About Me

I'm a freelance artist, designer and demonstrator and have been involved in arts and craft my whole life in one way or another. I design stamps for top British company Personal Impressions, under the "Lindsay Mason Designs" brand, as well as papers, templates and other crafting products. I'm a certified Ranger Educator and my first book,"Stamping", was published in 2009. I also design regular projects for Crafts Beautiful magazine and have made guest appearances from time to time on QVC. I've recently joined You Tube under the name of LindsayMason1000 where I'm posting short technique videos and you can buy my paintings and hand crafted pieces from my Etsy shop. My work takes me all around the country demonstrating stamping, papercrafts and general inkiness! When I'm not working, I love gardening, church & community activities, nature watching, journalling, music and theatre and just relaxing at home. Email me at: ljm.design1@virginmedia.com

Sunday, 30 January 2011

My weekend

Had a lovely day in Wigan yesterday, well Pemberton to be precise, at Card-io. Thanks to Wendy and her daughter for looking after me so well and all the ladies who came along....don't think there were any men this time! I had some of my favourite inks, stamps and flowers with me and I was also using Ranger's Liquid Pearls which are something I sometimes forget about for a while and then re-discover to my delight! Here I used them to create the background for this card. I stamped the fairy from my silhouette set and the dandelions and words which are from Marion Emberson's Make a Wish set (both PI) onto acetate. I flipped the piece over, squeezed White Opal, Flamingo and Peacock Liquid Pearls over the sheet and then brayered over them to create the squooshy effect.Handily, you can then press the acetate, pearl side down, onto card and it will stick in place. I added some dots of the pearls over the dandelion heads as well...getting really into those pearls!
I was also using Darkroom Door stamps again and this simple card is just using the watercolour technique with my Le Plume pens - coloured straight onto the stamps, spritzed with water and pressed onto 300 gsm white card. I do love this technique and the DD silhouette style flower stamps work extremely well as they allow you to build up a meadow scene really easily.I like to scribble my pens onto my craft sheet, add water, pick up the colour with a brush and tap the handle so that I get random spatters of watery colour over the image as well. I think this gives the whole thing a more painterly finish.
I received some lovely gifts this weekend too...some fantastic little icons all the way from India from two of my crafting buddies who had been out there recently. I have ideas for the icons already! When I got home there was a lovely card, tag and ATC waiting for me from another crafty friend...a lovely surprise! Makes me feel very fortunate that my work leads me to meet so many like minded people in a world that can, at times, seem very unfriendly.
Well, for some reason, I couldn't get to sleep on Friday night, so, after my busy day on Saturday I would normally had a bit of a lie in...that's to say no alarm, just wake up when I wake up. However, it was the men's final of the Australian Open and it was live at 8.15 this morning, so I got up to watch. Almost wished I had taken the lie in instead! Andy Murray was playing Novak Jokovitch and I just wanted the best man to win. Unfortunately, Murray was not only outplayed, he was also "out behaved" if there is such a term! He seemed to be very surly from the moment he walked on court and he was doing a great deal of "abusing his racquet" and swearing after his losing points. It's one reason why I like to watch Nadal and Federer...not only great players, but also they are gentlemen who take the knocks as well as the good times and treat them equally. Mmm...a famous poem springs to mind.... Well, just my thoughts anyway, and congratulations to Jokovitch for his win.
Okay, must away to bed now as I have workshops to prepare tomorrow and I think I need to catch up on Friday's insomnia! Lindsay

Monday, 24 January 2011

A few cards...

As promised, here are a few pictures of some cards that I made on Saturday using the Darkroom Door stamps.
This first one uses paper from Tim Holtz Vintage Shabby paper stash which I tinted with Distress inks and a light spritz of the new Ranger Perfect Pearls Mists in Heirloom Gold. I stamped one of the Art de Fleur vol 2 images onto PI's 300gsm card which I'd blended Distress inks onto. I spritzed with water and brushed water over certain areas of the stamped image. I then added the sentiment from the same DD set and the small Tour Eiffel from the set of the same name. I alcohol inked some Petaloo flowers to tone and added those as well as a hint of colour to the stamped flowers. The next card uses the 300 gsm card too. I stamped the beach huts from the DD set Seaside Vol 2 using Vintage Photo Distress ink. I heated the ink to dry it before using my waterbrush to draw the ink in from the stamped image to colour tint it. I tore the image and that of a piece of paper from Tim's Lost & Found stash...I am back into tearing I think! I layered these up and added the stamped shells from the same set, coloured as before. The lovely sentiment is also from the same set...love that teensy script!I simply tied some twine around to finish the card. The final card has a Bazzill Basics base to it. I tore (see what I mean!) a piece from the Vintage Shabby paper stash and added it to the front. I stamped the starfish panel, shells and words (DD Seaside Vol 1) onto PI gloss coated card using Black Stazon and coloured them using Le Plume pens. For the sentiment I literally streaked the pen across very quickly to give texture to the panel. The shells were cut out with a tiny border just to show them up better. I made a small hole in the card spine, threaded twine through and tied it round, parcel style, knotting at the front. I threaded single strands of the twine through three buttons and added them over the twine on the card using 3d foam on either side.
So, hope you like my nod to Summer! And not a hint of purple anywhere...amazing! Lindsay

