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When I am an old woman, I shall wear PURPLE….

The ABC Printing Challenge I am working on is U: Upcycle. At the moment I am sharing experiments. I was watching the sample video, gelli plate printing on plastic bags, and it made me think of clear things, like plastic page protectors, hard plastic packaging, and clear contact paper. And I thought about things that would remain clear – like Alcohol inks. That set me off on a journey LOL!

First experiment was thinking I might make a version of the circle curtain, using page protectors or contact paper instead of plastic bags. I thought they would be too opaque. Interesting but not very crisp, visually

So I tried adding the AI to the plate thru a stencil then sat looking at all that wasted ink ON the stencil. With the ink drying on the plate

I shifted over to another idea. I stuck a sheet of contact paper over the STENCIL – both sides had plenty of AI on them – and dripped a bit of straight alcohol into the holes. As part of the Upcycle part, I was using that hard foamy, plastic packaging to apply the ink, so pouncing that thru the holes added some of the ink on the packaging as well.

Such a lovely burst of colour! I stuck that to a bit of hard plastic clamshell packaging and held it up tot the light. Yummy!

Much like the first one, it is still indistinct, albeit pretty enough. Possibly need more of a play. In the end I peeled it off the plastic and added it to some white paper. And I pulled the print off the plate and did the same.

Love it but not sure how to use it. I do have a thought for the other bit, and will share that tomorrow!

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L: Layers – yeah I am all over the place…

Still trying to catch up and get the house back to normal. My crafty space is getting there, but there are other places that need more attention so it keeps getting a bit of time, the promise of more, then forgotten for a bit.

I have a piece I was playing with and another use for a bit of rubbish. You may recall I showed using some plastic packaging to get a textured effect with acrylic paint.

Well, I had a thought…the fact it is plastic might make it an interesting thing to use with Alcohol inks!

It’s maybe a little hard to explain, but you know when the AIs are kinda more on the dry side and you pounce over them, the ink disperses into little cells? You can get that sort of effect better with the plastic packaging than with the foam pads. Or at least *I* think so. Anyway, this piece had a lot of layers: alcohol ink, mica powders, a few layers or stencils, acrylic paints…

And the final piece I really like.

I feel like this could end up as a tip-in art journal page. I had a further play and made a similar piece with only a couple of layers. What I loved about this was how the mica that was clinging to the edges of the letter stencil transferred and gave me an outline while also kinda containing the alcohol inks! I love it so much and (like happens all too often) wish I could re-create the effect reliably. I plan to play with this a bit more for sure.

I will be at the hospital for the day, but am still hoping I manage a decent WOYWW view of my space tomorrow. Fingers crossed I also manage a full day of visits, before and after a potential knitting mate visit!

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Gelli ABC PrintingChallenge – day 2

The challenge for the day in Black/Brown. Pretty wide open, that. Considering my supplies, I remembered that I have a lot of Alcohol Inks in shades of brown. I think I used a lot of the old Ranger ones in the brighter colours so what is left is 100 shades of … well, I won’t say. You know.

I collected them all up, and a stencil that worked (ie a nice mix of open areas and lines)

Because the stencil is one I cut myself, I also have the surround, so I used that to contain the colours, although it is probably really hard to see since it is clear!

Loved the print I pulled.

All I had to do was trim it to size, dust the edges with some black ink to set it off, and I was done.

Only Day 2, but so far it is feeling do-able even during the window chaos. Here’s hoping….

WOYWW tomorrow and my windows will look just the same as they are one of the easier ones to sort and I am saving that for the weekend!

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When will I learn? Or maybe it’s OK

Yes, I know, I have flitted back to something from a little while ago. But I thought it was worth sharing. I am so often wanting to push things past the point they look good and into a hot mess. It’s just my nature.

What if I do THIS?

What if I do THAT?

then, inevitably

Oh NO!

I had this one print (on the left) from my play last week. I liked it, but I felt it needed something. I had added the flower as a stenciled image over the alcohol ink+paint print, and it was all a bit pale.

My first misguided effort you can’t really see, but I tried sketching around it with a very fin black pen and it was rubbish. You can maybe faintly see it if I zoom in, although it is pretty blurry, sorry.

{sigh}. What to do, what to do? I needed something that would both outline the image and highlight it in some way. The black pen limited my options A LOT. But I did have one idea. I grabbed my Art Glitter Glue and some VERY old foil sheets

and it worked!

OK so maybe it isn’t perfect, but I sure like it a lot better than the black pen! I am currently waiting for some added small dots in the middle to dry to tacky then I will rub that on as well.

You see? THIS is why I try not to throw things out, even when I suspect I am not going to ever use them again and even when I say far too often I am not a “bling-Y” person who is very much NOT tempted by foiling… DOH!

