©2015 - Cathy Read - removing masking - digital image

Masking Tips – Removal without Ripping the Paper.

Crunch time, will it tear the paper?

If you’ve used the right paper and remembered the dry rule. Be sure that the picture is dry before you start. If it still feels cold to touch, best to leave it. I leave mine overnight as I use acrylic. Even then, sometimes the ink is still a little wet so I’ll wait another day. Then now is the moment of truth. Will it tear? First of all remember to…

Go Slow!

If you saw the video in my last post, then you’ll realise the more you rush, the more likely you will tear the paper. Even if you’ve removed as much masking as I have.

So take your time!

Then, even if the unthinkable happens, you can avert a major disaster.

Press down.

Rub your finger over the dry masking to loosen it. If you can get a string started, then you can pull it, but don’t do it too fast and avoid pulling it at a 90 degree angle to the paper.

©2015 - Cathy Read - removing masking - digital image
©2015 – Cathy Read – removing masking – digital image

If you are pulling off a large area it’s good practice to use two hands. I find if you place one finger of the assisting hand on the masked area at the point where it is lifting off the page. Then press gently on the dry masking area as you pull carefully with the other hand. Reposition the supporting hand as required.

Change direction

If the paper starts to tear, just stop and approach from the opposite direction.

Leaving it on too long can be a problem, especially if you’ve a thick layer of paint or ink over the top. In these cases I find a scraperfoil tool can help. I rub it over the surface of the masking fluid first, which tends to loosen the masking fluid’s grip.

And that’s it, my tips to removing masking fluid without ripping the paper.

More Masking tips to follow soon.

If you know someone who might be interested in this article, then please share it with them.

The Masking Tips posts are aimed to help you with the use of masking fluid in watercolour painting.

Want to be inspired to take your masking to another level? Then why not check out my painting in progress videos on youtube?

Button to Cathy Read's Youtube channel


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