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Cardstock made simples!

Sorry that I didn't manage to get any pictures of my card samples up here before the weekend. What with bad light and lack of time, it just didn't happen. I'll definitely have some to show you soon I promise!
Talking of promises, I told several ladies at Saturday's demonstration in Washington that I would add a quick recap of what were the virtues of the various Personal Impressions cardstocks which I was using. I was writing down the info on little bits of paper for everyone, so hop this helps! These are my three favourite card types and what I do with them......
This first one is Personal Impressions Premier Quality Smooth White Card, which is available in packs of 10 or 100 A4 sheets. This is my favourite, all purpose cardstock which weighs in at 200gsm and is ultra smooth and brilliant white. I use it for drawing my stamp designs on, as well as for creating pop up inserts and stamping onto. It's thin enough to be able to cut around stamped images easily but sturdy enough that it holds up well for decoupaging them. You'll get crisp images when you stamp onto it and the brightness means that colours look clean.Next is the newest card in the personal Impressions own range. There isn't a picture of this cardstock as it doesn't come in a labelled pack as the others do. However, this one is a real gem of a cardstock and is called PIP300CWH....catchy eh?! It stands for 300gsm card white. Your local shop can get this if they don't stock it and it's usually sold in single A4 sheets or packs of between 10 and 25 sheets. It feels less smooth than the previous card but it has almost magical qualities to enhance your stamping and distressing work. You'll find that Distress inks blend beautifully and, what's more interesting is that, spritzing with water, or brushing water on, will give you the most dramatic faux bleaching effects. If you blend dark colours over the surface and then stamp a figure over them it may look great except for a deep blue face! Simply paint the face with water, dab with a paper towel and the face will really "pop" white again for you to colour as you wish. This card actually keeps water based inks wetter for longer, so is ideal if you want to stamp onto it with a Big n Juicy Rainbow ink pad and then brush water across for a blended effect. In fact, you may even want to heat set the ink slightly first - much better than having to quickly grab the brush in a race against time in case the ink dries! Really fabulous card that I am so glad to have to hand all the time.
Next in my "must have" selection is the Premier Quality High Gloss White Coated Card - see below. The word "coated" is the key here, as it behaves differently from standard gloss card or photographic gloss card. This is the ideal surface for using with alcohol inks...I especially like to use them to make mono prints by drizzling the inks onto my craft sheet, adding a little Blending Solution and then pressing the card onto the surface, moving it around a little and then lifting it away. However, I also recommend it for stamping onto. I use either Stazon or Archival inkpads (if using Archival, remember to quickly heat set it before colouring) to obtain really detailed prints from my stamps. If you find silhouette stamps can sometimes be tricky when stamping onto standard card ie if you get little patches of paler, or no ink, then do try this card as you will almost certainly get better results. As for colouring stamped images - water based pens, such as Le Plume or Memento, work beautifully on this coated card. Water based brush pens glide over the surface and blend really well to give seamless coverage. I used this card in the Crafts Beautiful project that I featured in my last post.So, I hope that helps all the slightly confused ladies that were buying the three cardstocks on Saturday and hoping that they would remember what they were each for when they got home!
I had a very nice first trip of 2011 I'm pleased to say! I had a good troll around Chester-Le-Street and got some much needed fresh air and a leg stretch...could do with some real leg stretching, but never mind! Then a relaxing evening and a good night's sleep before going to Dainty Supplies. Everyone fell for Rachel's Darkroom Door stamps as I thought they would! Apologies to those who were blaming me for making them leave the shop much poorer than when they went in!
I'll say cheerio for now and be back soon with some photos. I'll be making new samples for next Saturday's event at Card-Io in Wigan, so will give you some sneak peeks of those! Lindsay

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Why I like postmen...

