Splatter Resist Alcohol Ink Tile
I still have some ceramic tiles left from my last run to the hardware store, so when I remembered I had saved the contact paper heart from my Valentine's Day Glass Etching project, I knew exactly what I wanted to try.
I grabbed some bright alcohol inks, canned air, a 6 inch ceramic tile, and my contact paper heart. I originally cut it out free hand by folding the contact paper, so it doesn't have to be perfect, but I'm sure if you have a cutting machine you could use that to make whatever shape you'd like in contact paper or vinyl. I peeled back the paper backing and applied the heart to the middle of the tile (as best as I could eyeball it). Then I rubbed down the edges of the contact paper.
I squeezed out a drop of alcohol ink near the edge of the heart and used canned air to blow the drop out from the center of the tile. I usually hold the can with my right hand and a plastic lid with my left (I use the lid from the small plastic box I keep my inks in and then just wipe it off with rubbing alcohol when the project is done). A paper plate or piece of cardboard would also work, but unless you're crafting someplace where you don't mind stray drops of ink getting everywhere, you'll want to hold up some sort of shield in the direction you are spraying your canned air.
I worked my way around the tile with drops and blowing the ink. I tried to stay rainbow ordered-ish so that the colors next to each other wouldn't mix and turn into unpleasant shades of brown. I still had quite a few gaps after one trip around the tile. There were places where the colors didn't blow out nicely or where the ink drop squeezed out very different amounts of ink.
So I filled in as best as I could, just adding drops in places where there were big white spaces and blowing the ink away from the center until the tile was mostly covered.
Next I used a technique that I first used when testing rubbing alcohols earlier this year. I used a glass eye dropper (or a pipette) with some rubbing alcohol to get tiny little drops to form in the ink. Find a small bowl to pour some rubbing alcohol into (I actually used the lid of my box again, it has a lip and needed rubbing alcohol in it to clean the splatters anyway). You don't need very much rubbing alcohol because the technique requires the dropper to be empty. I dip the droppers tip into the alcohol and suck some up. Then I squirt it all back out. Then I squeeze the the dropper over the ink to expel any tiny amounts of alcohol that are left in the dropper and it creates a pretty splatter pattern.
When I was all done going around the tile and splattering, I was really pleased with the pattern. I let the tile dry for a couple hours to make sure I wouldn't smear it when I pulled up the heart, and then I carefully peeled it off. There was one small area towards the bottom point of the heart where there was a little bleed through from the ink. I used a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to clean up the bit of ink that seeped in along edge of the contact paper and we were good to go.
If you don't plan to handle your tile at all, you can probably just set it on a shelf and forget about it, but of all the surfaces that I've inked, ceramic tile is the most likely for the ink to smear, smudge, or flake off of, so I'd recommend sealing it. I used an acrylic spray. The spray will react a little bit with the ink, so to minimize that reaction spray a very quick light layer on the tile to set the ink and then let it dry before coming back and getting a couple of good coats on. You could also seal the tile with Mod Podge sealer if you like. Update: This Krylon Maxx clear acrylic sealer in the photo above is a bad choice--it turned yellow and flaked off of the tile. I'd now recommend Krylon Kamar Varnish (found in the art supplies--not in the hardware section) is an excellent first sealer. It doesn't react with the ink and then you can use your favorite clear acrylic sealer or mod podge after it's dried.
I stuck a set of little felt circles on the bottom of my tile to keep it from scratching any tables you set it on and I was all done. I have also cut a square of felt and glued it onto the bottoms of my tiles in the past--either would work. You could also use super glue to glue a picture hanger to the back of the tile if you want to hang it on the wall.
I think my tile turned out really cute, and I can't wait to try out more resists.