New Airbrush Painting Techniques

How to do spray paint art and speed painting techniques with a cheap airbrush and regular acrylic paints.
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Instructed by Alisa Amor Lifestyle / Arts & Crafts
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  • Lectures 27
  • Contents Video: 5.5 hours
    Other: 1 min
  • Skill Level Beginner Level
  • Languages English
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About This Course

Published 5/2014 English

Course Description

I’ll get right to the point. This is not your normal learn to paint class. If you’re looking to spend years of your life to learn techniques everybody already knows then move on. This class can teach you something VERY different, VERY powerful.

You’re going to learn all about the breakthrough airbrush painting techniques that will transform the way you airbrush forever!

The kind of airbrush artist who can improvise a whole painting in just minutes as a hobby or for a living.

These techniques come from a small group of street painting artists in Mexico. They figured out how to speed paint space scenes, landscapes and much more with spray cans. I learned from the original spray paint artists of Mexico and I have adapted the techniques for acrylic painters who do not wish to use spray paint.

This class will teach you how to do spray paint art techniques with regular acrylic paint.

I cover:

How to set up your studio.

How to mix your paints.

Different papers and surfaces you can paint on.

How to prepare canvas for using these techniques.

How to use common household materials to create incredible effects.

How to speed paint pyramids and a galaxy.

How to speed paint a sunset with palm trees and clouds.

How to speed paint a gorgeous wave.

How to use newspaper as a brush.

How to paint planets.

How to speed paint mountains and land.

How to use these techniques on metal, for example on cars.

And more!

If you do not already have a compressor, you will need to purchase one to learn these techniques. You will also need acrylic paints, some papers, a cheap airbrush (about $11-13), some airbrush accessories and some items from the grocery store.

I give you all the information and links that you need to purchase your materials.

I make it very easy to learn and give you inspiring new ideas to paint with your new skills.

So sign up now, come in and lets have some fun!--Alisa Amor

http://airbrushpaintingsecrets.com

http://spraypaintartsecrets.com

What are the requirements?

  • An open mind and a sense of fun. Willingness to follow safety recommendations. You will need to purchase paint, paper and a compressor to use the airbrush techniques.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Do spray paint art techniques with a cheap airbrush and water based acrylic paints.
  • To learn new airbrush techniques adapted from the spray paint artists of Mexico.
  • Paint a gorgeous wave with your airbrush!
  • Learn how to use newspaper and other household materials to create speed painting effects and more.
  • Learn how to paint a sunset and a beach with your airbrush and acrylic paints.
  • Learn how to paint a galaxy and pyramids with your airbrush and acrylic paints.
  • Learn how to paint cosmic and space scenes with your airbrush and acrylic paints.

What is the target audience?

  • Artists, spray paint artists, airbrush artists, acrylic artists
  • People looking for a great hobby
  • Artists who want to learn to paint quickly or paint for a live audience.
  • Spray paint artists who want to continue painting in the winter and without solvents
  • Airbrush artists who want to learn new techniques

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.

Curriculum

Section 1: Welcome
03:42

Welcome! Thank you for clicking on the materials column! Make sure you check here with each video for more good stuff! My email is spraypaintartsecrets@gmail.com and my name is Alisa Amor if you have any questions.

11:53

Please read the safety and ventilation information provided in the link below and create a safe space for yourself to paint in.

http://spraypaintartsecrets.com/airbrush-painting-secrets-2/safety-and-ventilation/

To do list from this lesson:

1 Set up your space so that any dust you make while painting is quickly moved out the window and away from you. Do this with fans and by reading the safety information for even more good ideas and solutions.

2 Get a mask to protect you from dust. I prefer a half face mask. Refer to the Safety Information above for links to find good masks.

3 Get a hair dryer

4 If needed get an airbrush cleaning pot. (You will need this if you use any airbrush other than the Harbor Freight quick change airbrush.)

5 Have some scraps of poster-board around

6 Whatever brushes you like using should be handy. You will need a palette knife (I call it spatula because that's what I learned in Mexico) You can get that online or in an art store. Get a few of different sizes and different sorts of tips.

7 You will need heavy plates and caps. Use your imagination to make caps more heavy. Tape heavy coins on them, fill them with clay etc ...You can use heavy cans as well.

