The challenge is to use sponging or brayering.
I decided to try an abstract brayered background, with acrylic paint. One of those techniques where you don't know quite how it'll turn out! A bit of a gamble maybe but I had time to redo it if needed! And as I need a lot more Christmas cards made quickly, I had a plan for another sponged card up my sleeve.
On a Clarity stencil card base, I used primary yellow, cherry red, bright green, forest green and cobalt blue paint, walking the brayer across the card.
It's also a case of knowing when to stop - although I kept going on this and it got better, softer and more luminous.
For a focal point, I used a reindeer cut with a Tattered Lace die. This is one of my favourites, I think it's very striking. I chose black glitter card, to give a dramatic contrast to the background.
I tried it on the background in different areas and orientations until I found the section I wanted to use. My circle dies weren't big enough for the piece I wanted to cut, so I fell back on my Fiskars cutting system.
The next step was is add some sponged hills to ground the reindeer and give him something to stand on. I tore copier paper to create a mask, then applied distress ink with a sponge - pine needles and aged mahogany, with touches of chipped sapphire.
To mount, I cut a larger circle from self adhesive black encapsulated glitter card. The reindeer die wouldn't cut this, it was too plastic and just stretched, but the Fiskars system, which has a blade, cut it fine.
The circle then went onto a slightly larger white square, and I edged it in black with a sharpie pen. I tried to photograph it, but the combination of white and reflective black in artificial lights was too much for my camera/photography skills!
I attached the reindeer to the brayered background with PVA, then mounted the circle into the glitter circle with foam tape.
At this point I felt that the hills looked a bit wishy washy compared to the reindeer, so I "reinforced" the front one with black soot distress ink.
As a finishing touch, I used the black glitter swirls that came out of the reindeer die in the corners. This meant cutting another reindeer out, which went into the stash but only briefly - see the next post after this one!