I’m so excited to share a new talent with all of you today! Amber was introduced to me a few weeks ago by my good friend Trisha, and I’m head over heels for her beautiful work! We got a few of the new Pick of the Bunch punches to Amber and she created a couple masterpieces that I couldn’t wait to share with you!
Hi there! My name is Amber Engelhardt. I’m a wife of 10 years and a very grateful stay-at-home mom of two kids: Ella (6) and Cohen (3). I became an artist the second my mom placed that first crayon in my hand! I even went to an art-focused Elementary school. In high-school I became interested in collage and loved cutting out pictures from magazines and adhered them to shoe boxes to make “memory boxes.” I started scrapbooking 13 years ago, when I was in college, and I’ve loved it ever since. Recently, I’ve found a way to combine both my love for collage and scrapbooking through mixed-media art. I’ve had a long-time admiration for folk art and it has been a goal of mine to make art inspired by folk artistry, but modernized with current color combinations and patterns. This dream led me to open my own shop on Etsy, called Amber EngelhART (http://www.etsy.com/shop/amberengelhART).
When I make a canvas or shadow box, I use a combination of hand-cut and die-cut designs. I also use punches, like these ones made by Tonic from the “Pick of the Bunch Floral Designs” collections. I start with scrapbook paper and then cut my designs, usually following a design from my sketchbook. After punching the Tonic flower petals and leaves, I used the “Pick of the Bunch” stamps, giving the flowers beautiful and instant detail. For this project and any others where you use markers or watercolors to color the punched images, it is important to use a waterproof ink pad. (I use Ranger’s Archival ink in Jet Black). Once I have it arranged, I adhere it with Matte Mod Podge. When that is completely dry, I use a fine point Faber–Castell black pen (also waterproof) to outline the rest of the details. Next, I watercolor over the entire project using Distress Stains by Ranger and Tim Holtz. This intensifies the current colors of the scrapbook paper, often times making the patterns unrecognizable. Finally, I get to play with India Ink markers to provide shading and details (I use Faber-Castell PITT artist pens). I use my fingers to blend the colors, finishing with two shades of brown to give the piece an aged look. The dried finish of the Mod Podge is what allows me to blend the markers; otherwise the ink would simply soak into the paper. The very last step is to cover it with one coat of Mod Podge, sealing and waterproofing the artwork.
Click each image or a close-up.
I love all of the steps I use to complete a canvas- but I know it’s time consuming….and not everyone’s cup of tea! You could still have a beautiful, one-of-a-kind piece of artwork without the water colors or the markers. Using the Tonic punches definitely gives you a great starting point! Thanks for letting me share a little bit about myself and my creative process. I’d love for you visit my blog: www.amberengelhardt.blogspot.com, where I share mixed media, scrapbooking, photography and crafts in general.
Happy creating, everyone!