Thinking of you – a dangle design card

© Angela Porter 2019

This little card and envelope took me around 3 hours to make. I had to remember how to do various things and find my supplies to do them with!

My first task was to make the sentiment banner. I had the idea for this one after someone asked me for recommendations of good books for learning hand lettering as they’re not at all happy with their handwriting.

Hand lettering and handwriting are not the same thing. Hand lettering is something you unconsciously do. Hand lettering is the conscious and deliberate drawing of letters, one by one. Practice, like everything else you want to learn and become good enough at, is important. I suggested that they try printing the sentiments out on their computer or using words cut out of books or magazines or stickers or stamps and ink pads used by card makers until they’re comfortable with their own lettering style.

That led me to thinking that rather than writing the sentiment directly onto the paper that I’m going to draw the dangle design on, what about if I hand lettered it on paper again and again until I’m happy with it and then cut that version out. I could then layer it onto coloured card to make a border, or onto the paper or or or…

So, that’s what I wanted to use here. A variation on what I’ve done in previous cards. I cut two trips of mixed media paper, one around 1cm wide, the other around 0.7cm wide.

On the narrow strip I wrote my sentiment. I did this confidently as I knew if I got it wrong I could always write it again – I’d not ruin my dangle design in any way. I then trimmed the strip close to the start and end of the sentiment.

Next, I coloured the wider strip of paper with victorian velvet Distress Ink. I trimmed one piece so it was just a little longer than the sentiment. Then, I cut two rectangles from the coloured strip. I cut triangular notches into one end of each of the rectangles. I used the sponge applicator to make sure the edges of the coloured pieces, including inside the notches, and the sentiment strip coloured. By doing this, there’s a darker edge to the pieces and this defines them against the background. The final step in making the banner was to glue the pieces together as shown in the photo.

I cut two pieces of mixed media paper for the front of the card. The smaller one I made a little narrower than the sentiment banner; I wanted the ribbon to hang over the edge a little. I used a pencil to mark where I wanted the banner to sit on the card. I then used a pencil to mark out the centre of the card so I could position my dangle centrally.

Above where the ribbon would sit I wanted to place an arrangement of pot plants – succulents and a cacti. Below I wanted a fairly simple dangle, but one that had elements that appeared in the arrangement of pot plants. I drew these with a 05 Uniball Unipin Pen.

I then wanted to colour the two pieces of mixed media paper before I coloured the designs in.

For the larger one I used Peacock Feathers, Bundled Sage, Weathered Wood and Tumbled Glass Distress Inks to colour the whole of the paper panel. I edged this panel with Faded Denim Distress Ink. Then, I lightly sprayed the panel with water so that I’d get some faded watermarks as a texture in the colour.

For the upper panel, I used a very light hand to add the same Distress Inks to the paper, but in a much paler shade. I also edged this panel with the Faded Denim Distress Ink. I realised it hadn’t erased the pencil guidelines before I added the Distress Ink so when I went to erase them they wouldn’t fully erase. I’d forgotten that I had to do that! Still, it adds a bit to the distressed feel of the cards, that and the damage marks that were on the larger panel too.

To colour the dangle design I used Mitsubishi Uni coloured pencils. I used a fairly limited palette across the design.

The last two steps before assembling the card were add dots of gold ink and some shiny adhesive crystal gems.

To assemble the card I used glue to adhere the lower panel directly to the card. I then used foam squares to adhere the dangle design panel to the lower panel and the sentiment ribbon to the dangle design panel. This card has quite a bit of dimension to it.

My final job was to decorate the envelope. I decided to draw some pot plants and some of the daisies along the bottom. I added some butterflies to the left as the area above the pot plant seemed empty, unbalance. I haven’t coloured the envelope in as I’m in two minds whether to or not. Also, it would be nice to edge the envelope with the Faded Jeans Distress ink too, maybe even colouring the envelope with the same Distress Inks as the card. There’s also the back flap of the envelope that would benefit from a little potted succulent drawing I think.

Distress Inks are water-reactive, so if I do this, once the envelope is addressed a light application of Micro Glaze would seal the colour in so it wouldn’t be damaged in the mail.

