I am really enjoying working with alcohol inks on photo paper right now. I just taught a class where we worked on photo paper and the effects are quite different to those I get on watercolour paper. I am using glossy photo paper from Costco and for stamping on these cards, archival inks. I have since switched to StazOn inks because they dry more quickly and slip less on the glossy surface.
These two cards feature a Darkroom Door stamp of the quintessential Australian homestead from days gone by. I chose colours that remind me of the often dry summer landscape and black bases to match the ink.
I used the swipe method to apply alcohol ink to the photo paper, dropping colours onto an impermeable craft mat, diluting them with rubbing alcohol then swiping my panel through the ink several times to cover the area.
Stamps: Homestead (Darkroom Door)
Inks: Jet black archival ink & sunshine yellow, willow, ginger, stonewashed, slate grey alcohol inks (Ranger)
Papers: glossy photo paper (Kirkland from Costco), Neenah epic black cardstock, brown cardstock
Tools: craft mat
I have combined a new die, ‘bamboo cut out’ with an alcohol ink background to create this simple design. As the name of the die suggests, the die cuts out all the little pieces to make up some stalks of bamboo. The easiest way to make this card would have been to cut the bamboo out of the alcohol ink panel to reveal the black background behind and I would suggest using that method. For some strange reason however, I chose to cut the bamboo out of black cardstock and attach all the little pieces to the alcohol ink panel.
I put double sided adhesive on the back of the black cardstock before die cutting then held all the pieces together with a sheet of ‘press & seal’ so I could attach them to the alcohol ink panel but it was a tad fiddly!
I made the alcohol ink panel on white yupo paper. I dropped some blue and yellow alcohol inks on a craft sheet, added some rubbing alcohol then swiped the yupo through it to pick up the blended coloured patterns. The colours reminded me of light through a forest so I chose the bamboo to be my feature image.
I have another alcohol ink background to share today. If you didn’t see the yesterday’s card you might want to click here (there’s a giveaway provided by The Foiled Fox so it’s worth a visit!) When I saw the new fancy fish dies from Penny Black, I immediately thought of the patterns possible with alcohol inks and blending solution. To create this kind of pattern I started with plenty of dark and light blue ink on my yupo paper then dropped some blending solution on a felt pad and pounced that all over the panel. The blending solution creates little bubble shapes in the ink. The felt pad also picks up blue ink from the yupo paper and prints it down again so more little bubbles.
I die cut the fish and sentiment from a silvery grey envelope I had saved; it had a bit of texture and a little shimmer to it. The die set, Fancy Fish includes two detailed fish and a teeny tiny fish; I have a card tomorrow featuring the third fish.
I am a guest of the wonderful Foiled Fox crew again today. To find out more about this silhouette blossom card you will need to pop over there. Once you are there you will want to browse through the lovely projects on their blog and wander the listings in their store.
Shauna from the Foiled Fox is offering one of my readers a $35 gift certificate from the Foiled Fox store this week. To enter the draw you need to check out their store then come back here to my blog and leave a comment letting me know what item you would put on your wishlist. You have until the end of Sunday March 26th EDT to let me know what you have your eye on. We will announce a winner next Monday.
I have linked to the products I used below, you will find them all in the Foiled Fox store.
Stamps: Spring blossoms, Happy snippets (PB)
Dies: gift card pocket set (PB)
Inks: stonewashed, cranberry & eggplant alcohol inks, Jet black archival ink(Ranger), versamark (Tsukineko)
Paper: neenah solar white cardstock, neenah epic black cardstock, white yupo paper
Also: Wow white pearl embossing powder, silver thread
A few months ago I tried all sorts of fun techniques with alcohol inks and I am keen to get them back off the shelf to try some more. Today’s cards are all examples of stamping with alcohol inks, using die-cut felt as the ‘stamp’.
