Polka Dot Pals Khadija

This is a new release at Whimsy Stamps for this month and she is named Polka Dot Pals Khadija. I added the face that was included and used the wings and fireflies together to create this little scene. In addition to using those elements from the set, I added pointy ears through creative color placement and made her more fairy like.

She was colored as a fairy ladybug with the bright red wings. From the top photo, you can see how much this Polka Dot Pal was transformed from the original uncolored state to the finished colored image. I love the Polka Dot Pals, even with those annoying beady eyes, because there are so many possibilities. And once colored (even without a face) they’re still adorable. So pick up your sets at Whimsy Stamps and let’s see what you can color!

Polka Dot Pals Fern

This was so cool! In the past, I’ve enjoyed coloring with my Prismacolor pencils on kraft paper but I came across a card by Sandy Allnock that achieved the same thing except with Copic markers. What? How was that done? Turns out, Neenah comes out with a Desert Sand color that works the same way as their white that I like to use. It wasn’t more than two seconds after discovering this that I purchased my own pack to play with.

My project started with using a few sets to create a scene using the Polka Dot Pals from Whimsy Stamps. This one used the character, fence and flower from Polka Dot Pals Fern combined with the insects and mushrooms from Polka Dot Pals Imogen. Lastly I added the face from Polka Dot Pals Khadija. Everything in the foreground of the scene was masked and the fence was added.
It took a little while to get used to the way the paper worked. Unlike the white, the Desert Storm shows dark when it’s whet so often times I would have to wait for that area to dry before deciding to color more or not. It wasn’t a problem on larger areas such as the fence and hair but the smaller areas took a little more patience.
I wanted to add white but wasn’t sure how that was going to work. I first started with some water based white and a brush but the paper seemed to get too wet and I couldn’t see what I was doing. So I ended up using a gel pen and giving a stark highlight in the direction of the light source. I think it works but next time I’ll be interested to find a softer way to add white – in hindsight, pencils seems like the obvious choice so that will be my go to next time.
For the card, I kept it simple and was lucky to find a decorative paper that matched. I was worried about that so I consider that a gold-start find. Since there wasn’t a lot of white, I stayed away from white embellishments or white in the paper least it would provide too much of a contrast.

These are the Copic markers I used:

E70, 71, 74, 77, 79
E40, 41, 42, 43, 44
E000, 30, 31, R12, E04
YR30, 31, 24, 27
R11, 12, 14, 08, 27
R0, 1, 2, 4, 7
YG21, 23, 25, 67
YR20, 16, 18
E30, 31, 35, 57

These are the stamps I used:

Polka Dot Pals Imogen and Mason Jar

Here’s another version of Polka Dot Pals Imogen clear clear stamped inside the Mason Jar rubber stamp, both available at Whimsy Stamps. This time I went with pink fairy dust in the snow globe and also added some extra features. Can you spot them without me pointing them out?

This image was stamped in a very light beige color ink which allowed me to use something other than blue for the jar coloration. It worked well with the pink.
The Polka Dot Pals stamp line are so fun to color and so versatile as well – you can change the look of the whole image just by giving it different elements and or faces. Here are some of the ones I’ve already colored using the four release from last month and this month. I haven’t even begun to start with the elements yet.
Ok, times up! I added extra twine to create a bow under the bells and then, of course, added a face to this cutie pie and the fairy dust in the jar. Did you get those three? You could probably count the ladybugs as additions too or you can use the ones from the stamp set.
Mason Jar rubber stamp

Polka Dot Pals Khadija

I hope this gal isn’t getting too much attention but after doing the Polka Dot Pals faces tutorial, I decided she actually needed to be colored and create my first card in over a year. So without further ado, this is my card using Polka Dot Pals Khadija

But wait! There’s more! How about another tutorial!! This was actually all going to be one giant tutorial but I thought it best to break it up, one for the face and one for the background. So get ready for much ado!

For this tutorial, I wanted to share one way that you could use the sentiments. In this picture, I’m planning out my layout. I try to pick long words and words that can be cropped are delightful such as this sentiment “splendidly.” Did you know I almost spelled this one wrong? That’s right, during production a valuable Whimsy DT member caught my error and I was able to fix it before production. Phew, that would have been embarrassing.
To use the sentiment so it would fit on my project, I chose to reduce it to “splendid” and did this by wiping away the ink on the last two letters. I did this for each time I stamped it.
I also used the music bar element from the set to fill in the area. I could have squeezed in another “splendid” sentiment for four in a row but I actually didn’t have another blue that coordinated. So this turned out to be a happy modification as I really liked how it turned out.
With the washi tape still masked around the outside, I used these colors to give the background more color and to separate it from the image more. (As you could probably deduce, the character was masked before stamping the sentiment. I did that with a scratch paper and covered up the girl.)
Here’s what it looks like after all the masking and washi tape was removed. Now I’m ready to do the coloring on the character. I need to remember to not color outside the imaginary line that is Polaroid photo area. That white border is important for that kind of look.
This was just a mini tutorial for the background so I didn’t take notes or photos while coloring Polka Dot Pals Khadija. The face is from the Polka Dot Pals Syeda stamp set.
The last thing I colored was some glitter using a glitter brush I had to give the dress and pipes some sparkle. It doesn’t show up on the photos very well but in person it’s a nice detail.

