Hi there! Today, I’m sharing the latest installment of the Exploring with Emily series with Ellen Hutson. This month, I am working with the new Hero Hues Reactive Inks. These inks debuted during the Hero Arts 45th Anniversary catalog release, and they are absolutely fantastic. They blend beautifully, and in the video I show how easily and perfectly they work as watercolors. You can watch it below or here on the Ellen Hutson YouTube channel:
The stamp used in the video is from a new-to-me stamp company: Colorado Craft Company. They have a beautiful group of Big and Bold stamps that feature some utterly massive blooms: Hydrangea, Peony, and Rose (that I used in the video above). I created two more watercolored projects using the Hydrangea and Peony stamps and my Daniel Smith watercolors.
For my first project, I used the beautiful Get Well Hydrangea stamp, first stamping it with Versafine Onyx ink and heat embossing it with White Satin Pearl embossing powder on some Arches Cold Press watercolor paper. The combination of the black embossing powder and the pearlescent powder creates a pretty pearlescent charcoal!
I wanted to create a light pink, antiqued hydrangea, one with many different highlights and lowlights and variations in color, as real hydrangeas do. I tend to saturate images with color to start, adding layer after layer of color until the light image that I’d envisioned in my head is no more. In order to keep the hydrangea light, I began by saturating the area around the flower with bright blue and turquoise watercolors. I found that the contrast of the vibrant background helped to keep my hand light on the flowers themselves. I tried to add lots of variations of color, keeping the petals on the top the lightest with very diluted color, the petals beneath quite dark with very concentrated color, and adding a few touches of very pale yellow to indicate sunshine hitting the bloom
After I’d finished watercoloring the bloom, I needed to add a sentiment, but didn’t want to cover up too much of my meticulously-watercolored panel. My favorite way to add subtle sentiments is to heat emboss a greeting on a piece of heavyweight vellum, which allows the background to still shine through, though slightly muted. I white embossed the greeting from Get Well Hydrangea on a rectangle of heavyweight vellum, then added tiny dots of adhesive behind the embossing to hide the adhesive and not ruin the overall look of the vellum.
For my second project, I focused on the gorgeous, massive peony, but I wanted to do some no-line watercoloring. I began by stamping the image Arches Cold Press using Ink On 3’s Fadeout Ink and my Misti.
I can never get enough pink peonies, so I watercolored the gorgeous flower using my Daniel Smith watercolors in shades of pink, lavender, adding some shadows of deep purple and highlights of pale yellow, again to add variation where the sunlight would hit the petals.
I used the same idea for the greeting as I did for the previous project; I silver embossed the sentiment from Missing You Peony on a strip of vellum, then hid tiny dots of liquid adhesive on the back of the embossed sentiment strip. An effective way to add a subtle greeting to your detailed card front, no?
Well, that’s all for me today! I hope you’ve enjoyed my first explorations into these beautiful blooms from Colorado Craft Company. They have many darling stamps, including some huge stamps of various sweets that I’m dying to play with. I hope you’ll check them out! Thanks so much for stopping by, and have a marvelous day!