AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

(affiliate links are used in this post. When you click on them and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog!)

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)

Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of the post to qualify for my monthly giveaway!

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!

Kick-start Your Creativity

Subscribe for for exclusive specials, updates and free tutorials & sketches

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!

Get everything you need to make this project!

The supply list is right here! Just click a product to get started. The links I'm sharing are Affiliate Links, meaning that I will receive a small commission on your sale, at no additional cost to you.
This helps keep the lights on and the inspiration flowing here at Pixel Maven's Retreat!

The Latest...

  • FREEBIES!!! There's no catch - check out my Freebies Page for all sorts of downloadable resources to help take your crafting up a notch!
  • Need a Color Coordinator to inspire color choices for your projects? Get yours today! 2019-20 Coordinators are NOW SHIPPING!
    "I love this! I have a hard time getting color combos together and this takes all the guess work out so I can start creating right away! I think every stamper should have one thank you for this amazing product." - Sandra

Here's some other projects you'll like!

 

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Floral cards are great for any occasion.
I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category.

AECP: Another Floral Card for Any Occasion

Altenew Educator Certification Program Participant Badge

This is the “best for last”!

I saved this final design from my Altenew Educator Level 3 Final because it is my FA-VO-RITE! The watercolor panel is oodles of fun to make and will shock you with how amazing it can turn out. The rest is just so stupid simple, but absolutely stunning. You’re going to love this…

(affiliate links are used in this post. When you click on them and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog!)

My Project

It seems like everyone’s on the watercolor bandwagon these days. Yup, I am too. It’s really no wonder when there’s so many cool things you can do with water, ink and paper. It’s not just about creating painted scenes, but amazing backgrounds (like you saw on Friday) and elements that really add to a design. Today’s project showcases a watery way to create amazing swirling backgrounds. You can apply any color combo that tickles your fancy — I just happened to stick to the same color palette so the card suite would have a cohesive look.

The Technique & Design

The background panel is another one of those simple, but WOW techniques. It’s a combination of hot press watercolor card, lots and lots and lots of water, ink pad re-inkers, and more water. Hot press watercolor paper is key to the technique as it will accept ridiculous amounts of water. My panel literally ended up like a soaked paper towel, dripping with inky water, but it dried amazingly and looks beyond gorgeous behind the simple, white Doodled Lace cover die.

Have you noticed a theme of the last three posts? I used the Sentiment Strips stamp set in all three, and the card designs were such that you could easily swap out sentiments for any need. Yes – even this bright beauty could be used for a sympathy card. It is elegant and simple – perfect for any occasion.

Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of the post to qualify for my monthly giveaway!

Project Tutorial Video

I’ve got another full-length process video for this one. Stop back tomorrow and I’ll have some of the techniques broken out into smaller Crafter’s Toolbox vids for you to reference for other projects.

All good things…

Yes, this journey has come to an end. Tomorrow I’ll have a wrap-up post sharing pics from the live event I hosted on Friday morning. It was great fun, and I didn’t get nearly enough pictures, but when you’re busy teaching, it’s hard to remember to snap photos… I did manage to get photos of all the participants finished cards – you will be impressed! One was even a NEW crafter!

Don’t Forget about my monthly GIVEAWAY!

Every month, I give away a sweet surprise to one lucky commenter. So, don’t forget to leave a COMMENT on today’s post to enter!

If you loved today’s project, I’d love to know! The blogosphere can be a lonely place, so please don’t lurk! Leave a quick word or two to tell me you were here!

Kick-start Your Creativity

Subscribe for for exclusive specials, updates and free tutorials & sketches

Share and Inspire Someone Today!

Get everything you need to make this project!

The supply list is right here! Just click a product to get started. The links I'm sharing are Affiliate Links, meaning that I will receive a small commission on your sale, at no additional cost to you.
This helps keep the lights on and the inspiration flowing here at Pixel Maven's Retreat!

The Latest...

  • FREEBIES!!! There's no catch - check out my Freebies Page for all sorts of downloadable resources to help take your crafting up a notch!
  • Need a Color Coordinator to inspire color choices for your projects? Get yours today! 2019-20 Coordinators are NOW SHIPPING!
    "I love this! I have a hard time getting color combos together and this takes all the guess work out so I can start creating right away! I think every stamper should have one thank you for this amazing product." - Sandra

Here's some other projects you'll like!

 

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Floral cards are great for any occasion.
I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category.

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Altenew Educator Certification Program Participant Badge

Floral cards are great for any occasion

I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category. Of course, it sometimes depends on your frame of mind when creating, and the colors selected, but more often than not, a sentiment can be swapped out for another very easily. That’s today’s card!

(affiliate links are used in this post. When you click on them and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog!)

CAS with color

There’s a lovely amount of whitespace on this design, which really qualifies it as “CAS”. Over time, I’m learning how to scale back some of my design to keep it more clean and less over-worked. Most times, less is more! 

