The art of reinventing and recycling requires us to look at things with new eyes. One form of art that has returned with a new look is stencil art…from edgy urban designs to artistic ornamental flourishes, stencil art is fun and easy to integrate into mixed media designs. Creating your own custom stencil design doesn’t require expensive tools or fine craftsmanship. To begin, look for simple images or designs that don’t have alot of detail or too many thin lines to cut around. Art Deco and Art Nouveau images are good choices because of their thick, defining design lines as are graphic geometric designs. Print or copy the image onto a good cardstock that will withstand cutting with an X-acto Knife…and you’re ready to go!
Custom Stencil Designs
- clip art image printed/copied on cardstock
- X-acto knive with new blade
- cutting mat
- repositionable adhesive spray (found at craft/art store)
- acrylic paint
- stippling paintbrush or cosmetic sponge (I use triangle shaped sponges found at drugstore)
Step 1. Print/copy image on cardstock.
Step 2. Using X-acto knife, carefully cut out black areas. Slice small detailed areas first; hold stencil firmly with free hand.
Step 3. Spray back of stencil with repositionable adhesive; mount on surface to be stenciled. Dab stipple brush or flat sponge in paint; pounce on paper towel to remove most of the paint. Lightly pounce brush or sponge up and down over stencil. If paint is applied too thick, it will seep under the stencil, blurring the lines; use a paper towel to blot any area with thick paint.
Step 4. Set aside to dry. Distress with sandpaper to achieve desired affect.
If you’d like to incorporate some edgy urban designs into your art, take a look at Stencil Archive, Stencil Revolution and Joystick where you’ll find galleries of street art inspiration and even some funky downloadable images. Make a statement…and then make sure to post a link of your art for all to see!