I love texture, and in today’s video, I enjoy playing with Nuvo Expanding Mousse to add texture to a watercoloured card. The Follow The Rainbows set I used was from a recent April card kit from Simon Says Stamp. As I write this, there are still kits available; however, you can buy the stamp set separately. The kit is filled with beautiful bright, happy rainbow colours, but I am always drawn to moodier colour schemes. I wanted to create a background to the woman with umbrella image from the Follow The Rainbows set, which had layers of colour, stamping and texture to represent the weather of a rainy day. With COVID-19, this card could represent the current chaos and the unknown but is supported by the strong, hopeful sentiment which we all need presently. I’ve linked all supplies at the end of this post. Compensated affiliate links used where possible at no cost to you.
Watch below or in HD on YouTube.
TEXTURE + WATERCOLOUR – NUVO EXPANDING MOUSSE
I placed the image in the Misti and stamped with Antique Linen Distress ink onto Fabriano Artistico Extra White cold-pressed watercolour card which I’d removed from its gummed block with a palette knife. I used an old cloth to wipe off some of the ink before stamping to ensure a light application which would blend and fade out with the paint. I used Daniel Smith paints and here’s my tip for mixing a lovely grey; I used Burnt Sienna mixed with Ultramarine Blue. You can vary the mix with more brown for a warmer grey or more blue for a cooler one. I started with a dilute mix of the grey and painted in one of the umbrella sections. I then brought in deeper colour into the section. My aim with each section is to leave a lighter edge where the metal frame supporting the umbrella structure pushes the fabric up to a point and catches the light. I didn’t overthink the shading of the umbrella past that, just aimed for areas of light and shade but those light sections being on the spokes which fan out from the umbrella centre. I painted each section separately to help define the edges. If I’d painted one section next to another, then the paint would have spread and bled between the two areas. I carried on round the umbrella until I had painted each section with the first layer of colour.
Moving onto the dress, I was undecided on what colour to paint the dress. I wanted some depth of colour but didn’t want it to look too much like Chris De Burgh’s Lady In Red! So, I went to a more subtle deep pinky-peach colour. At this point, I’m concentrating on getting a base layer of colour down before slowly building up the layers and shadows, adding those deeper colours to define the areas and add interest. However, before I went too far, I wanted to get the background started. This card was very much a play session for me of something I had in my mind and wanted to get out, and I wasn’t sure if it was going to work or not.
For the background, I washed the area with clean, clear water and a larger brush and then brought in some of the same colours I’d been working with up to this point – greys and pinky peaches. I wanted the colours in the background to reflect those of the woman. Adding paint into an already wet area is called wet-in-wet and is my favourite way to play with watercolours. I love the way the colours blend and bleed together, and by tilting the board, adding in droplets of clear water, you can affect the way the paint behaves and create lovely dribbles, blooms and interest. I must admit, when I first started painting the background I wasn’t keen, and then once I’d dried it with a heat tool, I loved the watercolour effect.
For most of the background, I used vertical lines to represent the rain coming down. However, I did create a horizontal area around her feet for the ground, and I kept this area directly around her feet light in colour so that she had a slight glow around her with deeper colours further out. At this point, I wanted the woman to pop off the page much more. She was a bit wishy-washy in colour and tone and blended in with the background too much, and so I went back in with deeper, darker tones. My method of doing this is the wet on dry technique – adding paint directly to the dry surface. I then take a damp brush and spread out the colour so create softer lines.
At this point, I wanted to work on the background more. I took the watercoloured piece of the board and popped it back into the Misti. I used the Good Reading Background from Simon Says Stamp to give some subtle areas of text to the area around the woman. To protect her from the ink, I stamped the image on a piece of masking paper and cut out before putting in place. I then inked the background stamp in Pumice Stone Distress Ink and again used an old cloth to wipe away some of the ink to create a softer impression. However, I ended up inking up the background twice so that the text of the stamp showed up on the textured watercolour card.
Next is the added texture I wanted to include on this piece. I used Nuvo Expanding Mousse in the Worn Linen colourway and a palette knife to spread the mousse over the background. This overlays and softens the stamped text. I spread the mousse in thin layers in some areas but thicker patches too. These thicker patches are the ones that will react the most to the heat tool. You can either heat the mousse straight away as I did or let the mousse dry and then heat it. The two methods give different results. I’m impatient so went with the heating straight away and loved how the thicker areas of mousse bubbled up under the heat to create texture.
I placed the piece back on a board and taped it down again to bring in more watercolour. All these different layers of watercolour, text, expanding mousse, and now more watercolour will create an exciting background to the focal point. Once I’d added more watercolour over the mousse, I covered the woman with the masking paper again and liberally splattered with white gouache and also left-over paint. I then removed the mask and splattered with a solution of Perfect Pearls for some sparkle. I took the watercoloured piece off the board before working on deepening the shadows further with coloured pencils.
This piece started as 5 X 7 inches, I cut and scored a piece of Ivory card from Simon Says Stamp to be 5 x 7 inches and then trimmed the watercoloured piece to be slightly smaller before adding foam adhesive to the back and adhering to the card base. For the sentiment, I was drawn to the “don’t lose hope – brighter days are coming” from the Follow The Rainbows set. It is such an uplifting greeting in these uncertain times that I wanted to include it on this card. I stamped the sentiment in clear embossing ink on a Black card I’d treated with an anti-static powder bag and then sprinkled with white embossing powder before heat setting. I trimmed around the greeting with a scalpel and metal-edged ruler before using a T square ruler to foam mount the sentiment in place. To add more texture and interest to the background, I added Glossy Eggshell Pearls from Little Things From Lucy’s cards kept in place with GinaK Connect Glue. I also added Bubblegum Blush and Rose Water Nuvo droplets to finish.
You can find links to the supplies I’ve used below; click on the picture or shop icon to get taken directly to the product. Where available I use compensated affiliate links which means if you make a purchase I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you! Items marked with an asterisk (*) provided by a store or the manufacturer. You can read my affiliate and product disclosure here. I genuinely appreciate your support.
Summary of the project which gives all the views of the card in one photo :D I’d love if you pinned and called by on Pinterest :D