Comet Moths


This card was made for Linden Leaf’s “Moths and Butterflies” swap.  I have had a few people ask for information on how they were made so I took some pictures while making some more backgrounds with my friend Aunt Cake.

As you all have read, I like to find inspiration at junk shops.  My favorite place is the $1 table.  During the last trip, I purchased an 1900 Sears Roebuck catalog and an old musty dictionary.  The catalog is still intact because I cannot bring myself to recycle it into something else.  Yet.

I took my dictionary and started shredding.  I picked out pages that had something to do with my subject.  (at least until I ran out) Then, I took my trusty gallon of white glue and used a credit card to smear it onto some watercolor paper.  I almost always use watercolor paper because you can do anything to it and it rarely curls.  I placed the pieces of dictionary paper onto the glue and smeared it on with another thin layer of glue.  I was mindful of bubbles and lumps because I wanted to stamp over it eventually.  I also made sure to go very thin and even with the glue.

Once the glue was dry, I got out my gesso.  I applied the gesso in a similar manner as the glue.  It went on very thinly with some bare spots and some thicker spots.


Once this layer was done, I started to get a little worried, but I decided to age it a little more with some distress ink.  I used a rag to smear and rub it in (my friend Aunt Cake and I had similar results using a cotton ball).


Notice that there are already some crackles appearing in the gesso in places.  I think this is because of the glue underneath and the gesso not wanting to soak into it.  There are also some darker places where the ink got into the gesso better than the glue.  I tried to buff off as much of the extra ink as possible with my rag.  I even got my rag damp to rub the gesso and ink down in places.

Once this layer dried, I was ready to cut my cards.

Here are the ones Aunt Cake and I made for her to use:


Once my cards were cut, I stamped my moth on with some Stazon ink and added some watercolors.  I also edged the cards with some brown ink.  Finishing the edges of the card is an important step that sometimes gets forgotten.  After some input from some LTC fanatics, I decided that two moths were better than one.

The final step was to coat the cards with some Ranger crackle medium.  I intentionally put it on thicker in some areas and thinner in others.  That made areas of larger cracks and smaller cracks.  I was careful not to go over a spot more than once so I didn’t smear the watercolors with the brush.  I did ruin a few cards this way though.


The cards had a slight curl so I backed them with another piece of paper and labelled them.  Voila!


I like that no two look alike.  They also have an interesting feel to them.  I like cards that make you want to touch them.  Art is as much feel as it is visual.



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