Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Once, I called today's technique "double exposure" -- because the result is a double-print image.  But more recently  I've learned the word more commonly used is "bumping."

First, a stencil or mask is used in one position on blank paper.  Then, when that paint has dried, the stencil is "bumped" so that it goes off-register from the original print.  When it's off-register this way, it's used again, with a different color paint.

The same stencil can be used for both prints, or -- to take the bumping technique one step farther -- a near-twin stencil can be used for the second print.

It was that one step farther that I took using my 9" x 12"  Tangled Pods and Dangled Pods .  (Dangled Pods is a reversed version of Tangled Pods!  They are near-twins, as shown below.  They can work together as a set, but are also available separately.)

Tangled Pods (9" x 12") -- a mask

Dangled Pods (9" x 12") -- a stencil

Starting with Dangled Pods, I printed papers to decorate two 5.75" x 5.75" greeting cards with this version of the design; this version, being a stencil, leaves the pods and vines white, while a coat of paint fills in the negative space around the pods and vines.

After that first print dried, I used Tangled Pods -- which is a mask -- carefully placing it somewhat off-register from the reverse-version, original print.  

As you can see in the photos below, this two-step approach results in a double-image, which differs just slightly from the look that's achieved when the same stencil is used twice.


The sizes used today are 9" x 12."  6" x 6" sizes are also available -- Small Tangled Pods and Small Dangled Pods.  To scroll through the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks, you can start here.  Many thanks!

Saturday, August 22, 2020

More Artists Working with Stencils and Masks

Artist Linda Webr made today's first print, using watercolor and one-third of my 6" x 6" stencil Quilted Flower Garden ...

... and I really admire the way she used such a "loose" medium to get 
this print -- it has the widely popular "painterly" look yet at the same time retains much of the stencil's original design.  This achievement may sound easy, but not everyone (myself included) can work this well with watercolor and stencils.  

If it sounds out-of-the-box thinking to use watercolor with stencils, just wait!  Another artist -- Melissa Ohlman-Roberge -- has used my 9" x 12" Clustered Leaves to make this print ....

... and the medium Melissa used was stained water left over from soaking a batch of beans!   I take my hat off to creative thinkers like Melissa!  I think the message we can take away from this is:  "Go ahead!  Try anything!"  

Today's final pieces of stencil-made art were created by artist Debi Adams. 
Check out StencilGirl Talk here -- to see a full-length write-up, with step-by-step photos, showing what Debi Adams did with stencils by Seth Apter and Nathalie Kalbach, alongside my 9” x 12” stencil Clustered Leaves.

Here is just a small sample:

To see more work by Debi Adams, visit her blog.

To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks, please visit here.

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Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Black and White Art-Making Ideas with Stencils and Masks

Today's first black-and-white art sample features hot air balloons created with freehand drawings.  

Featured stencil: my 9" x 12" stencil Facets.

Developing the art sample above, I started with a mix of white gesso and liquid matte medium; and I used the subtractive/reductive technique to lay in the stenciled area.  My 9" x 12" Facets, in its entirety, looks like this:

Facets (9" x 12")

After creating today's hot air balloon art-sample, I switched to a second subject -- vases -- and used zinc white acrylic instead of a gesso-liquid matte medium mixture ... 

Above:  These stencil-patterns of smaller vases in the upper left and lower right were created with my 9" x 12" stencil Vases.

My 9" x 12" stencil Vases looks like this:

Vases (9" x 12")

Thanks for visiting my blog today!  To follow by email, just use this option in the upper right sidebar.

To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks, please start here.

Saturday, August 15, 2020

Artists Using Masks and Stencils from

Clustered Leaves is a 9" x 12" mask that looks like this--

-- and I continue to be delighted by ways that other artists use it in their art-making ....

Melissa Ohlman-Roberge has created the stunning art below; please check out the rich handling of details!

For a hint at the versatility of this mask, my next featured artist is Mary Bucek, who's chosen a cool color scheme and a Gelli Plate to produce the two art samples below--

Next up:  Jackie Giammarco has a novel approach to using my 9" x 12" mask Looking up Through Trees L753.  The stencil itself is shown in the top photo below --

-- and, after making a multi-color print with Looking up Through Trees L753Jackie grabbed scissors to cut out some of the shapes created by the interplay of overhead tree branches.  Genius-level creative idea!  Some of those cut-outs appear in the photo below....


After its borders have been removed, and after it's been used for multiple painting projects, Looking up Through Trees L753 looks like this --

Above:  This is my own well-used mask.

Photographer-artist Kim Ross has used my 6" x 6" stencil Feathers 6 in making the simple yet truly dramatic print below:

I sincerely thank each and every artist who granted permission for me to re-post her art here today; and I thank every one of you who have come for a quick visit to today's blog post!  To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl masks and stencils, please start here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Trivia Quiz Answers

What stencils and masks were used to make these prints?

Above:  At the far right in the upper third of the photo, the top layer of green paint was printed with Swatton Grid (6" x 6" mask.) 

And at the bottom of the above photo (with white paint), I used my  6" x 6" Marbles stencil.

