Just prior to my self-imposed 2017 supply cut off, I slipped this order in on December 29, 2016. The inspiration to share about these lovely inks showed up, so here we go.
One of my favorite supplies is white FW Acrylic Ink, and I get asked about it periodically. I’ve been a fan of acrylic inks for some time, but never wanted to use them outright as a main medium, until I got these. This post has some simple swatches, some not so serious art journal examples, and one small painting.
These swatches are in a 4”x 6” Stillman & Birn Gamma Series art journal. That other little book at the bottom is a Moleskine Extra Small notebook, which I abused the heck out of the thin paper testing these inks. It did surprisingly well, and I also used it in a couple of the examples below.
Left page in the Gamma journal is the Transparent Collection which are earth tones- Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Raw Sienna
Right page in the Gamma journal is the Muted Collection – Pink, Violet, Turquoise, Green, Grey. The Grey has a purplish tint to it. I find it to be quite lovely. Both sets intermix wonderfully with each other. I’m glad that I got them at the same time, because they provide more of a complete palette. I’m impressed by all of them, and I normally I gravitate towards pinks, but the Turquoise knocks it out of the park.
On Amazon, the Muted Collection Boxed Set is retailing for around $40, but I’ve seen it go for a little higher and lower on there- I watched it for months. It was cheaper to order the five colors open stock (individually) from Dick Blick. The cost for the five Muted Colors was about $30 doing that- $6.01 for a 30ml/1oz bottle. I don’t see the Muted Collection sold as a boxed set on Dick Blick.
The boxed set description says it’s ten pieces, the five inks, and five collection cards- I don’t care about cards, or the giant packaging. The photo to the right came from the Liquitex site and is how the boxed sets are packaged.
The bottles come with droppers in the lids, which are handy for adding a bit at a time to the palette or page. Once dry, they do not rewet.
The Transparent Set on Dick Blick was about $13 for the boxed set of three- these came in a small box. The Transparent Set on Amazon is almost $22. Local art stores may carry these, and various online retailers do as well.
The Muted Collection also comes in two other mediums- soft body and heavy body acrylic paints. All three acrylic mediums are color matched. I was given the heavy body set as a Christmas gift (thanks mom, you’re awesome!), but I have to work into those. I’m not as comfortable with that medium. This is what Liquitex has to say about the Muted Collection Sets:
“At Liquitex, we don’t take no for an answer. After all, challenging the established ways of doing things is in our DNA. It’s how we invented the first acrylic paints in 1955. This is why we’ve been pushing the boundaries of what’s possible ever since.
We torture test products in our lab to ensure they defy every norm. Our Special Release Muted Collection is no exception.
Grey, Pink, Turquoise, Green and Violet: get to grips with perfect color matching and intermixability. Our Ink, Soft Body and Heavy Body work seamlessly together. We get technical so you can get creative.”
Here is a 1:49 minute video of the three medium varieties of the Muted Collection in action.
I’ve been into doing whimsical little things in Moleskine journals lately- below is their 2017 Pocket Planner. The yellow sky is a diluted wash of Raw Sienna. Grey was used in the clouds, Turquoise and a small amount of Green for the stormy sea. Small amounts of a few other acrylic inks- white, black and gold, that weren’t from the featured collections were used. That is a UFO in the sky, but looking at it now from the photo, I see a flying sombrero.
In the Muted Collection, all but the Violet have a rating of II for lightfastness, Violet has a I. The Transparent Set are all a I rating. The opacity rating for all of them is transparent.
Sediment on the bottom of the bottles can happen if the ink sits for a while- shake a bit before use. The finish is satin, they are an extra fluid acrylic, and water resistant. Water can be used to dilute the ink.
A couple more little examples. On the left, the sky background is the Muted Pink and Raw Sienna. Left is the same sky colors used and the Muted Turquoise and Green for the background. I used opaque black shimmer FW Ink for the trees. I was having some simple fun with Richeson Fluorescent Tempera Cakes. They are considered a scholastic supply, and are giant pucks of paint, which I ordered at the same time as these inks. Click to enlarge.
USES AND TECHNIQUES- for Arylic Ink
- Dip Pen
- Technical Pen
- Ink Brayer
- Screen Printing
- Fabric Painting
- Book Arts
- Photo Tinting
I’ve mainly used them like watercolor with a brush, and sometimes a dip pen. In this desert painting on Ampersand Aquabord, both sets were used. Acrylic ink works wonderfully on Aquabord. A small amount of dark blue acrylic FW Ink mixed with Burnt Umber was used for the rocks in the foreground, and the birds. This was inspired by the worlds largest gem and mineral show– presently taking place in Tucson, Arizona.
Supply reviews are on an impromptu basis. Click here to see numerous other reviews or up top on “Reviews.” I also share discoveries on Instagram- @jessicaseacrest. Supply reviews are shared with the intention of artists helping artists. Another great resource for art supply reviews, and tutorials is the effervescent Guest Doodlewasher Lindsay Weirich, aka- The Frugal Crafter. Her blog can be found here.
Check out the World Watercolor Group’s February Adventure- Natural Beauty here! These are prompts to help keep your creativity going during the month.
Wishing you the best! Happy painting and sketching!