Friday, May 11, 2018

Flowerful Friday: Anniversary Card and a Note About Printing on Watercolor Paper

Hello and welcome back!  Today I have the first of four anniversary cards I'm making for my friend's offspring.  I do this every year and it's a challenge to come up with different ideas, but something new came along just in time.

This digital stamp was designed by Julie Koerber and recently added to Power Poppy's Graceful Still Life set.  Julie used Marcella's dogwood branches and made her own clever composite.  She shared the "how to" here.  If you have Photoshop Elements it's not difficult at all and it's fun to play around when you have the time.  Julie writes a good tutorial.  If you already have the Graceful Still Life set you should have access to this image as an additional download.




The image prints in nice, crisp lines with a border around the perimeter.  However, my finicky printer and I had a misunderstanding and it turned out almost no line, with no border.  I had it on the wrong paper setting and was running out of cyan ink.  With my printer it's always an adventure.  I almost discarded the printed image, but decided to have a go at it.  I'm undecided as to how I feel about the results.

I printed on Arches 140 lb hot pressed watercolor paper and watercolored with Tombow markers.  Card size is 4 1/2 x 6 1/4.

Pictured below is my young dogwood tree which was my color inspiration.  This tree, sigh... every year I keep hoping for more.  It's not nearly as pretty as it was in the nursery.  Smaller blooms, sparse, not as pretty a pink.  I brightened everything up in the painted version because, you know, you can do whatever you want on paper.




A note about printing on watercolor paper:  I despaired of ever being able to watercolor a digital image until I learned a trick from my friend, Cheryl Scrivens.  The problem many of us have is that our printers won't take the heavier paper.

  • First, I should mention that hot pressed is finer grain and lighter weight than cold pressed paper, so start with that.
  • Tape a band of regular paper of a weight your printer can handle to the end of your watercolor paper.  I find that even 1/4" is adequate.  The plain paper will be your lead end.
  • Make sure to include that 1/4" of plain paper in the overall size for the setting you're using.  The finished size should be 5 x 7, for instance -- not 5 x 7 1/4.
  • You'll determine which setting to use on your printer in regard to paper type.  Oddly, my printer always works best on the semi-gloss photo paper setting.  I would think "matte", but no.  I have an Epson XP-310, discontinued.  The ink is waterproof, but also works perfectly for Copic coloring.  If and when I buy a new printer I'll make sure it uses the same kind of ink.

By the way, the lattice background is Spellbinders Basic Lattice, an oldie-but-goodie classic.

I'll take my leave now and wish you a happy day!


22 comments:

Sherri said...

Wow! Another gorgeous flower card! I've already told you I've named you the queen of flower cards and this is just another example why! You bring your flowers to life with the most realistic coloring I've ever seen! Love your tip on printing on watercolor paper. Someday I may get bravo enough to try it but my watercoloring sucks! Especially next to yours!

Nanny's Pansy Patch said...

What a gorgeous print! Your coloring is beautiful! I love the die as well along with your pretty bow! I'm always struggling to get my plants to look like the landscape place. Have a wonderful Mothers Day!

nancy littrell said...

Gorgeous flower card design and coloring...as always, my friend. It has taken our pink dogwood 20 years to finally become stunning! TFS your card and pretty tree blooms. Hugs..

CherylQuilts said...

Oh, Leslie, this is GORGEOUS! You were right to push on with the nearly no-line print. It's exquisitely colored, and what a beautiful layout with the lattice work behind. And your bow is a big WOW! Stunning card, my friend! And I am so intrigued (more and more so) with the Tombow markers. You certainly have made it look like Copic markers. I may have to hint for those for my next birthday gift. Hehe! Hugs, sweet friend, and thanks for sharing this beauty!! xoxo

Yogi said...

Beautiful. Love the coloring and the yellow letters. Have a great day

Verna Angerhofer said...

You did wonders with this design even though your printer was a bit finicky. I think it has a gorgeous look to it.

pam said...

Stunning colours on this gorgeous image Leslie, love the bow and beautiful background lattice.
Pam x

ChristineCreations said...

