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Making a Photomask

Print your ImageExpose your ImageWash your stencil Apply your stencil Engrave your stencil

Whether, you are just beginning or an experienced sandcarver, you should know that a good quality film print is key to processing a superior photomask. Although other factors may be involved, it all begins with a dark, opaque film print.

You can produce your Custom photomasks in four simple steps. To begin, you will need a computer, printer, a UV light source, photoresist film, water and a film print such as UV Vellum, Inkjet Film or Laser Film.

  1. Create and print your design. You’ll start by creating your artwork (using your preferred design software), and then printing out that artwork onto a film print .
  2. Expose your design. The next step is to expose the artwork design on the film print to a photoresist film using a UV light source. The film print will block the UV light from the photoresist in the exact outline of your artwork, but the areas that are exposed to the UV light will harden.
  3. Wash with pressurized water. You then simply wash out the photoresist film with pressurized water. The non-exposed areas will wash away, and you will be left with a photomask stencil of your custom design.
  4. Apply the photomask. Once your photomask is dry, you can apply it to your surface.
  5. Carve the photomask. Once your photomask has been applied to your surface, you are ready to begin sandcarving.

Using this method, you can create finely detailed, complex designs that can then be sandcarved onto glass, crystal, marble, stone and other surfaces. You would follow the same process to create photomasks for multi-dimensional carvings as well. (To create different levels of dimension on your sandcarved product, you would simply remove different portions of the photomask, one after another, at different stages of your engraving. The result will be an intricate, multi-dimensional carving.)

Click HERE and watch a two-minute video on Making a photomask.

For more information on creating Darker Film Prints, click HERE.

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