This topic has 6 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 2 years, 6 months ago by Tina Yager.

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  • #14968

    Hello All – I have been tasked with painting several small (About 10′ x 10′) translucent drops that will be lit from behind and used with shadow play. These drops will be hung on a track and moved as if they were traveler (Pulled side to side). My concern is that given the relatively small size, that starching the soft goods would stiffen the fabric and affect the drape / ability for the piece to be easily pulled on and off. Has anyone had any experience with something like this?

    #15949
     Tessa Broyles
    • Experience: 0-5 years
    • Scenic Status: Full Time Regular

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    Is it going to be pulled off like a shower curtain or or a frame so it keeps its shape?

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

    #15950

    tbroyles wrote:


    Is it going to be pulled off like a shower curtain or or a frame so it keeps its shape?

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

    Shower curtain style – which is why I’m concerned with maintaining a soft drape.

    #15951
     Tessa Broyles
    • Experience: 0-5 years
    • Scenic Status: Full Time Regular

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    I don’t have experience with this, but I would expect that starch would definitely stiffen it (the question is if it is too stiff for your purpose), and depending on how you apply the paint, that would too. If you have time, I would do some test samples, or find something old that has been starched and see how it looks pulled.

    Given that these won’t be hung on a frame, I bet you could get by without starching it, but I would experiment with using watered down paint vs. fabric paint/dye to see if that makes a difference as well. But again, never done this. Good luck!

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

    #15952

    Are you concerned at all with cracking in the paint once it is applied? To maintain stiffness/the look when the drape is on stage, I would just add a pocket (if you can) and some drapery weights. My concern with a task like this, and the fact that they must be translucent (and therefore somewhat delicate/lightly painted,) would be the deterioration of the painted surface as it gets gathered on and off stage (how many times does it get tracked on and off during the show? and how long is the run?) To help with that, and what might also help with stiffening a bit, would be to add a clear, flexible substance to the paint; something like elmer’s craft glue or Aileen’s tacky glue. But again, I agree with tbroyles, do some tests with these subtances if you have time, crumple ’em up, and see what works and what doesn’t for your purposes. good luck!

    #15953

    In the shop where I work, when we do translucencies we often use Liquid Decorator Colors, which are a faux dye from pro chem. Acts like dye but no setting. It can be thinned out and still be vibrant, leaving a nice pliable fabric. It’s remarkably affordable for how far it can be thinned. Depending on how the pieces play and their purpose (and your budget), you might also consider Poly Cyc from RoseBrand. I’ve known it to be treated with a coat of methylcel to counter the bleed, and then used with Liquid Decorator Colors with great success as a stained glass translucent piece. It comes in 10′-8″ widths. Regardless of fabric, faux dye (dharma also works) would be my go to here if you’re concerned about the paint adding to the stiffness problem.

    #15954
     Tina Yager
    Admin
    • Experience: 15-20 years
    • Scenic Status: Full Time Freelance

    I’ve been meaning to respond to this, hopefully this is still relevant. I did some small backdrops that were starched and hung on an exposed traveler. To keep them light and pliable, we used Rosco supersats and no latex. Anything that needed to be kept as a highlight or light area was either masked or blocked out with a paraffin wax during the layout process. In my opinion the starch did not make them too stiff at all and the supersats were easy to use and readily available.

    I’ve included pictures if that is helpful.

    Tina
    [attachment=2]32BA9C3C-C1E8-44FF-BB36-E05979DB0C57.jpeg[/attachment]
    [attachment=1]0D209169-C2E8-4AA9-BA10-D0DB6018036D.jpeg[/attachment]
    [attachment=0]EE3406BD-F1B4-4380-9D9E-15D7C7CBBC93.jpeg[/attachment]

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