Yesterday I posted about getting all of the inky goodness out of your stencils that have been spayed with inks. Today I want to talk about a second method of “reusing” your sprayed stencils.
Below is an original spray of a stencil (Urban Outsiders Stencil designed by Seth Apter for StencilGirl Products) and three follow-up flip and mist cleaning prints.
After the three cleaning prints are performed there is STILL some colorful residue left on the stencil. It is at this point that I pick another page and lay the stencil down on it with the original sprayed side of it facing up (away from the page). Take a baby wipe and clean the stencil on the page. It will cause the remaining ink to kind of form a uniform color as the baby wipe collects the color from the stencil surface–hopefully it won’t become too muddy. This color will transfer via the wipe to the paper surface creating another image similar to the positive original image of the fresh spray:
The image above is a little dark but you get the idea. I turned the stencil several times as I cleaned it with the wipe so as to add a little more interest to my new background for the page. It is a subtle effect, very soft and very smooth. It is much different from the original spray or any of the more brash “cleaning” negative copies shown above. The baby wipe solution creates a softness in its transfer that is difficult to imitate with most other wet medias.
Do you have a favorite stencil? Have you played with the positive and negative representations or created faded transfers from cleaning your stencils on a paper page? You never know what you are going to get–either with the sprayed image or with any of the other cleaning images either. Stencils, when used with impossible-to-control sprays, can spur creative challenges of their own. As Forest Gump used to say about life, using stencils is “…like a box of chocolates–you never know what you are going to get..” 🙂