Friday, September 16, 2022

Using stencils to create focal figures

Hi Everyone, 

My name is Niamh Baly and I am a stencil addict. Lately I have been fascinated with faces and using stencils to create large figures in my journal pages. This watercolour technique is super simple and so easy to create lots of focal images quickly. Here is a step by step video taking you through the full process. 

To begin, dampen a piece of watercolour paper. I have done this on ordinary card – but using watercolour paper does give a better result. Place the face stencil down onto the paper and paint through the stencil with watercolours. I chose to use dark neutral colours (sepia, navy) , but any colours will work. I found through experimenting that you don’t want the watercolours to be too watery. The damp paper in the background will help the paint spread. 

To create the body I painted a simple arch shape using the neck on the stencil as a guide. I then chose some abstract stencils to help add detail and texture to the body. Once you have added the stencilling, remove the stencil carefully. Use your own judgement to add more stencilling, or use a brush with water and a paper towel to blot away or remove any darkness or texture you don’t want. I turned the stencil over with the excess paint on the surface and printed it onto my figure as well for more texture. You may like to add in more hair and shading to the figure once you have finished stencilling. All you need to do is use a wet brush and pull the watercolour out from the stencil to create a shadowed effect. 

Here is a list of the StencilGirl® stencils I have used in this project to create the focal figures for these pages:  

Pretty as a peacock Mini M305: 

Cassiopeia Mini M306: 

Strength face S653: 

Laugh Face S651: 

Remember Face S649: 

Love Face S648: 

Maltese Mix Stencil L175: 

soulful scribbles: 


Here is a finished journal page I created using the same techniques and adding additional details with a quote and background stencilling.  


Thank you so much for stopping by the blog. I hope that this video has inspired you to get into your journals and create something beautiful using the fabulous face stencils and watercolours. 


Happy Creating,


Instagram: @niamhbaly


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