AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

Jul 16, 2019Project Roundup9 comments

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

Jul 16, 2019Project Roundup9 comments

Altenew Educator Certification Program Participant Badge

This is IT!

Strap in, people! This post is LOOONNGG and filled with lots of pics. We’re taking a look into Friday’s Altenew Educator Level 3 Final Challenge – my live class, and it was a good one! Stick around to the end, because I have something for YOU!

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I’m going to start off by saying that Friday could have been a huge disaster! As it was, I’ve been mulling over the session and realized that because I was using a webcam on a usb cord, I could have been moving it around a bit more so the Altenew peeps could see what was going on at different stations. Ugh. Hindsight, am I right? 

Well, the potential disaster came in on Thursday evening just before bed when my stomach decided to tell me that I ate something bad in the last two days and that I was going to spend the night with some mild food poisoning. OH, HELL NO! So, I spent most of the night awake and into the morning working on a BRAT (banana, rice, applesauce & toast) diet, hoping that nothing would get in the way of my class, scheduled for 10 AM. TMI? Maybe, but, it’s the truth…

Fortunately, I had the room all set up and ready to go well before the “episode”, so I just had to worry about making it through the 2 hours, and I did!

Room Setup

I’m fortunate to have a huge basement space adjacent to my craft room. It’s our “game room” and serves to show movies, play pool and as my workout space in the mornings. It also is perfect for craft classes! I add some thick MDF over the pool table and a tablecloth (black, of course, to hide any ink!) and voila, it’s a class space! I’ve taught classes here for the last 4-5 years. Though, I haven’t taught a class since last fall as my regular attendees needed a little break. Anyway, here’s a bit of the setup…

I have a cabinet in the room where I store student supplies. It serves as the Big Shot and extra supply station during class. It’s helpful to have this separate setup as using the Big Shot can make a table shake, and can cause mess-ups in stamping. Besides, if I have the space, why not use it?!

The table was set up for each participant with the items we’d need for the first part of the class. Because we were doing some watercolor techniques, we worked on those panels first, then went into stamping, then the actual card assembly. Sometimes you have to switch things up to make a class flow better. You can’t always go one card at a time from beginning to end and expect time to work on your side. So, each station had a paint brush and water container, an Altenew medium palette and a piece of teflon sheet (something you’d use for baking, but that works great for watercolor techniques and keeping water from soaking in everywhere). There was also a paper grid sheet (some leftover Stampin’ Up! stuff – can’t wait to get those new Altenew silicone stamp mats though!) a towel to wipe up messes and the Inspirefile PDF for reference and for participants to take home!

My workstation had all of my supplies as well as the stamps, dies and stencils we’d be using as well as some samples so the participants could see what we’d be doing before we did it. 

Let the Class Begin!

All of that was set up on Thursday (which we know was a good thing for more than one reason!). It really makes the event pretty stress-free. Knowing I have everything in place means I can just focus on the teaching. Besides, with my craft room right there, I can always just grab something if I forget it. 

I got hooked up with Virginia, Erum and Nicole just after 9:30 and we were ready to rock-n-roll. Class attendees rolled in shortly thereafter, with one last minute cancellation as she’d got “Grandkid Duty” at the last minute. Hey – life happens! So, with three instead of four, we pressed on with the class.

2 hours, gone in a flash…

I don’t have many pictures of the event itself as I was absorbed with teaching. That happens a lot…. Virginia had one that she posted on IG, and I grabbed it to put in my AECP story. Needless to say, things went smoothly. I had two attendees who were previous class members, and one attendee new to stamping and papercrafting. To quote Peggy “I am not creative”. HA! We would show her!!

We started off with the two watercolor panels. I demonstrated the hot press wash panel and then the ladies got started. They questioned how well their creations would turn out, but I assured them that when dry, they would be amazed (and they were!).

We moved onto the second watercolor panel – the cold press stencil smoosh one. They really enjoyed watching the colors mix, and Peggy, the “non-creative” started going outside the box, coming up with a stunning result!

