Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Stone Wall Backdrop

Arguably one of the most useful backdrops when performing Shakspeare is a stone wall. In this article we will go over the process of preparing a flat and painting stone.

There are two main types of flats, Broadway or canvas, and Hollywood or wood. Canvas are the most common in schools because they cost less to build and are light weight and easy to store. Wood flats are used in television and at the college level because they are sturdy, easy to configure, and if built properly can last for decades.

Here are some videos showing how to make each type of flat.



For our stone wall project I had some old flats that needed new canvas, so that is what we will run with.

I started by removing the old muslin from the flats, then stapled the new muslin into place. Next I needed to prime the flat. Knowing that I would be painting a stone wall, I decided to prime the flats with black paint instead of the usual white. This allowed me to save time later by not needing to shade in the grout lines.

After getting the flat primed, I experimented with a few rows to get my technique where I wanted it. The method I used was pinching masking tape onto the flat for the grout lines, then painting in the stones.

Here is a short video demonstrating the technique for pinching the tape. I found the spackle unnecessary.

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