I think it’s just beautiful printed this way Leslie! It feels so full of spring, that lattice is the perfect backdrop too. Gorgeous! So sorry the IRL tree is not doing what it’s supposed too! The blooms are sure pretty!

Darlene said...

Wow just gorgeous my friend! I've met Julie Koerber in person and she's an amazing soul! That was many years ago and although I have lost touch with her, you've inspired me to pop over and say hello to her! I LOVE how you've used color on this sweet card. Absolutely beautiful!
We too planted a couple of pink dogwoods a few years back. The one bloomed finally last year but was white vs the pink ... and the other one hasn't bloomed yet ... Grrrr Like you said .. they were so pretty at the nursery! Ugh
Have a wonderful day ... we are still out on open water but supposed to make landfall on Sunday! YAY

Donna Ellis said...

Lovely! Leslie, at least you can grow dogwoods there. It's too hot and inhospitable for them to grow here. They must have shade in Florida, and often, the overhead trees prevent the dogwoods from obtaining sufficient water from the ground. It's a lovely card, and a lovely inspiration! wishing you a great week-end! xx

laurie said...

What a beautiful card, and an awesome print. The dogwoods are gorgeous, and of course I just love that bow!!!!

Margaret said...

Stunning! I love the combo image with the sentiment and the dogwood branches. Thanks for the link to the tutorial. I need to try that. Sorry that your real dogwood is not living up to your expectations. I hope you can figure a way to get it to thicken out. Lovely. We had a white one in our yard where I lived growing up.

Pauline said...

Goodness gracious, this is Gorgeous!!! Leslie, you do some amazing water colouring with your Tombows. I'm glad the you went ahead with it. Love the complete layout of your card, the lattice behind is such a nice background for the dogwood branches and your nice big silk green bow....beautiful. Thanks for the printer info as well. Not sure how much stamping I will get done this coming week, Bill and I are both on vacation as of tonight, so will be outdoors enjoy the trails and birds. Enjoy the weekend.

Conniecrafter said...

I like the way this printed out and your stitching works just great with it!! Gorgeous coloring, and so love that lattice behind!! I may have to try the hot press paper, I have cold press and it is way too thick, and thanks for the reminder of what Cheryl had mentioned I had already forgotten what she had said to try. I always print on the matte setting also, I have a Canon printer but I could give it a try to print on a different setting too and see how it turns out :)

Jeanne H said...

Thanks much for the printer tips. Will have to try it...my printer is also picky, but it is 10 years old, and a discontinued HP All-in-One.

Christine Alexander said...

Leslie digital images frighten me so I just don't go there. I love the dog wood (British Columbia"s national plant) and your print and colouring looks amazing :)

Lynette said...

As usual - so beautiful, Leslie! Thank goodness you didn't toss it out! Printers and I don't get along so well:)

Susie said...

Lovely work Leslie! Believe me I am not the person to talk to about software or printers lately. Last month I had to resize a photo to be "exactly" and I mean "exactly!" 1800 x 1200 pixels - I had so much trouble that I finally had to send the photo's in RAW form - ugh. I've update Photoshop CC now and shouldn't have anymore problems. It's nerve wracking though.

Now... The dogwood is lovely even if it's not producing as much as you'd like - why do you suppose? The vibrant pink blossoms are beautiful! I love blue framing around it all, and the lattice die cut - perfection. But the one element on your card that gets me every. single. time -- the impeccable stitching! How do you get it so even - especially at the corners?!

Lovely card my friend!

Pretty Paper Junkie said...

The yellow and the pink are fabulous together with the hint of blue background shading. Nice!!!

Ros Crawford said...

What a beauty! You really captured that gorgeous shrub you have and as always your colouring is amazing!

Cindy Beach said...

Oh, this is a show-stopper, Leslie! It stopped me in my tracks until I flew directly to the site to look at the beautiful digital stamps. And stayed there for a LONG time, lol. Dogwoods grow beautifully in my state, and you've captured their colors amazingly well with your markers.

and the BOW = perfection! You know I love pink and green and the LOVEly yellow - they are all so pretty together. I appreciate your tips as I find digital to be daunting.

Stacy Morgan said...

Beautiful Anniversary card, she will love it. The lattice background is perfect touch Leslie. I have yet to print and color this one myself.

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