Spray Paint Stencils




Here is a fun hobby to start. I like to spray paint designs on different things. You can use your own photos or uploaded photos.

It's really simple to do. Just read through and try it out. 

If you have any questions don't be afraid to comment below. 

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Step 1: Supplies

What you'll need: 

-Cardstock with a black and white print of photo
-Gloves (optional)
-Cutting board
-Spray Paint (any color)
-X-Acto Knife 
-Object to put your design on (I'm using a paper for an example)
-Room to work

Step 2: Cut Out Stencil

Before you even begin, you need to choose what you would like to make a stencil of. Print it out in black and white, this will help make cutting it out a lot easier. If it has a lot of detail, it will be harder. I like to print it out on cardstock because it is less flimsy as normal printer paper and will keep its shape better. 

To begin, all you'll need is the cardstock with the design on it, the X-Acto knife, and the cutting board.
Please be patient! Depending on your design, it may take some time and patience to cut it out.
Sometimes there will be a white spot in the black, if so: cut it out and save it. You can add it on later by using double sided tape. 
Please be careful not to cut yourself. 

Step 3: Spray Paint Time

Next get ready to spray paint. I like to spray paint outside to vent the fumes, but whatever works best for you. 
I lay out newspaper underneath whatever I'm going to spray paint. 
Then I lay out the stencil where I want it to be. 
Lay more newspaper over the rest so it doesn't fly everywhere else. 
During all of this I wear gloves so I don't get spray paint all over myself. 
Shake the spray paint really well, on most cans they say up to 2 minutes... I don't usually shake them that much. 
Spray over your design, you might want to apply pressure around your design as your spraying so it doesn't run underneath your design. 
Let it dry!

Step 4: Your Creation

After it dries you can either: put a coat of clear coat or be done with the spraying. 
Remove the stencil and reveal your work. 
If it does not turn out the way you wished, practice makes perfect. 
If you find another way of making this easier, comment below for others. 

Enjoy spray painting! :)

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    15 Discussions


    Tip 1 year ago on Step 4

    This is a great post. From my experience if you need to have very well defined edges, you can use a sticker to make your stencil. Then paste the sticker on to the surface and after painting once you remove it you will find very smooth edges.


    5 years ago

    How would you do hammer girl ( if you don't know look her up)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    fix-spray is a good idea, what I've done for example around the lions ear or where the card stock would lift from the spray is make holes with a hole punch and then stick drafting dots over the hole.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Hello congratulations on the 'you know you could use the recording sheets FRISKET ;-)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    no, i mean that when you made the main stencil you held the can too close. that's why there is paint outside the lines. its still really awesome though and a complex stencil. i understand that your design is a lion, so it should rightfully be of a golden or tawny color. however, if you make a negative stencil (the opposite of what you did) and layer it over the picture with black or brown paint wit will REALLY set the design off and look fantastic. well done. the simplicity of the instructions helps, compared to other Instructables in which people make it all confusing. i am an experienced street artist, if you were wondering


    8 years ago on Introduction

    If You Don't Have Any Cardstock, You Could Use Cereal Boxes Because If You Just Normal Cardboard, It's Harder To Cut Through And Is Double Layered.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    could you do something like this on a wall? What would you use to temorarily glue it ot the wall to get no underspray?

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    You Could Just Hold It Really Still. I Tend To Put A Extra Strip At The Top So My Hand Doesn't Get Paint On It.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    there are a lot of reposisionable mounting adhesive sprays that work well. krylon makes a good one. make sure that its not a strong adhesive or it'll leave residoo onto the surface.
    whenever I've done stuff like this it seems to help it if what I'm spraying is mounted vertically. that way I'm holding the spray paint can vertically, then spray in light coats.
    now for cutting, it really helps to get yourself one of those green cutting mats. when you cut on wood, it will get scratch's and grooves on it which will throw off your cut. also change the blade often. need good crisp cuts. any "fuz" in the cut is gauranteed to bleed.

    good job!

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks! I just use the cutting board we have at home until I get up and go get a real one. :) I'll try the vertical thing! Thanks again!