Using A Compressor Or Can Of Compressed Air To Paint Flowers

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One of my Alcohol Ink friends noticed an album I have on Facebook called “Flowers”.  I did these in November of 2013 trying to discover the secrets of Stacie Raglione’s gorgous flowers.  Click here to see her wonderful work at Fine Art America. *

I used a small compressor as a substitute for canned air.  I found that the cans were getting pretty expensive and a small compressor is a one time purchase.

Here’s a video showing the technique. It’s certainly not a finished painting but will give you some ideas to try.  Take this technique and see what you can do with it.  Perhaps for underwater images, hair, just texture in an abstract.  What ideas do you have?

Here’s some pointers:

  • Use inks with a lot of alcohol if you want them to really move.
  • Hold the compressor nozzle low.
  • Move your hand/arm in the direction you want ink to flow.
  • Pulse the compressor to get little “fingers”
  • The compressor dries as it blows
  • Look for places where the ink is not dry and blow some more.


Here’s my compressor. It’s a Master Airbrush and is very light and reliable. Cost is around $80.

Let me know if you try this technique

* Please note: It’s okay to study another artist’s work to learn techniques but it is not okay to copy their work and present it as your own.  That is a copyright violation. Share your new ideas!

Just a reminder. The purpose of these tutorials is to teach new techniques that you can make your own.


4 thoughts on “Using A Compressor Or Can Of Compressed Air To Paint Flowers

  1. Mary Lomma May 4, 2015 / 2:05 pm

    Great instruction Sheryl. Here’s some I did w compressor last year on black 4X4 tiles. Resined and felt backs. I also had them enlarged on metallic for a great framed wall collage.

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jo Mersnick May 4, 2015 / 2:07 pm

    Thank you so much! I have wondered about that technique myself. I have purchased a small compressor and appreciate the tutorial on how to use it to create those beautiful flowers.


  3. Anna Nielsen April 27, 2016 / 10:23 pm

    Hi. I like you have bought a small compressor after figuring out the cost of canned air. I find it works great. Just a bit of a learning curve. Next on the list is to try using the air compressor to spray the inks. Thank you so much for taking the time with all the great tips and tutorials. You have a very special gift.


    • sherylwil April 28, 2016 / 12:19 pm

      Anna, you are most welcome.


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