The Technique & Design

This is the third card that we created at my Altenew Educator Level 3 Final. It prominently features a Build-a-flower stamp set – something that Altenew is known for. I specifically chose the Painted Flowers set because it is very forgiving. The individual images don’t need to be lined up perfectly to create a great look – unlike some of the other build-a-flower sets. I knew that my class attendees would not be familiar with this kind of stamping, but I wanted to introduce them to the style, and feel successful at the same time. Of course, I had a trick up my sleeve to make it even easier — check out the video to see what I did!

Can you imagine this design without the pink “cloud”? The flowers would look like they were floating, don’t you think? Adding the light swirl of color behind the arrangement adds a grounding element that works every time!

And, oh, what about that sentiment? Swap it out with any of 25 sentiments from the Sentiment Strips stamp set! They’re all the same height, so a 1/4″ strip works for every one. It covers sentiments from birthday to sympathy, thinking of you and even get well! This is a must-have set for your collection!

Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of the post to qualify for my monthly giveaway!

Project Tutorial Video

I’ve got a full-length process tutorial for you today. Enjoy, & follow along to create your own!

This is nearly the end!

Or is it? These final projects are the end of my journey to Altenew Certification. But, it’s also the beginning of a wonderful relationship with this amazing company! Tomorrow’s post will feature the final card from my Level 3 Final. Then, on Tuesday, I’ll post a final wrap-up with pictures from the event and the cards that the attendees made! You won’t want to miss it!

Don’t Forget about my monthly GIVEAWAY!

Every month, I give away a sweet surprise to one lucky commenter. So, don’t forget to leave a COMMENT on today’s post to enter!

If you loved today’s project, I’d love to know! The blogosphere can be a lonely place, so please don’t lurk! Leave a quick word or two to tell me you were here!

Kick-start Your Creativity

Subscribe for for exclusive specials, updates and free tutorials & sketches

Share and Inspire Someone Today!

Get everything you need to make this project!

The supply list is right here! Just click a product to get started. The links I'm sharing are Affiliate Links, meaning that I will receive a small commission on your sale, at no additional cost to you.
This helps keep the lights on and the inspiration flowing here at Pixel Maven's Retreat!

The Latest...

  • FREEBIES!!! There's no catch - check out my Freebies Page for all sorts of downloadable resources to help take your crafting up a notch!
  • Need a Color Coordinator to inspire color choices for your projects? Get yours today! 2019-20 Coordinators are NOW SHIPPING!
    "I love this! I have a hard time getting color combos together and this takes all the guess work out so I can start creating right away! I think every stamper should have one thank you for this amazing product." - Sandra

Here's some other projects you'll like!

 

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Floral cards are great for any occasion.
I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category.

Festive Friday: 2-for-1 Card Duo

Play along at the Festive Friday Challenge. DT members provide written or video instructions for their projects each challenge! Find us @festivefridaychallenge or festivefridaychallenge.com. New challenges every other Friday! #cardchallenge

Welcome back for another Festive Friday!

I’m so excited because not only is today a new Festive Friday challenge, but it’s also my Altenew Educator Level 3 final! This morning, I’m conducting a local class here at my home, and hosting the Altenew Educator coordinators via video conferencing. My projects for today are two of the cards that the class will be making! So, gather some supplies and make them along with us!

(affiliate links are used in this post. When you click on them and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog!)

So, before we get to the process video, let’s take a look at the challenge – I know you want to play along!

Looking for ideas – here’s a few:

  • Come up with something heartfelt and mushy to send to your parents. You know they love that stuff!
  • Try out a new watercolor technique you’ve been eyeballing. I have a great one for you today!
  • CASE one of the DT projects and add your own twist to our designs. Of course, if you blog about it, we would love for you to mention the Designer as your inspiration for your project. Here’s links to all of the Designers:

Here’s my take:

Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of the post to qualify for my monthly giveaway!

Stamps and Paper and Inks … Oh, My!

(Affiliate shopping links are listed at the end of the post)

Stamps: Sentiment Strips (Altenew)
Paper: 2 – 8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ – Solar White 110lb (Neenah), 5″ x 7″ 140lb cold press watercolor card (Strathmore), Scrap of Warm Sunshine CS (Altenew)
Inks: Nocturne Versafine Clair( Tsukineko), Cotton Candy, Rubellite, Citrus Burst, Warm Sunshine (Altenew)
Accessories: Black Soot DIstress Stain Spray (Ranger)
Other: Big Shot (Sizzix), Mega Hello die (Altenew), Stitched Rectangle dies (Lawn Fawn), Wendy Vecchi STAY-tion, Blending Tool (Ranger), Flowing Drops Stencil (Altenew), 

Now it’s your turn to link up!

Now that you’re all inspired, what will you create? The clock is ticking away for #FF0038 and we want to see your design. Link up your project over at Festive Friday and you might just be named a Festive Fave!

Don’t Forget about my monthly GIVEAWAY!