8 Have a place for your garbage. A plastic bag is fine.

9 You will need a piece of wood to paint on. You will need something that can absorb water without bending. This is because we will be making it damp before we paint on it to help our paper lay flat.

10 It's helpful to have a piece of paper taped to the wall to test your colors and some paper towels handy.

11 You will also need a compressor, airbrush, and some other stuff of course. More info on that coming in the next videos!

A brief history of where these techniques came from

For years spray paint art techniques have been developed and enjoyed by a small subculture of spray paint speed painters working on the streets and at home. These techniques have not been integrated into the mainstream of art techniques nor given the credit that they deserve. They have not reached many artists who would benefit from them. This is probably because of the solvent content of the spray cans plus the reputation of spray cans as a street art among other things.

Spray paint artists have been vulnerable to the solvents in the paints and have had to take great care. They have had trouble getting permits to paint in public for the same reason. Teaching it to children has been a problem as well.

Today these limits are gone! I have been working for over a year now on creating an acrylic technique that offers the same benefits as spray paint art. It was very important that it be as fast as spray paint art. Many airbrushes that I tried needed so much cleaning between each color that it just didn’t have the rhythm of spray paint art.

The surface to be painted on was key as well. The way that the spray paint moves on top of the poster-board had many factors that allowed for newspaper work and spatula work with great results. With acrylic paint this was hard to duplicate. Also the spray paint tends to dry in layers and quickly while acrylics have a very different drying pattern. These were a few of the issues that I addressed with years of experiments with the help of original spray paint artist Gerardo Amor and Paloma Coronado.

The following information is the result of years of experiments with materials and techniques.

My hope is that it will help integrate spray paint art techniques into the mainstream of fine art and that it will allow other artists to use these techniques in their work. Enjoy!

Just a note, I am NOT an expert in conventional airbrushes or airbrush materials. Some information about buying and cleaning airbrush materials is beyond the scope of what I offer and I will refer you to experts on these matters.

Section 2: Compressors
07:13

Replacing spray propellants with an airbrush and compressor:

The first thing that changes when we switch from spray paint to airbrush is what propels the paint. In a spray can, there are chemicals (propellents) that help the paint leave the can as spray. To avoid these chemicals, we will use air to propel the paint. You will need a source for that air.

You can get air from co2 tanks, compressors, etc……

It is possible to get a can of compressed air. This won’t be nearly enough. Some people have painted with a tire inner tube…but it won’t be enough for our purposes.

You can buy a small hobby compressor without an air tank..but this will run constantly and make tons of noise and possibly not have enough pressure. It can be done with a hobby compressor, but is not an ideal solution.

I recommend a compressor over all other types of air sources. Many of them only make noise for a few minutes and give you hours of painting time.

There are many types of compressors.

A compressor can be an oil compressor or it may be an oil-less compressor. I recommend oil-less because it is less noisy and requires less maintenance.

Another type of compressor is the “pancake” compressor. These can hold lots of air and only make noise for a short time. Make sure you drain these of air after each use for safety reasons.

Getting a good compressor will make your painting experience soooooo much better. It’s worth the money to get something that will work for you.

I have two compressors, I got one in the US and one in Mexico, both at Home Depot.

The one from Mexico is a pancake compressor with a 6 gallon tank which makes noise for about 2 minutes and then lets you paint for over an hour continuously. Sweet!

Check out these links to see similar compressors:

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-203162815/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=compressor&storeId=10051#.UME6-dfddDI

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-202529941/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=compressor&storeId=10051#.UME7VdfddDI

The one I got in the US is also from Home Depot. It’s called a Husky Airscout and it works OK for my studio, but it’s only got a small tank, so it makes too much noise for the street or indoors. (Every 20 minutes or so it makes about a minute of loud noise)

Check it out here:

http://reviews.homedepot.com/1999/100645228/1-5-gal-air-scout-compressor-reviews/reviews.htm

There are lots of places to get a compressor that is good but cheap. Here are some recommendations. ( I have not tried all these compressors myself, but you will find many good options at these links)

Tcp global www.tcpglobal.com These people have great customer service that knows about airbrushing. Just call them for advice.

www.harborfreight.com This company has good cheap stuff. They have lots of inexpensive air compressors plus they sell the quickchange airbrush too.

http://www.silentaire.com/silentaire/supersilent.asp I’ve seen this brand recommended by a few people but haven’t tried them.

