Stamping Glossary

Stamping Glossary

Sorry to those who already know all of these terms, and if you don’t, then happy reading.

Airbrush: A small, air-operated tool that sprays dye or alcohol ink by shooting air across the tip of a brush-tip marker, such as a Copic. Air compression may be mechanized or manually operated via a squeeze bulb.

Blender pen: A dual-tip marker filled with a clear blending fluid. Used to achieve subtle, watercolour effects.

Blocks, acrylic: Various size clear, acrylic blocks used to mount cling-foam or photopolymer stamps for stamping.

Blocks, wood: Various size wood blocks used for pre-mounting rubber stamps.

Brayer: A small hand roller similar to a paint roller used to spread ink and paint across paper or stamps. Available with foam or rubber rollers.

Brush, aqua: A brush with a refillable tube meant for holding water. Allows the user to watercolour without the use of a water bucket or cup.

Brush, digital: A digital file (.PNG or .ABR) that enables the user to digitally stamp images in photo-editing software using the Brush tool.

Brush, foam: A foam tipped dowel often with a wedge shaped end that can be used like a traditional brush for transferring paint and ink.

Brush, stipple: A stiff-bristle brush used for pouncing ink or paint onto paper to achieve mottled or ‘pricky’ effects.  

Brush, watercolour: One of various sizes soft bristled brushes used for applying light washes of ink and water mixtures to paper. see also: Watercolouring

Chalk: A soft, mineral based medium used to achieve soft colour effects with stamped images.

Cling mounting foam: A foam with a strong adhesive on one side and a repositionable adhesive on the other, used for mounting rubber stamps to acrylic blocks.

Conditioning: The act of roughing up a new stamp with an eraser to enable ink to better cling to the image surface.

Copics: Easy-to-blend alcohol ink markers popular for colouring stamped images with realistic shading and colour results.

Crayons, watercolour: Water-soluble crayons that enable the user to create watercolour effects either by lifting the colour from the crayon using a watercolour brush or aqua brush or by blending the colour that has already been applied to paper. see also: Watercolouring.

Direct-to-paper: The technique of brushing an inkpad directly across a piece of paper to achieve a lightly distressed look.

Dye, tea: A dye ink whose colour is derived from tea. Creates a subtle, natural aged look when applied to paper.

Dye, walnut: A dye ink whose colour is derived from crushed walnuts. Creates a deep sepia-tone stain that can make papers look aged. Can be used to watercolour.

Embossing: To create a raised effect on paper or cardstock. see also: Embossing, dry and Embossing, heat.

Embossing, dry: To create a raised section or design on a piece of paper by pressing the paper through a stencil-like template using a ball-end stylus. Can also be accomplished by using a manual die-cutting machine (Big Shot, Cuttlebug) and an embossing folder or a design plate combined with a silicone or rubber embossing pad.

Embossing, heat: To create a glossy, raised section or design on a piece of paper by coating it with a powder that melts when heat is applied to it.

Emboss resist: A technique in which ink is applied over a heat-embossed image in order to make it stand out on a project. The ink penetrates the paper around the embossed image, but wipes cleanly off the image with a paper towel.

Embossing powder: A fine powder that sticks to pigment and watermark ink and melts when heat is applied to it. see also: Embossing, heat.

Glaze, dimensional: A clear, liquid adhesive that creates a raised layer when dry.

Heat setting: The act of applying heat to ink in order to dry it and ensure that it will not smear when touched.

Heat tool: A small, handheld tool that gently and quickly blows hot air. Used in heat setting and heat embossing.

Huffing: The act of re-moistening drying ink by breathing from one's mouth onto an inked stamp.

Ink: A liquid that contains pigment or dye for the purpose of applying the colour to a surface.

Ink, alcohol: An alcohol-based, dye ink that is easy to blend and non-soluble in water.

Ink, chalk: A chalk-based, pigment ink that dries quickly without being heat set and provides a soft, chalky finish.

Ink, dye: A water-soluble ink whose colour has been added using dyes. Can be used to watercolour.

Ink, hybrid: A fast-drying, pigment ink. Requires heat setting on glossy surfaces and fabric.

Ink, Indian: A simple, black, solvent-based ink whose colour is derived from carbon. Also called India ink or Chinese ink.

Ink, pigment: A water-resistant ink whose colour has been added using pigment particles.

