Kieran Fitzgerald – Basic Airbrushing

Club Meeting: & June 2023
Report by: Ian Connelly

Kieran started the demo by mounting a bowl blank on a screw chuck, and proceeded to chat about needing to consider what would be a shape that would make a good canvas for the airbrushing. He turned an ogee like shape on the bottom.

“Ogee is any variation of an S shape”

Kieran Fitzgerald

Kieran then talked about his compressor with a tank capacity of 21l, which is only really any good for the airbrush as it cannot sustain the requirements of a full sized spray gun. Although it works fine with a toolshed touch up gun.

His airbrush is a $16 trademe item and pressure on the compressor should be set to about 25-30psi – this should be checked with air flowing through the airbrush.

For colour he was using u-Beaut water based dyes. He decants the dye into a pill container, and dilutes with water (3 sprays to 2 drops).

Then he explained the dual action of the airbrush – down for air, pull back for flow.

On the piece of wood that he had now mounted on the lathe, he sprayed yellow, red, green and then cedar. Drying was aided by a heat gun. Then danish oil was rubbed over the piece – which seemed to enhance the blending of the colours.

The next step is to hollow the bowl to get a sharp edge between the colour and the wood.

Alternatively on a bowl that is already hollowed you need to mask – either mask to the edge, or mask over the edge and cut it off at the edge were two suggested alternatives.

Once hollowed the piece was then sealed with a spray can of clear acrylic. Two tips came out during this – clean spray nozzle by tipping can upside down and spraying until clear – store cans upside down as it keeps better.

Next onto another piece with a hammered finish.

The final piece had pieces of tape put across it, then airbrushed black, tape was moved then red applied, tape was moved again and blue was sprayed. The piece was then sealed with clear.

We then got a recipe for a cleaning solution:

1 part tap water
1 part isopropyl alcohol
1 part windows cleaner
2-3 drops of dishwashing liquid.

Kieran gave a great and lively demo, full of information that was presented it all in a very approachable way. I look forward to seeing the results of others having a go at some of the things we were shown