Some things to find out about a compressor before you purchase it:

How much air does it hold?

6 gallons will last an hour or more. (Remember to empty air out so that it doesn’t rust!)

Is it oil-less?

What size is the outlet where the air comes out? Will it connect directly with your airbrush? (if not you can usually get adapters)

How noisy is it?

How long does it make noise to fill the tank and how often? (you may need to try it out to find out about the noise it makes)

Does it need a separate regulator or moisture trap? (if it does, I wouldn’t get it)

Can you adjust the airflow? (you have to be able to adjust the airflow)

Please check out this link for someone else’s more experienced thoughts about air sources:

http://www.craigcentral.com/models/airsource.asp

It is important that you drain your compressor after each use to prevent the tank from rusting! This is for safety reasons!!!

Here is a video that shows you how to drain the air from your compressor when you are finished painting.

http://www.ehow.com/video_5774687_drain-air-compressor.html

Teflon tape is helpful:

You will also need teflon tape to eliminate air leakage wherever you are connecting things. If you need any adapters to make your parts fit, get them at www.TCPGlobal.com or an art store instead of the hardware store if possible. They seem to have slightly different treads and they screw in more tightly to the airbrush hardware. The connectors I got at Harbor Freight would not screw together with their own airbrush properly! Your experience might be different. Teflon tape will help you out if you can’t get the perfect adaptors. The ones from TCPGlobal seem to work fine with all airbrush adapters and compressors.

Here is a great place to order adapters:

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/airbrush-accessories.aspx

Harbor Freight Quick Change airbrush , which I will demonstrate shortly, comes with a quarter inch to 5mm adapter in the package so that you can connect it easily to a quarter inch output.

Make sure you can adjust your air pressure because this is essential! Usually there is a knob to do this with on your compressor.

You can paint with the hobby compressors and I have done so in certain situations where I need to carry my materials. The disadvantages are less air, less air control, more noise.

Section 3: Paints
15:08

Airbrush Colors:

The simplest thing to do is just to buy airbrush colors. You can buy them many places, such as the link below. They are airbrush paints and will work for cheap airbrushes as well as the more expensive ones.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/createx/createx-airbrush-colors.aspx

Information on Windex formula:

http://www.ehow.com/about_4760000_what-chemicals-windex.html

Windex is called Windolene in some places. In Mexico there is a brand called "Golden Hills" which works great.

Windex! Yes. That is what we will be using to mix and dilute our colors. If you cannot find Windex brand, another brand with the same ingredients will do. Make sure it does not have things added..for example to cut grease.

If you cannot find a glass cleaner that works for you, or if you would rather use only water, you can mix some airbrush medium with water and get similar effects. I demonstrate the difference in one of the following videos.

It's helpful to have Windex or another glass cleaner around at least to re-wet the paint if it dries too much. You will need to try different brands in your area and see what works if you cannot find the above brands.

Createx or other airbrush paints:

Airbrush paints are generally very similar. You do not have to use the brand I feature. Use whatever you have handy in your area.

Createx is a good brand available in the US but there are other fine brands as well.

In Createx airbrush paint there are many types of paint including opaque, transparent, iridescent, fluorescent, pearlized and others. For our purposes the first thing we need to look at is the difference between the opaque and the transparent paints.

Opaque paints give you coverage. Transparent paints are useful for adding color, shading, and adding subtle accents.

You will need both kinds.

It is very easy to make any color more transparent. You simply add lots of transparent airbrush medium and/or windex (or a little water) to the color and voila! More transparent.

It's harder to make the paint more opaque. You can add opaque airbrush medium to a transparent color, but it will never give you the coverage of an opaque paint. The only way is to add an opaque color, which then, of course, modifies the color.

You need both opaque and transparent colors to have the most fun. I recommend getting a combination of both. The colors each have their own personality and behavior, opaque and transparent, and the only way to find out what you like is to experiment.

Get at least red, blue and yellow in opaque. You can always mix any color with white and it will become more opaque (and lighter) You can also mix the colors together (in their own bottle) to make any shade you desire.

I like to have transparent blue and green for shading and for water effects. Transparent black is essential for painting space scenes. I usually get a large transparent black and a large opaque white. White seems to be the same whether opaque or transparent. Undiluted opaque white works best for making stars when painting space scenes.

