Viva Las Vegastamps Design Team Call

 I’m trying out for the Viva Las Vegas Stamps Design Team!

Recently, I ordered a really cool stamp–The Terra Cotta Silhouette Horse.  The moment I saw it, I knew how I wanted to use it.  I wanted to do an art journal page with the feel of antique art, caves, old maps and clay pieces.

I decided to use Faber-Castell Big Brush pens for their strong, earthy colors and the ability to mix their colors on the stamp, and to use the same colors on my page.

I like to incorporate Zentangle®- tangle patterns in my work.  Normally, I pull the patterns out of my head from memory, and play around with new ones.  I decided to keep this work simple, and aim for the same kind of strong but simple visual power that the stamp has, so I only used two patterns. One I chose because it is a grid-line and the other because it is circular-each providing a contrast with the other.

While I have an idea in my head when I start, I don’t have a strong picture visualized.  I like to go with the flow and take things as they go.  Half the fun is surprising yourself with the finished work.


The Terra Cotta Silhouette Horse stamp from Viva Las Vegas Stamps-Item 2547, also found on Plate 742

Rhodia WebNotebook

Faber-Castell Big Brushes: Med Flesh 131; Terracotta 186; Sanguine 188; Dark Sepia 175; Cold grey IV 233; Cold Grey II 232; Skyblue 146

Faber-Castell Art Pen, Medium-Black
Pentel Sunburst White Gel Pen

Acrylic Block

Tangle patterns Used:
Cubine  Official tangle pattern by Rick & Maria Thomas
Cabbage Rose by Carolyn Boettner

When I tested my Big Brush pens I discovered they were almost dry, and my stamped image wasn’t as complete or intense as I’d hoped.  But, I wanted a rough look, so I decided to go with what I’d had.

The rubber stamp, inked up, and the image it created

I re-inked and stamped a second time, and then stamped a third without re-inking.

Then I filled in a bit with the Big Brushes.
And then I went to the store and bought fresh Big Brush pens for the rest of the piece, lol.
I used the Dark Sepia to shade around the bottom and right side of each stamp.  I used Terracotta on the top and left.  As I worked on the piece, I kept adding to these shadows, going for a 3D look.
I colored large sections at random.  My main colors were the Terracotta and Skyblue.  I shaded with the Sanguine and Grays, adding a few dark spots with the Dark Sepia.
I colored the horses with Medium Flesh, using the Dark Sepia around the legs and tail.  
I used the black Faber-Castell to draw the grid lines for the pattern Cubine.  I drew the pattern in three distinct sections, altering the direction of the center ‘cube’ to get the feeling of swooping and swirling.  I used the Dark Sepia to color in the center cubes, and returned to the art pen to add some hatched shading.  I also added Cubine behind the stamps.
The cabbage rose pattern was drawn with the art pen, and then outlined in dark sepia.  
I wasn’t entirely happy with the way the horses looked and I didn’t feel the worked ‘popped’, so my last step was to use a Pentel Sunburst White Gel pen to emphasize the swirl of the grid lines and bring out each layer of the Cabbage rose petals.
I used the Sunburst to add a few highlights to the horses, and smeared the gel ink here and there, to give the look of light catching on rough edges.
I think the finished piece looks a bit like clay or stone tablets sitting on a large carved slab.
I love the selection of stamps to be found at Viva Las Vegas Stamps.  
You can can the stamp for any occasion at their store or visit their blog for challenges, projects, tips & techniques and their monthly newsletter. 


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