Category: Technical Stenciling

  • text stencil reverse text

    Make a Text Stencil Using Any Font

    Stenciling images is cool, but often you want to add some text to give context to the thing you’re stenciling. Alphabet letter stencils and stencil fonts It used to be, the way to handle this was to take out your big set of letter stencils, like the parking lot painters, and just do one letter…

  • alternate halftone separations of original superhero image

    Halftone Color Stencils that are Not CMYK

    I’ve chosen the name for this post so that hopefully, if you’re here, you know about halftones and are looking for something beyond the standard CMYK halftone separation. Four-color separations We’ll start with the four-color separations which include CMYK, and work our way down the list to separation models with fewer and fewer colors. CMYK:Cyan-Magenta-Yellow-Black…

  • beatles cmyk halftone print

    CMYK Halftone Stencil Tutorial

    To follow this tutorial, you’ll need What is a CMYK halftone? CMYK halftone is a printing technique used to reproduce continuous tone images using four colors: Cyan (blue-green), Magenta (hot pink), Yellow, and Black. Photographs or complex color graphics are broken down into halftone dots of varying sizes and densities, which are then printed using…

  • flying pig stencil light and dark layers, reproduced on midtone surface

    Mid-tone sidewalk chalk stencils

    Art students learn the art of ‘dark-light-dark-light’ (chiaroscuro) by drawing with dark and light chalk on mid-tone (typically brown or gray) paper. The mid-tone is the default, and the shadows are dark and the highlights are white. This technique works as well on concrete or asphalt as it does on brown paper. If we create…

  • bridging a stencil in cricut design space

    How to Bridge a Stencil

    I first started making stencils because I had a brand new laser cutter, and I wanted an excuse to watch the laser cut up a bunch of card stock. Without knowing too much about stencils, I used the ‘trace’ function of Adobe Illustrator to separate an image into light and dark. When I fed the…

  • Three stencils made from images generated by DALL-E

    Make stencils with DALL-E

    Let’s just jump in and say that the slickest-looking artwork is going to come from MidJourney, about which we’ve written pretty extensively: But MidJourney doesn’t do everything (yet!). So we’ll get right to the two things that DALL-E has on MidJourney that are super-useful: outpainting and inpainting. Outpainting in DALL-E Outpainting is when you want…

  • gradient background introduces jagged or speckled artifacts in stencil

    What to do when your Stencil is Grainy, Speckled, or has too much Detail

    Color separation is the process of reducing a full-color image to just a few colors. Having just a few colors is part of what makes a stencil look unique. Your original image usually has millions of colors in it, and when you reduce a rainbow of colors in a detailed image down to just four…

  • when to use traditional versus halftone cmyk stencil

    When To Use a Halftone CMYK Stencil versus a Traditional Stencil

    Halftone stencils are fun to make and paint, and they are surprisingly versatile for reproducing images that traditional stencils often can’t reproduce. Elsewhere we show how to make and use a CMYK halftone stencil. This article is all about knowing when to use a halftone stencil versus a traditional stencil. As you’ll see, sometimes you…

  • angry man with pop art tag shows rays of anger

    20 Midjourney Prompts to Generate Stencils

    When MidJourney first launched, we immediately wanted to come up with a stencil-friendlier version of Frida Kahlo. Interesting, and we eventually got what we came for. Now we’re back with more practice, and more experience getting a desirable stencil result. Why not go directly for what you want? Why beat around the bush if MidJourney…

  • roses repeating

    Use Midjourney to Make a Repeating Wall or Floor Stencil

    You’ve seen high-impact rooms with repeating patterns stenciled on the wall or floor. We generated some repeating interior wall stencils together some time ago. But what about making your own custom pattern? I made a dozen custom patterns in an hour or so with MidJourney version 5. (Remember, we used the AI to generate stencil-ready…