Ink, solvent: A waterproof, solvent-based ink ideal for use on non-porous surfaces. Dissolves in alcohol.

Ink, watermark: A sticky, translucent ink ideal for creating watermark prints on paper and heat embossing.

Ink refill: A small bottle of ink for use in rewetting dry inkpads.

Inkpad: A raised foam or felt pad soaked with ink in order to facilitate the application of that ink through stamping or direct-to-paper techniques.

Kissing: A technique involving pressing one stamp (inked or uninked) to another, inked stamp in order to transfer the image of one stamp to another. Ideal for creating patterned images.

Masking: 1) A technique involving covering a portion of a stamp during the inking process in order to remove that portion of the image from the final result. 2) A technique involving stamping an image, covering it, and stamping another image over part of the covered image in order to create the illusion that one image is behind the other. see also: Over stamping. 3) A technique involving covering a portion of a project in order to keep it free of ink.

Marker: An ink-filled reservoir with a brush tip at one end for colouring. May also have a pen tip for drawing and writing.

Over stamping: A technique involving stamping an image, covering it, and stamping another image over part of the covered image in order to create the illusion that one image is behind the other. see also: Masking.

Paint, acrylic: A fast-drying, water-soluble paint made from pigment suspended in an acrylic polymer base.

Paint, watercolour: A paint created by suspending pigment in a water-soluble medium. Dye ink can also be used to watercolour.

Paint, shimmer: A paint made from light-reflecting pigment suspended in a lightweight medium (typically polymer based).

Paper piecing: A technique to create detailed, multicoloured images by stamping a single image on multiple colours/patterns of paper and cutting out the image in pieces. The pieces are then reassembled to create a multicoloured image.

Pencils, coloured: A pencil with a solid pigment core used for colouring.

Pencils, watercolour: A pencil with a solid, water-soluble core. Allows the user to colour an image, then blend the pencil marks using a watercolour brush or aqua brush.

Pouncing: The act of quickly applying a brush or pencil to a surface in a straight-up, straight-down motion to create small dots.

Pigment powders: Pure mineral-based, coloured powders (often with light-reflecting surfaces) that have not been suspended in any medium to create paint or ink.

Re-inkers: see Ink refills.

Rock 'n' Roll: A technique in which a two-tone image is obtained by inking a rubber or photopolymer stamp with a light colour, and then rolling the edges of the stamp in a darker colour of ink.

Sponge dauber: A sponge dauber is a small piece of foam that has been adhered to a plastic cylinder. The user can then place the cylinder on one finger to enable him or her to apply ink with precision.

Spray ink: A lightweight ink in which microscopic pigment particles (often with light-reflecting surfaces) have been suspended. The ink is applied through a simple, pump-action spray.

Stamp: A surface that has been etched with a negative image for the purpose of printing a positive image.

Stamp, acrylic/clear: See Stamp, photopolymer.

Stamp, photopolymer: A stamp in which the negative image has been etched into a flexible photopolymer material containing varying degrees of silicone. The etching usually occurs by transferring the image into the liquid photopolymer using a light-based process. When the material cools and hardens, the stamp is created.

Stamp, rubber: A stamp in which the negative image has been etched into rubber through a plate- or die-based process or burned into the rubber using a laser.

Stamp, wheel: A rubber stamp that has been rolled and mounted onto a wheel for the purpose of quick image transfer.

Stamp cleaner: A water-based or solvent-based cleaner for the purpose of removing ink from stamps.

Stamping off: A technique used to create images lighter than a normal stamped image, also referred to as "ghost images", by stamping without re-inking the stamp after the initial image is stamped.

Stamp Press: A large acrylic block with spring feet that enables the user to quickly produce stamped pieces of the same design. Manufactured by Fiskars

Stamp-a-ma-jig: A stamp positioning system involving a placement ‘jig’ and clear plastic sheet that allows the user to perfectly place stamped images on a project. Manufactured by Stampin Up! Inkadinkado and,  other companies.

Stippling: A technique involving pouncing an ink or paint covered stipple or other stiff-bristled brush on paper.

Two-step stamping: A technique in which two or more stamps are used to create a single, detailed image. Trademarked by Stampin' Up! as Two-Step Stampin'

Watercoloring: A painting method in which thin washes of colour are applied in layers to achieve detailed shadows and highlights.


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