Technique: Inking Images

I gotta admit, I'm not super happy with this inked flower. It has a lot of potential but it needs some work.
On the other hand, I'm loving how the background of this card came out. Should have done a step-by-step post of that process. Oh, well. :)
I do love inking images. It's therapeutic and I love mixing colors. It's really fun - I definitely encourage you to try it! See the supplies and instructions after the jump.

I ended up using two other inks that aren't pictured. Just choose some ink pads in shades of the same color or complementary colors, etc. Depends on your image and the look you want. I really like Tim Holtz products. These distressed inks are great. The image I use was one I printed from an online coloring book.

Start with your base color or choose an angle to work from. For example, you could work from the inside out or outside in. Softly apply your ink with the makeup sponge. I went in a circular direction, to follow the flower's shape. And I used a clean sponge for each color.
Then you start layering color how ever you want. This is the really fun part. And remember - you will cut the image out so don't try to stay in the lines. One thing to be careful of - if you use the wedge makeup sponge, it will leave lines so be conscious of smoothing those out as you go. One way to avoid some of that is to lightly twist the sponge as you apply the ink (kind of like buffing bronzer out on your face).

So, the flower looks pretty cool, huh? Really rustic (and maybe a bit unrealistic, hah!).
Alright, here's the problem. I got trigger happy with the ink. Oops. See how washed out my black outline is? And the colors aren't as vibrant because I went too crazy with this brownish-tea color. Sigh.You can sort of fix this by taking a Q-tip and reapplying color on top of the mistake. So I reapplied yellow to the center and it kinda works out. It's hard to mess up this technique and I don't think the end result is bad. I just liked it better before I went nuts with ink.
 So here it is on a card. Okay, I like it. I can do better but I still like it. 
And I LOVE the background. Like, so much. I did a couple of different inking techniques on the background too. 

So the difficult thing about this technique is you have to have at least a few complementary colored ink pads. So that can get expensive. (I mean, I don't want to use reds/browns every single time so that means I have to buy blues/greens/yellows, etc). But I have this tendency to throw myself into a technique or type of supply if that's my craft of the moment. So I see ink pads in my future. ;)


  1. How cute!! I love the way the inking looks, and the red/oranges look nice with the greens.

  2. In love with this. You're amazing!

  3. I love using the Tim Holtz/Ranger inks! The best part is that they don't set right away and you can blend them with water. I use a misting spray bottle to get interesting mixes of colors. You can also heat set them when you get exactly what you want. Great job!


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