How to on a double action airbrush
How to use a Double Action Airbrush
First you need to consider the distance
As paint particles spray from the tip of your airbrush, the paint disperses in a cone type shape. So the closer an artist holds an airbrush to the surface, the finer the spray pattern will be. Usually a thin hair line pattern is created by airbrushing as close as 1/2 inch away from the art surface. Larger and softer patterns are created from airbrushing a few inches away from an art surface. And really hard edges are usually obtained by masking.
Double action airbrush control.
A single action airbrush has a finger control button on the top. Pressing it turns the air flow on and releasing it turns the air off. A double action airbrush allows an artist to control paint volume and air flow with a finger button. Pressing it will turn the air flow on; pulling back on the button opens a paint valve. This is why they're called a “double action airbrush". The more you pull back the button the more this causes the valve to open and so more paint will release.
The speed and control.
Time is a big factor when airbrushing. Moving over an area slowly will deposit more paint than moving quickly over the same area. If you maintain consistent paint volume and distance but have variable speeds of movement across a surface, you will create variations of color and density between slow and fast movements.
Double action airbrushing technique
You will realize that good technique comes with practice and learning to master the three controls all at one time. To see exactly the effects of each control, beginners should practice controlling one control at a time.
With your double action airbrush, push control button down keeping air flow on constantly. Maintaining a steady distance and speed, vary the paint volume by pulling back and forth on the finger control button as you airbrush across a surface.
Now do the same but maintain steady volume and distance but vary your speed across a surface.
Next practice distance control. Maintain a steady moving pace and paint volume but vary the distance to the surface. Practice all 3 until you can see the effects of each control.
Distance, speed and volume are primary factors in controlling spray patterns. The effect of controlling speed may be less noticeable but it is possibly the most important to master. To demonstrate, hold your double action airbrush approximately 1/2 inch away from the surface & take 10 seconds to airbrush a steady circle. After that, airbrush a circle same size but faster without compromising volume or distance. Although your circles might not be the greatest, the one airbrushed faster will have smoother contours and should appear to you more pleasing. It may take some time for you to learn how to airbrush quick strokes, but it's essential for you to learn to produce clean, well formed lines + tones.
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