Airbrush medium:

Where to purchase Transparent medium and opaque medium:

http://www.tcpglobal.com/createx/createx-additives-and-mediums.aspx

Airbrush medium is basically a thick clear-drying acrylic.

Airbrush medium is a thicker liquid than windex. It looks thicker when you mix it with your paints. Because it's thicker, it does different things. It does not do as good a job as Windex in re-wetting the paint when it is too dry.

Both transparent and opaque airbrush medium will dry transparent. You can use either to make a final coat to even out the look of your painting.

We will be using airbrush medium for many things. It's a good thing to have but if you absolutely can't find it, don't worry. You can usually use Windex and for most applications. Another alternative is to find the thinnest acrylic medium you can find and dilute it with water or Windex. That will work in most cases.

Paint in tubes:

How to use paint in tubes:

Obviously paint that is in a tube is too thick to use with the airbrush. There are some things that we can use to thin our paint. Windex and airbrush medium are good options.

What kind of paint to use?

Advice: Using tubes of paint and Windex is fine with the cheap airbrushes demonstrated here. Please don’t use tubes of paint, Windex or other unconventional airbrush materials with an expensive airbrush as it may break it!

You can use airbrush paint or regular acrylic paints. (Perhaps over time I will share my experiments with goache and watercolor spray paint art…but lets keep it simple for now)

Acrylic paints come with different amounts of medium. (medium is the stuff that the color is mixed with)

Basics brand and Reeves brand acrylic paint for example are cheap and contain more medium and less pigment. They are called "Student grade" which means less pigment, more medium. When you mix them for use with the airbrush,they will look much more diluted.

This can be beautiful and transparent type of color, but it doesn’t work if what you want is coverage. I would not use Basics or Reeves acrylic black as my main black. Use a high pigment load paint such as Winsor Newton or other artist quality paint.

Transparent paint may dry more clear than it looks when it goes on. Take care to put a bright opaque color beneath any transparent color to make sure it shows up when dry. This is important even for the high pigment artist quality colors!

Some really cheap paint, such as acrylic hobby paint from Walmart or a hobby store is actually quite opaque because it comes mixed with a low quality white color. These can actually be quite useful. Some come already in squeeze bottles which is very convenient! This paint will behave differently than the other types of paint I mentioned. Usually it is very low pigment. The most important thing with this cheap hobby paint is to avoid the matte colors and choose the glossy ones. Do not use them as your main paints. Add a few for spice. They are not as reliable as high pigment colors and may not look as good dry as they do wet. But definitely play with them!

Almost every kind of paint and mix has a use. You will get a better idea of this once you watch the actual lesson videos.

Here is how to prepare the paint for your airbrush:

To prepare paint from a tube, squeeze the amount of paint you wish to prepare with into the bottle and add Windex and airbrush medium as you wish. The end consistency should be like thick milk. You will thin this even further when you put it in the bottles you will use to paint with. Windex will simply thin it.

Airbrush medium will dilute the color and make it less intense. Do not add airbrush medium if you want your colors to be intense. Do not add airbrush medium to cheap low pigment load acrylic paints. Airbrush medium thickens the paint slightly while also diluting it.

When you have added enough liquid to make a thick milk consistency, screw on the cap on top of the stocking and shake the bottle until it is fully mixed.

Then when the color is mixed open the spout top and get your airbrush bottle. Put some of the color into the bottle and further dilute with Windex and/or medium as desired before painting with it.

Again, the Windex simply thins the paint, it will become slightly transparent, but not as much as with the medium. The medium makes it thick and dilutes the pigment load further.

If you find your paint spattering, it may need to be thinner. Add more Windex.

You will need some bottles with a spout or squeeze top

You can buy them, or re-use bottles that had something in them.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/autobodydepot/ItemDetail.aspx?ItemNo=KUS+BTL-8Z

You can use any bottles that you have finished using. For example hand santizer, syrup, salad dressing bottles…anything with a spout or squeeze top will work. You need to be able to squeeze the paint out. You can also use empty clean airbrush paint bottles.

One source for Liquitex Basics acrylics:

http://www.usartsupply.com/liquitex/

This brand is cheap and good to make transparent colors

One source for Winsor newton artists acrylics:

http://www.dickblick.com/products/winsor-and-newton-artists-acrylics-sets/?clickTracking=true

This brand is high pigment load and gives you more intense colors. Lots of subtle detail with these.

