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Search the archive, three years of Inklings.

Ask the Artist

Our Artist in Residence, Dina Kowal, answers your questions

  • Submit your question to Dina
  • November 4, 2020
    Q: Yvette wants to know: "I need some advice or instruction on how to make a card for a blind person."

    A: I'd definitely create a card that's tactile with lots of raised elements - die cuts, embossed layers, embellishments - with a variety of textures and recognizable shapes. For the sentiment, there are braille fonts that can be downloaded for free - I would print the sentiment in reverse, lay the cardstock onto a firm foam sheet, and press into the dots from the back side of the cardstock with a small stylus. That way they'll be legible from the front.

    October 28, 2020
    Q: nanamouse says: "I would like to make a dome card but am not sure how."

    A: A quick search showed several card designs with a slightly bowed front - this is done by creating a front panel just slightly wider than the base, and adhering it only at the sides. Check out the Bendi Frame Card tutorial for step-by-step instructions!

    October 21, 2020
    Q: Pegi asks: "I have a lot of Weekly Inklings but in moving last year I missed a lot of them. How can I get the ones I missed?"

    A: All of our newsletters are archived in the Tutorials section of the website - you can find all the back issues HERE. By the way, the Tutorial page also houses our vast tutorial library (over 800 tutorials!), insightful reviews by our Product Focus team, and all past answers to the Ask the Artist questions - you can even do a keyword search there if you're looking for information on a specific topic. Be sure to poke around for lots of valuable (and free) information!

    October 14, 2020
    Q: skmrg asks: "How should I be cleaning my photopolymer and my rubber (background) stamps? Would the method depend on the type of ink being used?"

    A: I just swipe mine with an old dry rag! In general you'll want to use the solvent that is the base of your ink. Dye inks are water-based, and you can clean them with a damp rag or shammy cloth or even a baby wipe. There is a Stazon cleaner that is formulated for use with solvent inks on rubber - it's not recommended for photopolymer, because of a chemical reaction that will eventually break down the material. There are specialty stamp cleaners you can buy - I don't use one, but you can find some member recommendations HERE! Be sure to wipe the cleaner away with something that doesn't shed lint, since that fuzz will stick to your stamps.

    October 7, 2020
    Q: Linda wants to know: "What do I do with the teeny tiny stamps that a lot of sets come with? I tend to make larger cards (half fold, 6" x 6" etc.) and those tiny stamps look lost."

    A: I've been using them most lately for wreath stamping - we have a fun tutorial HERE that shows several ways to create this fun effect! I might also put a few small stamps together on an acrylic block to create a random 'swoosh' of small images across a card or around a focal image. I've also found that many of my paper crafting supplies cross over into working with polymer clay - smaller accent stamps are great for pressing into beads and buttons, or adding texture to a clay slab!

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