Sunday, February 16, 2014

Tutorials: Make Your Own Silhouette Template

The theme over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge blog this week is "cameo," whether that be a traditional cameo silhouette shape or a different interpretation (like when someone does a surprise "cameo" appearance in a movie).  As I thought about cameos, I got to wondering if those classy heads every wanted to sprout some legs and escape the confines of the broach, necklace or frame they were trapped inside.  So I decided to expand the idea of a cameo to a full silhouette for this week's project.  And I made the silhouette template myself.  I'll show you how easy it is to do:

There are already some great silhouette templates/stencils and stamps on the market, but it's also quite entertaining to make some of your own.

Start by flipping through magazines until you find a human in a shape that would make an interesting silhouette.  Here's the picture I found, which was from a Bluefly ad in an old magazine:

Make sure that the silhouette you choose has plenty of open space between the arms, etc.  Remember that the only part that will show is the outline, so you want to ensure that the shape will be recognizable as a human.

Cover both sides of the magazine picture with clear packing tape.  This gives it stability and will allow you to paint or stamp over it, if desired.

Once you've taped over the image, cut it out and see how it looks.  I like my silhouettes to be a little more cartoony, so when I cut out this girl, I trimmed off a little extra to make her look more doll-like and less realistic.  I also rounded out her head where her hat was (since I didn't want her to look like a box head), and I also removed her purse to further simplify the shape.

Tuh-da!  Now you have a perfect template that you can either trace around or that you can use as a mask to paint over, etc.  And because it's encased in packing tape, it's good for several uses.

Next I began on the background.  I used heavy watercolor paper and started layering on Washi tape and scraps of patterned paper.

I added some smears of acrylic paint and Tim Holtz Distress paint and when it was dry, I spritzed on some Dylusions ink spray in Cut Grass, Funky Fuchsia and Vibrant Turquoise.

I stamped on some background polka dots and reverse polka dots with a homemade stamp.  I also repeated the word "dream" with a Tim Holtz stamp and stamped out a great quote by Helen Keller.  I added some black gesso to the outer edge of my paper to create the look of a frame.

Lastly, I traced my stencil girl onto some patterned paper.  To make her stand out even more, I added some shadowing with ink and drew around her edges with a black Sharpie.  I made her some wings out of paper that I inked up, sewed "graph lines" on and then dissolved in various sections for a tattered look.  I attached them to my background and used 3D dots to secure the silhouette:

And here she is as the finished product.  And all because I felt bad for body-less cameo heads!

There are so many great products I used to bring this piece to life, which you can find at that store we all know and love-- Simon Says Stamp:

So what clever cameo ideas will you think up this week?  Do share your genius with us at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge blog because it's always wonderful to see what you create and you also get a chance to win $50 of Simon Says Stamp store credit!  Yipee!!