Nov 11, 2012

Frentures- Day 20!

Bet you thought I forgot!!!!  Finally, finally, FINALLY I am returning to share the last few days of our summer trip:

We set out with the plan of visiting the Citadel this day, but in true vacation meander fashion, another great opportunity popped up while we were en route. On our way through old Quebec, we were drawn in by a town crier- like invitation to come and watch a firearms demonstration.  Who can say no to the possibility of a shoot-out at high noon?

 And so we followed this guy to a little park just off the road. He narrated as a couple of other fellows demonstrated the million steps it took to fire off a musket.

They were very disciplined, and quick! Some volunteers tried to match the experienced guys later- it was quite funny!

After the firearms demonstration we were told of a more thorough tour of the old fort armoury and artillery museum.  We learned a lot about the cannons that are all over the old town, and Avery participated in a drill to prepare one for firing. We learned it took 4 people to work each cannon, and that everyone had a specialized job. 

We learned more about life on the base- about the recruitment practices and soldiers who stayed here. About the conditions and hardships. We toured officer's quarters and Avery got to try on a French officer's uniform- a wooly and heavy contraption wore in all seasons. We learned that they never took baths because they believed that a layer of dirt and sweat and yuck acted as a barrier to disease. It reminded me of a story my Grandma told from her days as a young nurse, where some old bachelor dude would come to the hospital once a year for a bath, and his underwear would be actually stuck to his skin. Those poor nurses had to soak him and peel the layers off....

Fortunately the tour guide was not authentic in all practices. Avery was quite engaged with him, and chatted his ear off...

We spent so much time at the artillery museum that time got away from us. We made it to the citadel just after the last tour was allowed in.  That gave us the chance to head for an early supper at a restaurant we had our eye on right from the first day we were in Quebec City. Restaurant aux Anciens Canadiens is housed in one of the very oldest building in Quebec City, built in 1675. The interior is all stone and old wood and low ceilings. It is a very expensive place to eat, but is well regarded and serves traditional Quebec fare. We could go because they have a (relatively) more reasonable dinner offering before the main supper rush. 

Our meal was marvellous! So glad we could eat here. Mark had meat pie (naturally!), I ate a duck confit, and Avery had.... wait for it.... poutine!

Well fed, and pleased with our day in Quebec City:0)

Nov 5, 2012

Explore Everything

Originally published under "Tuesday with the Team"
(but reprinted here so I can gather all my stuff together)

Hello! I had so much fun with the project, and can’t wait to share it with you.  I even remembered to take photos along the way, so you can see the process and hopefully feel encouraged to jump in and try a photo canvas of your own.

Here is a list of things that I used: Canvas (any kind is fine), leftover chipboard letters, gesso, assortment of inks (I used Clearsnap’s Spritz and pigment inks. I like how ‘inky’ the spritz is, rather than watery and I like the smooshy-ness of the pigment ink.), a mask, stamps, a few embellishments and SUPER good adhesive (I used Be Creative tape.).

Ready? Here we go!

1) Lay out your chipboard letters, making sure to accommodate your photo(s). When you are happy, remove the photo and stick down your letters. The colors do not matter, just size, font and leftoverness, because….

2) …you are going to cover everything with gesso! Why? I did it for two reasons- or maybe even three.  The gesso is like a primer; it will take the color we want everything to be happily. And it covers up the colors we don’t want.  It also gives me a chance to play with texture. I wanted the letters to end up looking like they are emerging from the canvas, not sitting on the canvas.

I did use a popsicle stick to spread some of the gesso around, but also got in there with my fingers to make sure the middle of letters and edges etc were covered the way I wanted, to the depth I wanted.  Don’t worry about getting messy- you are washable!!!  It’s a brilliant design, really…

3) Then add a little texture. I used a bit of plastic wrap and dabbed it everywhere, creating a rough, kinda-brick-like texture.  You could also create textures with stamps, stencils… whatever!

You are going to have to let this bit dry.  Probably overnight.

4) Okay! All dry, and now you are ready to add your own colors.  Currently, my daughter’s favorite color is purple, so of course that was what I made sure was part of my color palette.  I first spritzed ‘River Mossy’ over the whole background, and then layered ‘Wine Berry’ on top using the brick stencil.

5) Now we are having fun!!!  Wait for the spritz to dry. It won’t be long, I promise.  Add some more interest to the background by layering different color spots on with a stylus and foam tip applicator. I chose pigment inks for this job because they take a while to dry, giving you a chance to move it around, blend colors together and generally get it arranged to your satisfaction. Stamp some other images over top too!

I inked on top of one of the chipboard words to make it stand out for the title, then added some letter stickers to finish the title. The swirly stamp is from Unity.

6)  The background is done!  All you have to do is add your photo and embellishments. And then hang it:0)

The flowers and crystal swirl are from Prima, and the mosaic tiles are from Harmonie. I used a Fiskars border punch too.