Sources for iridescent and metallic acrylic paint in tubes:

http://www.utrechtart.com/

Utrecht has some great iridescent acrylic colors.

Go to their site and search on iridescent acrylic paint. They even have metallic colors in tubes.

Golden, a brand of paint, also carries iridescent and metallic colors. Just google Golden iridescent acrylic to find sources.

Work with whatever is available in your area!

A little advice on choosing colors:

You will become more sensitive to when to use opaque colors and when to use transparent colors as you begin to learn to paint in the lesson videos. The best thing is to evolve your own style based on your own preferences and experiments. The way you mix your paints will be unique.

Generally an opaque color is used when you want better coverage and you want that color to dominate. A transparent color is used for shading and modifying the colors already down. Transparent black seems a bit easier to remove than opaque black. The amount that the paint is diluted is also very important. There is no better way to learn then to just get in there and try it!

Pantyhose paint filters:

You will also need a womans pantyhose and a pair of scissors. Cut a small square of pantyhose and put it over the top of the bottle. Then screw the top on on top of that. This makes sure that tiny particles of dried paint or glops cannot enter the paint that you are airbrushing. This will help avoid clogging the brush, which is really really annoying when you are painting.

More advice:

(This advice applies when making land with newspaper. )

You can test the wetness of your painting by touching it gently with your finger.

If the paint looks thick and gooey where you touched and starts to fill itself in again, there could be too much. It should lay fairly flat and not flow around.

If you have put too much paint, dry with a hair dryer until it resembles the right amount of dryness. If you go too far, use a little Windex to loosen it up again.

If you wish to only use a small amount of color and it’s too dry to work with, put a layer of transparent or opaque medium ON TOP of the color.

This will ensure that the final layer of dark or black color does not overpower the middle layer.

The final layer of black or other dark color should be a high pigment load paint that is very diluted with windex. It should provide complete coverage with a very thin layer. If you have a too thick layer of black, your land will be very muddied. We want the amount of paint in the second (color) layer to be more paint than the amount of black (or whatever color) in the final layer. That way your land will be colorful instead of muddied.

It will be much easier to understand all of this as you watch me do it in the video lesson!

Sometimes a video is worth 10,000 words.

Don’t worry if this is confusing, it will become second nature with watching the videos and some practice.

03:26

Simple green:

http://simplegreen.com/household/

To clean your harbor freight nozzles (or anything else) of acrylic paint, soak it in Simple Green.

Pledge Future:

http://www.swannysmodels.com/TheCompleteFuture.html

Please remember to wear a protective mask when spraying Future (or anything) It's not good to breathe it in!

P.S. "Sealer" is my translation of what acrylic gloss is called in Mexico. I apologize for using that word. I did not realize that in the US it's called clear acrylic.

09:55

This is an optional video of me mixing my paints for work. If you have any questions about how to mix your paints, this video will demo the whole process for you. Feel free to skip ahead and come back here when you have questions about mixing paints.

18:34

In this video I demonstrate two different techniques to mix your paint.

My preferred method is to mix paint with Windex. You get sharper lines that way and it resembles spray paint art more.

Some people will not be able to find Windex (or a similar brand) or may want to use water for health reasons.

That's fine, you can do that. You can see that it looks different, but equally beautiful to paint that way.

If you choose to use only water and medium to thin your paints, you will still need a bit of glass cleaner to loosen the paint up when it is too dry.

Whatever you choose, only put one mix back into your storage bottles of paint. Never combine different brands of glass cleaner or medium because you risk ruining your paint.

The important thing is that the paper be slightly glossy so that it doesn’t absorb too much spray paint.

The best place I have found to buy poster board is Walmart. Staples is a close second.

There is a company, http://www.internationalpaper.com/US/EN/Products/CarolinaPP/CarolinaAdvantage.html

that has just been recommended to me by a student of Hugo Montero that sells nice paper to paint on but you will have to call them to ask where you can purchase in your area.

Dick Blick sells several types of poster board and you can order online from them.

Posterboard 8Ply (Item 13109-1302)

What you want is a thick glossy smooth paper.

Section 4: Airbrushes
13:39

Airbrushes and accessories:

My number one pick is the Harbor Freight Quick Change Airbrush.

