Thursday, October 24, 2013

Playful Musings: Halloween Design Fun

Understanding basic design terms and element theory, helps one layout their design and how to use color.

You can stamp into Embossing Paste!  Let set up about 10-15 minutes (test your area, humidity or dryness of weather can affect drying times!  Experiment to see how long it takes.).  You don't want the paste all the way dry but you don't want it wet.  A stamp can be impressed into the paste and leave an impression without the paste leaving residue on the stamp.

I not only sprayed the film viewer piece, but used the stem from the sprayer to add splats of paint.  This is from Lindsey's Stamp Gang and is a part of your KIT!!!

The moldable film was used with a die cut machine to cut out the bat.  If you wanted to curl the wings, zap it with a stamping heat tool and bend up or down the wing edges.

Design Terms

When designing a layout, I have a basic idea but as I work, things change according to how I want to add colors or following basic ideals of design elements.

Here is my basic layout.  You can see while it is nice, it is lacking something or looks unfinished.

Adding Contrast to layout
Adding splats of green color to film viewer, suddenly adds contrast and dimension to the area.  The viewer no longer looks flat.

The Embossing Paste adds contrast with texture, also adding texture.

Adding dimensional items to flat, also adds contrast.

Bright yellow web adds contrast next to a more muted color.

Repetition of colors or textures, elements, adds interest to the piece.  Mostly they say as rule of thumb is "odds" is more pleasing to the eye.  Different elements placed to create an odd number can work, or an even number such as 2 can work if there is contrast in size or color so elements do not get lost in the art.

Creating a number of 5, and drawing the eye around the layout is the bat, witch sign, cardstock web, little boy, and pumpkin.  While the boy is the focal point, you want other elements to carry your eye around the layout.  The film view is actually 1 which is odd (try not to have too many 1 element unless it adds texture or contrast) but it also makes 3 with the silver web charm and the bottle hanging down.

As far as colors go...The Gelli printed background (See September LTD Kit), has yellow, orange and green.  Different shades of orange was used for repetition, purple was added a couple places as repetition and contrast, and the green.

Bridging connects elements of the layout together.  This way there is balance and elements are not just floating.  If there are 2 elements together, a 3rd (the bridge) can tie them together.

The boy collage piece is a bridge for the Gelli print and the Embossing Paste texture.  The chipboard web further bridges the collage element to the Gelli print.  The collage image bridges the film viewer.  The  witch sign and bat is also a bridge.

Here is the October kit packed with so many goodies to play with.  So many, you can do several mixed media art pieces!  Check my October 9th post to see how I used the art parts, stencil, along with the the embossing paste, and embossing powder!!!

Knowing and understanding basic design terms can change the way you create your art.  You no longer have a lost feeling - what goes where??  What colors do I use???  Why does my art look off-balanced?

To read about more design terms and about color theory, check out my book, Creative Art Concepts for Papercrafts, published by C&T Publishing (Amazon and other sources too.).

After some creating and practicing, the ideals of design will come second nature to you!  The ideals/terms come in handy as a reference when you are stumped or struggling with what you want to create.

Frog Dog Studio Kits take the worry out of creating because all the products inside are matched to go together or for the individualist, can be used separately.  Remember, a kit from the month(s) before can be used in a current kit :-D  I love that!  Because of the orange and fluorescent colors, I was able to use ink, and other items from the regular September kit.

Cre8tively Yours - Lea 


  1. Lovely piece Lea, and thanks for the tips - I'm always having those moments where I don't know what I need to do to "finish" something, even though I might be happy with the textures, elements and so on it just doesn't sing to me - I think you've put your finger on the problem for me so thanks for sharing your expertise! :o)