With hopes of becoming more organized in my studio, I knew it was time to get as many of my unmounted hand carved stamps onto something stable and easier to identify.
I use many different mounting techniques. Primarily it has been easy for me was to just simply use double stick tape on acrylic mounts. The problem with that is I have to attach and remove the stamp with each use and visibility is limited when trying to locate stamps when I go to use them.
So this week I spent a day mounting my stamps on various materials. This is what I used. I like using wine corks (okay, I might just have a few... ;D) on the small stamps. The corks make them super easy to stamp with because of the height. The small wooden blocks that are available in different sizes at the craft store are great too. On both of those I paint a coat of paint on the top before stamping the index, this gives a crisp image.
Also I use extra thick fun foam available at the craft stores. The best kind I have found are the large pieces used as floor puzzle pieces for kids, this is the blue you see in the pictures. The red you see is simply the fun foam that you can sometimes find in the extra thickness.
Another great material to use that I learned from Michelle Ward is the garden mats that are used for kneeling on while working in your garden. One of those can go a long way. These are the pink ones you see here, they provide a nice high mounting block. I cut all the foam with a large utility blade, making sure to fully extend the blade and use a single pass when cutting to keep the foam from shredding.
When stamping the index image on the top of the stamp I have stamped directly on the foam, but have found that fades over time. This time I stamped all the index images on white paper and used gloss Mod Podge to adhere the image on top of the stamp, making sure to give a good coat on the top for protection. I also did this on some of the painted corks for a crisper cleaner image.
Of course, you could always use wood mounts available from different sources online or at stamp conventions.
It feels good to have some organization and clarity in my creative space. Now.... time to stamp!
It was inevitable that my art table be finally cleared off. When I finished the this much needed endeavor, I ended up with a pile of paper pieces that had been hidden and waiting for a home. Since I can hardly bare to throw away small interesting pieces of paper, I knew what I had to do to keep them from landing in another spot somewhere in my studio where I would have to deal with them later. I took that pile and opened up my art journal and a bottle of matte medium and started gluing. I also decided to very quickly carve two small stamps to accompany my art journal page creations. I ended up with three pages. Ta-da!!! I loved the fact that I utilized my extra scraps and had two new stamps.
So, here is how these pages came about....
I will show the carved stamps at the bottom of the post.
The top page started like this
Like I said many small pieces of paper.
Then I added a layer of white gouache to tone down the busyness of it all.
Next I added some colored gouache to compliment the main colors on the page.
And finally I stamped on the page with my small newly hand carved stamps.
The next two pages were created with the same process.
Step two and three...
And, finally step four with the stamping...this time I stamped the image in a diferent orientation creating a whole different pattern.
Again the same process.
Step two and three...white gouache then colored gouache
Then step four with the stamping to finish. Now I must admit these pages will have more added to them as I use different pens to doodle and write the events of my life. I am thinking these little raindrop shapes need to be outlined with a gel pen.
And, now the carved stamps. They are small but I have found that small stamps when stamped in repetition can create a lot of movement in the pattern.
I like how these two little stamps have big design possibilities.
So there you have it, three new art journal pages and two new carved stamps.