From time to time the question of Masking comes up . I have used it for many years , often with success .
I thought I would share with anyone who might like to try my Implements and /or Materials .
These are the Implements;
I have a Glass with Liquid soap and a squirt Bottle for the Brush . I clean this all out every few months and let the water evaporate when not in use . I Use a small syntheic brush for large spaces . I generally recoat these Spaces and , always remember the paper MUST be BONE dry, before you start , No exceptions to this Rule.If Not the paper will come up with the Mask.Color will leech out under the mask, Etc.
The Finer implements are : L.to R- A square toothpick, an Ice Cream stick ,Whittled ,a Bamboo Pen, 3 Different sized Twigs, Whittled , 2 incredible Nibs , one rubberized, that I like best , My Favorites , 2 Chopsticks Whittled Flat and Pointed , One Small brush ( Synthetic ).
I use and like Pebeo Best as it is more liquified ,you can add water to it as well. A Rule I follow is to take the time to close it tight and the Masktape it All Around the sides , Each time I use it , without fail. I have had a Bottle last for Months without using it.
Some artists like the Ruling Pen , I was not able to master it ,and it did not move fast enough for me . In some cases I have and have used the Bottled Blue mask with metal Point, but generally I am looking for varied lines and that is too regular and I cannot get the fine line I can get with the Sharpened Chopsticks.
Here is another Picture in which you might be able to see the Points on the implements.
I use masking to save any spot that I do not want touched by color . Now sometimes you will get a Hard edge from the mask that you need softened. In that case, I use some Matte Acetate (I frequently cut a shape out of it, Comes in Pads , like Tracing paper and can be Drawn on) or a piece of Watercolor paper and a Cotton Ball ,soaked and squeezed out tight and wipe away at the edge . Keep turning the cotton overand over so as not to Reapply the paint back into the paper and use clean ones when they are dirty. You can also wet the area with a Clean Water brush and wipe back with a clean Brush several times . The idea is Not to abrade the paper , just to remove color. I use Arches which is very tough and withstands a lot of abuse . So test your paper for rubbing , you don't want a Hole in the paper after 3 days of work !. I don't use a brush for the same reason , Abrasion. I can get a soft edge that looks natural with the cotton too .
I hope this Helps and can answer any questions that seem confusing. There are many other ways to do this. This is what has worked for me through the years . I am impatient and don't like to waste time.
One more Tip. I once did a painting that had a Huge amount of intricate detail on a 22x30 painting. I had worked on it for Hours. Not thinking clearly, as it was late at night, I put the Mask bottle on the Painting and dipped from there. The Bottle, of course tipped over, not only on the Painting, but Under it ,so it was now Glued to the board.
I got up and walked away to let it dry and so I wouldn't fool with it, just removing the bottle. Later, I used my Pick-Up. ( A Plastic Square, don't use your fingers , dirties the Paper and is very ineffective) to pull all the excess masking off. The painting was saved, but it was a frightening moment. Moral ! Don't put the Bottle on the painting, hold it in your Hand. If you are not using it, cap it every time.
Hope this has helped .
I would be Happy to fill in on anything I missed. Other Members feel free to tell about your Good Experiences and Tricks with Masking.This Question is asked, I guess, every month , from what I can tell.