This one is my workhorse….

Harbor Freight Quick Change Airbrush:

http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=quick+change+airbrush

The brush comes with 5 bottles, tubes and nozzles. It also comes with an airbrush hose and a quarter inch to 5mm adapter which you will need to connect it to your compressor.

Other companies have begun to sell the same brush!

Another version is called

Master Single Action

The brush number is

MAS E945

You can google that and get many other purchase options.

Here is one link to buy it.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/itemdetail.aspx?itemno=MAS+E945

General Airbrush Information:

I must tell you, I haven’t tried every kind of airbrush in the world! There are good ones out there that I am unaware of.

The most important thing for painting in this style is to be able to change colors quickly.

You can always have several different kinds of airbrush because it's fun to explore the different things they can do.

We don't need anything fancy. In general, what you need is called a single action bottom feed airbrush.

Single action means that you only have one control, on or off. Usually you can adjust the spray amount too with these.

Bottom feed means that the paint comes in the bottom.

If you google it, just try googling single action airbrush.

The important thing is how much trouble it is to change the colors. If it’s a hassle, it won’t work for this style.

You also need to be able to have a lot of paint coming out the brush, not just a thin coat.

You can start with one, but I recommend getting at least 5 Quick Change Airbrushes so that you have extra caps, bottles and tubes at all times. They are very inexpensive.

Here is a nice explanation of different types of airbrush for general information

http://www.goldenpaints.com/technicaldata/airtips.php

Here is where you can get an extra airbrush hose that you can cut up into tubes or use.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/itemdetail.aspx?itemno=ABD+TH-025

Here is one place to get bottles and caps.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/abcups.aspx

Here is where to get different adaptors and fittings (scroll down)

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/abcups.aspx

10:34

The Masters airbrush from TCPglobal (or similar airbrushes) also works. If you like this style, I recommend getting at least 2 plus a ‘splitter’ to avoid the problems with changing colors. You will also need to purchase the bottles separately.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/AirbrushDepot/ItemDetail.aspx?ItemNo=MAS+E96&gclid=CL_iiKKbpLQCFUWo4AodbQYAtw

The splitter is on this page, you may need to scroll down or choose a tab to find it.

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/airbrush-accessories.aspx

The Iawata Eclipse airbrush that I show in the video is this one http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/abdkit4200.aspx

I would not recommend making this your main airbrush as the amount of paint it shoots is too thin for our purposes. You should not use Windex with expensive airbrushes such as this one as it will hurt them.

Masters airbrush at TCP Global:

http://www.tcpglobal.com/AirbrushDepot/ItemDetail.aspx?ItemNo=MAS+E96&gclid=CL_iiKKbpLQCFUWo4AodbQYAtw

There are lots of similar airbrushes. If you like this style better, just use whatever you have available. Just make sure you can get enough paint out of the brush to create wet layers of paint.

Iawata Eclipse:

http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/abdkit4200.aspx

I learned this later, you should only use Windex or glass cleaner with CHEAP airbrushes!!! Not with an Iawata Eclipse!!!

If you run Windex through it like I did, run some airbrush cleaner through it when you are finished painting so it does not corrode the brush.

You really do not need a fancy airbrush like the Iawata Eclipse at all for this work. I'm just showing it to you so you know the differences and the ups and downs of different brushes.

Section 5: What to paint on
14:26

There are two basic methods to prepare paper for painting.

First of all, if you have poster board or glossy thick paper, you do not need to prepare it.

1) If you have canvas or water color paper you can prepare it with gesso and "sealer".

(Sealer is used in many countries to seal walls before you paint them. It is a clear acrylic paint. In the US they use "primer" and it has color in it. Some acrylic primers may work. Clear acrylic paint of any type will probably work. I use Sherwin Williams Polycrylic when I am in the US and "wall sealer" from Comex in Mexico)

I prepared canvas paper, but you may prepare any kind of canvas this way. You may need substantially more layers of gesso and sealer (acrylic gloss) for unprepared canvas.

Watercolor paper can be prepared this way, or with only Gesso. This works well for certain effects when you want absolutely no shine. There will be more on this as we move along. Watercolor paper has advantages and disadvantages. You may want to wait to try this until I post a video explaining them. Or not….

http://www.dickblick.com/buy/product/155866-airbrush-papers-borden-riley-airbrush-pad.html

2) Another method of preparation is to spray the sealer, diluted with Windex (or water), onto your paper and let it dry. That will give you a different look and feel, but also a very nice method of preparation. Try different things to see what your favorite is. I will demonstrate this in another video.

