I bumped into a film techno-geek yesterday at Home Depot. She just moved into the area from New York and works at one of the top motion picture sales and rental companies in the nation. Her goal was to make sure she continued to explore the arts and find new ways of expressing herself.
While our conversation touched on the latest technologies and how to most effectively use data storage devices, including a new system that can turn a C300 into a C500, we brainstormed a way for her to create a flexible template for screen painting.
Her first thought was to purchase a thin plastic sheet of milar, cut various designs into it and use it with aerosol paint to spray her artwork onto a paintable surface. This would require a certain amount of registration in order to align the various colors and more flexibility than rigidity.
Several ideas were bounced around during our discussion from using plastic lighting gels to Plexiglas sheets – All being transparent for registration purposes.
Then it dawned on me. The template would have to cut cleanly and with enough precision to capture curves without jagged edges. It would also be helpful if it were transparent, not only for the alignment requirements, but also for any spraying precision required by the design.
The answer seemed simple. The number of millimeters of thickness would make all the difference in the world. So, what if she used thick packing tape? If she started with a piece of printed artwork and covered it with a layer of tape, she would be able to use an Exacto blade to trace the exact lines of the paper. And, if she needed the template to be 3 or 4 millimeters thick, she could just add another layer or two of tape.
By tapering the cut, she could also make sure the spray paint kept to a hard edge. This would allow tighter lines and a more accurate final image – It’d be like creating a custom stencil.
In that moment we both knew that the idea would work. The joy that filled her face as she started to imagine how her design would look was priceless. Her new custom tool was going to make her artistic expressions come to life in a way that honored her vision for the project. She immediately saw how the technology of her solution would facilitate her artistry.
It was such an enlightening moment that I too was ready to purchase some packing tape and spray paint. After all, art in any form helps us to express those inner feelings that are worth sharing.