Tag Archives: stencil

The Cicada Emerges

Painted Cicada

Cicada created with molding paste, crackle paste, and acrylic glazes, 5x5" by Lucinda Howe

Last week I showed how to create a stencil and to apply molding paste to make a raised image of a cicada, the good luck symbol of Provence.

Here are the steps to complete the process:

Add a purple glaze over the dry molding paste.

After the glaze dries, apply a generous layer of crackle medium with a palette knife.   Remove most of the paste over the main image with a damp cloth.

After the crackle paste dries, add more glazes of gold and brown to bring out the details.

Finish with a layer of matte medium to be sure the crackle paste doesn’t flake off and a final layer of acrylic varnish.

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How to Create Your Own Stencil

Last week we talked about incorporating stencils in your acrylic paintings.  To personalize your design, you can create your own stencil.

Cicada on Wall

The cicada is the symbol of Provence and often appears on walls and in fabrics

In this example, I am showing the steps to create a stencil of a cicada, the symbol of good luck in Provence, to use in my series of paintings inspired by my recent trip.

The first step is to start with a simple image of a terracotta cicada on the wall of a house.


Cicada in black and white

Cicada in black and white

To isolate the image, crop the photo and print it in black and white.

Trace the outline, being sure to completely enclose the shapes that will be cut away.






Cicada Stencil

Cutting cicada stencil with heat tool

Tape a piece of clear blank stencil plastic over the drawing onto a piece of glass.  Cut the stencil using a craft knife or a heat tool with a sharp point.  Pop out the cut-away shapes and clean up the edges if necessary.



Tape the stencil to your canvas or board and cover it with a layer of molding paste about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch thick.  Carefully lift the stencil and let the molding paste dry overnight.  Clean the stencil before the paste dries on it.



Cicadas drying

Molding paste ready for drying

Try varying the thickness of molding paste to see what works best with your stencil.






Next week…. Adding color over the stencil.

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