Saturday, January 25, 2014

Sketchy Solutions...

So I recently discovered a great challenge blog and online scrapbook supply store called  The Memory Nest and I decided to play along with their January sketch challenge.


Looks pretty easy right? Nope.  Not for this girl.  It's these simple sketches that stump me. Especially with a vertical 4x6 photo.  I've grown quite used to scrapping smaller, usually square photos, so to scrap a larger photo was more of a challenge than I expected (and I still had to skinny it up so it's more like a 3x6).

I started a layout with the larger squares of paper layered behind my photo.  Agonized over it for a couple of hours, then tossed it and pulled out a light grid covered cardstock and my good old Faber Castell gelatos.(shocker, right?) ;-)  Every time I have struggled with a layout I have ended up coming back to the gelatos and I always feel happy with the outcome.  So here's a bit on my process of putting together a layout using mediums as substitutes for paper elements on a page.  Give it a try!

For this layout, I used the gelatos as a stand-in for the lighter gray paper layer shown in the sketch.

First I put a decent layer of gesso over the background paper.  Once that dried, I scribbled big lines of color with the gelatos, finger blended them, then went over them with water and a watercolor brush.  If you want your gelatos to blend well without hard lines, apply them softly to the paper - you don't have to press down hard at all.  Then wet a watercolor brush and apply a generous amount of water on the lines that separate your rows of color.  Blend the colors out until they look the way you want them.  I stood my paper up and tapped it on my desk to get the colors to run into each other and make some dripping and pooling.

I used a stencil and added some circles with modeling paste over the gelatos, then layered strips of vellum to stand in for the darker gray paper in the sketch.

 A few hearts, a button flair, and a little bit of doodling.  Viola.  A super cute pastel page of the kiddo. :)  I switched the elements but stayed pretty close to the sketch shape.

I hope enjoyed this little how-to...and link me to your layout if you give this technique a try! :)

Have a fabulous weekend!




  1. Gorgeous page Shawna and I seriously need to get me some gelato's!!

  2. LOL, my friend you have come a LOOOONG way from those first few Gelato-frustrated've got 'em doing your deeds now...this is super-duper fabulous! And it still follows the sketch...& thanks for the intro to a new challenge if I need it!!!! LOL...but, hey! Variety is the spice of life.....going over to take a peek........

  3. Love this effect and thanks for the steps.....must remember I need lots of help, when it comes to gelatos! The photo really pops it!

  4. Shawna, you rock with this one. I had same problems with that sketch.
    This turned out to be just fabulous! So hoping you'll join our dt :)
    Thank you for playing along with us at tMN!

  5. Show your page is beautiful. I love the elements you used. Thank you fore joining us at the Memory Nest.

  6. Oh this is stunning Miss Saucy... I am going to have to play with my gelatos... I have not used them yet because I don't like the way they come out. I am going to give this method a try...maybe this will work out better... I don't like that I can never get rid of the scribbled lines properly. I love the doodling and the vellum behind the photo. I love your take on the sketch too... great job lady... You are rocking the challenges :D x

  7. Okay, just so you know, YOU are the one who inspired me to use Gelatos!! This layout is super awesome and sweet!! Love all the doodling too!!
    ...{so just so we're clear, I blame you for my current obsession ;)}

  8. Amazing take on the sketch. Thanks for playing along with us at The Memory Nest. :)

  9. Shawna, WOW!!! Love your take on the sketch. Your layout is gorgeous. Love the colors with the black and white picture. Great title and journaling - amazing.

  10. Oops - forgot to say - thank you for playing along with us at tMN!!!

  11. I love your layout! I have been trying to get that kind of look with gelatos and I'm so glad you actually explained it! I always see it, but nobody ever writes how they achieved it. I'll have to give my gelatos a second change now. Thanks so much for joining us at the MN!