If you’ve been a maker for any length of time, even if just for a few days, you know who inspires you. I’ve got a lot of favorites in paper crafting mostly but some in painting, some alcohol ink artists and some mixed media favorites. As I began planning this card, I started drawing on the inspiration I’ve gotten from a few of my favorite makers. I really like how this turned out. Discovering alcohol ink has been fun and I feel like I keep seeing new ideas in my head every time I let my making mind wander.
First, the alcohol inked background starts with just two ink colors, Watermelon and Wild Plum by Tim Holtz. This vibrant, cheerful color combo is a nod to Dawn McVey at Raspberry Suite – My Favorite Things, someone I’ve followed for a long time. Her favorite color combo is red and pink and I think it’s a beautiful compliment to the Gina K Massive Peony stamp. This color choice was a no-brainer.
When I laid the alcohol ink down, I moved it around with a mini blower I picked up on Amazon that’s meant to be used to clean cameras. It’s a perfect size for my “petite” hands. When the ink started to dry, I spritzed the whole thing pretty generously with 90% isoprophyl alcohol and then did nothing – just waited for it to dry again. I love the affect this creates as the alcohol smooths out a lot of hard lines that sometimes form in the middle of the background while also dispersing little droplets of the color in spots where the ink hasn’t moved to already. This is one of my favorite methods to use when creating alcohol ink backgrounds. The hardest part is resisting the urge to mess with it but the effort of waiting (and believe me, its an effort!) pays off.
Its very hard to see but I used an older Hero Arts wooden stamp with a very old looking script type and some lift ink to add some texture to the alcohol ink background. I wanted it to be a little more pronounced than it is but you can see a little bit of it best at the bottom center of the card. Because I used Alcohol Ink Cardstock and not a non-porous surface like Yupo, the lift ink didn’t work like it does on non-porous surfaces. (You can learn more in this video by Tim or in this video by Jennifer McGuire – two favorite makers as well.) I guess I’ll be spending a few more afternoons with the lift ink and some backgrounds on the right surfaces to get this just right.
After the background fully dried, I used VersaMark watermark ink to stamp the image and Ranger Princess Gold embosssing powder. I really like this gold because it’s bright.
The second bit of inspiration comes from Carissa Wiley at Sprinkled with Glitter. After I stamped and heat embossed the flower and sentiment (from Hero Arts BTW), I started to mount the card front to my card base. But because I used Tim Holtz Alcohol Ink Cardstock for the alcohol inked background, the white from the card front and the card base were two different shades of white and I didn’t like how it looked. Not having any complimentary card stock to mat the card front, I had two options. I could go straight ink pad to paper and ink up some card stock with a color from my Distress Ink collection or I could use this little faux gilding technique I saw Carissa use on a card a few days ago. Carissa did hers much neater than I did but I like this idea so I decided to give it a try.
I wanted the edge to be a little uneven and organic on purpose to sort of match the haphazard feeling you get from the alcohol ink background. I dabbed my ink pad at an angle in a few places so a little more of the VersaMark ink would stick to the card front. I decided to work on just one edge at a time because I didn’t want to run the risk of bumping or touching the embossing powder edges before they were heat set.
I mounted the finished card front to the card base with a large piece of white craft foam to keep the panel evenly raised. Mounting with foam really makes the panel sit up on top of the card base and makes me feel like the panel I created is a little tiny piece of art, framed in white and on display.
Seeing what others make and how they explore creative ideas is really interesting to me. I am grateful for so many makers who take the time to share in detail how they’ve achieved the projects they share. I challenge you this week to take a piece of inspiration from a maker you follow and incorporate it into something you’re working on.