Well, I do when they bring me packages filled with lovely things! This afternoon brought me some Le Plume pens to replace the old ones that I have been trolling around for several years now...I'm really bad at throwing pens away - always thinking that next time they will work! There were also these lovely templates by Crafter's Workshop, which I'm going to be using with ink pads and Perfect Pearls Mists.And, these three tins of fabulous Darkroom Door stamps by Rachel Greig. They are (L to R) Tour Eiffel DDRS049, Seaside Vol 2 DDRS054 and Seaside Vol 1DDRS053. Gorgeous aren't they? And I love the fact that they come in these slimline storage tins - my tip is to write the number of stamps in each set on the inside of the tin using a marker pen. That way, you don't risk losing any of the smaller images as you can count them up before putting them away. I'll be using these on glossy white card and colouring them with the Le Plume pens. New pens...what a treat!So, just thought I'd use my coffee break to show you some of the things I'll be demonstrating this Saturday at Dainty Supplies in Washington...Tyne & Wear, not DC! Come along early if you want to grab any of the stamps as I think they will be gone quite quickly. I'll also be using Art de Fleur sets 1 & 2 and Friendship Flowers from the same range.
Well, now to mount the stamp sheets onto Kling-On, finish my coffee and then back to preparing more samples for Saturday. I'll try to post pictures of some of my samples before the weekend. The templates are available from Anyone stocking Personal Impressions products, as are the stamps, by the way. Lindsay

Saturday, 15 January 2011

The wanderer returns

Not that I've been wandering! Quite the opposite really - I feel a little bit like a hedgehog that's reluctant to come out of hibernation! Christmas was quite a stress filled week and I've been taking some time out to catch up with some much needed sleep and a little R & R too. I've still been working away at home, with new designs and magazine projects. The picture below is of part of a set of matching pieces that I made which are in the February (current) issue of Crafts Beautiful. We'll be doing something in a similar vein on my first workshop of this year in a couple of weeks. These particular examples are made using the lovely Rachel Grieg's Darkroom Door stamps - gorgeous images. I'm looking forward to seeing Rachel again in February when she visits the UK for Stitches and workshops at Dawn's studio. Looks like the sun was shining when I took the photograph.....mmmmm, not much sign of it today. It's a very dull, dour day today.Well, it seems a little tardy now, but I hope that most of you had a lovely Christmas - I say 'most of you' because I know that a few people had a fairly depressing time. Let's all hope that this year can be a fresh beginning and that we have more positive things happening.
Apologies to those who never did receive their Christmas cards from me....that's apologies from the post office I think really! Thank you to everyone who sent cards to David and me, they were much appreciated, beautiful and it was difficult to take them down after the twelve days were up!
Well, I shall be back into the travelling about mode next weekend! I have enjoyed the novelty of being at home at the weekends, it feels quite decadent! So, I'll be up at Dainty Supplies in Washington, Tyne & Wear next Saturday. I'm going to be demonstrating stamping and stencilling with the new Ranger Perfect Pearls Mists and Crafter's Workshop stencils. I'll be using Darkroom Door stamps too, so, if you are around the area, do pop in and bag a set - they are top quality and come in snazzy tins to keep them safe and for easy storage.
The weekend after that I'll be at Card-Io in Wigan - I'll have more details next week about exactly what I'll be demonstrating. Then I'll be busy with workshops at Dawn's Studio at the beginning of February. These will be stamping (cards), making jewellery with Ranger products and an all day Art Journalling class. I've had a few email queries as to whether the workshops are still going ahead, as you will have no doubt read/heard that Dawn and her family have taken the decision to sell the shop. I can reassure you that, yes, all the advertised workshops are going to be running. Dawn will keep everyone posted as to any more classes that may be added after these. I know that many of you will be very sad, including myself, at the news, and I know that it was a difficult decision for everyone involved and that we all wish them well.
I'll try to catch up with any emails that I'm still late in replying to and the next thing I know it will be Stitches time again, so lots and lots of samples to be made. That's my favourite few days in my working year, when I get to catch up with everyone - including Tim of course...think I shall have to warn him about some of you who are going to his workshops in February!!!
So, I'll sign off for now...I feel as if I have almost forgotten how to blog after all this time! Will be back with more photos soon. Lindsay
PS Please do check out my rant blog, or go to http://www.fishfight.net/ to find out about a very important campaign, if you haven't been watching the Channel 4 programmes on the state of the fishing industry. This is one of those times when the general public can really help to get things done!