Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Watercoloring in Your Bible

Hello sweet people! Thank you for visiting my blog today. I really appreciate your support. I've been getting a few questions but no way to reply to those asking, so I'll answer them today in this post. Please remember to leave me a way to contact you if you have questions. Or you can post them to my Facebook page. This is a bit longer than my usual posts, but I think you'll find it worthwhile.

Beth and Angie both asked about using Stampin' Up! inks in your Bible. I use an onion-skin Bible. The pages are thinner than most journaling Bibles. When I stamp SU! classic inks, they act just like Memento - they are both dye-based inks (water reactive). Because they are very wet water-based inks, they soak through bare pages easily. They also take a few moments to dry and smear easily. They not only soak through, they will imprint the previous page, as well.

What can you do? You can prepare your pages for all kinds of media. I use CLEAR gesso - this came up last week in discussion. If you use regular gesso, it has white acrylic paint in it, making it opaque. I use Liquitex Clear Gesso found at both Hobby Lobby and Michael's. Gesso seals your pages, and it also provides "tooth" or a rough surface that will hold ink, paint, colored pencil, etc. It feels a little gritty when dry. You can get a sanding block and gently smooth the gesso once dry but I usually don't bother.

Please note - thin paper is always going to show the image on the reverse side. This is a function of thin paper. Bleed-through is a totally different problem - it actually obscures the page behind and can affect working that side of the paper. If the thin paper visibility is a problem for you, I'll be giving you some tools next week to help avoid that. Clear gesso reduces bleed-through. If you know you're going to put a lot of wet media on the page, consider using 2 or 3 thin coats of gesso.

Using Versamark ink and heat embossing is another trick to stamping without shadowing or bleeding. If you're going to color with pencils, that's all you need. But if you're using wet media, you will still need to prepare your page with gesso.

I hope that gives you enough info to go on, ladies. Please feel free to ask questions, just make sure you give me a way to respond! Now, today I'm sharing with you how I use water-based pigments to color in my Bible. In this video, I use Stampin' Up! reinkers with a waterbrush to watercolor after heat embossing.

I have always loved the story of Noah and his family. Of course, my predilection of loving animals really drew me to it. It's amazing to think we all trace our roots back to this event. I've been reviewing Genesis and how inclusive it is. It covers creation, the fall of man, a huge flood - all the way to the exodus. A lot of things are going on in this single book! So, dig in and see what you come up with - be sure to share your work! You can inspire someone else no matter what your skill level is. We are all growing, still. Colossians 1:3-14, growing and bearing fruit.

Next week, I'll be sharing my tests of various inks and a variety of papers. I'll have some great samples for you using the most popular inks and providing other tips. So, please look for that!


Now, a bit of other news. Some of you know that my church has planted a church in San Francisco. This Christmas, our church provided 30 gift cards for needy families identified by a San Fran local school. I was asked to make card holders for those cards. I prayed over every card holder as I made them. It was a joyous time of worship for me, as well.

I was wondering the other day, just a mindless musing, what became of those envelopes and gift cards. I was ok with not knowing - many kindnesses occur daily without shouting back. Yesterday I opened my mailbox and a friend who had worked closely getting all this coordinated had sent me photocopies of notes.

Now, I'm not posting this to toot my own horn. I just want you to enjoy how God chose to use this. The pastor writes:
"I wanted to say thank you so much for sending the Target gift cards. You allowed us to be a blessing in ways that we couldn't imagine! By the time we got the cards and went back to the school counselor, she said that the school community was so generous that there were no more needs. So we went back to our church community and began to pray and ask the Lord what we should do. (Pause.) 
Last October, one of the families we were working with in the homeless/park community got in some trouble and their child was taken away by social services. My family is now fostering him and the families in our church are helping care for him. His mom entered a rehab facility and [is] getting her life back in order.  
She now proclaims Christ and is trying to get her kid back. We have been given the responsibility of supervising her visits with him and helping her learn to parent him better. It's tough, but it has been a huge blessing. (Now back to the story.) 
We felt the Holy Spirit tell us to bless the women & children living in this particular rehab facility that his mom is in. When we inquired, we found out there were the exact amount of kids in this home as there were cards/money that you guys provided us. So as a church we bought each kid a stuffed animal and gave the gift card to the parent to help w/Christmas. I wished you could have been there to see the smiles & tears on their faces. 
God once again has shown us when we follow Him, His plans are way better than ours! Thank you for partnering with us and being a Blessing to us so that we could be a blessing to this community. We now have a huge open door to share the gospel with these women/moms. I attached a "Thank You" card they sent to us but it more appropriately belongs to you guys. From the bottom of our hearts - Thank you for loving and caring for us here in San Francisco. God is at work! To Him be the glory, 1 Peter 4:11."
I'm just blown away. We couldn't have planned or predicted any of this, and I'm grateful to have been used to provide a very small part of this blessing. The handwritten notes from each of the moms are a treasure to read. So much love has been exchanged with such a small gift, and so many more opportunities are waiting to build on this foundation. Just remember - give good.

            Luke 6:38 - Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down,
                 shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. 
                 For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

Have a blessed day!


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  1. Woah!!! You weren't kidding--this is AWESOME!!! First, let me mention that I find your Bible journaling to be super inspiring and so much fun to watch! What a fabulous way to create watercolor effects and I LOVE that gorgeous flower--THUD!!! So amazing. Now for your church--what a superb testament to love for our neighbors--love for one another. I firmly believe that your praying over each beautiful gift card you made has a definite and purposeful impact on how God will use your gifts to bring joy and hope to others. It never fails to amaze me at how God brings all things full circle and shows us how what we do (specifically) makes a difference in the outcome of ourselves and in the lives of others. And when we get the privilege of seeing the impact, it's just a big bonus!!! Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful story of your church to the new one in SF with us! It's very heartwarming and inspiring!!! <3

  2. What an awesome story. So cool to see God working. What a blessing that He gave you a gift and you gave it back and He multiplied it!

  3. Love the video! Beautiful results. And what a joy for your heart to have those notes!


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Welcome to the Bunny Nest! I host rescued animals in a small in-home setting. Currently, I host 3 bunnies and 2 kitties. These animals will be socialized and housed for the entirety of their lives in my home. They inspire my crafts, and I use any proceeds to pay for their needs. Thanks for visiting!