Every month, I give away a sweet surprise to one lucky commenter. So, don’t forget to leave a COMMENT on today’s post to enter!

If you loved today’s project, I’d love to know! The blogosphere can be a lonely place, so please don’t lurk! Leave a quick word or two to tell me you were here!

Kick-start Your Creativity

Subscribe for for exclusive specials, updates and free tutorials & sketches

Share and Inspire Someone Today!

Get everything you need to make this project!

The supply list is right here! Just click a product to get started. The links I'm sharing are Affiliate Links, meaning that I will receive a small commission on your sale, at no additional cost to you.
This helps keep the lights on and the inspiration flowing here at Pixel Maven's Retreat!

The Latest...

  • FREEBIES!!! There's no catch - check out my Freebies Page for all sorts of downloadable resources to help take your crafting up a notch!
  • Need a Color Coordinator to inspire color choices for your projects? Get yours today! 2019-20 Coordinators are NOW SHIPPING!
    "I love this! I have a hard time getting color combos together and this takes all the guess work out so I can start creating right away! I think every stamper should have one thank you for this amazing product." - Sandra

Here's some other projects you'll like!

 

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Floral cards are great for any occasion.
I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category.

AECP: Can’t Stop with the Stencils

Altenew Educator Certification Program Participant Badge

Yes – seriously, another stencil technique

Every time I see a new stencil now, I want to buy it. They are so versatile and absolutely fun, fun, fun to experiment with! My latest crush is the Flowing Drops stencil from Altenew. Let’s check out the results of my last Altenew Educator class!

(affiliate links are used in this post. When you click on them and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting my blog!)

Class #5: Watercolor Basics & Beyond

This is my last class for my Altenew Level 3 certification! I really loved taking a class with Jen Rzasa again. She’s got such a great design eye, and shares fantastic techniques that are easy to achieve. This class focused on using the 36 Pan Set of watercolors that coordinates with other Altenew colors. 

My Project

I just can’t get enough of stencils! I honed in on a technique right away that was very similar to one I’d shared with you previously. It got me having fun with blending watercolors in a very easy way!

The Technique & Design

I feel like I’m coming full circle here since this technique is so closely related to the very first project I shared for my Educator certification! If you don’t remember the technique, be sure to check out the post. In order to achieve the background, instead of smooshing the stencil into distress ink, I created a watercolor panel using the 36 Pan Set and Hot Press watercolor paper. Hot Press paper will take oodles of water, so it’s very easy to create these loose blends. Then, I laid the stencil into the super watery panel and let it dry. The water liked to pool around the edges and into the spaces.

This technique is a definite waiting game as the panel needs to dry. You can do some heat setting, but need to be careful to not melt your stencil! 

To make the results of the panel stand out even more, I added some white gouache to the stencil and overlaid it to make those paths lighter. Then, I outlined the drops with a Sakura White Gel Pen, and added in depth with some graphite pencil shading.

Don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of the post to qualify for my monthly giveaway!

Crafter’s Toolbox Video

The stencil and watercolor technique is explained further in the Altenew Academy class. It’s a great one, so I suggest you add it to your watch-list. Instead, for today’s video, I thought I would share how I added in the extra depth to the droplets using graphite pencils.

One journey ends, another begins…

I have truly treasured this journey through the Altenew Educator Certification Program. I have learned new techniques, refined old techniques and really pushed my creative skills over the last four months. I’m really excited about conducting a live class again as it’s been about a year since my last one. I can’t wait to introduce my friends to these amazing products and share with them some fun new techniques they can add to their projects!

Don’t Forget about my monthly GIVEAWAY!

Every month, I give away a sweet surprise to one lucky commenter. So, don’t forget to leave a COMMENT on today’s post to enter!

If you loved today’s project, I’d love to know! The blogosphere can be a lonely place, so please don’t lurk! Leave a quick word or two to tell me you were here!

Kick-start Your Creativity

Subscribe for for exclusive specials, updates and free tutorials & sketches

Share and Inspire Someone Today!

Get everything you need to make this project!

The supply list is right here! Just click a product to get started. The links I'm sharing are Affiliate Links, meaning that I will receive a small commission on your sale, at no additional cost to you.
This helps keep the lights on and the inspiration flowing here at Pixel Maven's Retreat!

The Latest...

  • FREEBIES!!! There's no catch - check out my Freebies Page for all sorts of downloadable resources to help take your crafting up a notch!
  • Need a Color Coordinator to inspire color choices for your projects? Get yours today! 2019-20 Coordinators are NOW SHIPPING!
    "I love this! I have a hard time getting color combos together and this takes all the guess work out so I can start creating right away! I think every stamper should have one thank you for this amazing product." - Sandra

Here's some other projects you'll like!

 

AECP: Level 3 Final – a Live Class

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!

AECP: A Floral Card for Any Occasion

Floral cards are great for any occasion.
I love it when I can craft up a design that will accommodate any sentiment. I find that lots of floral designs fit that category.