These are the Copic markers I used:
C0, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7
BV20
R00, E000, 30
B00, 01, 12, 14, 06

These are the stamps I used:

Polka Dot Pals Add-on Faces Tutorial

Welcome! In this tutorial, I’m going to give some tips and tricks on how to add the Polka Dot Pals add-on faces to the Polka Dot Pals.

You’ll find Polka Dot Pals sold at Whimsy Stamps in clear sets with elements and accessories that and interchangeable between sets. So a forward face from one set will work with any of the other forward facing character.

There’s a lot of information here – if you want the reader’s digest then just look at the pictures but if you want the unabridged version like a true die-hard, then stick with me and read the text. 😛

For this tutorial, I used two sets: the character from Polka Dot Pals Khadija and the face from Polka Dot Pals Syeda. Product links shown at the bottom.
First, let’s get to know the characters and elements of the face. I know, you know what an eye and ear look like, but let’s do it for kicks and grins so we’re on the same page when it comes to terminology.

CHIN: The chin is visible on almost every character and is a wide sweeping smile shape. But you’ll also see this same shape on the face’s stamp. The base part that clings to the acrylic block will resemble the same shape which will help with placement. (Here’s an interesting note: sometimes the chin might not match exactly because more stability is needed for a mouth, such as the face shown on the left. When this happens, just ignore the bump and you can focus on the cheeks instead for alignment.)

EARS: Ears are not always visible on the characters especially if they are covered with hair, bows or other accessories. However, when you do see them, they also aid in placement for the same reasons as the chin – the base of the face stamp have those same protruding nubs that will align with the character’s own ears.

EYEBROWS: These are easy to spot but you may find it interesting that they are included with the character and not with the face. Why is that? For those that don’t want to add a face then the pupils and eyebrows are already there to give the character personality without having to add anything on.

PUPILS: This brings us to the pupils which are the beady-eyed dots on the characters. They are positioned the same on every character so that the faces can be added. However, when not adding a face, those dots represent the character’s eyes. The face is a large blank canvas, per se, so there is enough room to play around and have fun – you can add color to the eyes, stamp a face, or color your own face.

IRIDES: Here’s the tricky part, did you know that the plural or iris (as in eyes) is irides?! I had no idea until this tutorial. Ok, so with the tricky part over, let’s talk about the irides. This is the large open circle on the face’s stamp which would be colored green, blue, brown or whatever color for your character. It’s circular because the pupil is curricular. When stamping, the pupils and irides should be centered with each other – hence the reason for this tutorial.

This step is specifically for those to prefer to eyeball (HA!) the position of the faces, like I do. For each face, I like to practice on my paper pad until I feel comfortable with the results. If this makes you uncomfortable, then using a stamp positioner will also help you get that perfect placement you’re looking for. But don’t stress it too much – if the faces are off, you’ll see below there are ways they can still be “saved” and you can “just keep coloring, just keep coloring.”
In this image and the one below, I have stamped a few common outcomes. In the example above, the first one is the desired result where the pupil is centered in the iris. For the other two, they appear to be looking down or up but when colored, it doesn’t exactly look right. Why is that? A quick answer from Wikipedia: in humans, the iris is a circular muscle in the eye, responsible for controlling the diameter and size of the pupil similar to optical aperture. Think of it as camera lenses and how they open and close but the opening part will always be in the center.
In this example, the top two faces have off-centered placement as well so when colored they look a little wonky. But if that’s what you’re going for, then ignore all this. LOL The last one, however, is one of the softest and quickest tips – if you find it frustrating to align the pupils and irides, then just use a cotton swab before stamping the character and remove the pupil. You can color it back in later, as seen below.
Lastly, I wanted to share this with you for two reasons – first on the left you can see these are all the faces from the above examples. I like to stamp my faces in a lighter color so that I can add the depth through color – however, this also allows me to color over the pupil and then later color it in the shape and size of my choosing. On the right, you would hardly notice those same wonky faces when looking at their eyes. The second reason? Just look at those possibilities and how much the pupil and highlights can change the look.

Pink Ostrich and Colorless Flamingo

Still trying to figure out my watercolor vibes but this time I’ve upgraded to Arches hot press paper that Jennifer shared with me. I immediately noticed a huge difference and was a lot more relaxed when using it. I’ll have to put some of that stuff on my wish list!!

