Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Oh those skins...

are a process!

I'm starting here with a sheet of music, as the value of doing a skin is very apparent when it's important that script, faces etc. are right side up.  If you're uncaring about that, or you want the image reversed, you can use a direct transfer instead.

Place the image you wish to turn into a 'skin' on a piece of palette paper,

and coat it with a layer of liquid gloss medium.  I always place a tick mark on the palette paper with each layer to remind myself how many I've done.  It's also helpful to do each layer in a different direction to ensure the paper is adequately covered in all areas.

When you've got at least six layers of gloss medium coating your image, it's time to celebrate (perhaps a glass of wine?).

Carefully peel the paper up from the palette support, and turn it over.  Spritz it liberally with water, and

gently, gently, GENTLY start rubbing it with a plastic scraper.  As you get closer and closer to removing the back of the page entirely, you may wish to use your fingers to avoid removing too much or tearing it.

Although this is not a quick process, it's a valuable one (and you might want to save those bits of paper to paint for another project).

I love the way the white of the paper comes away, leaving a transparent plastic skin - it can be overlaid on any background and becomes beautifully integrated.  This process works equally well for coloured imagery although the background will not show through (except where white is part of the image, since the printing establishment does not normally print white).

It's interesting to note that the backs of these transparent skins can also be painted to add yet another dimension to your work.

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