a cutie! awesome embossing on a digi- my ink dries too quickly- but i'm excited to find some of this paper & try again! thanks for another fun post!!

Gabriele said...

hi Mel and thanks for sharing this cute idea (I am thinking of a photo of my cute little grand-daughter :) ).
Thanks for the embossing tips. I am just trying out different ways how to get the best results... so your article came just in the right time :)

But what I wanted to say:
It is soooo great to read you again (I also had a blogging-vacation this year *g*) I am sending tons of Merry-Christmas Wishes to both of you :)

Hope, you`ll have peaceful holidays and that all your wishes for 2011 may come true :)

Hugs from Germany,

Annie said...

love this idea - so cool

Ann xxx

Juls said...

such a gorgeous idea!!!! absolutley love it!!!! Hugs Juls

Jennifer said...


That is adorable!!! :) I love it! If I had more time, I would do my children's pictures like that on my Christmas cards.

Thank you so much for sharing,


Alice said...

super fun! what an adorable card and a fab idea!

Dymphie said...

so fun and cute! thanks for sharing :)

Merry Christmas!

Gaby said...

Mel, thank you so much for your wonderful tutorials!
I look forward to seeing your new creations but I understand you have a life too!!

I hope 2011 brings you and your family the very best!