Saturday, 2 September 2017

PaperArtsy Topic 12 - Hybrid Inks

I'm back with a PaperArtsy challenge. I skipped (or didn't submit) a few challenges because I'm still in the creative crisis "phase".

The latest topic is Hybrid Inks. This is a page in my art journal:

Since everyone was using the Distress Oxides, I decided to dig mine from a dustbin and show you why they are the biggest disappointment of the season for me. Here is my story…

When I finally got them – and paid a fortune for them (you know, taxes, customs, shipping and such) – I did what I always do with new supplies: I sampled them for my swatch book. With Distress products, I always do one sample of the ink itself and another sprayed with water. This is what I got:

this is Fired Brick 

A result I was expecting from all the previews. I let it all dry overnight and returned to my samples the next day. And I found this:

To my amazement/horror, all pairs of my samples looked the same. The nice water splatters disappeared, and the sample that didn't come into contact with any water was all oxidised on its own. Even the sample tags I made using multiple colours turned to a terribly dull and milky awfulness.

This surprised me – I never had any problem using Distress products, they are quite fool proof and forgiving when it comes to usage. There was nothing said about using a special paper, special water or anything. The humidity in my room is quite normal – average or below average. So I repeated my samples, with the same result.

Still blaming my technique, I re-watched official and unofficial tutorials, followed the process religiously – same colours, same paper, drying time, everything – but still got unappealing, almost monotonous milky background.

So, I'm done with Oxides - for good. I'm keeping one for stamping on dark paper. It doesn't matter which, because they all turn to a same shade within 24 hours.

Can you tell which one is Peeled Paint 
and which Cracked Pistachio??

Now back to my page. Somehow, I din't enjoy the process, because again and again, it didn't work. For some reason, the colours don't build up, no matter how much I dry them, but keep reactivating and creating – not mud – but a grey “meh”.

I used Spiced Marmalade, Fired Brick, Walnut Stain, Cracked Pistachio and Fossilized Amber. You can tell at first, but not when you dry it thoroughly.

The white splatters are not oxidisation – they are the paper underneath, where I blotted away the wet ink. I desperately wanted to put some vibrant colour on it so I stamped some shapes using acrylic paints.

stamps used from sets ESA01, text stamp from ELB30

I even tried stamping some more shapes using the Oxides on top.

using Wilted Violet on the round thingies (ELB34 set)
and Cracked pistachio on the text stamp (ESA04 set)

See, how it changed over night? It just lay on my table - I didn't even dare to breathe at it!

(strange how my iPhone camera is still picking up the colours
I don't see in real life - I think I'll need to add a scan of this mess)

Even the acrylics look like they acquired some of the milky patina over the course of few days.

So, I had a background I could have achieved by a used teabag (and maybe let it mould a bit?) I desperately needed to bring some colour to it, something to take your eyes away from the dullness.

In the end, I decided to stamp tags on some deli paper which I sprinkled with Infusions and sprayed with water.

 text tag from ESA04, normal tag from JOFY22

I also added some black splashes.

Finally, I added a quote and called it done.


  1. I must look at my earlier D.O makes to see if the colour has changed! Still the design of your pages works, even with the colour a bit dulled!

  2. Hmmmm.. that is really strange. I haven't had any trouble. I love my oxides. Your journal spread is wonderful!!!!!!!!!