Some of you might remember that I complained about the new colors of Memento ink when they were released in 2012. I found the new colors gave me blotchy, spotty images, while the old colors gave nice, crisp, smooth images. (Not to mention that the darker new colors are so dark as to be almost black...yes, northern pine and elderberry, I'm talking about you!)
I contacted Tsukineko at the time and received a response asking for more information and pictures, which I supplied. Since then, nothing.
It's also weird that on Tsukineko's website, there is no mention of the new colors at all. I wonder if I've missed something and they've been discontinued, although you can still buy them online and in stores.
Whatever the current situation at Tsukineko, one thing is certain...dye inks vary in the quality of images they produce depending on the formula, the pad texture and saturation, the type of paper used, the type of stamp used (fine detail, block, outline, rubber, photopolymer, silicone), the stamping surface, and the amount of pressure used on the stamp.
That's a shocking number of variables for stamping a good image. And it explains why we an*l-retentive, obsessive-compulsive neat freaks get so frustrated when images turn out blotchy.
You shabby-chic, vintage, artsy distressers out there might not understand this frustration, but trust me, vulgar words get dropped repeatedly and stamps may or may not get thrown across the room. Not by me, mind you, but I can picture the scene very clearly in my mind. Oh, yes, I can.
A frustrated search for "the perfect ink" is common among stampers of the obsessive kind, and it justifies our owning giant hoards of ink of all kinds. For the record, pigment inks will give fewer problems, but even they can be pains in the you-know-what for rather different reasons.
Anyway, today's card shows one way of dealing with imperfect dye ink...play up the imperfections.
This card displays Memento Pistachio ink (one of the 2012 colors) and Hero Arts Orange Soda. As you can see, the images are not crisp and clean. The Pistachio is blotchy and the Orange Soda is blurry, with loss of detail on the tiny pumpkins. The close-up shows exactly what the problems are:
From my point of view (the obsessive--and correct--point of view!), these images are unsatisfactory. The best fix would be to toss this card front in the recycle bin and start over using VersaColor or some other fast-drying pigment ink.
My original plan had been to use a bunch of tiny little rhinestones on this card. I have about a thousand brown ones from a bling-buying binge a few years back. Looking at the pre-blinged card, however, I realized that crisp, shiny bling would look out of place with these blotchy, blurry images and would only heighten the fail status of this card to my obsessive mind.
That's when I thought about Stickles.
There is no way to make perfect dots with Stickles. The nature of glitter glue gives uneven edges, and dispensing the exact same amount for each berry would be impossible. The uneven edges and natural variation of the glitter dots works with the flaws of the card, rather than against them.
And so I reluctantly show this card on my blog. I love the organic curves of the vines and the color combination and the curly cursive font. If I hold it at arm's length and squint, it looks perfect.
But you can bet I'll be making this same card in pigment ink. Oh, yes, I will.
stamps: Papertrey Autumn Adornment, Keep It Simple Thanksgiving (sentiment)
paper: Papertrey white
ink: Memento, Hero Arts
accessories: Stickles, corner rounder