Sherri originally developed ITS for transferring images onto non-porous surfaces like metal. But there is another bonus use for the product that she’s been using to get fantastic results. By mixing ITS with pigment powders, you can create a custom palette of colors that you can use to paint on non-porous surfaces. The example here shows colors applied to a fine metal clay bracelet. So if you have some ITS solution and pigment powders, it’s time to get creative. It’s best to practice on some bottle caps or other metal surface to get used to working with the paint before you start on your jewelry piece.
Steps for applying color to metal using ITS:
1. Mix a very small amount of pigment powder with a drop of ITS with a toothpick on waxed paper. A little goes a long way. Use less powder for a transparent watercolor effect, or add more for opaque color. (Wear a respiratory mask to avoid inhaling pigment powder.)
2. Use a toothpick or small paintbrush to apply the paint to your surface. It dries quickly, so work with small amounts. Colors can be layered or mixed as with any other type of paint. If you make a mistake, act quickly and scrape the paint off. After it is set, you will have to sand it off. (For metal clay pieces you can fire the piece to remove the paint.)
3. If you just want color only in the recessed areas of your surface, as in these examples, paint the entire surface first, then scrape the paint off the raised areas with a toothpick after about 10 minutes, when the paint is almost set.
4. Let the ITS paint dry completely. Set the paint with a heat gun for about one minute. This will not only set the paint, but also bring out the color and clarity of the pigment powder for an enamel-like finish.