Introduction: Water Drop Effect - Custom Paint Secret, Airbrush

This is one of the best kept secrets in the industry. How do they get that bizarre effect. It's easy.


celticrush97 (author)2011-07-21

Any idea if this could be done on walls?

Thanks for the ible!

dayayohut (author)2011-07-15

I tried this on my PS3 controller, I did it with CREATEX Pearlized Candy Blue with the CREATEX Opaque White over top as the water.

It did not turn out well. I think it may have been the combination of the colors. It also had a lot to do with the curved surface of the controller.

MarkerMan1 (author)2010-07-31

I bought some enamal paints but im not sure it is the right kind, it says it is water based so wouldent it just blend into the water?

siouxsieq (author)2010-04-26

I'm looking for a cool idea for kids room. Can this be done on a wall??
Thanx for posting!

miqt (author)2008-04-09

does anyone know how to do this effect but on water drops that are actually dripping down....kinda like long drops, i think that'd be cool.

Robobvious (author)miqt2009-06-08

I haven't tried this yet, but I imagine if you took a canvas like that, and just sprayed water along one of the top edges, then tilted it you could let the drops drip down naturally, then go on to the next step with the spray paint. Not sure if it will work but hey, you don't like it, paint over it and do it again! Oh, and please tell us how it comes out!

tspike7 (author)Robobvious2010-02-15

if that idea does not work then it may be more time consuming but still possible. have the surface you are painting be [almost] perfectly flat leaning in the direction you are wanting to have it drip. spray water onto the surface as you normally would and then use an eye dropper to add water to the surface and use a toothpick to move the water around to where you want it to be.

i havent tried it yet, but its an idea worth trying.

best of luck

iMakeRandomStuff (author)2010-01-06

 I used red paint on the water droplets so it kinda looks like "blood" drops. Great fun!


llamafur (author)2009-01-24

here's the paint job. I wanted the face plate to actually have texture.

Kvath (author)llamafur2009-10-09

 It is Dry Xbox case ?!?
or wet ?

:O looks like a wet street

ac1D (author)llamafur2009-03-27

W-O-W. I want it!

MrSkary (author)2009-05-25

SWEET Ur vid was easy and simple!! AWESOME job bro!!! Much Thanks,

garrettmorse (author)2008-06-07

Hey what colors look best over white for the water drops? Thanks

I used on a computer blue and white, it turned out amazing, i started with a blue base, then did light white paint on the droplits, if you want il post pics upon request

Can you post the pictures?

CapnTac (author)garrettmorse2008-08-07

My guess would be a light blue or yellow.

ExtraMedium (author)CapnTac2008-08-14

I would go with light blue as yellow may look like pee lol

clark (author)ExtraMedium2009-01-06

haha thats a nice thought

thyubernoob (author)garrettmorse2008-10-01

How about red?

llamafur (author)2009-01-23

I just did this to my xbox 360, and it looks really good.

Rob K (author)2008-01-28

Im trying to figure out why enamel paint?

xl1500 (author)Rob K2008-08-30

Rob K the reason you have to use enamel paint is because it will not stick to the water droplets. If you use a water base paint, it would just blend into the water droplets and give you a muddy effect.

Shut Up Now (author)xl15002008-12-24

correct. enamel isnt water soluble.

w00ty32 (author)Rob K2008-02-05

Maybe, some paints wont stay on the drop of water, and breaks the drop/slides off/etc. I don't know the propertys of paint very well, so I'm just throwing things up in the air.

Hoxer (author)w00ty322008-02-08

I have to ask - What is enamel paint??? I'm from Denmark and it must be called something else here, because i've never heard the word before. What's the different between "normal" and enamel paint??

Bright Shadow (author)Hoxer2008-02-22

enamel paint is usually a high-gloss rust resistant. a good example is Rustoleum brand

MadMechanicMike (author)2008-01-17

i wanna do the top of my laptop like this but im afrade im not gonna like the result.

hey instead of painting on ur laptop why don't you paint on a sticker, that way if you like it you put it on your laptop, and if you don't you keep trying. (im pretty sure you can get good sized blank stickers)

You can always paint back over it if you don't like it! My 2 cents.

Get a large adhesive roll of paper. then you can do it and apply it to your computer with no risk.

Vinstepula (author)2008-08-15

That turned out to be way easier than what I expected. Thanks for posting this!

ExtraMedium (author)2008-08-14

I take it only the paint that is sprayed on has to be enamel

trooperrick (author)2008-06-01

Do you have to have the paint completely dry (bottle says 48 hours) or does it just have to be dry to the touch before using the drops and second color? Thanks in advance.

drewdoog (author)2008-02-27

if you dont use enamel, the paint will slide off the water drops leaving you with spots that arent blended. they will simply show you the undercolor with no shadowing effects. At least this is my experience with it.

sims01 (author)drewdoog2008-03-01

can you tell me how long to let it dry and do wipe the water off or do I let it evaporate on its own thanks sims01

Dr.Paj (author)sims012008-05-05

Evaporate, but you can blast it with a heat gun.

AirbrushTricks (author)2008-04-18

Thanks everybody. Sorry for the lack of replies. I've gotten soo lost in all these projects I'm starting to lose track where all these vids are. Always feel free to track me down at

dsaavedra (author)2008-04-04

this was really cool. nice vid. thanks for the instructions! got some paint and tried it out today. i still need improvement but its turning out nice. im gonna do this on some fishing lures:

bigtallrulethemall (author)2008-03-12

Thanx for the vid! Ive seen this somewhere else before fogot how 2 do it and when i tried i just messed up. So this wuz ccol!

jjay10 (author)2008-03-08

thats cool dude nice

bduffman (author)2008-01-23

thats the best video ive seen im stoked im so gona do this on some thing mayb my car doors but dont no cause may look weirdo ill find some thing lol u got me look around for some thing now look wat uve done ur gona make me go crazy and do it on every thing i own in a min

incorrigible packrat (author)2008-01-17


Erik Lindemann (author)2008-01-07

Saw this on "How It's Made" on the Discovery Channel, they were doing it on some hockey masks. Very cool effect, I hope this helps some people out.

Bran (author)Erik Lindemann2008-01-12

Saw it also, although this video is more informative (and great!)

Cool, it took me a week to research how it's done. Not many pros want to give up this secret.

XHorntail (author)AirbrushTricks2008-01-07

Well then thank you for sharing! You should do a vid on making a setup on a budget, I know that'd be popular. Gotta say, just your vids have gotten me into the whole thing.

AirbrushTricks (author)XHorntail2008-01-07

Thanks. I'll do that once I get the chance.

GorillazMiko (author)2008-01-07

Awesome videos, very good quality, keep them up! :-)

TeacherOfTheWays (author)2008-01-07

Wow very cool! Might try this some time!

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm an amateur custom painter that loves to share all the cool tricks that i learn along the way.
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