A How to Stencil Guide for Rainforest Mural Page 2 – Oak Lane Studio

A How to Stencil Guide for Rainforest Mural Page 2

by Leslie Ann Powers

Before you start the layers, measure off a space on your wall that is 5 1/2' by 7 1/2'. This is your painting area. Use brown tape (not masking tape) to mask off beyond this area. Now you're ready to start your mural.
Layer 1
Following the steps will make creating this rainforest jungle easy and fun. Take your time and measure carefully. If you wish, you can also move kits around to suit your vision or space, but be sure to start with the first five steps to begin all murals.

Step 1A:
From the bottom, measure up both sides and make marks at 18" and 25". Using a chalked string, "Pop" lines across the canvas, and then draw a wavy line across the canvas between the chalk lines (this is the line between the sky and trees). Paint the top area in the blue latex and the bottom area in the green latex. Wait 24 hours before continuing to Step 1B.

Step 1B:
As in step #1A, measure up sides at 29" and 34". "Pop" two more lines, then draw a wavy line between them. Using "blue tape," tape along this line (see picture).

Now you are ready to create the horizon!

Mix about one cup of white latex paint with 1/8 of a cup of water in a bowl (this is your glaze). Wrap a cookie sheet in aluminum foil and put multiple layers of paper towel on it. This is your blotter. With a natural sponge, lightly dip it in the glaze, and then blot it on the paper towels. You need very little paint on the sponge. As the towels get saturated, replace them with new. Practice this technique on paper before applying onto the wall. Starting at the blue tape, lightly sponge across the line -- using less paint as you go up. Your goal is to let more and more blue show through.

Step 1C:
Mix a dab of dark brown with the green paint to make it slightly darker. Use your clean sponge to lightly paint along the treetops and occasionally throughout the tree. This will simulate leaves. NOW FOR THE STENCIL KITS From this point on, practice stenciling each kit on paper before painting on the wall. This way you are able to tape your sample on the wall to choose your placements. 
Layer 2 
This is your first layer of stencil kits (I would suggest starting with D-620 Grasses and D-626 Palm, but I encourage you to use your own ideas as well). They should be only slightly greener (or brighter) than the background trees. Both of these kits are the same color greens. Step 2A: Measure up from the bottom of the mural and mark for the palms, then measure from left to right making marks for the grass. Now tape your practice paint outs on your wall. You're ready to paint. Lift your sample and place the stencil below it - remove that sample and paint the wall.

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