KILLER AIRBRUSH Q&A: I have a compressor that has been running well for four years. Then it got hot and would not restart. A clicking noise could be heard when I tried to start it. I let it cool down and it started and cycled normally but would not build up pressure. What’s wrong?

A. First thing to do is check for air leaks. In this particular case, upon investigation, the questioner found that there was a crack in the moisture filter that allowed enough air to leak so that pressure would not build up. A new moisture filter solved that problem. Note: Silent compressors are protected by a thermal circuit breaker that will shut off the compressor when there is an electrical overload or if the pressure relief line and pressure relief valve in the pressure switch fail to unload the pressure in the pressure line from the compressor to the tank. It will click when it breaks the motor circuit and click when it makes the circuit.

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KILLER AIRBRUSH Q&A: What, if any, are the advantages to a multiple airbrush system for shirt airbrushing, where you have an airbrush for each color?

For optimal efficiency and results, a multiple airbrush system is the way to go, if you can afford it. Shirt artists usually spray as many as 14 colors in a 10- to 15-minute time span, and with a single gun system a lot of time is wasted in cleaning out one color for the next. The problem is further compounded by muddied colors if the previous color is not flushed thoroughly. With a multiple airbrush system, the time wasted in purifying colors is eliminated. Your colorAirbrushFleetLOs are always their most vibrant, and white, the most difficult color to keep pure with a single gun is always, well, white. Designs that normally take 15 minutes with a single gun, are reduced to 10 minutes or less with multiple guns. And saving even just five minutes per shirt can be significant. However, the major drawback is price. For a 12-gun setup, depending on the brand and type of airbrush used (double-action airbrushes with a medium spray nozzle are recommended), the cost can range between $920 and $1 800, including airbrushes, air hoses, and a manifold. But in shirt airbrushing, time is money, so the advantages of a multiple airbrush system justify the investment. Another disadvantage is maintenance. Needless to say, the more airbrushes used will magnify the burden of cleaning and clog prevention and troubleshooting. Therefore, a full-blown system is recommended for experienced airbrushers who are well versed in repairs and maintenance. A multiple gun arsenal can quickly become a nightmare for the novice. The next best consideration is a three-airbrush system, using one gun for white, one for black, and one for the rest of the colors. This will keep your white trouble-free and pure and your black from being a muddy influence on the other colors.

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“Alien” Artist, Surrealist H.R. Giger, Dies at Aged 74

Swiss surrealist artist H.R. Giger who designed the monster and revolutionary sci-fi sets for the film Alien has died, his museum said on Tuesday. He was 74.

Giger, who was born Hans Rudolf in the eastern Swiss town of Chur in 1940, died on Monday in Zurich from injuries he obtained after suffering a fall, an employee of the H.R. Giger Museum said, confirming reports in Swiss media.

Famous for creating the otherworldly creature in Ridley Scott‘s 1979 horror film Alien, Giger was awarded an Oscar for Best Achievement in Visual Effects in 1980.

The son of a chemist, he studied architecture and industrial design in Zurich, and first experimented with ink drawing and polyester works before moving onto large freehand airbrush works showcasing nightmarish dreamscapes.

His work explored the relationship between the human body and the machine, and he created surrealist images of humans fused with industrial parts, a style he described as “biomechanical“.

One example of this was his 1973 record cover design for “Brain Salad Surgery” by English rock group Emerson, Lake and Palmer’s which depicted a human skull encased in a machine.

“My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy. A good many people think as I do. If they like my work they are creative… or they are crazy,” Giger said in an 1979 interview with Starlog magazine.

In 1975, Giger endured tragedy when his partner Swiss actress and Li Tobler, who served as a model in several of his works, committed suicide. He married Mia Bonzanigo in 1982 but the couple later divorced.

Giger was also known for his sculptures, paintings and furniture and many of these works are on display at his own museum in a medieval castle in Gruyeres, central Switzerland, which is run by his second wife Carmen Maria Scheifele Giger.

The museum, which opened in 1998 also houses Giger’s private art collection, including works by Salvador Dali.

Giger was featured in Airbrush Action magazine and was a recipient of the Vargas Award.  Cliff Stiegiltz, Airbrush Action’s publisher, visited the legendary artist at his home in 1988.  “Giger actually picked me up at the airport, and we toured Zurich and his amazing home, and had lunch where I sat under a Picasso Giger6LOGiger2LOGiger4LOGiger5LOGiger7LOGiger8LOpainting,” Stieglitz recalls. “I remember his kitchen had a bath and a life-size replica of the now classic alien creature.  The dining room walls were covered with Giger murals; absolutely gorgeous in person. And his Oscar award was clearly on display.  The chairs, tables, and even the outside pavers were custom-made with his elaborate and macabre concepts. At one point he invited me to see his backyard garden, which seemed like something you’d see on the Adams Family. Giger was a great host, even though he nodded off a couple times at lunch.  It was a truly memorable experience.”

