Stencil Technique

Instructions for the stencil technique:

In the stencil technique, the central utensil is the stencil. The stencil represents a negative image of the actual image and is used to obtain a simplified positive of the image with paint on walls or paper. This technique is widely used in street art, inter alia, because pictures can be easily reproduced and the installation is quick due to the previously fabricated film.

In the following, we would like to provide you a little guide on how you can use this technique yourself:

Required tools:

  • an image as a template
  • film
  • solid paper
  • foil pen
  • cutter
  • cutting pad
  • tape, better: Washi tape
  • tempera colour or similar

Step 1: choose an image

First, choose an image that you would like to use for the stencil technique. We recommend using a picture that has hardly any shadows (unless it is desired as an artistic means) and few details.

Step 2: edit the image

Scale the image to the size you want.

To start working you need a black and white picture:

You have the option of simply copying the picture in black and white. In this case, go over the black areas yourself (with an Edding or similar) and mark the areas that should remain white.

It is easier to use the stencil technique with digitized images, which you can edit according to your wishes in an image editing program such as Photoshop or GIMP (free version available on the internet). By using the Threshold tool, you obtain a black and white image. Feel free to try out the different values ​​until you have received the image you want and then print it out.

Please note that either all white or all black areas must be connected to one another and the areas with different colors are cut out. All surfaces that should not be cut out and are not connected to other surfaces should be connected or colored afterward.

Also, make sure that the image is not too complex on your first few tries so that it will be easier for you to work with.

Step 3: trace

Now attach the printed image to the work surface so that it does not shift and place the film on top of it. Attach the film too. It is best to use Washi tape for fixing, as this does not destroy the paper when it is removed.

Use a foil pen to trace all the boundaries between black and white areas. Don't forget that any surfaces that should not be cut out must be connected.

Step 4: cut out

Cut along the lines with a cutter and carefully remove the cut-out parts. Our film has the advantage that it does not tear easily, but it should still be handled with care.

Step 5: colour

Now, place the template you have cut out on your desired paper. Do not use too liquid paint (tempera paint is suitable, for example) and dab the paint on with a sponge.

At his point, be creative and vary between the colors, the paper, and the utensils for coloring. You can use our film several times, but you should make sure that the paint on the film has already dried and that it does not smear.

Suitable films

The transparent film allows you to combine different motifs on one film or to print motifs from different films on one sheet while printing. This results in many different content design possibilities, e.g. self-portraits with ambivalent topics, composite presentations on current topics such as environmental pollution.

With our transparent films, the stencil technique is very simple to apply as the films can be transformed easily by utilizing a cutter and yet do not tear at the incised areas. Our films are stable so that you can use your stencil several times and try out different design options. You can also gently wash the foil off before reusing it.

Our films are made from 80 to 90% of recycled material.