So let me tell you about my project! About a few weeks ago, Becky from AMACO emailed me telling me that she saw on my blog that I like to work with metal and asked me if I would like try their line of metals called ArtEmboss. Well, that was an obvious answer--of course I would!! So she sent me 4 different kinds.
Each handy tube comes with its own embossing tool and pattern sheet (I'll tell you about those later) and the sheets are 9 1/4" x 12". This was great for me, because the only metal I've worked with is aluminum. I got to work with brass, copper, pewter, and aluminum. My overall favorite was the copper. It's easy to work with, very durable (no tearing with the stylus), and when you put black paint on it and wipe it back off, it ends up with a wonderful result. But the pewter was my favorite to work with by far. It's very soft for a metal and flexible which makes it very easy to do whatever you want to it, and even though it's soft, it's very durable. My least favorite was the brass. It seems stiffer, and it was harder to adhere to my surface. I always use heavy gel medium for my glue for metal, but I had to get out my other all time favorite glue for the brass. The name of this glue is called The Ultimate Glue (LOVE it). And another thing that has me very excited about ArtEmboss metal is that there are also 7 other different colors available, and I most definitely see these in my future. Make sure you check out the AMACO website for more info.
Becky sent me a very ample supply of metal, so I decided to make 2 pieces of art from it. This gave me an opportunity to try different techniques that I've never tried before, so this was a great learning experience for me also. So here's basically everything that I used for my metal projects:
Starting from the left--this is the pattern sheet and embossing tool that comes with each tube of metal. The tool is wooden and pointed on one side and flat for smoothing out the metal on the other side. And this is now my favorite embossing tool to use--it's not as sharp as a stylus so it's easier on the metal. Also in the photo are stamps, Staz on ink pad (that's the only kind that will work), punches (the metal punches just like any paper--awesome!), hard plastic embossing plates, plastic stencils, rub ons, acrylic paints, and assorted embossing tools (love that hammer). Also, below the pattern sheet you'll see that white square--that's EcoArtBoard . I love this stuff--I think it might be made from MDF (just like wood). This one was 2" x 2" but they come in assorted small sizes and even a convenient ATC size. You can find it here. I used these to adhere my metal pieces to and I'll show you what I mean.
So for the first piece, I decided to make a sampler using the 2 x 2 pieces (EcoArtBoard). A great way to start out if you've never worked with metal before. And remember, you can use regular scissors to cut it with. I also wanted to mention that when you emboss metal, it works best with padding underneath. I use an old mouse pad--works great.
I used my stamps with Staz on ink for both of these. The one on the left is aluminum with copper corners, and the one on the right is the brass, and I used the pattern sheet for the border. All you have to do is tape down the metal (with painters tape), and also the pattern sheet on top of it. And then just trace the pattern with your embossing tool onto the metal. It will leave an imprint. Then just take your embossing tool and go over the imprinted metal on both sides to make the pattern deeper.
On these two I used my heart punches. I've never used punches on metal before, and what was I waiting for?! I'm telling you, if you know how to use a paper punch, then you can do this. On the top one, which was copper, I collaged the lady on the Eco board (Old postage stamp--actually) and glued the metal over the image, and I also rubbed a little aqua/blue paint over the copper (I was going for the patina look on this one). I used the pattern sheet from AMACO again. And on the bottom one, I did the same thing with scrapbook paper, and put pewter over it and this was embossed with the embossing plate mold. And I want to mention again that I adhered all of the pieces (with a little help from my friend The Ultimate Glue for the brass) with heavy gel medium.