Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Is Direct-To-Paper A ‘Lost Art’ So To Speak?

There’s so much decorative paper flooding the market today, and instead of being used for scrapbooking, its use has crossed over to card making and other paper arts. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this is a bad thing, but I’m kind of mourning the loss of more artistic ways of decorating paper using inks, paints, and rubber stamps etc. I wonder if people who are new to paper arts like rubber art stamps even know about direct-to-paper?  On that note, I offer this tutorial.
The Direct-to-Paper Technique
This technique requires the use of pigment ink. Slow drying pigment inks allow plenty of working time. Many stamp artists like Colorbox pads for this technique. They have small pads called Cat’s Eyes, and snap/slide out pads like the Option pads and Petal Points. Of course other brands of pigment ink can be used as well, but the pads should be small for the best outcome.  

Begin by selecting the colors you prefer and apply pigment ink directly to cardstock by gently swirling and spreading the colors. Apply lighter colors first, then darker colors, letting one color show through or blend with the color that borders it. You can create random, or more controlled patterns. Try different hand motions, using the corner or edge of the pad like a brush. You can try sponging ink on the paper, or even apply it with a stipple brush. Make sure to blend the edges where the colors meet. Create a depth of color by layering colors, one over another. To get an even more blended ethereal look, use a sponge to smear the freshly applied ink. Various ink colors blending together and the paper color showing through, create a subtle and elegant look

Using metallic or lighter colors on very dark paper produces a very dramatic effect. Many stamp artists use only three or four colors - experiment and decide what effect you like best. Make sure to use reinkers to keep the stamp pads generously inked or the foam on the pads will tear or come off. This technique is really fun and very relaxing.

To clean your stamp pad, gently wipe on a dry paper towel. Never use water or soap, those chemicals will not react well with the ink and will cause a fungus. (Once a lady came into the art store where I taught classes, and showed us this moldy stamp pad wanting to know what was wrong with it. Turns out, she tried to wash it!) The customer service department at Clear Snap told me that to repair a pad, apply Super Glue to the plastic base. When you do this, make sure the base is completely dry, using a paper towel. Then reattach pad.

Below are some examples using direct-to-paper. Some are darker, jewel tones, but it can also be done with pastels and lighter colors with stunning results.

1 comment:

  1. Are you serious?! These are gorgeous! I've got to get out my stamp pads. Thanks.


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