Of all the visual forms of arts done by human race, stenciling is one of the oldest (if not the oldest). For tens of thousands of years, it has remained in human societies and as a matter of fact, records show that stencil art can be as old as 40,000 years and that is the most conservative estimate.
For individuals who are considered amateurs when it comes to stenciling, it can be described as a type of art in which a representation, character, patter, number, symbol or a pattern can be formed when pigments, paints and inks are applied beneath the material that was earlier put in between the paint and the surface in a way that the image is formed in the free portions of the surface. After this quick definition and description of stenciling has been given, the next thing that will be done will be to talk about and describe the kinds of stenciling that can be experienced by anyone.
The kinds of stenciling is often dependent on the materials that have been employed or the type of stenciling method itself. Here are some of the most famous kinds of stenciling available:
- Fabric Stencils: This type of stenciling is one in which the materials employed in the making of the stencils are different fabrics such as cotton, silk, linen and others. It is onto these materials that the pigment or ink is applied, and the material is also the medium between the two sides. When it comes to sheer beauty and attractiveness, fabric stencils are ranked as some of the very best. This is because it is not stressful to apply different colors into them.
- Paper Stencils: As expected, this is a kind of stenciling in which the material that is arranged on the surface is paper or different forms of paper. This can come in form of any type of paper like books, torn cards, cardboards and others. It is also noteworthy to know that paper stencils can also mean the type of stenciling that has been done on the surface of paper.
- Glass Stencils: As the name implies, in this type of stencil art, the surface upon which pigments are added is glass. Here, the artist has the liberty to select the kind of paint or ink that is to be used. The reason for this is that glass is a very different medium in comparison with other kinds of surfaces and in the making of glass stencils, the correct type of sticky material has to be used so that the paint can gum properly to the surface. Interestingly, glass stencils are widely-accepted and this explains why we see them being used on regular and common items like utensils, plates, mugs and so on.
- Metal Stencils: This is a form of stenciling in which the main material used for the stenciling or the material onto which the pigment is applied is composed of metal. This is quite different from other types of stenciling because it needs a great degree of dexterity to pull off.