Thursday, December 6, 2012

TGIF: Predator and Prey

Here’s your Hampton Art Design Team gal Vivian Keh!
I don't know about you guys, but I've never really been very big on Halloween.  I have one positive yet vague memory - getting dressed up as Raggedy Ann at about 5 or 6 years of age.  My fondness for that particular Halloween had nothing to do with candy (now, if we had been begging exclusively for dark salted chocolate, well, that would have been a whole 'nother story!)  nor the camaraderie.  It was just the yarn pigtails that I was able to fondle the whole dang day haha!  Perhaps that's where my fondness for texturzzzzzz was born lol!  But freezing my buns off going to door begging for stuff I didn't even like?  Nah.
As I approach the big four - oh, I have absolutely no desire to put on costumes, etc.  And to be honest, I'd rather not hand out candy, either :-/  Yes, you can poo poo me all you want.  I'm one of those party poopers who on Halloween will turn out all the lights, corral the dogs into a back room, and pretend I'm not home...
So... for my varied design team projects, lacking some necessary mojo, I looked to my beloved garden for inspiration.  At this time of year, as the days have gotten shorter and the haggard remains of once thriving plants have started accumulating around the garden beds, I've noticed a lot more spider webs woven in and around the detritus.  Late the other night, when I let the dogs out to do their business, I witnessed a spider voraciously attack a moth that had gotten ensnared in its web.  I was at once disgusted and enthralled, so impressed by the fearsome beauty of a common spider that I was inspired to create this project below.

Phew - I got away without having to use the typically brash orange, purple, black, and green Halloween color combinations that I rather dislike :-/
To create these effects, I started out by inserting a sheet of Core'dinations Color Core Cardstock into a great new embossing folder I recently picked up, and then sending it through my Sizzix Big Shot!
The crisp textures and patterns that result from dry embossing totally float my boat!  You can see above how the white core is just begging to be revealed.  A little aside - look below at the beautiful results of simple dry embossing on a plain sheet of white cardstock!
If you're interested in the results of the white project shown in progress above, come visit me on my blog today! The final effect was equally cool!
But, back to this dark and spooky project, after dry embossing, using a cosmetic sponge, I rubbed a selection of grey, muted blue, and red Colorbox Mixed Inx onto my mini-canvas.
At this stage, I felt the textures needed to be brought out a bit more prominently, so I sparingly added white as well.
And oh, how the patterns popped!  After sanding the raised areas, I applied a bit of black distress ink along the edges.
Next, I began the process of embellishing in order to create an environment like that in which I always encounter our stealthy backyard predators.  To start, I took the scrap from the sheet of Core'dinations that I had used for my canvas, and shredded it using a pair of Martha Stewart Fringing Scissors.
I then crushed the irregular fringes and began affixing the pieces to my canvas, inserting found feathers wherever it felt appropriate to do so.
As you can see above, I used an additional technique that I've been working on which uses hot glue to create an organic and rather grotesque result (which I love!!!) - you will find me guest blogging a full tutorial on this effect at the Two Peas in a Bucket blog on November 1st!
For this project, I broke in my new Silhouette Cameo to cut out an amazingly life-like spider.  I applied watermark ink and black embossing powder to mimic the spider's shiny exoskeleton and intensify its black color.
Then the creepy crawler got placed where he belongs on my canvas.
For my spider's unsuspecting prey, I used a moth from the Hampton Art/ 7 Gypsies "Butterflies" IC0195.
There are 4 gorgeous butterflies in this set, and If you're a butterfly nut like me, you can conveniently find these at your local Michaels!  Prior to stamping, I spritzed a few colors onto a piece of white cardstock.
After stamping and fussy-cutting it, I also applied some of the same Mixed Media Inx to the edges.
Despite my distaste for Halloween, I had a BALL making this project.  While Halloween itself doesn't frighten me, these creatures lurking in the garden surely do.
Truthfully, I got such a kick out of the varied responses from my crafty friends after they saw sneak peaks of the project, like, "Very cool, but that spider? That spider kind of creeps me out."  Bwahahahahaha!
Thanks so much for visiting with me here today - hope to have provided you with some mixed media inspiration, and I'm looking forward to sharing with you again soon!!!
Hampton Art/ 7 Gypsies "Butterflies" IC0195
Core'dinations - Color Core Cardstock Neutrals 6 in x 6 in pack
Recollections - White Cardstock
Colorbox - Mixed Media Inx in Pewter, Patina, Schoolhouse, and Jasmine
Clearsnap - Pigment ink in Black
Tim Holtz - Distress Ink in Black Soot
Hampton Art - Top Boss Watermark Ink, Black Embossing Powder
Hot Glue
Smooch - Smooch Spritz in  Sea Kiss and Black Velvet
Tattered Angels - Glimmer Mist in Raven and Sea Glass
Maya Road - Maya Mist in Antique Copper
Tools Cuttlebug - Spider Stew Embossing Folder
Sizzix - Big Shot
Martha Stewart - Fringe Scissors
Silhouette - Cameo Electronic Die Cutting Machine

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