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Alcohol ink and PAPER stencils on the gel plate

I was curious. After die cutting all of those paper fronds for my texture plates, and with them scattered all over the room, I grabbed a few and thought “I wonder if they will work with Alcohol inks?” And yes they do!

So the paper does soak up more of the ink than is ideal, but I suspect that all it needs is a coat of gel medium on both sides to minimize that at the very least. I was feeling quite experimental, so even though I expected what might happen, I did roll over some hand sanitizer on a previous alcohol ink print I had done so I could press a coated bit of acetate onto it. It smeared, but I really liked the OTHER sheet, where I rolled off the brayer. It was pretty cool. I did try to get a second print without more hand sanitizer but I think I was too slow.

There was still more ink on that piece so I tried a few things, like adding the hand sanitizer to the gel plate then getting a bit of that on the frond and quickly pressing it into another print. I just loved how the splatter pattern came thru , and the ink sponged round the edges. It all just worked so beautifully I did NOT want to mess it up with hand sanitizer. And to be honest, I didn’t really want to aerosolize alcohol and risk breathing it in (another way people reactivate the alcohol ink on a plastic stencil) so while not a perfect effect, it felt far safer.

The end result, with a bit of white gel pen outlining, made me happy!

SO. Lots of play, lots of interesting outcomes, and not a lot of thoughts on what to do with them. ATCs? Cards? Can’t add in too much more to my Journal Petite, lest it become more like an open-mouthed Pac man gobbler than a journal!

I’ll think on it and see. But yeah, overall, I am pretty happy with a LOT of the prints I managed. I forgot how fun it all is.

Oh dear…


WOYWW 683 – an overview

Happy WOYWW to all! I am scheduling my WOYWW earlier than usual as I am anxious to play and if I don’t I’ll probably get swept away and forget. Silly me.

I have been playing a bit with my gel plates and some new alcohol inks. I still have a on of the old Ranger ones but all the dull vintage colours mostly left. This new set is all pretty bright and colourful. My desks, before I tidied up for WOYWW, were shocking. It was pretty early and dark and dismal when I took the photo so I amped it up so you can see what’s going on. The later ones are a bit brighter.

Yeesh. Many hours of cleaning and tidying and… across my window desk there is a wide range of handmade tools for gel printing.

The OTHER TOOLS probably need some explaining. The green thing is a slightly domed lid that I use like a baren. A Speedball baren is nearly £30. This one was free 😀 The lego is a placement tool so I can overprint on an existing print and get it right over the same area. The rectangle is an old block with a bit of furniture pad on it that I use to get good pressure with my stamping platform. The blue circles are water bottle lids and the white shapes are also furniture pads. They are flt and work great as alcohol ink application tools and you get tons for £1 and they are sticky on the back. I am a cheapskate at heart, but more importantly I like to use stuff I have before I go buy something.

My main desk is pretty tidy too

I’ll spread out some of my prints from that pile – as is my way, I am exhausting all the techniques that cross my mind with the inks before I move on to play with something else. I like some of them pretty well…

I think that’s quite enough LOL! And what will become of them? No idea. It’s not really about making a thing, it’s about playing and learning. I might tip in a few of my faves in my journal petite or make some ATCs, not sure yet.

But not before I have a lovely hop across the desks. Happy WOYWW!


WOYWW 597 – still left wondering…

Happy WOYWW once again!

<sigh> While virtually all networks (in the USA and around the globe, even Fox News) have called the election for Biden, I still am unable to exhale.  I really wanted to be posting a Good As Hell page but am not risking a jinx.

As I mentioned in a reply to a comment, there is still A LOT of unifying work to be done.  4 million more people voted for Biden, but a HUGE number voted to keep the status quo.  That is a problem.  This art journal page is on my desk, and it pretty much sums up how I feel:

I have a couple of in process shots. The background is basically alcohol inks dripped and blown across a gesso-ed page.

And a slightly better close up of the stencil

I first did the stencil on deli paper and stuck it on, but eventually added another stencil over the top to darken it. I may have to do another layer to really make it pop. I think I wasn’t brave enough to risk the background. You will see how that went wrong on a different page in a day or so, if I manage to fix it!

I also made another stencil which is there but out of shot, that I am calling Stacey Tha’ Goddess! Rather than roll over and give up when voter suppression in Georgia let the guy who was overseeing the election for Governor WIN the election, Stacey Abrams mobilized people like never before. When Biden was called as the winner, she barely took a breath to celebrate, but instead IMMEDIATELY reminded people of the upcoming Senate run-off for two seats. You can bet she is working hard today, tomorrow and EVERY DAY till the election to not let people rest on the win, but to get out and vote AGAIN.

I will be thinking how I might work this into a page one day soon.

I will be meandering round the desks this morning and try to keep up my visit every desk goal for another week!