built in airbrush mask?
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Thread: built in airbrush mask?

  1. #1

    Default built in airbrush mask?

    Hey airbrushers, I have a question for you guys. I\'m wondering if there exists some sort of mask that you can attach to the airbrush.

    My idea is something about 6 inches from the nozzle and you insert little slides into it for different mask effects. (a circle for doing dots, a slit for a line, the slides are endless!)

    Since a miniature is a 3D surface, I need to use one hand to hold the miniature and the other to hold the airbrush -- I don\'t have a third hand to hold a mask. By attaching the mask to the airbrush, I can paint with a bit more spontaneity.

    Hopefully this ASCII art can demonstrate what I want:

    Code:
         ____
        |    |      O
    ====|>   O     /|\\
     /  |____|     / \\
    (not sure why the code effect is leaving blank lines, but it gets the point across...)

    The O represents the mask to allow only a fraction of the paint through.

    Does an object like this exist or do I need to invent it?

  2. #2
    Superfreak!!! Dragonsreach's Avatar
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    Well my wife bought me an Airbrush for christmas and I\'ve been trying to find a good book on the subject for a complete beginner. In the one & only one I\'ve got there is nothing about attachment masks so I think that you\'ll be inventing one.


    BUT..... Airhead is an air brush artist, If I recall correctly. He/She will be able to point you in the right direction.

  3. #3
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Pete, go for it. I have used freehand masks in lots of airbrush art, but nothing like that. Frisket works well for flat art, but nothing works well for 3d (try to mask a motercycle helmate:mad: )

    The only thing I see is generally if you are useing freehand masks, you shoot away from the lip of the mask to avoid lifting the mask with the air.

    If you are after softer effects, hold the mask up from the surface a little and shoot more square.


  4. #4

    Default

    Yup, I\'m definitely looking for softer effects. I\'ve found that if I try to spot a miniature I end up with spidering (I don\'t know if that\'s the normal name for it -- it\'s too much paint and then little legs start running off from the blob of paint.)

    So I figure if I use an attached mask I can do smaller diffuse spots -- that might help with more detailed airbrushing.

  5. #5
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    More thoughts:

    If you are after tattoos, etc. on a fig, something like some of the fingernail templates might work. Something like this



    If you need a third hand to hold the fig while you are painting, what about a small ball-head vice? (With the jaws suitably padded of course)

  6. #6

    Default

    I\'ll probably be making my own masks with clear transparency plastic. The fingernail ones seem a bit to concrete.

    I have a decent vise, but then I need to keep adjusting it for new angles, and that might screw up a rhythm.

  7. #7
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Dragonsreach
    ...my wife bought me an Airbrush for christmas...
    What\'d you get?
    Compressor?
    Feed? Top, side(cup), bottom(jar)?


    BUT..... Airhead is an air brush artist, If I recall correctly. He will be able to point you in the right direction.
    More of a hack, sort of like my mini painting.lol

  8. #8

    Default I can\'t really help you either......

    Airbrushing is just so different from brush painting that it is hard to offer advice....
    The other major problem is that each airbrush is different, so one person\'s good advice, will be another persons bad advice.....
    Yup...It\'s pretty tricky:D

    I have moved from Badger to Testors to Paasche. I still stick with Paasche but I have recently bought an Iwata which I am slowly falling in love with.

    Experiment.....They are all good for base-coating, but other than that, they have limited use with 28mm figs..

  9. #9

    Default

    Airhead\'s vice idea is how I did this RAFM Unicorn except I hot glued him to a dowel instead of padding the jaws. You need the Iwata in one hand and the free hand mask in the other. The mask I made myself out of a very thin plastic card cutting various curves into it, that would be suitable for 25 mm minis. Imagine a sort of tiny french curve. The other thing that is important is the use of \"transparent\" paints and build the shading slowly. You could use opaques but it would be much harder to achieve the subtle realistic shading.

    Hope that helps

    Garyo

    P.S. Radu Vero\'s Airbrush: the complete studio handbook is where I learned most of my technique on freehand masking.

  10. #10
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Pete, spidering can have three causes. Too much air or too much paint or too close to the work.

    You got a Custom Micron right? or an HP-B? Either one should move paint at about 5-7 psi. (if not, your paint may be too thick) (I won\'t try to go metric - I\'ll screw it up). Either one should be able to shoot a line about 0.5 mm (the same as an automatic pencil).

    1. Turn your pressure down - 10 psi should be about your max except for priming or basing a dragon.
    2. Don\'t pull so far back on the trigger. The amount of paint sent through the gun will be less. The CM has an adjustable stop for this.
    3. Don\'t let the brush stay in one place - it has to be moving.

    Shirts are easier, spiders are rare. Hard surfaces however, need much more care. For circles and lines, practice, practice and practice. Get a piece of graph paper. Practice shooting small dots at the intersection of the lines. Leave the air on (trigger pushed down). Pull back slightly for a small dot. Learn to work the trigger back and forth to control the paint. Then, go back and \"connect the dots\" - shoot horizontal lines (right to left and left to right) between the dots. Practice starting and stopping the lines at the dots. Do this vertically (top to bottom and bottom to top.)

    For fine lines, low pressure, little paint and gun close to the surface. As you move to make the lines bigger (wider), move the gun further away from the surface and pull back further on the trigger.

    There is almost nothing intuitive about an airbrush. It all has to be learned and put in \"muscle memory\". It has to be automatic for your finger to push down, pull back. Then move forward before releasing. Do not let the trigger slam forward - this may damage the cone. Always keep the air on until the paint is off - this will reduce tip build-up.

    Trying not to sound like my instructor, but the basics have to be learned.

    Next lesson, the dagger stroke. Same time next week. Til then, keep painting and don\'t let your tip clog.;)

  11. #11

    Default

    Originally posted by Garyo
    P.S. Radu Vero\'s Airbrush: the complete studio handbook is where I learned most of my technique on freehand masking.
    Yup, I have this book. It\'s a good one.

    Heh. Thanks for the advice, Airhead. I guess the 20-25 psi I\'ve been setting myself at has been a bit much... ;)

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