Monday, March 14, 2016

Daler Rowney VS Izink VS Silks VS Fluid Acrylic

Soooooo...I finally dropped the hammer on getting some Daler Rowney FW Acrylic inks. I've wanted to try them out and play around with them to see if they are like some of the Izink I currently own. A sale on the inks HERE was enticing enough but then I saw that they come in NEON colors; Well, Damn! I'm all over that. I bought 4 bottles; colors that I hoped would round out a rainbow of colors with my Izinks.

But were they compatible? Were they even similar? I get so confused when products come into my field of vision and I'm not sure if they are the same as something I've got. (Just like the last showdown between Distress Crayons and gelatos!)

So entering the ring this time are acrylic inks! And then a couple more products entered the ring but fortunately none of them had folding chairs. (Sorry, wrestling reference...)

IN THIS CORNER:  Daler Rowney FW Acrylic Inks
These are a water-soluble acrylic ink that dries with a water resistant film on most surfaces. All 66 colors are very to extremely light-fast and can be mixed. They are permanent and translucent. They come in several varieties including shimmering and pearlescent. These inks can be used like a paint or used in pens and airbrushes. It can also be sprayed in a mister bottle and diluted with water. They come in a glass bottle with an eyedropper-like dispenser in the cap; it appears like the old black ink bottles of yesteryear.

AND IN THE OTHER CORNER: Izink from Aladine (Distributed by Clearsnap)
These are an acrylic based pigment ink that is acid-free and can be used on a variety of surfaces. According to the Clearsnap website, the ink is opaque and is mainly used for hobby arts and crafts. It is available in 26 colors, some of which are pearlescent. They can be diluted with water and used like a paint. They can be mixed. They come in a small bottle with an eyedropper-like dispenser in the cap.

So in a nutshell, I discovered that these two products are, for all intensive purposes, THE SAME.  They are both translucent and permanent which means you can easily layer colors on top of each other and still see the lower layer. Both come in the same delivery system; a bottle with an eyedropper.
Here's my test sheet:
I didn't have two colors that were similar so I just went with the green and yellow. (It made more sense to buy new colors in case they really were interchangeable.) I used a sturdy textured paper to test on. (It looks like watercolor paper but it doesn't really behave that way. It's paper that's designed for laser printing.) I tested two colors that both had shimmer to them.
While the Izink description said it was "opaque", it really wasn't. I painted right over black marker and it didn't even come close to covering it. This color is Cactus. I applied it with a brush with no water. It didn't take long to dry so I stamped over it with StazOn ink with no problems. Black markers worked over the top as well. I tried Sharpies and PITT pens. The brush PITT pen smeared just like it does over acrylic paint.

All of this was true for the Daler Rowney ink in the Hot Cool Yellow color. (Sorry the photo didn't come out too well!)
This sample also shows a little Fluorescent orange layered over the top.
The Daler Rowney ink seemed to be a bit more pigmented that the Izink but it's hardly a difference worth noting. I did learn that a little of both of these products goes a LONG way. I dropped the ink directly onto the paper before spreading it with a brush. I got a little too much yellow and man, I could have coated three times the area of my paper with it. Both had good shimmer to them but the Izink dried with more shimmer that the Daler Rowney...but that may also be because of said "too much" ink. As I was trying to spread out my mess of yellow ink, I ended up going over the same area several times. I think this may have covered up some of the shimmer. It just seems like the "thicker" parts of the ink aren't as shimmery. So for maximum shimmer, a thin layer is best.

A downside to both of these products is that the eyedropper can clog. Only one of my 5 Izinks has a clear eyedropper. And 2 of them came to me with clogged droppers. (In fact, I didn't realize they were really a dropper...I thought it was some kind of stirrer because I couldn't get any ink to draw up into it.) I bought 4 of the Daler Rowney inks and the yellow had a slightly clogged dropper. (The cause of my yellow mess when starting. At first, I thought the product was very thick but it was just a clump of mica/particles clogging up the dropper.) I haven't checked the Copper color I got. The neon colors aren't shimmery so no problems there.
Just a note that these things will occur with these products.

I also mixed colors and they mixed wonderfully together to create new colors. I got a seriously wonderful orange and a good purple color. I mixed them on my palette and brushed over paper.

So after testing, I added in two more products that I had at hand. These other two products had similar traits and I wondered how they would compare.
Joining in the fray:
TAG TEAM 1:  Silks Acrylic Glaze by ColourArte
These are iridescent paints that create a semi-gloss glaze and they contain mica. They work on a variety of surfaces and can be thinned with water. They come in 96 colors and all are shimmering. They are permanent and translucent. They come in a small pot.

TAG TEAM 2:  Golden Fluid Acrylic
Fluid acrylics are a type of acrylic paint that are generally more translucent that regular paint. Fluid acrylic is highly pigmented, light-fast, and permanent. They can be thinned with water or other mediums like airbrush medium. They can be mixed and work on a variety of surfaces. Golden produces 66 colors. They come in a small plastic bottle.

I tried out the Silks first since it was shimmery. I only have 4 of them but Pretty Peridot was a comparable green. Remarkably, but not surprisingly, the Silks had all the same characteristics of the other two. It behaved the same way with my tests.

But there is one glaring difference. Silks is thicker. It goes on more like a paint and has more body. As you can see in the above photo, those little background lines are where the paint held it's line. It seems that the Silks are the "heavy body" version of the other two.
The black pen test worked as well even though it is recommended that the Silks be allowed to cure for 48 hours.

So I had figured out that I had three products that did basically the same thing. One of them was just thicker than the others.

It seemed to me at this point that my Golden Fluid acrylics worked the same way without the shimmer. So since I had a comparable yellow, I made up a quick card for that.
The only difference I noted here was that this seemed more pigmented that all the others. I'm not sure if that's because the others has a shimmer and this didn't or if the nature of the product. If you look at the square on this card, you can see that the paint covers better here. Of course, this one is labeled "opaque" but then again, the Izink website says those are "opaque".

So what can I conclude?
I had fun playing with stuff and figuring out how they behave for the way I work. I now KNOW that these acrylic products are basically the same thing with small differences. Will I favor one more than the other? Probably.
I currently love the Golden fluid acrylics because they are an artist grade, high quality product and I'm still doing Inspiration Wednesday with Donna Downey...and that is the paint she uses most often.
But I'm very attracted to the Silks acrylic glaze simply because of the variety of colors and the shimmer they provide.
As for the Izink and Daler Rowney inks, I think they will find a place in my stash in certain colors. They are basically interchangeable so I'll go with whatever colors I like. (Like the neon colors from Daler Rowney or the Volubilis in Izink...a deep blue!)

I learned a lot from this play-time and it helped me to categorize my products. Now I understand what they can and can't do.

"Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It's the courage to continue that counts."  --Winston Churchill

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