I did all the stamping on glossy photo paper which allows the inks to move and blend a little but nowhere near as much as the on yupo paper. Yupo paper is a synthetic paper which is totally waterproof so the ink does not soak into it at all but spreads across it as it dries. The photo paper does absorb ink even as the glossy surface lets it spread and blend a little.
By varying the amount of ink you drop on the felt die-cut you can get a lacy effect or a full print. By adding a little blending solution to the felt you can dilute the colour and get a blurry effect within the shape. The possibilities are extensive with this technique.
Stamp: Words of Kindness, Sentiment Collection, Happy Snippets (PB)
Die: Autumn Jewels , Pinwheel (PB)
Ink: Alcohol inks (Ranger)
Cardstock: Glossy photo paper, coloured cardstock, Neenah solar white & natural white
If you haven’t tried stencils with your alcohol inks you might be surprised at the lovely effects you can get. Let me warn you though, they might not do what you want them to, but they will probably do something cool. There is a bit of trial and error involved when working out how much blending solution or rubbing alcohol to apply through the stencil. Too much and it spreads under the stencil and you lose the pattern definition. Too little and you will not remove enough colour to get a pattern. It is worth playing with applicators too. Applying solution with a q-tip will take much longer but you will have more control.
I started with a deep blue pattern on yupo paper with little patches of burgandy ink. When it was dry I positioned the ‘hypnotic’ stencil over one corner then removed colour with blending solution on a felt applicator. I kept an eye on the felt as I pounced it through the stencil because it was picking up blue ink. If it got too blue it wasn’t removing ink anymore. I like the batik look with some lines of blue in the white spaces
On these two purple toned panels I used the same technique but was not as careful to keep the stencil still on the one below. The pattern from the stencil is just a mix of abstract shapes. The blue panel at the top of this post is all about the stencilled pattern but these two messy purple ones are just here because I love the colours. Before I die cut the word ‘hello’ out of the purple cardstock I positioned a strip of ‘stick it’ adhesive on the back where the word would be. That made it easy to attach the panel to the card base and pop in the little loops and circles that were cut out. I saved the purple ‘hello’ cut out of the card below and stuck it inside the card above.
Having so many alcohol ink experiments on hand is helping with my resolve to try new layouts and sketches. The colours and patterns that appear almost magically when working with alcohol inks need little or no adornment. This panel was mainly aqua with some splotches of coral pink here and there until I added silver and scraped it across the panel with the coffee stirrer. I ended up with the rock formation style patterns which were kind of cool but the silver had taken over.
I played around with several ideas for using the panel including tossing it but finally settled on a layout inspired by this card on JJ Bolton’s blog. I chose the coral coloured cardstock for the die cut to bring out the few patches on the panel. The assembly of this layout did not go smoothly for me, (there is more than one reason I stick to the portrait gallery layout!) I cut a piece of light weight cardstock to stick behind the circle to keep everything together. When I ran my finger over the edge of the circle to press it firmly onto the backing, the silver ink smudged onto my clean white card base. I managed to transfer silver ink via my die cutting plates also. The metallic alcohol inks sit on the surface and therefore need some sort of fixative; (I have watched a tutorial about this just haven’t looked into whether I have the right fixative) Rather than make the same mistake three times I decided to polish the patterned circle with a paper towel as someone had done successfully in class to see how much silver would come off. I removed quite a bit which revealed more aqua and left the panel less smudgy. The rest of the assembly was more straight forward; I used ‘stick it’ adhesive on the back of the folk flower die cut and embossed the sentiment on black cardstock for contrast.
When I visited JJ Bolton’s blog to look at her card layout I read about the clever wax crayon technique she used on her card…something to try another day.
Stamps: Happy Snippets (PB)
Dies: Folk Flower (PB)
Ink: Alcohol inks, Versafine ink (Ranger)
Paper: glossy photo paper, Neenah Epic Black 100lb cardstock, Neenah solar white cardstock, coral cardstock
Also: stick it adhesive, white embossing powder