Friday, May 1, 2015

Painting: Stencil Tutorial #2

The purpose of this tutorial is to show the process for using painter's tape stencils to create a complex image that develops first in the background and then proceeds to the middle ground and foreground. The two images on the left on each example were kept out during the demo as a reference (one for value and the other for scale).

01. An area of Bristol is taped off at the same scale as my digital print. I added some divisions to my digital print at correspond to the divisions you see on my tape. This is to help me get the scale of my drawing as close as possible. Note that on my digital print I've marked off what is background, what is foreground and what is middle ground. This allows me to work the painting like the layers in Photoshop or Illustrator. Whats on the bottom of the stacking order is farther away but is painted first. 

02. I first start by painting the background. I mix up some paint based on the values I had decided on in my digital mockup. Because these shapes are so simple I did not use any additional tape stenciling here. I used a blow drier to dry the paint quickly so I could move on to the next step.

03. After the paint was dried I added more tape over my painting and gridded it off again. 

04. In this composition there was only one area that I considered to be in the middle ground. I use the tape grid as a reference to freehand draw with a marker the foreground figure I am attempting to render. 

05. I carefully cut and peel back the tape revealing the middle ground group of figures.

06. After matching my physical painted mixture against my digital reference (left) I proceed to paint the masked off middle ground.

07. The paint is once again dried with a blow drier to speed things up and the tape is removed.

08. I apply a new covering of tape, grid it up again, freehand draw the foreground figures and cut and peel them away. I mix the required value of paint for this area and begin painting the stenciled area.

09. One more round of tape, grid, cut and paint was used to capture the small figure in the bottom left but the steps are the same as before. The process allowed me to work from background to foreground, taking what was otherwise a rather complex image and breaking it into individual elements, separated in space. Because the taping was somewhat time consuming I sped things up with a blow drier and freehand drawing. 

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