Card-Making Techniques: Yupo Paper
Join Deborah Nolan to learn exciting card-making applications for Yupo paper!
Yupo is a synthetic cardstock made of 100% polypropylene. Despite its nonporous nature, Yupo has long been a favorite with watercolor artists because it doesn’t pill, curl or warp, and it allows pinpoint control of the paint. Artists who work with ink appreciate the way colors retain their vividness and how Yupo’s smooth matte surface yields crisp images. A variety of media can be used on this paper including, but not limited to, acrylic paints, Dylusions ink sprays and paints, India inks, alcohol inks, Archival inks, Staz-On inks, Sharpie markers and Faber-Castell PITT artist pens.
Yupo initially appears to be identical to glossy cardstock, but the differences are great. Ink dries on the latter almost immediately. Ink also cannot be removed from glossy cardstock, so blending can quickly become muddy as the colors pile up on one another.
In contrast, ink takes longer to dry on Yupo, making it easier to manipulate and remove. Ink can also be reactivated and will continue to interact and move as long as it is wet. As a result, color blending is automatic and trouble-free.
There are three important caveats to consider before working with Yupo. First, its nonporous surface requires extended drying time without benefit of a heat tool, which will warp and melt Yupo immediately. Second, finished projects should be sealed with a fixative such as Krylon Clear Coat. Finally, skin oils provide a permanent resist when they come in contact with Yupo, so rubber gloves are a must.
There are many techniques for applying alcohol ink to Yupo. Hours of enjoyment are guaranteed to anyone who wants to sit down and have a good play. And after you’ve exhausted the alcohol inks, you’ll be hooked enough to try watercolors, acrylics, markers and all the rest of the media.
Step 1: Squeeze drop of ink onto Yupo paper. The droplet will expand in a circular shape, resulting in an aura or halo effect (Photo 1).
Step 2: Repeat Step 1 as desired with the same or different colors. As droplets
expand, they react with the other droplets (Photo 2).
Step 3: Release drops of 91% isopropyl alcohol or Ranger Alcohol Blending Solution (ABS) to further interact with ink droplets (Photo 3).
Step 1: Apply drops of three alcohol ink colors to felt or foam ink applicator tool. For best results, allow space between colors. If desired, add drops of 91% isopropyl alcohol or Ranger ABS (Photo 4).
Step 2: Pounce applicator on Yupo paper or dab with twisting motion (Photo 5). Step 3: If desired, refresh applicator with ink or alcohol and repeat Step 2.
Step 1: Squeeze drop of ink on Yupo paper. Step 2: Blow through straw to chase ink into veins or to manipulate droplet’s shape (Photo 6).
Step 1: Squeeze drop of ink on Yupo paper. Step 2: After ink has dissipated but is still wet,we gently blot with textured paper towel or sea sponge (Photo 7).
Step 1: Squeeze drops of ink on Yupo paper. Step 2: Push droplets into planes or lines with side of coffee stir stick (Photo 8).
Step 1: Apply 91% isopropyl alcohol or Ranger ABS to pad, cloth or cotton-tip swab.
Step 2: Press pad or cotton-tip swab into inked Yupo paper; lift off desired amount of ink (Photo 9).
Step 1: On dry, inked Yupo paper, stamp image with Archival ink. Step 2: Immediately remove ink with dry, soft cloth (Photo 10).
Step 1: Place stencil on dry, inked Yupo paper.
Step 2: Dampen foam ink blending tool with 91% isopropyl alcohol or Ranger ABS.
Step 3: Gently rub blending tool over stencil to lift ink (Photo 11).
Step 1: Place stencil on dry, inked Yupo paper; secure stencil’s edges with removable tape.
Step 2: Hold down first stencil opening with two fingers; drop ink into opening (Photo 12). Step 3: Let ink stabilize before releasing fingers. Step 4: Working clockwise, repeat Steps 2 and 3 with each stencil opening.
Masking, Version 1
Step 1: Place plastic mask or sticker on uninked Yupo paper. Step 2: Apply ink(s) to foam applicator tool and pounce over sticker and surrounding area (Photo 13).
Step 3: Once dry, gently remove sticker (Photo 14).
Masking, Version 2
Step 1: Place sticker on dry, inked Yupo paper.
Step 2: Apply alcohol to foam applicator tool and pounce over sticker and surrounding area.
Step 3: Once dry, gently remove sticker.
Step 1: On dry, inked Yupo, doodle with permanent ink pens.
Step 2: Start doodling in upper left corner and work clockwise. Cover doodling with scrap paper to avoid smearing.
Step 3: Allow doodling to dry 24 hours; spray with fixative.