Thoughts on Inks

Inks tried:

  • Caligo Safe wash
  • Hawthorne Stay Open
  • Akuakolor
  • Daler Rowney block printing
  • home made  using Hawthorn Transparent ink and Cornelieson’s dry pigment

Thoughts on makes of ink:

  • water based inks – difficult to handle and get repeatable results
  • Caligo – limited colours but tubes don’t skin over and they wash up easily for home use. Skin over in tubs.
  • Hawthorn Stay Open, lovely inks but more difficult to wash up. Citriwash works well. Lovely colours, especially Payne’s Grey and Peter Wray Grey. Don’t skin over.
  • home-made was fun but difficult to balance transparency, viscosity and pigment load.

Parameters to think about with inks:

  • viscosity, and relative viscosity
  • transparency
  • skinning
  • cleaning up (safe use, restrict white spirit, use veg oil or soap)
  • colour range
  • drying – seems to depend on viscosity, pigment load but also thinning medium
  • loose ink squirms about on the plate
  • subtlety of  colour
  • different consistencies for relief, etching, collagraph
  • process colours – in theory you can mix any colour but in practice (mine) you can’t get the subtleties of earth colours etc.
  • transparent ink v extender. Less pigment load v looser ink
  • some inks soak into the paper, some lie on top like enamel
  • price – luscious colours don’t come cheap. Pigment always costs.

About starrybird

I am mature student studying art with The Open College of the Arts. My passion is printmaking.
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One Response to Thoughts on Inks

  1. suespainting says:

    Wow! Your blog is so informative- really helpful for someone like me who is just about to start the course! Thank you for the link from fb!

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