Alcohol Ink artists have been inspiring me for a very long time. Seeing their process is mesmerizing. However, I was deterred to give it a try because I thought I needed all these new tools, a bunch of alcohol ink refills/colors, special paper, etc.
More recently I’ve discovered some tutorials on how to use Alcohol Markers like @stampinup Stampin’ Blends and 91% alcohol on vellum. This made the art form a little more attainable for me.
So taking what I’ve learned from other alcohol marker tutorials, and the beauty of the larger alcohol-ink art pieces, I decided to try my own twist to the “Alcohol Marker on Vellum technique”. With a few simple tools that most card-makers already have, I was able to make card backgrounds that resembled the style of my favorite alcohol ink artists (@anneroosart). I’m also entering this card into the #SUOC279 challenge. Designer’s Choice.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Alcohol is a chemical so take care when using it. It is recommended to be in a well ventilated area, and to avoid using straws at risk of inhaling alcohol fumes.
Materials to make Alcohol Ink Art on Vellum
Vellum (Cut to 4.25" x 5.5")
Alcohol Markers (e.g. Stampin’ Blends)
91% Alcohol or higher
Precision Applicator, Water Painter reservoir, or any other means to drop alcohol from the store bottle onto the vellum
Optional: Air Blower/Bulb Blower
Optional: Magnetic Mat or other clipboard/surface to tape down the edges of vellum to minimize warping
Materials for the Finished Card
Tear Tape or Tape Runner (e.g. Stampin’ Seal)
Rectangular Die (Stitched Rectangle Dies)
Alcohol Ink Art Process Steps
Tip: To minimize warping of the vellum, optionally secure the vellum down onto the magnetic mat with magnets, or a craft mat with removable tape (e.g. washi or painter’s tape). One additional option is to adhere the vellum to a sheet of thick card stock with tear tape or other tape runner. (dimensions 4"x5.25"). This step can be done before or after the alcohol ink art process, however doing it beforehand will help minimize vellum warping.
1. Lay down some alcohol marker ink directly onto the vellum. I prefer to work in relatively small areas so that I can manipulate the alcohol a little easier. I start with a scribbled circle, oval, heart, or random blob.
2. Add alcohol to the vellum, just enough to cover the marker ink you just added to the vellum.
3. Using a heat tool on the low setting (if applicable) start heating the alcohol from different angles. I start with my heat tool further away to mix the ink and alcohol together in the beginning before I focus on drying the edges. Play around with different angles, and proximity to the vellum. You can also use an Air Blower/Bulb Blower to push liquid around.
Tip: To get the rose effect, I heat dry the edge of the alcohol on one side, and then I go to the nearly opposite side to dry the next edge, and then I find another edge to push around the ink. Drying it single edge by single edge is what creates the petals.
Tip: If there’s a part that dried faster than you wanted, you can add more alcohol again to a specific area to re-activate the existing ink. OR if your art is completely dry and you want to keep adding more detail (e.g. more rose petals) add more alcohol marker ink in a specific area, and cover it with alcohol and start the process again with the smaller area.
Tip: When the last little bit of alcohol is drying, to avoid it drying VERY dark, I will dab that last bit of dark alcohol with a tissue.
The complete video of this heart/rose alcohol ink process was 9m48s. This time lapse video was sped up to reduce time to 1 min.
Finished Card Process
1. If you didn't already adhere the Thick Basic White Card Stock to the back of the vellum panel, you can do it now. I use tear tape or tape runner (e.g. Stampin' Seal) only along the edges of the cardstock, which will mostly hide behind a frame. The vellum started at 4.25" x 5.5", so I trimmed down the vellum after the alcohol ink art process. My final vellum panel is 4" x 5.25".
2. Cut a piece of Thick Basic White Card Stock to 4" x 5.25" and create a frame by using a rectangle die to cut out the middle. I used the 2nd largest in the Stampin' Up Stitched Rectangle die set (3-3/8"x 4-3/4")
3. Glue the frame to the front of the vellum panel (like you're framing your art ☺️) and then adhere it to a card base.
4. Add a sentiment and embellishments to finish your card. (If heat embossing, be sure to use an embossing buddy so the embossing powder doesn't stick to the alcohol ink)
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