I’m actually quite pleased with this card. It’s got me thinking about how to do more of this kind of stuff – card making the ‘Angela’ way!

If you give making cards like this a go, I’d love to see what you create! Happy art-ing, lettering and crafting!

Lots of ideas for dangle designs are shown in my book
‘A Dangle A Day’.

Inktober 2018 Day 10 ‘Flowing’ and World Mental Health Day 2018 #wmhd

Angela Porter Inktober 2018 Day 10 Flowing watermarked

Today’s #inktober2018 prompt is ‘Flowing’, so I knew I had to incorporate ripples into my art for today. I also wanted a blue-green colour scheme, so I used Distress Inks and an ink blending tool to colour an A4 piece of Bristol Board from Frisk.

After drawing pencil lines to allow me margins, I set to work with a range of Uniball Unipin pens to draw my design.

I started with the wavy lines in the bottom left corner and just let everything flow out from there quite intuitively, as is usual for myself.

It’s taken me quite a while to do; I think I started it around 7:30am and it’s now nearly 3pm. Sheesh, that’s nearly 8 hours!  Here was me at the beginning of Inktober stating I was going to do little drawings and so on.

However, there’s a dual purpose in today’s art.

Although I’m not doing anything specific for World Mental Health Day (#wmhd #worldmentalhealthday #wmhd2018) I am taking care of my own mental and emotional health by creating this drawing.

Yesterday was a tough day for me emotionally. In my role as a champion for Time to Change Wales (#ttcw) I gave an anti-stigma talk to HR people in a college, both of which triggered some quite strong emotional flashbacks for me.

A couple of hours after that talk ended, I had my weekly EMDR therapy session which resulted in some strong and painful releases of trauma stored in my body as well as some emotional flashbacks of trauma in my childhood that I’d dissociated from.

So between the two, I was emotionally exhausted yesterday evening and night and I woke up headachy and tired today.

Part of my self-care for my emotional and mental well-being is being creative and it just so happens that Inktober’s prompt was a perfect one for today, yet again.

When I get lost in my artwork I enter a state called ‘flow’. It’s a kind of meditative state of calm, peacefulness. My self-talk (which is often so very negative) is either quieted or loses it’s power over me. It’s almost like I’m outside of time and space.

So, the approx 8 hours of drawing (well more like 6 or 7 as I had a break to meditate mid-morning and took a short time out to get a veggie bacon sandwich for a late lunch) had just flown by.

I’m still tired, but there’s a peace there within me that wasn’t there when I woke.

Creating a drawing that is rather intricate is something I don’t get to do often when I’m working on coloring books, but it is definitely something that soothes my sore emotions and mind.

Not only is it time that the stigma and discrimination around mental health is brought to an end, it’s time we all looked after our mental and emotional health as much as we do our physical health.

I have a couple of chronic health problems and during my regular checkups I’m asked about my mental and emotional health as it’s known that people can develop mental ill-health when they live day to day with a chronic illness.

I know from personal experience that when I don’t take care of my emotional/mental health I become physically ill, so the state of our mental health, emotional health and physical health interact with one another, of that I’m sure.

So, try everyday to take the time to do something that lets you relax and find joy and peace in doing. There are so many things that people use for this – drawing, coloring, painting, playing music, gardening, walking, cooking, exercising, dancing, singing, meditation, mindful activities, taking a relaxing bath by candle light, a massage, a cup of tea somewhere with a beautiful view, a walk in the surf’s edge on a sunset beach, yoga, tai chi….the list goes on!

What do you do for your own mental and emotional self-care? What do you love to do where you can find yourself in ‘flow state’ or a meditative state that gives your mind a rest?

 

Inktober 2018 – Day 5 ‘Chicken’ and Day 6 ‘Drooling’

Angela Porter Inktober 2018 Day 5 - ChickenAngela Porter Inktober 2018 Day 6 - Drooling

Day 5 – Chicken

Chicken, I mean, chicken?!? Really? the best I could come up with were some cute, cuddly, doodle chooks, along with some eggs and feathers to decorate the hand-lettered ‘chicken’.

Oh, and I made it another dangle design. (A Dangle A Day is available for preorders).

