This pigment and rubber latex combination is intended to be used for a short period to lock in the color while painting. Allow the masking fluid to fully dry for a few minutes. Then, remove it before continuing to paint. As long as any brushes are rinsed thoroughly after coming into contact with the fluid, these don't have to be switched out for fresh brushes.
Those who have never tried using masking fluid before will be amazed at the results they see with this Windsor & Newton product. Also known as liquid frisket, masking fluid is available in various colors that make it easier for the artist to quickly remove the frisket once it's dried. Orange is a color that certainly cannot be missed so that no fluid is accidentally left on a piece of artwork. However, cream and gray frisket are also common. Windsor & Newton's masking fluid comes in a natural pastel yellow.
As the name suggests, masking fluid goes on like a liquid on a piece of artwork, but it dries into a solid. It will feel more like hardened rubber, even a type of soft cement, as it begins to trap in the beautiful colors of a piece of art. It's important though to allow both the artwork and the liquid frisket to dry fully. If the fluid is still liquid-like, give it more time. Otherwise, artwork can be accidentally and permanently damaged.
Most artists prefer using Windsor & Newton masking fluid on watercolor pieces. With this use, it doesn't always have to go on parts that have been painted. Instead, to keep the white paper as stark as possible, the frisket can be used for more luminescent whites. Similarly, if an artist has painted around the edges of a piece of paper and wants to bring back the starkness of the whiteness, use this fluid to do so.
Once it's time to get rid of the liquid frisket, doing so is easy. An artist doesn't need a scraper or other tools. Instead, they can just wash their hands and then use their fingers to wipe away at the hardened materials. It's important to watch the liquid carefully though. Just as touching it too early before it has fully dried can be harmful to the overall appearance of a piece of artwork, so too can waiting too long. The more that the liquid hardens, the more difficult it can be to fully get rid of.
Artists who have never used masking fluid on their work shouldn't be nervous to try. Shake up the bottle first. Then simply apply some of the liquid on the edge of a paintbrush and then cover the artwork with a thin layer. It's better to cover tiny spaces first and then work up to larger ones once the artist feels more comfortable. While brushes can still be used for painting after applying liquid frisket as long as they're washed immediately, it's recommended that new brushes are not used for this job. Once the frisket hardens, the artist won't ever be fully able to get it out of their paintbrush completely. Therefore, only use brushes that have seen better days or try using cheap brushes.
To keep brushes as clean as possible before using masking fluid, an artist may want to try combining a small amount of water with a very little bit of dish detergent or soap. Put this on a plate or in a bowl and dip the brush into it until it's bubbly and lathered. After using a brush to paint on liquid frisket, wash under a sink with more soap, removing as many of the hardened pieces as possible. As mentioned, don't expect to get every last trace of frisket out of the brush.
Once the masking fluid is completely dry, the texture of the watercolor painting may change somewhat. These areas may have a more visible and stronger appearance than they did before. To prevent completely altering the look of the watercolor painting, the artist should test out the fluid on small portions to see its effects once dried and removed. If it seems like this effect would be too much, use less fluid.