This was colored with Karin watercolor brush markers using a pallet tray and watercolor brush. It was inspired by some photos I took at the zoo except for this ostrich I decided to give him a big ol’ Adam’s apple. “Gulp! Why am I pink?”
His companion was also inspired by my zoo visit and I decided to color this flamingo in ostrich colors. I gave it a little character in the eyes and can image her saying “Well what, how’d that happen?!”
Not everything turns out and this is just an example of some of my frustrations as I figure this watercolor thing out. This is on cold press paper and three different mediums. Not one of my favorites but it’s part of my stepping stone process to learning more.

Jennifer Dove's Copic Boot Camp

It’s time to jump back and create the iconic post of “what I colored at boot camp” and show off all the things I did. These, of course, were all done using Copic markers. Jennifer’s Boot Camp is amazing and great friends too – shout out to everyone I was sitting next to during the camp and at lunch day after day: Kellie, Karen F, Wendy, Cathy T, Therese, Meenu, Taya, Cathy R, Janice W, Nan, Ginger, Charlene, Mags and Luigi. Thank you to all the helpers and it was so much fun getting to know you all: Patty, Cassandra, Ellie and Becky. Also thank you to all the sponsors. Thank you Jennifer for everything.

Elephant of Surprise by Heffy Doodle
Thankful Owl and It’s Owl Good by Technique Tuesday
Gnomey Drew by Make it Crafty
Wonder Moustache by Twistoon
Puppy Love (with my third addition above) by Picket Fence Studios
Polka Dot Pals Renata by Barbara Sproatmeyer
Vintage Artichoke by Concord & 9th (with some extra details by me)

Watercolor Failures of a Winter Scene

I had seen a gorgeous loose watercolor painting of a winter scene with aspen trees and was very inspired by it. I thought, that should be easy. Right?! Well, not so much for me with watercolors at the moment. I sketched out the image and tried a wet on wet technique. Then I didn’t let it dry long enough and proceed to add some details – and well, you can see how that went.

This was done with Karin Brushmarker Pro watercolor markers on Craft Perfect Watercolor Card 300 gsm cold press.

In hindsight, I can see areas where there was something good going on so it’s not all that bad. I did slightly learn from it so that’s a plus. I’ll have to revisit something like this in the future and see how much I’ve progressed. It’ll be a doozy of a before and after, I’m sure.

Bob the Cow

This is Bob. Say Hi to bob. He like salty things and standing in the sun. I like Bob. I actually met Bob on the farm while visiting a friend. However, believe me that Bob in real life was a lot more interesting, albeit not as colorful.

For this image, I sketched out my image lightly with pencil then continued to experiment using the Karin Brushmarker Pro watercolor markers. I mainly created a pool of ink then used a watercolor brush to the paper. The white highlights were a combination of a gel pen and white gesso.

Polka Dot Pals Syeda with Gnome Marci

I had some fun over the winter break while the kids were out of school and wanted to play around with the faces from the Polka Dot Pals sets (clear stamps from Whimsy Stamps) to see how they would work with other stamps. In the past, I’ve stamped a face on a Magnolia Tilda stamp, Make it Crafty Mushrooms and a DoveArt Hot Sip mug. Now I’ve stamped a face on La-La Land Crafts Gnome Marci and I think she’s adorable.

To get this look, I first stamped Gnome Marci with a light color ink using a stamp press. Then I stamped the face on top using the same color but stamping it one more time to make it darker. This allowed me to do a no-line color while still seeing both faces – however, with the Polka Dot Pals face darker, I was able to ignore the Gnome Marci face when coloring.

It was interesting to me to see that the faces were generally the same size. Seeing this tells me that the Polka Dot Pals faces could be used on all the La-La Land Marci and Luka stamps, perhaps more. Tip: In looking at the above image, you can see that the pupil from Marci doesn’t match up with the eyes from Syeda. So when coloring, completely color the iris from Syeda with your color choice before coloring in the pupil. This will help you get the pupil centered.

I also stamped the head bow accessory from the Polka Dot Pals Syeda set and then penciled in some knitting guidelines on her hat which would be erased prior to coloring.

I usually start coloring the face first then work on the larger sections. For this girl, I wanted to go with a Swedish Tomte which is a mischievous domestic creature responsible for the protection and welfare of the farmstead and its buildings. They are usually dressed in gray with a bright red hat and have gray or white hair.

When finished coloring Gnome Marci, I thought the eyes stood out more than I wanted so I needed to introduce more turquoise to the image. The Polka Dot Pals Syeda set came with flowers too so I added those and began to color but it just wasn’t enough. Plus with Gnome Marci’s hands out like that, I quickly thought of Iron Man and with two and two together, that’s how she got her flower powers.

I hope this was inspiring for you to experiment with the Polka Dot Pal faces – what can you add them to?

Copic Markers:
R12, E0000, 30, 31, 33, 35, 47
N0, 2, 4, 6, 8
B00, 02, 49, 57
C1, 3, 5, 7
R12, 14, 24, 29, 39, 27
Y11, YR23, 24
YG17, 21, 23, 25

Stamps Used:
Polka Dot Pals Syeda clear stamp
Gnome Marci rubber stamp