Tea, Collaboration, and Contemplation

A very wonderful friend came to visit me today bearing yummy cheeses and crackers and cookies and chocolate.  Bat cookies!  We made a pot of tea and had fun laughing at Oreo being a punk trying to convince us to share cheese and crackers and cookies.
We looked at the fabric paint/print block conundrum, which inspired me to do a bit more research into a solution.  I thought I'd share what I'd found
 - making a stamp won't work with the metallic acrylics I'm using for this particular project, but might be possible with non-metallics.  Apparently the light reflective particles (like mica) don't really pass through the felt or paper towel or whatever you choose to use for the pad.  This makes sense, but I would never have realized it and thus might well have wasted time and paint.
- A lot of people seem to feel that using inks is a better idea.  Typically water-based or acrylic screen-printing or block printing inks.  I haven't used them myself yet, but I hesitate to use them because I've found the range of colors to be limited and because they're difficult to find in many stores and I like to be able to buy stuff in person the first time around.  I also worry that some of them tend to leave too much of a thick layer and a stiff hand.  But then, so do the metallics.
- I have also seen a lot of suggestions for using a brayer to apply paint/ink to the block.  I think this is the direction I'm most inclined toward at the moment.
- There is also a suggestion to use cotton swabs or similar items to clean paint out of the grooves just before printing.  I sort of tried this already with a paintbrush and didn't find it all that satisfactory, but I may give it another shot.

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