8 Embossing a Digital Stamp!

Did you ever want to emboss a digital stamp, but didn't know how?  Well, now you can!!  This is a fun and great technique if you've ever wanted to emboss a digital stamp!  Here is my finished card which has been donated to the 2012 St. Jude children's card drive!  Tiffany Doodles was a proud sponsor for the second year in a row!

I started off in Photoshop where I bring in all my digital stamps that I want to use in my layout.  I first create a document that is 5.5" wide by 4" tall and 300dpi.  I start this way b/c I want to see my actual card size.  That way when I bring in my stamps I can scale them to the size I want in relation to the size of my card!  For my card I used 1 of the patched hearts, the needle, and the little stitches from the Patched Hearts digital stamp set!  I layered the stamps and rotated the stitches around until I thought it looked cool! For this card, it didn't really matter where the heart is placed on the document b/c I'm going to use a spellbinders die to cut it out anyway.
Photoshop Tip 1: to get all the images you want onto 1 document.  Simply open them all up.  Then use your 'move' tool to drag them one by one onto your new working document.
Photoshop Tip 2: to rotate the layer you're on hit [Ctrl+T], then turn it how you like and hit enter. 
Photoshop Tip 3: to bring one layer in front or behind the other simple drag them around on your layers palette.

Before I printed my layout, I prepared my paper.  I used Neenah #80 Classic Crest.  Gesso and a sponge brush!  This gesso technique is fabulous for many reasons!  #1 It will let you emboss your printer ink like a dream! (you'll see below!)  #2 It gives you texture!  For this card I wanted to lay my gesso on in a neat and tidy horizontal fine line pattern.  So I painted on my gesso back and forth all around the area of my paper where I knew my heart was going to print out.  After I came back from rinsing out my sponge brush my paper was already dry.
Also, at this step (painting on your gesso) you can choose several options for texture!  You could swish your gesso around kinda sloppily or lay it down whatever way suits you!  Now, at this point (after it dries) you can choose to be done with your texture, or you can sand it down, however much as you like.  You can even sand it down paper smooth!!  It's up to you!  I choose to keep my horizontal line patten without sanding! (at least for this card anyway!)
Texture medium note: Gesso works great for this, but Matte Gel Medium also works like a DREAM!

Once your paper is dry insert it into your printer (be sure it is turned the right way so that your digi prints on your painted area).  Get your embossing powder ready!  I find that I like the really fine powder!  Set your printer quality to "best photo" or the equivalent quality on your printer.  Using this setting lays down the most amount of ink onto your paper!  This helps your image stay wetter a little longer when coming out of the printer, thus giving you time to get it covered in powder (quickly)!
Now, go press your print button and get READY!  You must be quick!

As soon as your paper is out - pour on the powder!  (An additional tip is to cut the bottom half off of your paper so that it comes out even quicker!)  Make sure your whole image is covered, then go shake it off and heat set as usual!

Now look how beautifully that embossed!  Looks as good as if this was a rubber stamp!  Impressive!  Plus you can see the texture of my gesso!!

Next I die cut my image to get ready for the card!  You will notice that your paper will tend to curl due to the heating process, but I'm not too worried about it b/c I intent to sew it down to my card!  You can use scotch tape or blue painters tape to tape your die cut to your paper so that it stays in place and doesn't move around and mess things up!

I picked out some paper from Basic Gray's Lemonade pack!

This time I decided to use my watercolor pencils instead of copics! What a fun way to color my digi on this cool texture! I used my red pencil to lay on a little bit of color in the bottom of the heart.  I wanted go from dark to light so I only colored half.

I dipped my brush in water and started painting the red, I pulled it up into the lighter area to cover this patch.

I used this same process to color the rest of my patches!

I thought my heart needed a little edge for dimension so I used my turquoise pencil to color around the entire edge of the heart.  I used a light green pencil and scratched it around in only a few places.  Being that these pencils are actual watercolor paint the blend crazy good!

So I painted around my heart to get this really cool blue/green edge!  Love love love this effect, plus with the texture from my gesso - too fun!!   For those of you who don't know, I paint too and when I do small projects I use a bottle cap for my water and a little cotton cloth for my brush!  You can see some of my watercolor and acrylic painting on my personal blog here if you are interested.

Next, i assembled my card!  I printed the sentiment (also from the Patched Hearts set) I recolored it in Photoshop and we'll have a tutorial for how to do that coming soon!  I punched all my holes for sewing with a large push pin!

Then I sewed the running stitch in red around my heart.  I did the zig zag stitch in turquoise where my two papers met.  And I did the back stitch around my sentiment as well.

And here it is, my finished card!  Oh, I thought the corner needed a little something extra so I used my red stickles to add some curly q's to the corner!

Here's a closeup of it to see the cool texture and painting!
I'm glad to know that this card might brighten the day of a child that is stuck in a hospital.  I hope you enjoyed my digital stamp embossing tutorial!  If you did, tell me on a comment!! More coming soon!

Edited to add: Here is another link to some camera digis I've embossed.  On this set I sanded til the paper was smooth!


donna mikasa said...

Thanks for sharing such a cool technique! I've heard of embossing digital images before, but never tried it. Your tutorial is awesome!

Anonymous said...

Awesome tutorial. Thank you so much. I always wondered how to do this, and now I can try.
Thanks again.


Cheryl said...

This is a great tutorial! I never used gesso or matte medium before. (I have embossed digis using glossy paper). I love your technique better. I think I need a trip to Hobby Lobby to get some gesso.

FrancineB said...

Fabulous tutorial! This is a technique I will definitely try. Thanks so much for posting the instructions.

Terri said...

Great idea! Can't wait to try it. Please keep your ideas coming.

Jo M said...

I always wondered how to emboss digital images! Thank you for your clear tutorial.
How do you stop the embossing powder getting into your printer though . . . .

Kris said...

Thanks for the great tutorial, will try this for sure.may

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this tutorial. I'm starting to really like using digis, but was sad I couldn't emboss them. Now I can!

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