Basic Alcohol Ink How-To

 Several people (more than two)
have asked my how to use alcohol ink.
So, let us start with a simple ATC.
Ranger and Tim Holtz distribute alcohol inks,
you can get them at Michael’s, Hobby Lobby,
or haha! of course you can.
Amazon sells everything.
Except maybe goats.
Alcohol ink works best on Yupo paper.
This was a little sample pad of ATC sized
yupo paper that came in my Art Snack box this month.
It comes in all sizes – seriously – and can be found
on Amazon,, and Michael’s.
 When you use alcohol ink, work on a protected surface.
Craft sheets are perfect.
Here I worked on a large, thick sheet
of cardboard that I had left over.
 Alcohol inks also stain your fingers,
so if you aren’t a lover of brightly colored
fingers, I’d recommend some type of glove.
I can’t give you a recommendation
because I use the messy, pretty fingers
technique myself.
Makes me feel accomplished.
(Emoticon smiley face.)
 Sorry I talked through that last photo.
Take your first color and squirt a couple
drops in random locations.
Some people prefer working in odd numbers,
but since these ATCs are small,
I didn’t worry about that.
As you can see, I began with pink,
then switched to a couple drops of yellow.
 Then be patient and wait.
The colors will spread and push each other
where the edges touch.
Sometimes you get cool colors where this happens,
sometimes just a darker edge with its own
(Did you notice how that lower pink circle’s
edges closed around and left that white hole?)

At this point I felt the ATC needed a little

more color, so I added a couple spots of

turquoise. And I love how it turned out.

This is the perfect place to stop for today.

(It isn’t where I stopped with the ATC,

but it is a good stopping point.)

Once dry, this ATC will be ready for a little

tangling with my Copic multiliner.

I hope to inspire you to work with these inks.

Such beautiful, rich colors they make!

4 thoughts on “Basic Alcohol Ink How-To

  1. Interesting to see how the colours sometimes mix, sometimes don't & sometimes even go round! Really unpredictable & a wonderful way of working loosely but allowing the looseness to structure the tangling which follows – hope people can follow what I'm saying come to that!!

    • they definitely have a mind of their own when you use them this way. there are other techniques that i will get to soon where you control them.

    • The biggest difference is the inks I used here are alc0hol based. Dylusions are water based. I dylusions will work on yupo, the results will be a bit different. Let me play with it and get back to you.

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