Make It Market: County Fair Sneak Peek & July Release Wrap up...
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Mini Masterpieces...


I have a super fun project to share with you today! It's no secret that I'm just a little obsessed with the current watercolor trend.  I wish I could paint, but I can't, so I like to fake it using my stamps. I spied these tiny little canvases and easels the other day when I was out shopping (Wal-mart in the craft/art/paint section) and I just knew they would be perfect for stamping on to create some mini masterpieces! Let me show you mine, and then I'll show you how easy it is to make some for yourself.

Mini canvas-blank

After pulling out my Papertrey dye inks and a few Papertrey stamp sets that I thought would work perfectly, this was the result...


Let me show you each one in a little more detail.  The cityscape uses stamps from City Scene. All three of them use the small script sentiments from the new Get Lost stamp set (just released this week)...I thought the carefree script almost mimics an artist's signature...but it adds a fun sentiment instead.


The branch on this next one is from Out on a oldie, but goodie...some sets really never go out of style, it's still one of my favorite Papertrey sets ever.  The bird is from Love Birds.


My last mini masterpiece uses a vase from Gracious Vases (the original, not the Mega) along with several small flowers and leaves from the Embellished Elegance set.


Now that you've had a look at my mini masterpieces, let me show you how easy it is to make your own.

Start by stamping your design onto the canvas using dye inks.  You might want to cut a piece of scrap paper the same size as your canvas and practice on that first, just to get your layout/design looking the way you want it.  Also, the mini canvases are just like regular, full-sized canvases -- they are wrapped around a wooden frame, so the center is hollow (on the backside) which can make stamping a *little* might have to carefully lift the canvas as you are stamping and push it against your stamp from the backside to get the image to stamp completely.  But the good thing is that your stamping doesn't have to be perfect at all for this to work, so don't sweat it if you smudge things or don't get a complete impression in the process!

Here's my cityscape after stamping.  You can see that the Eiffel Tower image didn't stamp completely...this is totally fine as you'll see in a bit.  One other thing to note, I did use the "rock 'n roll" technique to add some shading to my images as I stamped them.


Now comes the fun part...watching your stamping turn instantly into a watercolor masterpiece! Just take a damp waterbrush (or a regular paint brush dipped in water if you don't have a waterbrush)...not too much water, just damp...and start smudging the stamped images.  It does NOT take much at all to make the ink spread, so go easy.  I didn't brush over the whole image, I left some of the details intact so that the stamped images didn't loose all definition.


When I was finished, I added a little color to the background as well.  I did this by pressing my inkpads onto a scrap of acetate and picking up the color with my waterbrush, then just brushing in the open areas of the background. I also added a few splatters to my background by flicking my brush after picking up the color from the acetate sheet.

Here's a quick look at what my vase looked like before I brushed over everything with my waterbrush. It looks sort of bare, but the smudging with the waterbrush really fills things in...



Here's one last peek at all three of my mini canvases together.  I can't wait to find the perfect place to display them!


Thanks for stopping by today to take a peek at my mini masterpieces.  I hope you're inspired to give something like this a was super fun and easy!

1-arrow supplies


Supplies not linked:  Mini canvas & easels (purchased at Wal-mart)