Removing Mask from Watercolor Painting

MaskRemoval01I used a masking pick-up tool to pull up the dried masking fluid from my painting. (See previous posts on the earlier progress of this painting.) It took quite a while to loosen and pull up the masking. This painting is large, a full sheet, 23 by 30 inches. Since I painted over 5 layers, and each layer has a new application of masking, there was a lot to remove. The work was worth the effort though and I am pretty happy with all of the beautiful textured results.

 

MaskRemoval02Here is the chunk of masking that I pulled from the painting. By the way, the only good tool to use to remove the masking is a masking fluid pick-up tool. It is similar to a rubber eraser, but it will not smear the pigments on the paper. The dried masking fluid sticks to it beautifully. I usually get an edge up with the tool, then gently pull with my fingers. Avoid rubbing the painting with your fingers as you have oils on your hands that will get into the paper. I find that when I use the masking pick-up tool I can be relatively aggressive with it. I rub it all over the painting, especially after most of the masking is removed. It will pick up any little leftover bits that are left behind. It is important to remove ALL masking from the painting.

 

MaskRemoval03Now I am ready to evaluate the painting. I can see I need to diminish some of the textures in the netting and darken the boat so that the basket will become more of the focal point.

It isn’t finished yet! I’ll post another update soon.

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