(Reporting by Caroline Copley Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)

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When airbrushing, I maintain my air pressure at about 25 psi as directed by the dealer where I bought my airbrush and compressor. Is maintaining a constant psi critical? Sometimes, my airbrush clogs when I spray thicker paints.

Airbrushing at a constant 25 psi (pounds-per-square-inch) would be similar to driving your car at a constant 25 mph. You can as long as you drive a straight road, but stopping or turning sharply is a chore. Likewise, pressure set at a constant 25 psi works great for a certain specific set of circumstances, but that’s about it. Analogies aside, air pressure regulation is probably one of the least understood, most underrated aspects of attaining success in airbrush art. Air pressure is highly dependent on two things: the viscosity of paint, and your type of substrate (automotive surfacesPierceProgressLO, T-shirts, canvas, illustration board, etc). For example, I use 50 to 70 psi when airbrushing T-shirt paint straight from the bottle, which is ideal to siphon the paint, atomize it correctly to achieve a complete range of lines and shading, and to force the color into the fabric.  For fine line work with a thinner medium, such as a transparent ink or an aniline dye, onto a paper or board, the air pressure should be lowered to about 10 psi, giving more control and preventing any “spidering,” where the paint spreads in all directions on impact. The pros adjust air pressure to as low as 1 psi and as high as 90 psi. If your airbrush is clogging with thicker paint, try increasing the air pressure until the problem stops. Experimenting with air regulation is one of the most important aspects of airbrushing. Controlling the air pressure is key to performing various textures and spray patterns.

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Cliff Stieglitz to Teach Facebook Marketing at Las Vegas Airbrush Getaway October 6-10

Cliff Stieglitz, Airbrush Action magazine’s publisher and founder, surprised attendees this past week at the Orlando Airbrush Getaway with a flash Facebook Marketing seminar. Conducted at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld hotel, Stieglitz shared how he grew Airbrush Action‘s Facebook page, AirbrushActionMag, into the industry’s most successful, taking it from about 4,000 ‘Likes’ to more than 182,000 and growing.  As a result, future Airbrush Getaways will offer this half-day class that will include: how to get started in Facebook, how to post, how to develop and optimize Facebook ads, split testing, how to grow ‘Likes,’ ‘Shares,’ and engagement, posts that work, demographic filtering, how to better market yourself as an artist (or any profession), how often to post, and much more. “Originally, I had no interest in our Facebook page, or any social media channel for that matter.  I out-sourced a woman in India to make daily posts, which consisted of nothing more than non-airbrush-related puzzles, riddles, and sayings” Stieglitz explained. “Then, I realized that she substantially overcharged for her services.  That really got my attention, to say the least. I started fiddling with the page, got hooked, and have been very committed to it since.”  In the beginning, Stieglitz sought advice from a couple of consultants, “but they didn’t really have the insight for it.  They didn’t quite understand our audience, and in many ways I seemed to know more. For example, one “expert” who worked for an established social media agency in Manhattan didn’t agree with posting more than one image at a time, yet I found time and again that multiple images of art in a single post receive the most ‘Likes,’ views, and engagement. In the three or four days he took charge of the page, my views dropped by more than 50%!  He then withdrew himself and his bill.” Ted Stoler, Airbrush Getaway alum, attended the Facebook Marketing seminar and concluded that “What I learned from Cliff’s presentation alone made the entire Airbrush Getaway worth it.” Stay tuned for details on Stieglitz’s seminar at the Las Vegas Airbrush Getaway, October 6-10, at the Tropicana Las Vegas Hotel.

StieglitzLO

Cliff Stieglitz explaining the finer points of Facebook at the Orlando Airbrush Airbrush Getaway, May 5-9 at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld Hotel.

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KILLER AIRBRUSH Q&A: HOW TO BUY AN AIRBRUSH

I used an airbrush in an art class recently, and now I’d like to make a purchase. What should I look for when buying my first airbrush?

