Powdered Pigment Techniques Update + A New VSN Blog!

Powdered Pigment Techniques Cover
VSN’s Powdered Pigment Techniques eArticle

If you are a stamper, I’ll bet you’ve got some powdered pigments in your stash, whether they are Perfect Pearls, Pearl-Ex, Primary Elements or whatever. When is the last time you got them out and played?

I recently took some time to review VSN’s “Powdered Pigment Techniques” eArticle. I think it has held up very well and is full of ideas and good information. I checked all of the links inside the eArticle, and while most were fine, I did find a few that go to external internet sites (either articles on powdered pigment techniques or product sites) that had gone bad. Most were due to things like a company changing names or moving a web page within their site. I’ve fixed these and the updated eArticle is now posted on VSN’s eArticle page. I also updated some of the info about VSN at the end.

If you access this eArticle by going to the site each time to read it online, then you’ll find the updated eArticle there to read the next time you visit. If you have saved this eArticle to your own computer to read offline, be sure to go to the eArticle page today and re-download it so you’ll have access to all the eArticle’s resources the next time you read it. And if you haven’t yet read this eArticle, seriously, why not? It’s free and full of all kinds of good info on using powdered pigments. It may just inspire your next stamping project!

My plan is to work my way through all the eArticles in VSN’s eArticle Library in this way to make sure each one is still up to date. I hope to get at least one done each week, so watch for more updated eArticles in coming weeks. I’ll be starting with the most popular eArticles first and then will work through them in no particular order. I’ll make a note on the eArticle page next to each updated eArticle and I’ll post a note here too, so you’ll know when each one is done. If you have a request that I do any particular eArticle sooner rather than later, please leave a comment below.

VSN is Branching Out with A Second Blog!

Blue Jay Eating a Peanut
Blue Jay Eating a Peanut

I’ve been taking a pause from writing about stamping in recent months (other than an article in RSM’s Summer 2015 issue.) If you enjoy my writing and if you like watching birds, you might like another project I’ve been working on. I’ve started a second blog, called “Birdseed & Binoculars”, about backyard birdwatching. Right now there are eleven posts up. These and future posts cover topics like choosing bird feeders, making your own improvised birdbaths and strategies for dealing with squirrels, Starlings, raptors and neighborhood cats, as well as lots of interesting info on the birds themselves. If you like birds, please check it out. And even if you aren’t into birds, if you know someone who is, please share the link with them. Many thanks!


Some Really Good Acrylic Paint Videos to Recommend!

Acrylic Paints

Here it is the Monday again and I’m SUPPOSED to be spending today picking topics for future eArticles. But the internet is calling me and pulling my attention away! But that’s OK really, because there is some great info on the internet if you give yourself permission to poke around and take a little time to read some blog posts and watch some videos and let the flow of the internet take you someplace interesting. Today I’ve watched several EXCELLENT videos that relate to using acrylic paints in the studio – things like avoiding over-diluting acrylic paints, how to clean brushes and palettes, and even how to get dried acrylic paint out of clothes or other fabrics. Good stuff. So I wanted to let you know about them.

Continue reading Some Really Good Acrylic Paint Videos to Recommend!

When is a Monoprint Not a Monoprint?

Gelli Print Monotype

I’ll bet I know an art word that most stampers (including myself) have been using incorrectly for years. In fact, just as late as the most recent eArticle, I used the term “monoprint” to describe a technique that involves scribbling watercolor crayons onto a craft sheet, wetting them and pressing paper onto the color to transfer the design to paper. But today I learned that isn’t really a monoprint! It’s actually a monotype. Do you know the difference?

Continue reading When is a Monoprint Not a Monoprint?

The Fickleness of a Stamper

Misc Stamps and Mediums


I have a confession: While I remain loyal to stamping, I am very fickle when it comes to art techniques and mediums used in or along side of stamping.

The articles that I like best to write are those where I can learn something new in the process and not just regurgitate things that I already know. (I know a lot about stamping and a little to a lot about all kinds of related art and craft topics.) And if you’ve read more than one of my articles in VSN or online eArticles, you know that when I really focus on something, I dig in and learn a LOT about that topic. All that detail comes out in the resulting article. So if you want to really learn about a topic and all the possibilities (and not just learn a single quick technique), VSN’s print issues or eArticles are a great place to go. I offer you more ways to use what you’ve got. (Why buy supplies to just do one technique when you can usually use them for so much more?)

If you immerse yourself in a topic, as I do when I research an article, you are likely to either get really, really sick of it or you get really, really enthused about it. Nine times out of ten, when I focus on a stamping related topic, I get enthused. In fact, that new-to-me art medium or set of techniques often becomes my favorite art medium or favorite technique EVER . . . until the next in-depth article and my new obsession. That is where my fickleness comes into play.

Continue reading The Fickleness of a Stamper

Watercolor Crayon Sample Card

Watercolor Crayon Artwork

This is a quick card that I made for the “Watercolor Crayons: Techniques For Stampers” eArticle. The layout and design of the card isn’t really the strongest, but I like it for two reasons: I love the strong colors and the feel of it. And I like that it shows two very different ways that you can use watercolor crayons in stamp art: to create a vibrant background and to subtly color and shade a stamped image.

Continue reading Watercolor Crayon Sample Card

New Watercolor Crayon Techniques eArticle POSTED!

Watercolor Crayon Techniques for Stampers

VSN’s Newest FREE eArticle, “Watercolor Crayons: Techniques For Stampers” has now been posted on the website. Are you ready to be inspired?

In the world of rubber stamps, watercolor crayons don’t get a lot of love. There is something about a crayon, with its association with the scribbled art of our childhoods, that can keep us from giving watercolor art crayons the respect they deserve. But these handy little sticks of pigment can be used in many different ways in stamping. The results can be bright and beautiful!

This eArticle introduces watercolor crayons and looks at surfaces where you might use them. Techniques include:

  • Coloring and Blending Dry (Smudging, Layering and Sgraffito)
  • Using With Regular Wax Crayons (Wax Crayon Resists)
  • Coloring Dry and Then Blending Wet
  • Heat Embossed Resists
  • Coloring on a Palette or Craft Sheet (Paint, Monoprint, Embossed Lines, Stencils)
  • Touch and Paint (Waterbrush & Blender Pen)
  • Coloring Wet (2 Techniques)
  • Coloring on a Stamp (3 Techniques)
  • Using the Shavings

52 half-sized pages designed to view comfortably on your computer screen and it is also printable! (pdf version.) Color photos of technique steps. 17 beautiful stamp art examples of the techniques covered. Also available in epub and Kindle mobi file versions for stampers who would like to read this on tablets or Kindle Readers.


Nancie, VSN

Watercolor Crayon Techniques eArticle Will Post Tomorrow!

Watercolor Crayon ArtworkI know I’ve been quiet this week, but I have a good excuse. I’ve been finishing up the “Watercolor Crayons Techniques for Stampers” eArticle. It is all done and will be posted tomorrow — probably mid-day or early afternoon eastern time.

Continue reading Watercolor Crayon Techniques eArticle Will Post Tomorrow!