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Cheap Tricks-Granite By Terry Hill


The Stippling method I use to create the stone or granite effect involves deflecting the paint off just about any object you can hold conveniently in your hand, such a s a clothespin or a tongue depressor. This method will work with any airbrush (the Aztek offers a splatter nozzle that produces a similar effect but, it tends to work better at low pressures and with thin paints), and you can be creative here. I’ve seen people use everything from broken plastic spoons and knives to the end of their thumbnail.

The beauty of this method is that you don’t have to change your normal air pressure. Personally I set my compressor at about 65 psi.

This technique can be a little messy until you master it, so you’ll want to wear something that you don’ t mind getting a little paint on, and be sure to throw a drop cloth on the floor.



The broken heart is drawn on poster board or your stencil material of choice and then cut out. We will use both the positive (the piece you will be spraying around) and the negative (the piece you will be spraying into) of this stencil, so be careful to keep both pieces in good shape.



Place the stencil positive onto the shirt.



This is how your airbrush should be positioned on the clothespin. The clothespin serves to direct your aim as well to control the stippling. Generally, if you want concentrated areas of stipple (dots), you’ll need to be within 3 to 6 inches of the surface. Press the trigger all the way down for maximum air flow and rock it back slightly to release a small amount of paint. If you seek a more loosely spaced stipple pattern simply use the same trigger setting as above but hold the airbrush 6 to 12 inches from the surface. Large dot patterns can be produced by backing away as far as 20 to 30 inches or more, fully throttling the finger lever, and experimenting with different amounts of air pressure. The variables to try and consider are many: air flow, distance from work, amount of paint, thickness of paint, and amount of air pressure.



Stipple the area around the stencil positive. Here I’ve used black, violet, and deep blue. After stippling, and without using the clothespin, I spray the edges to create a soft border. A sow shadow and erratic cracks are added. After highlighting the cracks with opaque white, the lettering is done using an opaque blue I created by mixing Createx pthalo blue pure pigment and opaque white. The lettering is then thinly outlined in black, followed by a thick hot pink outline.



The stencil positive is removed.



The stencil negative is put into place.



The heart is painted by first using violet as the underpainting to establish tone, followed by layers of red and hot pink.



More cracks are added to the heart along with white highlight and finishing touches.

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