Friday, June 10, 2016

Creative Carte Blanche - Winged Things

It's a new month and time for a new Creative Carte Blanche creative adventure. This month, Susan Mostek has challenged us with the theme "Winged Things." I knew right away that mine was going to include bees. I love bee imagery!

I created this art journal spread and I'd love to share how it came together.

I began with gesso on my pages. Once dry, I added Fossilized Amber Distress Paint with my fingers. I find that I'm applying paint more this way lately than with brushes. Something about literally getting my hands in there makes it that much more enjoyable.

Next I worked in Wild Honey Distress Paint. (Yes, with my fingers.)

Once dry, I stamped this dictionary stamp with Sepia archival ink onto the pages. How fabulous is this? It's a dictionary page with the words and definitions for Bee, Beehive, Honey and Clover. (I'll put a link to all stamps and products used at the end of this post.)

I Googled images of bees and printed out this line art, approximately 7 inches wide. I only have an inkjet printer, so after printing it on regular inkjet paper, I sprayed it with an even coat of Workable Fixative. I wasn't sure if this would work or not, so I just gave it a try. Once dry, I blended Distress Inks in different areas of the bee with colors such as Abandoned Coral, Peacock Feathers, and Mustard Seed. Not traditional bee colors, I know. And that's exactly why I did it.

I took creative carte blanche. (*wink*)

Next, I cut the bee out close to the image outline. It doesn't really matter what color I make this bee, don't you agree? I think it would look pretty cool with any combination of colors.

Before adhering my bee to the page, I tapped some Rusty Hinge Distress Paint through a honeycomb stencil. 

This might be hard to see, but I masked off the bee and crown from the center of this great stencil from StudioR12. I recently discovered their website and bought a bunch of stencils. I wanted to focus on the laurel wreath for my pages.

I used Ruby heavy body acrylic paint from Dina Wakley Media for the laurel stencil. These are by far my favorite paints to work with, and Ruby is the perfect, true red.

I stamped this sentiment from the Ponderings stamp set by Stampers Anonymous onto Tim Holtz's Tissue Wrap, then cut out each line and adhered them to the page with Collage Medium. Once dry, this tissue will be less noticeable.

To fill in open spaces, I stamped several small bees and some honeycombs of different sizes using archival inks. I also added a stitch stamp around the four edges of the spread.

After stamping the stitches, I rubbed Vintage Photo Distress Crayon around the outer edges and smudged it with a wet finger. Next I outlined the laurel with a white gel pen and outlined my bee with black Pitt artist pen Big Brush by Faber Castell and smudged it to create a soft but dramatic shadow.

I discovered that the Workable Fixative worked really well and kept my inkjet bee from running or bleeding when water-based products were applied over it. I sealed over the top of the bee with Collage Medium and a medium paintbrush.

Now it's YOUR turn to join in the adventure. Let's see what Winged Thing you can incorporate into your art! Post yours on the Creative Carte Blanche blog at the main challenge post by Susan (on June 3rd). Have fun with it!



  1. What a gorgeous design! I so love the giant bee, and yes you can color a bee however you like! ;0 Amazing layers in your beautiful background and I love the stenciled frame to the text. Fabulous!

  2. Absolutely stunning. I love this! x

  3. Nifty tutorial, awesome page, highly-revered subject matter!

    Except for stepping on one in my bare feet when I was a kid, I never gave bees much thought. Until the day a swarm formed on a large tree trunk in our front yard. Not knowing what to do next, I learned all I could about this behavior and thank goodness I didn't freak and have them killed because they are so very important for our food and environment and are becoming seriously endangered.

  4. Such a stunning page and a great step by step!!

  5. Thank you so,much for sharing your beautiful,journal spread and your great step by steps too. Gorgeous page with such a lot of interest and fab layering.

  6. Wow, Annette, great art journal page. I got lost in your tutorial (in a good way!!) and am itching to get my hands painty. The bee is stunning and I really love that laurel wreath. Brilliant layering of color & texture! <3

  7. This is FAB Annette, the huge bee is perfect and the layers are so interesting. Off to track down the bee dictionary stamp! Many thanks for the step by step X

  8. Annette....these art journal pages are fabulous! I totally am in love with your bee. I love that you took Creative Carte Blanche with him because his coloring is my favorite! Your background is fabulous. I'm like you...painting with my fingers is way more fun and really gives you a better "feel" for the pun intended. It just DOES! You did such a fabulous tutorial, too. LOVE THIS!!!

  9. LOVE your page Annette and the bee is just delightful! xx

  10. Absolutely love this! Thanks so much for the tutorial!

  11. Beautiful journal pages Annette! Love the big bee an all the stenciled detail! Thanks for the inspiration and thanks for sharing your creative process!


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