Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Favorite Technique: Alcohol Inks

My favorite technique is using alcohol ink on polymer clay. I think I like it so much because there is no limit to what you can create or enhance using this stuff! I have applied ink to: wet clay, baked clay, matte clay, pearl clay, and colored clay with a brush, toothpick or just plain dripping the ink directly onto the clay (or a combination there of) and every time the result is different. After my trials and many errors, I thought I would share some tips for people who want to experiment with alcohol ink.

Solvent based inks were originally developed to mimic stained glass. Therefore, the ink is at its most vibrant when applied to a smooth, high gloss surface and allowed to dry naturally. When applied to baked pearl clay (I use Premo! pearl), it really comes alive but it is also the most difficult to control:

If you use the ink on wet polymer clay (I use both Fimo soft and Premo! white) you have more control:

You can also tint the raw clay with ink. I dribble the colors onto the raw white clay and work the clay to get look/color/pattern I want:

Or, after baking, let the inks run and do what they please!

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