Some hints to keep it flat:

First thing to do is to paint on top of humid wood. Have a piece of flat wood to put your paper on top of. The night before, spill some water on it and let it sink in over night. In the morning wipe off any extra. (Your paper should not be getting moist.) The humidity coming from the wood will stop your paper from bending.

You can tape it down before you paint (tape underneath the paper or around the edges though this is not really necessary. If you still find your paper curling, try not to thin your paints quite as much so you can use less paint if possible. Dry it with the hair dryer when done and flatten as you dry it by pressing on it with your hand. If all else fails, store it underneath a stack of heavy flat paintings and it will be flat in the morning.

13:02

It doesn't matter if you use the same colors or mixes that I use. In fact, you will certainly have to create your own favorite colors to work with with the materials you have handy.

To learn more about the techniques used, watch the Bonus videos by Gerardo Amor which explain the theory and techniques of basic planets and land.

Newspaper:

Soft absorbent newspaper works better than magazine paper or advertisement paper. This is because it absorbs more wet paint.

09:19

The important thing is that the paper be slightly glossy so that it doesn’t absorb too much paint.

The best place in the US that I have found to buy poster board is Walmart. Staples is a close second.

There is a company, http://www.internationalpaper.com/US/EN/Products/CarolinaPP/CarolinaAdvantage.html

that has just been recommended to me by a student of Hugo Montero that sells nice paper to paint on but you will have to call them to ask where you can purchase in your area. They sell worldwide and speak many languages. You can find your language on their site and call to find where they sell the paper you need.

Dick Blick sells several types of poster board and you can order online from them.

Y Poster board 8Ply (Item 13109-1302)

Link to Dick Blick 8 ply posterboard.

http://www.dickblick.com/products/blick-economy-white-posterboard/?clickTracking=true

In Australia I've heard that you can purchase from "Arrow Paper Supplies" and what you want is "Finesse Cast Coated"

In Latin America the paper is often called "Sulfatada" or "Eurocote" or "Caple"


13:03

There are many kinds of absorbent paper. Some are airbrush paper and Bristol. Any fine art paper with no gloss on it is an absorbent paper. If you paint on unprepared absorbent paper it will simply absorb your paint and you will not be able to create many of the effects demonstrated here.

Here is one place to buy airbrush paper.

http://www.dickblick.com/buy/product/155866-airbrush-papers-borden-riley-airbrush-pad.html

Preparing absorbent paper:

You can paint on absorbent papers such as airbrush or watercolor paper if you prepare them properly.

One way of preparing paper is to spray it with sealer mixed with Windex and to allow it to dry thoroughly. Depending on how much sealer you use, it can be very absorbent or very sealed or anywhere in between. You can even prepare parts of your paper and leave others untouched for certain effects!

(Again, when I say "sealer" I mean clear acrylic paint in the US)

The one I use is Sherwin Williams Polycrylic.

I highly recommend that if you do many of these, prepare your paper out doors and purchase a larger more industrial airbrush to do it. Harborfreight and TCPGlobal have some of these. You can call and ask for recommendations.

Experiment with the amount of "sealer" until you like the result. Less sealer (acrylic clear) will be more absorbent. If the paint does not adhere to the paper and forms little beads of color, you have the wrong "sealer" or have used too much.

03:32

Some hints to keep it flat:

First thing to do is to paint on top of humid wood. Have a piece of flat wood to put your paper on top of. The night before, spill some water on it and let it sink in over night. In the morning wipe off any extra. (Your paper should not be getting moist.) The humidity coming from the wood will stop your paper from bending.

You can also spray the water on with your airbrush!

You can tape it down before you paint (tape underneath the paper or around the edges though this is not really necessary. If you still find your paper curling, try not to thin your paints quite as much so you can use less paint if possible. Dry it with the hair dryer when done and flatten as you dry it by pressing on it with your hand. If all else fails, store it underneath a stack of heavy flat paintings and it will be flat in the morning.

01:53

You do not have to gloss your work. Leaving it matte is great too!