After that, we cleaned up our watercolor supplies and moved onto stamping and setting up the card bases.

At this point, I started breaking up tasks so that the supplies could be utilized efficiently. One participant worked on stamping flowers, while another worked on background blending and spatter, while the last worked on sentiment stamping. This way, all of the supplies were in use and nobody was waiting for something to come around. Since there were only three, they basically rotated the three phases and all ended up finishing about the same time.

By that time, the watercolor panels were dry and we were able to complete the four cards.

Here’s some pics from the event, and the attendees’ results! (Click on an image to open the slide show)

Project Happy Mail
Send me a card and get one of my creations in return (blank for you to use).
All received cards are donated! Click for details.

And now, the projects…

If you followed along on Friday, Sunday and Monday – you saw all four projects in detail, along with the process videos. Today, I’ll summarize and share not only the process videos, but Crafter’s Toolbox videos that break down specific techniques.

1&2. 2-from-1 Card Duo

These cards feature a watercolor & stencil smoosh technique. The class attendees selected any stencil they wanted, so we ended up with different looks. It’s nice to allow participants an opportunity to add their own personal flair to a project. We got two cards from one watercolor panel by using the Mega Hello die and utilizing both the positive and negative parts of the diecut. Waste not, want not! LOL!

See the original blog post here.

The first Crafter’s Toolbox video details creating a watercolor & stencil smoosh image. There are all sorts of watercolor tools you can use – the 36 Pan set, Watercolor Brush Markers, Reinkers, or in this case, we used the Mini Ink Cubes.

The second Crafter’s Toolbox video shows how I use Sizzix Sticky Grid Sheets in my stamp positioner, and how easy it makes stamping sentiments on 1/4″ strips!

2. A Floral Card for Any Occasion

This design doesn’t have any watercolor in it 🙁 But, it fits into the card suite because of the color scheme and the use of the Sentiment Strips stamp set. I wanted an opportunity to introduce the Build-a-flower style that Altenew is known for, and I thought that Painted Flowers was one of the most forgiving sets to start with.

See the original blog post here.

The Crafter’s Toolbox video for this card features the alignment technique I created to make it easy for the class to find success in stamping the many flower layers with accuracy, and without pulling their hair out! Out of the whole day, I think Erum and Virginia were most impressed with this technique. I explored it a bit more after the class to see how I could get it to work with larger images, and surprise, surprise! I figured it out 😀

3. Another Floral Card for Any Occasion

This is the last design – It features an amazing hot press watercolor wash background. The ladies were doubtful at first, but once dry, the panels were just stunning! Of course, when you add the Doodled Lace cover die and a simple sentiment strip, the finished card is just perfection.

See the original blog post here.

The Crafter’s Toolbox video details how to create a hot press watercolor background. Like the stencil technique, you can use any dye ink medium, but we used reinkers.

And that’s a WRAP!

This day seemed pretty far away, six months ago! But, it feels like I just blinked and the time and all the projects had passed. Though I’ve been crafting for a very long time and cardmaking for over a decade, this journey helped me to refine style and technique in a very short time. 

The Altenew Educator Coordinators – Erum and Virginia are amazing and supportive. I could really tell that they genuinely cared about my work and were always ready to give me just the right feedback to help me improve along the way. Not only are they great cheerleaders, they’re great artists too!

If you want to improve your skills the Altenew Academy classes are definitely worth a look! If you want to go next level, consider applying for the Educator Program today!

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And now a gift for you!

If you remember way back to the beginning of the post, I said I’d have something for YOU. If you noticed the attendees place settings, you saw an INSPIREFILE. Well, the latest one is here, and I’ve got it right here for you. Usually only my Newsletter Subscribers get first crack at the e-magazine, but to celebrate, I have it here for everyone!

Oh, and I also have a NEW Inspirefile Archive page set up with the past files (since I started the new magazine format) so you can grab the previous files for oodles of inspiration!

Thank you for joining me on this journey! I can’t wait to see what adventures await next!!

Share and Inspire Someone Today! 

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AECP: Level 3 Final - a Live Class