Clear Cut

Precision masking with Frisk Film

PA James Green uses Frisk Film as an alternative to masking fluid to create perfectly sharp lines in his paintings

What is it?

Frisk Film is a self-adhesive film which can prove a very useful acquisition for any artist. It is commonly used for airbrushing techniques but its uses far outstretch this.

Frisk Film is a low tack transparent film which can be applied to your artwork to provide a protective barrier in a similar way to masking fluid. However the advantage of using Frisk Film over masking fluid is the ability to mask off much larger areas and in a more accurate way.

It is particularly useful when masking out a painting which consists of any manmade objects as you can achieve some incredibly sharp lines as illustrated in the simple painting of a white yacht demonstrated here.

The film itself is mainly supplied on rolls and available in a matt or gloss finish. The gloss finish is the clearer of the two, meaning when it’s laid onto your artwork it’s easier to see through to cut.

The matt is not quite as clear but is still clear enough to see your artwork through, however the matt has the advantage of allowing you to draw on top of the film if you need to make any adjustments.

White Yacht

1Here I used the matt film, cutting off the amount I needed to cover my drawing.

2Using a 2H pencil, I accurately drew my yacht straight onto a Hot Pressed paper. After peeling off the Frisk Film from the backing I placed it over my drawing and then, importantly, with the help of a rigid ruler I pushed out any air bubbles trapped under it.

TIP: Some soft papers may lift when the Frisk Film is applied so if in doubt it’s always best to test the Frisk Film on your intended surface first. Also avoid using it on textured or rough surfaces to eliminate paint seeping under the Frisk Film.

3Once all the air bubbles were removed I cut the Frisk Film carefully with a scalpel, applying enough pressure when doing this to cut through it but not so much that it cut or left grooves in the paper. This does take a bit of practice but by using a fresh blade every time you won’t need to apply too much pressure. I cut all the curves free-hand and the straight edges, such as the yacht’s masts, by running the blade against a rigid ruler.

TIP: If using matt Frisk Film you could always cut away from your painting. Do this by drawing your image on top of the film first and then cut it with more pressure on a cutting mat, after which you then transfer it to your painting. This makes it easier as you don't have to worry about cutting through to your paper but it can be less accurate.

4Once entirely cut I peeled away the excess film leaving the Frisk Film on the part of the painting which I wanted to keep white, not forgetting to take out the small piece of film from between the two masts! I did this very slowly and carefully in case I had missed a bit while cutting or hadn’t applied enough pressure in places with the blade, which would result in the film tearing.

 

5Now with the film cut I proceeded to paint the background. The Frisk Film allowed me to work freely using a splatting technique combined with a light wash sweeping across the paper and over the film in one go with a flat brush. To eliminate any paint leaking underneath the film I didn’t work too wet and ensured the film was still pressed down firmly as I worked.

6Once completely dry I peeled back the Frisk Film. To start this process I used my scalpel blade to help lift one edge of the film being careful not to damage the paper. Once I had lifted a little section, my fingers then took over

7This revealed a perfect shaped yacht which was paper white and ready for some small details and shadows.

8Finally I painted the yacht and added a few shadows to the background with a No 4 round brush.

 

Materials

Masking film:

Watercolour paper:

Winsor & Newton Gouache:

Winsor & Newton Watercolour:

Daler Rowney FW Inks:

Brushes:

Also:

  • Scalpel with new blade
  • Rigid Ruler
  • 2H Pencil

James' website www.jamesgreenart.co.uk has an interesting work in progress section which shows more examples how Frisk Film is used. He is based in Peterborough and is available for airbrush demonstrations. You can also follow James on facebook or contact him by email: info@jamesgreenart.co.uk or telephone 01733 203230 / 07786 995794.


Clear Cut

Precision masking with Frisk Film

PA James Green uses Frisk Film as an alternative to masking fluid to create perfectly sharp lines in his paintings

What is it?

Frisk Film is a self-adhesive film which can prove a very useful acquisition for any artist. It is commonly used for airbrushing techniques but its uses far outstretch this.

Frisk Film is a low tack transparent film which can be applied to your artwork to provide a protective barrier in a similar way to masking fluid. However the advantage of using Frisk Film over masking fluid is the ability to mask off much larger areas and in a more accurate way.

It is particularly useful when masking out a painting which consists of any manmade objects as you can achieve some incredibly sharp lines as illustrated in the simple painting of a white yacht demonstrated here.

The film itself is mainly supplied on rolls and available in a matt or gloss finish. The gloss finish is the clearer of the two, meaning when it’s laid onto your artwork it’s easier to see through to cut.

The matt is not quite as clear but is still clear enough to see your artwork through, however the matt has the advantage of allowing you to draw on top of the film if you need to make any adjustments.

White Yacht

1Here I used the matt film, cutting off the amount I needed to cover my drawing.

2Using a 2H pencil, I accurately drew my yacht straight onto a Hot Pressed paper. After peeling off the Frisk Film from the backing I placed it over my drawing and then, importantly, with the help of a rigid ruler I pushed out any air bubbles trapped under it.

TIP: Some soft papers may lift when the Frisk Film is applied so if in doubt it’s always best to test the Frisk Film on your intended surface first. Also avoid using it on textured or rough surfaces to eliminate paint seeping under the Frisk Film.

3Once all the air bubbles were removed I cut the Frisk Film carefully with a scalpel, applying enough pressure when doing this to cut through it but not so much that it cut or left grooves in the paper. This does take a bit of practice but by using a fresh blade every time you won’t need to apply too much pressure. I cut all the curves free-hand and the straight edges, such as the yacht’s masts, by running the blade against a rigid ruler.

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