Not a Tutorial…Just an Awesome Idea ❤️❤️❤️
Ok, so this is not a tutorial, but more of a personal review of how photo paper reacted to my acrylics and alcohol inks.
I have included links to related tutorials if you need more information on a certain technique. This post just sheds some light on my recent happy accident.
Make use of those blank photo packs of paper that come with printer ink cartridge refills. This is not always offered, but for the same price, you can catch a deal where you buy both black and color printer cartridges, and they will throw in a pack of like 50 photo cards! If you only need the photo paper, it is priced very fairly, and I include links at the bottom of the post.
Alternate Uses for Photo Paper:
I seriously do not know ONE person that prints their own photos from home…unless they are an artist and have a black room. It is incredibly expensive for printer ink, so I am wondering if others have these stashed away thinking there might be a cool use for them someday.
Well. TODAY is that day. If you are a painter, these blank photo 4×6 inch cards will rock your world. Normally my favorite technique is acrylic pouring, but alcohol inks look amazing on these as well.
Experiment #1- Acrylic Pouring:
Not even sure why I even tried acrylic pour on these, but it was a completely happy accident. My curiosity made me test how well the photo paper retained the color and paints. I had to see if it would be possible to do pours, since this it such a large volume of paint to apply to any surface.
Related: Getting Started With Acrylic Pouring
Amazingly, the photo paper did not warp and bend (like even the flat canvases do!). The paints slide around beautifully and you can easily manipulate how the paint lays out due to the bendiness (yes just made that word up-but you know what I mean:) of these photo sheets. They hold the colors true, are completely inexpensive to acquire, and look that much more professionally done once you set it in a frame.
Experiment #2: Alcohol Inks:
Since the surface is non-porous, I knew Alcohol Inks would be a great match. First I tried just dripping the ink on to see how fast and well the ink was absorbed…and the photo paper sucked up the ink like no other. I tried adding alcohol directly to my felt piece to dilute the coloring, but NOTHING happened. The inks were pretty ingrained into the photo paper right away. I also tried the Blending Solution directly on the photo paper which made it dilute a little better, but it was still a pretty solid meld between ink and paper.
I love mixing brush lettering pens with alcohol inks. So, my first trial was a flowers on the photo paper with alcohol inks, then once it dried, I outlined and defined my nature scene with ease.
Benefit for Any Vendor:
Since I have been doing Farmer’s Markets trying to sell my art, I was incredibly excited about this because they would be like a “bite-size) sample of the art I create. I could sell them with the frame, or just enclose them in a plastic sheet cover ( personally I chose to use old clear page protectors cut in half) for cheaper and have the buyer be in charge of picking out their own frame.
Loving this new idea. So much easier than lugging around 20+ stretched canvases pieces for every Market.
More Professional Looking Art:
Since these babies will most likely go in a picture frame, I would skip the sealant. Which makes this project even more simple. Have fun creating paintings, multimedia art (pen, markers, paints, etc.) or fun vinyl transfers with these photo cards.
Hope you get some value out of this post, and any old and unused photo paper hanging around from the last time you refilled your printer’s ink cartridges.
Or, just buy the photo paper outright, you will not be disappointed with the price!
***Items I used:
Here are some quick links to items needed to create this project if you do not already have everything:
Photo Paper Recommendations:
- 4×6 (100) sheets
- 5×7 (60 sheets)
- 8.5″x11″ (25 sheets)
- Art sleeve protectors (made out of cellophane) 5×7
- Liquitex BASICS acrylic paint set (48 colors)
- Ranger Alcohol Ink starter set (3 prime colors)