Saturday, June 13, 2020

Combining Recognizable Images with Abstract Designs Using Stencils and Masks from

Many years ago, when designing art rubber stamps, I enjoyed combining silhouettes of recognizable images with abstract patterns. 

Fast-forwarding to more recent times, StencilGirl's MaryBeth Shaw and Carol Baxter gave me the idea of creating the same kind of imagery simply by overlapping stencils.  

Their idea gave birth to today’s post --and today's post starts with a show of my final prints, before its segue into step-by-step demo photos with directions.   Showing finished products first will help make those directions easier to follow. 

Today's first recognizable image:

6" x 6" Heron stencil -- a recognizable image.

Today's first abstract design:

6" x 6" Ornamental Iron Curls -- an abstract design

Below:  6" x 6" Heron stencil was used in tandem with 6" x 6" Ornamental Iron Curls .... 

 Today's second recognizable images are both included in Pair O' Parrots stencil (6" x 6")....

 Pair O' Parrots stencil (6" x 6") -- two recognizable images

And today's third abstract design is ....

an abstract design, 6" x 6" Pavilion Shadows 

And today's third abstract design is ....

6" x 6" Sassy Spray, an abstract design

Below: Pair O' Parrots stencil (6" x 6") was used with (left) Pavilion Shadows and (right) Sassy Spray.

Below: Pair O' Parrots stencil was combined with (left) Ski-Lift Works and (right) Ornamental Iron Curls .  All three measure 6" x 6".

Ski-Lift Works (6"x 6"), an abstract design

Below:  6" x 6" Heron stencil combined with 6" x 6" Sassy Spray.

My first step was to go thru my stencils and masks, looking for images that I wanted to combine.    

The photo below shows 6" x 6" Heron and 6" x 6" Pair O’ Parrots paired with Ornamental Iron Curls and Sassy Spray (both also measuring 6" x 6".).  Later photos will show that I eventually included 6' x 6" Pavilion Shadows, as well – to give each parrot an abstract pattern of its own.

The Heron stencil -- not easy to see here -- is on the far left and Pair O' Parrots is on the right.  This parrot stencil was used in an earlier project that left yellow paint, making this stencil easier to photograph! Under the bird stencils are Ornamental Iron Curls and Sassy Spray. Please click on the above photo to enlarge it and better see details.

Next, I taped the silhouette stencils to the sturdy paper I would be printing on--

Far left: Heron ; middle:  1 of the 2 parrots in Pair O' Parrots ; far right:  the other parrot in Pair O' Parrots .  You can click on this image to enlarge it and better see detail.

I then used the same masking tape to block off the tops and bottoms of each of the three bird shapes.  What I left open was the center of each of these silhouettes, as shown below:

Again, feel free to click on the above image to better see detail.

 Over the top of these openings, I taped the abstract stencils.  Notice in the photo below that I didn’t bother to tape over the feet and lower legs of Heron; there was no need, since I knew from the taped boundaries to avoid this area with the first application of paint.

Using heavy-body green paint and a Smudgee, I daubed paint through the three abstract stencils that I'd taped on top of the two silhouette stencils of birds.

Left to right, below, are Ornamental Iron Curls over HeronPavilion Shadows over the left Parrot, and Sassy Spray over the right Parrot:

Click on the above photo to enlarge it and better see details.  The Smudgee is on the far right.

The photo below shows the paint daubed through the abstract stencils, before the stencils have been lifted.

After the stencils were lifted …

… the printed abstract areas appeared.  Click on the photo above to enlarge it and better see details.

After these areas dried, they were covered with masking tape.  Then, more paint was daubed through the newly opened stencil areas – the tops and bottoms of the bird shapes:

When the above stencils were lifted, the results were the combination images shown at the top of this post -- 

Sometimes the finished prints need small corrections,so I use a Sharpie pen of matching color to get the precision I want.

Thanks for stopping here today!  To follow my blog by email, please use that option in the upper right sidebar.  To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks, please start here.

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