Thursday, January 15, 2015

Technique of the Week - Ink and Salt

In conjunction with the Art 'n Soul weekly Newsletter, this post is an expansion on the latest Technique of the Week article with a tutorial on the Ink and Salt technique.  This technique was brought to us beautifully by Magenta Design Team member Carole Dion, through the Magenta Newsletter.  If you have not signed up for the Magenta Newsletter, you should definitely do so.  It showcases many fabulous techniques, and it is not to be missed.  You can sign up on the Magenta blog here.  Also, here on my blog, look on the right hand side and scroll down a little to find links to the other Magenta Design Team members.  Carole is listed there.  Check out her blog, she is so very talented.

Last things first, here is the card I made with this great technique

I made this Birthday card for one of my new Iceland relatives, using salt from the Reykjanes Peninsula of Iceland.  I LOVE how this background turned out.

This technique uses coarse sea salt sprinkled onto watercolor paper which has been sprayed with water and ink.  Since I am a collector of different types of salt, I wanted to see if the different types would have an affect on the appearance of the final piece.  I used 4 types of salt:  Noirmoutier Coarse Sea Salt from France; Hawaiian Kalaea Sea Salt (sort of a Sienna color); Hawaiian Sea Salt with Activated Charcoal (black); and a newly acquired addition, Saltwerks Coarse Sea Salt from the Reykjanes Peninsula of Iceland (close to my heart).

First I taped some pieces of Tim Holtz watercolor paper, smooth side up to some plastic cutting boards.  I also used this as a test of tape.  I have been using painter's tape, but I find that if I'm not very careful when taking the tape off, it sometimes tears my paper.  I have started using micropore tape, which is a medical tape that I obtained on Amazon, courtesy of a recommendation from Jennifer's McGuire's blog (see my list of blogs I like to visit).  I did find that the micropore tape worked better at not sticking too hard to my paper.

I sprayed the 4 panels liberally with water mixed with Perfect Pearls powder.  (1/4 tsp per 2 oz of water).  Those of you who know me know that I don't usually use just plain water - I love the shimmer that the Perfect Pearls gives.

For the ink and water sprays, I chose to use spritzers that I had previously made with my favorite colors of Distress re-inkers (Peacock Feathers; Mustard Seed; and Picked Raspberry).  I have also mixed some Perfect Pearls powder into the spritzers to create beautiful pearly sprays.  A tutorial on creating your own pearly sprays is on my blog here.

I started with Picked Raspberry and I tried to spray in a different place on each panel.

Next I used Peacock Feathers

Last was Mustard Seed

I started adding the salt, and first was the Grey salt from France

Second was the sienna colored salt from Hawaii

Then the black salt from Hawaii

Last was the pure white sea salt from Reykjanes in Iceland

All of the salt must be left on the paper until they dry completely.  The salt reacts with the ink and draws it up.  I love the mottled look this gives.  I also love the shiny effect the Perfect Pearls gives to each piece.  It's hard to see in the pictures, but it's beautiful in real life.

After they were all dry, I scraped off the salt from each piece.  I found that they were all different.  The Hawaiian salts especially left color residue on the panels.  I love them all!

To complete the Birthday card, I used a Magenta Stamp (Multilingual Happy Birthday 07.907.L) and stamped in with Versamark Ink and embossed it with my favorite embossing powder for sentiments - Ranger Black Sparkle.  This embossing powder glitters with every color in the rainbow - it's beautiful in real life!

I mounted the panel onto a piece of So Silk paper in Beauty Pink, and affixed the piece to a white A2 size card.

I'm saving all of the colored salt, because Carole said she would show us something to do with it in another Magenta newsletter.

I hope you try this technique, it's fun, easy and rewarding.

Materials Used:
Magenta stamp:  Multilingual Happy Birthday 07.907.L
Distress Ink re-inkers:  Picked Raspberry; Mustard Seed; Peacock Feathers
Versamark Ink
Perfect Pearls powder
Sea Salts:  Noirmoutier Grey Course Sea Salt; Hawaiian Kalaea Sea Salt; Hawaiian Sea Salt with Activated Charcoal; Saltwerks Sea Salt from Reykjanes Peninsula in Iceland
Ranger Black Sparkle Embossing Powder
Tim Holtz Watercolor paper
So Silk Beauty Pink paper


  1. thank you for such a wonderful experiment with watercolors and the various salts. perhaps we should have a play day bringing in all of the different salts!

  2. Very nice, love the way you did it! With this technique you can also take very shimmery inks or mix various finish. It was a genuis to try with various salt!!

    1. Thank you Carole, and thanks for the great tutorial!

  3. I totally agree with Debbie and Carole, trying different salt was a great idea...

  4. OK, so now I NEED to buy colored salt as well?! LOL Gorgeous results, Dianne! TFS

    1. Thanks Ellie, and you should buy colored salt! When else can you get art supplies with your food budget? ;-)


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