Sumi ink is traditionally a black Chinese calligraphy and painting ink that works seamlessly on Japanese rice paper, Awagami papers, watercolour paper, and Yupo paper. This beautiful deep matte liquid ink flows smoothly from bamboo calligraphy pens, calligraphy brushes, fluid paint brushes, natural sable haired watercolour paint brushes and traditional dip pens.
Blend and work Sumi ink in monotone or add it to an existing piece of artwork. The rich and velvety opaqueness of Sumi ink can cover other mediums such as acrylic inks, shellac inks, and watercolours with ease.
Sumi ink is naturally dense in nature. It can be diluted with water so that grey tones can be worked when painting with it. There is an entirely new world of tones, hues, and density of colour. The spectrum available to the artist with just one bottle of Sumi ink will make your eyes widen with appreciation. Layering watered down Sumi ink on a piece of quality 300gsm paper can create beautiful, flowing effects. In contrast, smooth, intense outlines and silhouettes can be made with single brush strokes.
If you are into urban sketching or traditional comic sketching then Sumi ink is a medium you must try. It can be used with traditional calligraphy pens as well. Crosshatching, lines, stippling, and patterns can be created to form quick sketches on the go.
When writing with Sumi ink, a dip pen and traditional parchment calligraphy paper can be used with some practice blotting paper. There is a real art to the handwritten letter in this century of the digital age; take your work to the next level, and compliment it with a traditional coloured wax seal.
Did you know that onion skins (the first, papery layer) is used to create the most magical paper? Thin, airy, almost incandescent; onion skin paper is a flawless companion to Sumi Ink. The tradition of ink, paper, and brush can be dated back to the times of the ancient Ottoman Empire. Most of the ink dyes were made from exotic ingredients like pomegranates, walnuts, and tea. Burnt sugar was used to create caramel, yellowish white. Onion skins made red and buckthorn made yellow. These dyes weren’t just used to make ink dyes; the scribes also dyed their papers with them as well.
The possibilities of Sumi ink are only limited by your own imagination. Draw with it, paint with it, write with it, and own it.