When I first became interested in lettering, I noticed beautiful pieces of gold calligraphy on Pinterest. And, while I loved the effect, I simply couldn’t figure out how to achieve that myself! Then, one fateful day, I ordered a Finetec Golds palette. Creating calligraphy with it has a bit of a learning curve, but it’s worth riding out any frustration to figure it out! In today’s blog post, I’m going to teach you how to use the Finetec palette to create stunning gold calligraphy and lettering.
What is the Finetec Palette?
Finetec is a German company that makes opaque metallic watercolors. The watercolors have mica in them, which makes them very shimmery. The company sells a few different palettes, so you can choose which one fits you based on personal preference. The Golds palette features a mix of four golds, a gold/silver, and a silver …
The Pearl Colors palette has all different colors of metallics …
And then there’s the option of purchasing little pans of individual colors.
While you may immediately associate watercolors with painting, many calligraphers use Finetec as a gold ink! Finetec makes a wonderful ink because you can control the opacity, mix colors, and take advantage of easy transportation.
How to Use the Finetec Palette
To transform the Finetec palette into a shimmery gold calligraphy ink, you just need to moisten the pan(s) of your choice with a bit of water! (I usually use 1/4 to 1/2 a teaspoon). Let the water sit on the Finetec for about 30 seconds, then use a small paintbrush (size 0 to 2) to mix it. As soon as you achieve the viscosity of heavy cream, you’re ready to write! To see Finetec gold ink preparation in action, you can watch this three minute video:
Of course, brushing Finetec on the back of your nib can be time-consuming if you have a very large project. That’s the downside! For recommendations on metallic inks that you can dip your nib into, you can read Calligraphy Ink Recommendations: Sparkling Delights – Part I and Part II.
If you’re not familiar with using the Finetec palette, you will more than likely experience ink flow issues. To remedy those issues, you’ll want to be vigilant about two things. First of all, make sure there’s enough water mixed into your Finetec! If the mixture is too thick, it won’t flow off the nib.
Second, make sure you clean off your nib often with water and a non-fibrous cloth while using Finetec. Shoot for cleaning every two minutes, max. The mica particles in the watercolor tend to stick to the nib, which can gunk things up and affect ink flow!
Finetec Project Tips
If you’re making a calligraphy project on dark paper, a white mechanical pencil will come in very handy! You can use the pencil to draw guidelines, then create your gold calligraphy. Finetec dries very quickly, so after 10-ish minutes, you can safely erase your guidelines!
You can create stunning pieces by combining Finetec elements and non-sparkling elements. The Janet Style envelope below utilizes Dr. Ph. Martin’s Bombay Ink in “Aqua” and Finetec Aztec Gold to create a delightful visual experience!
Finally, don’t forget that you can switch it up and use Finetec as a traditional watercolor! I used a small paintbrush and Finetec gold to create the border for this cute animal art.
Where to Find Finetec
Finetec is available in many countries. Here is a list of where you can find it:
- Australia – The Gold Leaf Factory or Calligraphy Supplies Australia
- Canada – Delta Art
- Germany – Coliro.de
- India – Amazon.com
- Netherlands – Splendith
- Philippines – Art Nebula
- Spain – Cocoloko
- United Kingdom – Scribblers
- United States – TPK! (We have individual Arabic Gold pans, the Golds palette, and the Pearl Colors palette.)
If your search for Finetec metallic watercolors comes up short, don’t worry about it! Rest assured that Finetec is not the only game in town. Kuretake makes a nice “Starry Colors” palette, Schmincke has a great golds pan, and Paper & Ink Arts has a gorgeous gold sumi color available in a little ceramic pot.
Every weekend, I conduct international giveaways on social media. This Friday (July 21st) will mark the start of a giveaway for a Finetec palette. Check TPK social media this weekend for instructions over how to enter! You can enter the giveaway on both the TPK Facebook and the TPK Instagram to double your chances of winning.
Of course, if you have any questions about using the Finetec palette, you are more than welcome to ask in the comments! I’ll be glad to help when I have a moment. 🙂 In the meantime, I hope that you learned something from this post — I know that you’ll be creating stunning gold calligraphy in no time!
Enjoy the rest of your day!