Retail prices for airbrushes vary, so if you surf the net you’ll get an idea of costs. However, in many respects you get what you pay for. Cheaper airbrushes generally rely on less expensive materials and will wear out faster. More expensive airbrushes simply are built better (stainless steel needles and chrome-plated internal parts, for example). Also, more expensive airbrushes tend to be more versatile. In order to establish price range, establish your needs. Certainly, a BMW will outperform a Ford Focus, but if you are only looking for basic transportation, the Focus will do fine. In assessing your airbrush needs, there are two rather important considerations. First, what spray patterns will the airbrush yield? Does it spray fine enough or go wide enough? Can you achieve a consistent stipple effect easily? Does it spray a variety of paint media in the patterns you desire? The second major consideration is how the airbrush feels in your hand. This assessment may be a bit more difficult, but it’s a very personal thing. Is the airbrush too heavy? Do your fingers feel cramped up? If you plan to spray for long hours, you need more than a five minute trial demonstration. Many airbrushes feel great for the first few minutes, but 12 hours later your hand will tell you which is more comfortable. If you trade at the same art supply store, ask the dealer if you can take a demo airbrush home. Or, if you can invest the time and money, attend an Airbrush Getaway (http://bit.ly/1kvcNaE) workshop before you buy anything airbrush.  The Getaways provide all materials and equipment, affording you the great opportunity to try everything.  There is simply no substitute for hands-on experience. To sum up, price, material, versatility, and feel are your major considerations when buying your first airbrush. These, determined by a needs assessment, will get you going in the right direction. For more detailed information and a listing of the best airbrushes, check out the 2014 Annual Airbrush Buyers Guide in the November-December 2013 issue of Airbrush Action.

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THE AIRBRUSH GETAWAY HANGOVER

The Airbrush Getaway workshops, albeit a pure labor of love with amazing results and rewards, is physically and mentally draining with its non-stop intensity, airbrush adrenaline, euphoria, long hours of painting, information overload, and the required maximum focus and concentration. So, it’s easy to understand why most, if not all, students, instructors, and staff experience the “Airbrush Getaway hangover.” Let’s face it: every high has its crash, and the Getaways are no exception with their inevitable and regrettable let-down of the end, and subsequent morning-after crash.  Also, the realization that this 5-day program quickly becomes the blink of an eye, compounded by the separation anxiety of existing and newly bonded friendships, is sad and quite sobering. In fact, professionally, I’m never happier than when I’m at an Airbrush Getaway with the great rewards of being among my best friends and observing students immerse themselves and evolve their talents. “It’s always like a family reunion for me,” Gary Worthington reflected. I’m anxious to feed my Airbrush Getaway addiction in Las VegasWeiGoldLeafLOKentGarberLO October 6-10, at the Tropicana!  Stay tuned for details and perhaps some huge surprises.

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Cliff Stieglitz Conducts Free Facebook Marketing Seminar at the Orlando Airbrush Getaway, May 5-9

Day 3 of the Orlando Airbrush Getaway was capped with a free seminar on Facebook marketing conducted by Cliff Stieglitz, Airbrush Action magazine’s publisher. Stieglitz explained in detail how he took Airbrush Action‘s Facebook page from about 4,000 ‘Likes’ to 182,000 in about a year. “I may offer this at all Airbrush Getaways from now on because I understand how important it is for many artists to build their ‘Likes’ and promote their work,” explained Stieglitz, who demonstrated how to post, create a Facebook ad, boost a post, split testing, and many other nuances of Facebook. Airbrush  Action‘s page, http://www.facebook.com/airbrushactionmag, is the most successful in the airbrush industry, postingIntenseLOMichelleWrathellLOMoldyLOSotoProgLOBrianLugoLOAutoLOPierceProgressLOTerryDennisLOPlotterLOMuralsLO galleries of airbrush art, new products, events, free videos, and step-by-step content.

 

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LIKE FATHER LIKE DAUGHTER. THE AIRBRUSH GETAWAYS GENERATE GREAT MOMENTS, MEMORIES

Like father like daughter: Edward Walsh and his daughter, Carly, enjoyed quality time together in the 1-day INTRO CREATING KILLER SKULLS with instructor Rod Fuchs, at the Orlando Airbrush Getaway, May 5-9, Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld. Maybe we should position the Airbrush Getaway as a viable family excursion, using the tagline: The family that sprays together, stays together. . .   FatherDaughterLO

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GET YOUR FREE DOSE OF INSPIRATION: VISIT THE ORLANDO AIRBRUSH GETAWAY, MAY 5-9!

Alum Colin Threadgould enjoys his annual pilgrimage from England to attend the ORLANDO AIRBRUSH GETAWAY. Get your FREE INSPIRATION! All are welcome to visit the ORLANDO AIRBRUSH GETAWAY, MAY 5-9, at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld. Gary Worthington’s TOP 30 T-SHIRT NAME DESIGNS 3-hour DVD, the latest issue of AIRBRUSH ACTION, the DIAMOND COLLECTION, and hundreds of other airbrush related items are available for sale at great discounts. Come meet some of your favorite celebrity airbrush artists! The address: 10100 International Drive, Orlando, Florida or call 732-233-7007.

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