Trying Kielty Inks for the First Time

Pacephotographs/ February 18, 2019/ About Alcohol Ink, Art, News/ 4 comments

First up – I’m not associated with Kielty Inks, nor did I receive any free products from the company (sadly). I’m writing because I chose to.

How it Started

Last autumn I heard of a new AI brand called Kielty but didn’t pay much attention because stupidly enough I assumed I wouldn’t be able to get the inks in my corner of the world. It’s difficult enough to get my hands on Piñata or Ranger so I guessed a new and unknown brand won’t be available. Plus someone had said something like Celtic Ink, which I obviously couldn’t find anywhere.

Then I saw that someone from said corner of the world had ordered Kielty so I thought I’d give it a try. I went all in and ordered the full bundle plus extra stuff (to save p&p).

Just six days later my parcel arrived.

The Inks

The bottles look pretty much like any regular ink. But the tops have already been colour coded and every label has a drop of ink on it to show what it’s content looks like.

After giving them a few hours to go up to room temperature (the parcel was kind of cold) I started experimenting. And what can I say? These inks are lovely. They are brilliantly pigmented, spread easily and a little goes a long way. I find they do behave similarly to Ranger’s inks and blend well with both Ranger and Piñata inks. The blending solution is easy to use and works nicely. I especially like that

About Lightfastness

On their Facebook page I asked Kielty about varnishes and UV protection. The answer:

“I have heard that Kamar interacts with my inks. I am waiting on a can to test it. Most water based varnishes should work fine. I will be releasing one in a few weeks.”

“My inks have very good light fastness. A varnish will not do much to effect this unless it has a UV inhibitor built in. Or unless you put the piece behind uv filtering plastic/glass. I am releasing in a few weeks a varnish with uv inhibitors that will extent light fastness to over 250 years in normal display conditions. I have not been able to reliably test the time beyond that.”

So far I’ve noticed that Ghiant and Liquitex fixatives both reactivate the inks, so I’m still looking for a decent varnish…

Besides the inks and blending solution Kielty also offers glitter, a layering solution (which looks extremely promising, more in another post), a retarding solution, Kelpi to prep porous surfaces, and neddles and tips for fine details when applying the inks. I’ll be testing everything, that’s for sure!

Here’s a video of me using the inks.

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  1. l have been reading up on the kielty inks and think that saying they are lightfast in normal conditions, means that they still cannot be put under bright lights or sunlight so similar to the ranger and pinata. l keep my ink art indoors and have no problem with fading , just do one coat of a spray picture varnish.

    1. I surely recommend adding a coat of a UV protective varnish as well. Kamar is not readily available where I live so it’s a bit of a search…

  2. Hey guys.
    Regarding lightfastness I have to say that about normal display conditions.
    I have samples exposed to sunlight since day one and there has been no appreciable change. One sample has been out in the elements since September, The ink is applied to kelpie on wood too, so a worse case scenario. I have pictures of this but I cant list them here, so contact me through facebook if you wnt to see this. Other samples that are retained are in liquid form (even more sensitive) to UV and this is tested in my spectrophotometer once a month since September, again no appreciable change.
    I have a side by side of another brand and mine taped to a window in the lab, I started to notice bleaching of the other brand in less than 2 weeks. Still no change in mine.

    So, all I can say is that I have invested considerable time investigating LF of my inks and I am confident that you guys will be happy 🙂 I am always around if people want to ask questions.

    If you make a piece to go on display regardless of how light fast my ink is it should be protected! Because that is just good practice and something you should be doing anyway.

    Any product which has an organic solvent or hydrocarbon base will interact with my product. Water based varnishes (better for you and the planet anyway) work with my inks and KI will have one out in a few weeks.

    1. Thank you for your reply and the information. That’s really helpful!

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