I used Sakura Pigma Micron and Uniball Unipin pens to draw the design. I drew everything directly in ink, though I did add some pencil guidelines to make sure the letters were on the level and roughly the same height.

To add colour I used Copic markers. I added some highlights of gold using a Sakura Metallic Gelly Roll. Oh, and I added some white highlights using a Sakura Souffle pen.

It’s worked out ok…

Day 6 – Drooling

Drooling, dribbling just said ‘monsters’ to me, and as the only monsters I draw are cutesy ones this is what I came up with. Some of the monsters are dribbling/drooling, but the page most definitely is drooling from the top.

I started by colouring the paper with Distress Inks and an ink blending tool. I wanted it to look grungy and old.

Next, I started by drawing the border, then the drooling pattern at the top of the page, and added stippling for shadow.

After that, I started drawing from the bottom up, starting with some weird alien plants.

Sakura Pigma Micron and Uniball Unipin pens were used for the drawing.

After the outlines were drawn, I used the same pens to add shadows and patterns to the design. I followed this up with a white Uniball Signo pen to add the white highlights.

All caught up

These two mean I’ve caught up with the Inktober 2018 challenge! They have taken me a few hours of my Saturday morning to do, but it’s been a pleasurable time for sure.

Inktober – Day 3 “Roasted”

Angela Porter Inktober 2018 Day 3 - Roasted

It’s taken me a good 2 or 3 hours to create this one!

The ‘roasted’ element is the background colour scheme. I created the roasting hot background with Distress Inks on Daler-Rowney mixed media paper (3″x7″).

I then used Ohto Graphic Liner pens to draw the design and added gold and white highlights to some of the design elements.

I like this one; the colours are what make it for me!

#inktober2018 #inktober

Practice…

Angela Porter 28 June 2018 watermarked

I had some fun with this one. Lots of zentangle-y patterns in a zentangle style ‘string’. I eventually worked out how to get a better ‘separation’ of the areas that worked aesthetically for me (and was more my kind of style). I added a quote and some darker shades of the same colours in the background it was all done.

I am enjoying my current phase of just creating for the sake of creating, especially adding quotes in very simple hand-lettering. I expect there’s going to be quite a few more created as time goes on.

Oh, the holes are in the top as I took the sheet out of my A5 discbound sketchbook; I’ve coloured most of the pages with distress ink in various ways. Should I wish to frame or reproduce this, I can easily remove that area of  the page.

I also quite like having the empty space above the quote and design. My art can become very, very busy and intricate, but this seems to bring some balance to the overall design.

Sunday funday

experiment 8april 2018 angela porter It’s Sunday, so that means it must be #fundaySunday #Sundayfunday.

This was my bit of fun for the day.  I created a background using Distress Inks, a mini-blending tool and a stencil.

After scanning it into my Microsoft Surface Book, I imported it into AutodeskSketchbook Pro and started to draw entangled patterns on the top of it.

It was just an experiment to see how it worked out, including the use of colour gradient fills for the entangled patterns.

I think it worked out ok.  I think there’s some more things I’d like to try out using this method; scanning backgrounds and then working on them digitally opens a new world of possibilities for me, as well as keeping me playing with more traditional media.  I do love the mix of the old with the new.

Of course, drawing on my Surface with the Surface pen is a lot like drawing with pen and ink on paper but with more possibilities…

Mixed media 25 Feb 2018

Angela Porter mixed media 25Feb2018

I’ve been hard at work on my ‘A Dangle A Day’ book and felt I needed a break from the computer screen.  As much as I love working digitally, I believe it does the soul good to work in different ways from time to time.  A change is as good as a rest, it is said, and also a change can get the creative juices flowing!

A trip to Hobbycraft in Newport, Gwent, yesterday had me buying some A4 Daler-Rowney Mixed Media boards.

These are 1.4mm thick and sturdy board forms of their mixed media paper.  The board did warp when I added tissue paper with matt medium, and it’s still a little wobbly today.

The pictures shows how far I’ve got for now.  I’m letting the little drops of copper and golden glitter dry as I take a break from it to decide if I need to do any more to it.

The image I drew and then coloured using Distress Inks.

I’ve enjoyed getting a little inky, painty and messy for a change.