If you want a more glossy or deep finish,you can use clear spray paint. I recommend Molotow clear. You can use Future Floor-wax from Pledge (as described in the "some other fun materials" video in your airbrush. Or you can purchase an acrylic gloss from an art store. There are acrylic glosses meant for airbrush. Ask the sales person if they have them. I have been fairly unsatisfied with the gloss from the art store but it will even out your texture. The issue is that it seems to leave a slight milky film.

It is VERY important that you do not inhale the glosses. They are not good for you to breathe. Gloss outside if possible and make sure the dust is not lingering in the air!

Section 6: Clean up
03:06

IMPORTANT TIP

If you are experiencing clogging of the nozzles with your Harbor Freight Airbrush, place a sewing pin in the nozzle when it is not in use. That way they will not clog!

Cleanup:

Pipe cleaners are great for cleaning out airbrush tubes:http://www.harborfreight.com/5-piece-airbrush-cleaning-brushes-68155.html

You will need a sewing pin to clean the harbor freight airbrush caps.

Steel wool is great for removing dried acrylic paint from plastic bottles.

A tooth brush is handy for getting inside bottles you can’t reach into.

Something useful to have is an airbrush cleaning pot. This is useful for changing colors on all brushes except the Harbor Freight brush.

Airbrush cleaning pot: http://www.tcpglobal.com/airbrushdepot/itemdetail.aspx?itemno=ABD+TP-50

If you pour paint back into bottles, make sure that you only mix materials that are the same. Do not mix one kind of Windex or glass cleaner with another for example. Keep your mixes clean and predictable.

01:30

This video shows you why you should avoid heating your paint bottles.

Section 7: Lessons
22:45
Some tips:

You can test the wetness of your painting by touching it gently with your finger.

If the paint looks thick and gooey where you touched and starts to fill itself in again, there could be too much. It should lay fairly flat and not flow around.

If you have put too much paint, dry with a hair dryer until it resembles the right amount of dryness. If you go too far, use a little windex to loosen it up again.

If you wish to only use a small amount of color and it’s too dry to work with, put a layer of transparent or opaque medium ON TOP of the color.

This will ensure that the final layer of dark or black color does not overpower the middle layer.

The final layer of black or other dark color should be a high pigment load paint that is very diluted with windex. It should provide complete coverage with a very thin layer. If you have a too thick layer of black, your land will be very muddied. We want the amount of paint in the second layer to be more than the amount of black (or whatever color) in the final layer. That way your land will be colorful.

It will be much easier to understand all of this as you watch me do it in the video lesson!

Sometimes a video is worth 10,000 words.

Don’t worry if this is confusing, it will become second nature with watching the videos and some practice.

Sunset
25:38
Wave
15:48
Section 8: Painting on Cars
21:05

You can get Createx Auto Air colors here (or elsewhere)

http://www.tcpglobal.com/autoaircolor/auto-air-colors.aspx

Section 9: Some basic techniques
Planets
25:16
Mountains
22:14
Spatula and Newspaper
35:45
Section 10: Trouble shooting
Trouble shooting
Article
When the paint won't come out
06:27
Section 11: Where to get more painting lessons
Where to get more painting lessons
Article

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Instructor Biography

Alisa Amor, Artist, Inventor

Alisa Amor studied art and music at Oberlin College. She decided to move to Mexico at 20 and immediately became close with the inventors of spray paint art techniques. She learned these techniques from Gerardo Amor, one of the original spray paint artists of Mexico. She also met and was influenced by other original spray paint artists including Ruben Melody, Cecilia Banos, Ricardo Huet, Rafael Martinez and others. She became a teacher of spray paint artist Paloma Coronado and many others who traveled to Puerto Vallarta seeking lessons in these rare, underground techniques. She lived in Mexico for 16 years, making her living painting on the boardwalk of Puerto Vallarta and playing music in the bars and clubs. In 2007 she moved to NY and continued her art and music work. Because of the colder winters in NY and the desire to avoid spray paint solvents she decided to adapt the spray paint art techniques for use with airbrush and acrylic paints. She spent over a year experimenting with paints, papers and airbrushes and other materials. After many experiments she has adapted the spray paint art techniques she learned in Mexico for use with a cheap airbrush and regular water based acrylic paint. She now lives and works in Eureka Springs Arkansas teaching and using these new techniques in many projects and playing music.

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