Since finishing last year’s Christmas cards, I’ve been wanting to build upon my skills with using proper watercolours. I knew I wanted to use them again though this time with a better understanding of how to work with the medium. As preparation, I watched tutorial videos and experimented, undertaking Inktober to force myself to create. After completing this challenge I felt much more ready to try my hand at another handmade watercolour card.
For the design, I wanted to attempt a Christmas symbol that I hadn’t tried before aka not another Christmas tree. 2020 was the year I really got into and inspired by online illustrators, including Amanda Herzman who does lots of floral based work. This gave me the idea to create a poinsettia flower design, which is also known as the ‘Christmas flower’.
Last year for my birthday (or maybe Christmas, not too sure) my family gifted me some watercolour paints. Up until that point I had only used the pencil variety so I was pretty stoked to finally, after all these years, to use the realdeal. I knew I would want to use them for this year’s cards, it was just a matter of working out the image and application.
When I was a sketching up ideas, I thought it might be comical to have Lucy included in some way and ended up drawing a bunch of different dog related Christmas scenarios. I settled on one involving her popping out of a present that would easy enough to implement. For the style, I was inspired by Lissova craft with her layered pot plant creations to try something similar (definitely not as cool as hers though).
I believe this is my 8th year (!!!) of making Christmas cards and if these years have taught me anything, it’s that preparation and experimentation are key for ensuring everything will come to fruition. I’m glad I started prepping for these cards early on as there were quite a few missteps along the way.
After last years work, I wanted to go back to something more simple. For some reason I thought linocut printed cards would be an easy idea, I could just roll out as many as I wanted once the lino block was carved. Getting to that final day of printing would turn out to be another matter.
Along with the usual bustle of December, I once again gave myself the task of making my own Christmas cards. This year’s design would turn up the complexity from previous years with a Christmas scene painted with watercolour and some gold leaf highlights since I had so much left over from last year.
Originally my plans were lot more ambitious. I wanted each card to have a different image that when put together would create one giant Christmas scene. Time constraints dampened that idea though and instead I chose one that would be easy enough to roll out. I mocked up the design digitally before printing it out to use as my main guideline for all the cards.
Continuing the theme from last year of avoiding overly complicated cards, I wanted to find something that wouldn’t be too stressful to create. I’d always had an interest in using gold leaf but was unsure how difficult it would be to incorporate. After doing some digging and watching some videos, I discovered that the process was rather simple and the materials fairly inexpensive. From that moment, I decided to create a completely gold leaf card with a simple brushstroke design.
The only materials you need to get started working with gold leaf is some brushes, gold leaf sheets and a special adhesive, all of which you should be able to pick up any good art supply store. For the gold leaf sheets, you don’t need to buy the expensive ‘proper’ version, gold imitation leaf works fine.
I can’t believe it’s already 2016, the last few months just seemed to fly by. I hope all of your end of year celebrations were fun and joyous ^_^.
Keeping up with tradition of the past few years I once again made all of my Christmas cards, this time creating Christmas stockings using just paper and gift wrapping. Below is a step by step guide on how I made them along with their gift tag counterparts.
Christmas and New Year have come and gone and I hope you all had a wonderful time during the break. Following on from the last three years I made my own Christmas cards and gift tags again, this time (really) trying not to make them too complicated. I went back to watercolours but also played around with using masking fluid in the making process.
A very, very belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all! Hope you all enjoyed your break!
Apart from the usual Christmas shopping, I once again decided to set myself the task of creating my own Christmas cards and gift tags. This year I wanted to make cards that were easy to put together but as always there was more to it then I expected :/. I also decided to write up instructions for these cards as there was such interest in my two previous Christmas posts (here and here) over the December break. Hope they help you make your own wonderful creations!
The inspiration for this year’s cards came from leftover twine I’ve been collecting from wrapping gifts. I have a habit of over estimating how much I’ll need and usually end up cutting off the extra. I decided that the cards would use the twine by threading it through to make shapes and patterns.
I know the Card Project is over but I couldn’t help making a new birthday message for someone who missed out last year.
Last April, my friend moved into the same office space as me and we became good desk buddies. While we’ve now both moved on to new places, I felt I should give her something for my birthday since I wasn’t able to before (her birthday was a couple of months before we met).
I’m trying to incorporate drawing more into my routine, setting aside some time in each week to just spend time sketching stuff, whether it’s part of a project or just a small piece like this. This was my little drawing from last night after just sitting there, staring at a blank piece of paper, wondering the same question.