Swatton Grid (6" x 6" mask)

Below:  In the upper half of the photo, the top layer of purple acrylic paint was printed with my 6" x 6" stencil Seaweed.

The stencil Seaweed itself looks like this:

Adding abstract imprints to artwork -- whether that art is abstract or representational -- is an easy, fun way to increase the artwork's complexity and visual interest.

To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencil and masks, please start here.

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Stencil Trivia Quiz

Can anyone guess which 6" x 6" stencils and masks of mine were put to work in making the prints below?

Answers to today's quiz will appear in my next post!

Whether an artwork is abstract or representational, adding abstract imprints is a quick, convenient way to ramp up complexity in that artwork; and complexity increases visual interest.  One goal of an artist is to capture and hold the viewer's attention, and this is a step in that direction.

To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencil and masks, please start here.  

Thursday, August 6, 2020

3 Artists Using my Masks and Stencils from

Today's post shines a light on artists who have used some of my stencil and masks, and the ball starts rolling with Carolyn McGowan.  Carolyn's three photos below show prints made with 3 of the Artist-Trading-Card stencils that are among the 9 included in ATC Mixup Swatton #1.  Carolyn's substrate was brown packaging paper and her technique was to apply a variety of commercial color sprays.  After the paper had dried, Carolyn added a whimsical touch by sewing around each of the images.  This project was part of a bigger project done at StencilGirl StencilClub for a project-of-the-month swap with a washi tape theme.

Below:  The 9" x 12" ATC Mixup Swatton #1which holds 9 stencils and 3 bonus masks, all sized to fit Artist Trading Cards.  Cats also comes in a 6" x 6" size and Hot Air Balloon, two additional sizes.

Coming up next:  A new-to-me artist, Claudia Holland, has used my two stencils below --

9" x 12"  Branching Blossoms Silhouette

... and ...

9" x 12" Garden Montage

-- to make the following prints using her Gelli Plate:

The above Branching Blossoms Silhouette print was made with luscious metallic paints.

Below are two Gelli Plate prints Claudia made using Garden Montagefirst as a positive image and second as a negative image.  Both were made with a variety of paints blended together; my favorite is the second one -- I love these mysterious colors!

The photo below comes from another project made for the washi tape series mentioned at the top of this post.  You can click on it to enlarge it and better see details.   The artist here is Joy Bayus, and, among the other images she chose for making her washi tape, she included prints made with my Artist Trading Card-sized stencil Osprey.  This is one of nine stencils that come with my 9" x 12" ATC Mixup Swatton #2 ....

The ATC stencil sheet itself -- along with its two bonus masks -- appears directly below, and is available here.

Osprey and many of the others also come in larger sizes.

My sincere thanks to today's artists, who generously allowed their artworks to be shown here! And thanks to all who took time to stop at this blog today!  To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks, please start here.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Botanical Art Samples -- Made with Stencils, Masks and Readymade Appliques

Any quick skim thru the pages of my StencilGirl stencils and masks -- starting here -- quickly highlights my love for botanical designs.  

Below:  The black background is my freehand painting-sketch of a very special personal favorite, bamboo.  The over-print in pale green was made with acrylic paint pressed thru my 6" x 6" stencil Bamboo Wall.  I had to trim the print so as to fit onto the front of a 5" x 7" greeting card ....

.... so I decided to use the leftover scrap as a decoration on the left side of the card's matching envelope:

My love for botanical designs stretches beyond my own creations.   Recently I discovered a source of botanical laser cut-outs that add dramatic punch to greeting cards that I'd created farther back in time--

Above:  The original print was made on Chinese Joss Paper using my Artist Trading Card-sized stencil Ginkgo which is one of nine stencils included in ATC Mixup Swatton 2.  The white lace edging and leafy sprig were late additions -- using a gluestick -- that really sparked life into the overall image.

Above:  Likewise, this original print was made on Chinese Joss Paper using my Artist Trading Card-sized stencil Ginkgo, one of nine stencils included in ATC Mixup Swatton 2.  The white leafy sprig is a late addition -- adhered with a gluestick -- that really sparks new life into the overall image.

Above:  The original print was made on a blank tag using my Artist Trading Card-sized stencil Sprigs, which is 1 of 9 stencils included in ATC Mixup Swatton 2.  The white flower-and-bud sprig is a final-step addition; I believe I'd already added the butterfly (created with a paper punch.)

Below:  a variety of prints (some with close-ups) made with my 9" x 12" Winter Berries Mask and my 9" x 12" Winter Berries Stencil ....

The topmost photo was done with Winter Berries Mask with a base coat of pale yellow acrylic paint on a 9" x 12" stretched canvas.  Having lifted off the mask and allowed the paint to dry, I placed strips of masking tape across some areas, giving myself guidelines for creating vertically slanted areas of various colors and shades.  (I carefully pulled off the masking tape after applying paint.)  Next, I used the patterns of the imprint itself to guide me in developing horizontal, wavy sections that, likewise, varied in color and shade.  


Thanks a (botanical) bunch for visiting my blog today!  To scroll thru the pages of my StencilGirl masks and stencils, please start here.