Archival Inks are fade resistant, water resistant, acid free, non-toxic and permanent, which means that they stay put when you use them with other inks, dyes, pigments etc. I’ve always used black archival ink to stamp on top of inky backgrounds or to stamp an image that I then want to colour in and not have the outline react. Ranger Inks brought out a whole set of archival inks in a range of different distress colours and I was inspired by Juliana Michaels to try a layered stamping technique on glossy cardstock.
For this technique you start by choosing your colour combination and make sure to include some less intense colours. Smooch the ink pads down onto a craft sheet to get some ink, mist with iso-propyl alcohol and then dab your glossy cardstock into the ink to create a coloured background. Because the inks are diluted you get much softer colours – which is perfect for a background.
Then you start to layer your stamps over the background to create a collage effect. In my first attempts I used Prize Ribbon, Salvaged Patina, Villainous Potion and Frayed Burlap. I was a bit worried by one of my cards because I used a butterfly background stamp that was too definite and seemed to take over. But once I had stamped the butterfly image in the deep purple and picked that out with a purple ribbon it seemed to be okay. However, I much preferred the similar card where the background was less definite. I really liked how the card with 2 butterflies turned out.
I then moved into trying different colour palettes – Frayed Burlap, Crackling Campfire, Wild Honey and Kitsch Flamingo for another butterfly; and then into yellows and greens for the dragonfly. Then I decided to move out of my comfort zone to create underwater scenes using the same technique. I made a complete mess of my first octopus image but was able to salvage it by stamping the octopus onto a fresh piece of card, cut it out (yes it was fiddly!) and then glue it over the top of my earlier mistakes. I was very pleased with my second octopus and managed to layer fish and seaweed as well as the more abstract background to create more of a scene. I was less pleased with the lobster image but there is certainly something to work with. I think it will be worthwhile having another session with this technique to see what else I can create and I hope I have inspired you to have a go too.