The latest from the Stencil Maker

  • Mid-tone sidewalk chalk stencils

    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…

  • How to Bridge a Stencil

    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…

  • Make stencils with 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…

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

    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…

  • Featured Artist: Kevin Minium–Classic Ford Coupe Stencil on Canvas

    Featured Artist: Kevin Minium–Classic Ford Coupe Stencil on Canvas

    Sometimes you have a great idea for a composition and just can’t wait to get started. Whether he’s working in mixed media to create football concept art (we gather he’s a Seahawks fan) or just tricking out the man cave, artist and maker Kevin Minium never waits to do anything. And in this case, what…

  • When To Use a Halftone CMYK Stencil versus a Traditional 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…

  • Why is the NASA logo so popular?

    Why is the NASA logo so popular?

    Many people look to space exploration as a way to expand our horizons and push the boundaries of human knowledge and understanding. The NASA logo serves as a reminder of our potential as a species to achieve great things, and the importance of scientific discovery and exploration in our lives. The meatball and the worm…

  • 20 Midjourney Prompts to Generate Stencils

    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…

  • Use Midjourney to Make a Repeating Wall or Floor Stencil

    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…

  • Render an Internet Meme with a Stencil

    Render an Internet Meme with a Stencil

    Memes, with a little text or context, get your point across very quickly. Did you know that they work as well as stencils as they do on the Internet? If you want to stencil with a meme, you’ve got something going for you: it’s a meme, so people recognize it. Apart from the context, you…