At the end of 2017, I decided to take on a little custom project for my customer, Taketani Judo Academy in Melbourne.
Previously, the kanji symbols for "Taketani DOJO" were made by a local company that did vinyl stickers. However, as you know, the surface of a tatami mat isn't exactly smooth.
Over time, dust started accumulating under the vinyl, and the edges started to peel.
This project did take some patience, as well as well informed research on what to do.
I will summarise how I completed the task:
2) Spray painting
Firstly, this is by no means an easy task. If you're completely new and not willing to take the risk, do try and find a professional.
From the next few photos, you will see that I am creating a stencil for the spray paint. I cover the old vinyl sticker with some masking tape after making sure that the mat area is clean from dust and dirt.
I then use a stanley knife, to cut around the edges of the kanji character. care is taken to only cut the masking tape, and not the actual mat
The part which used to be the kanji character is then disposed, leaving the void where the paint will then fill. You will then need to ensure that the masking tape is pressed as close to the mat as possible.
Before you start using the paint, ensure you wear the proper PPE and do it in a well ventilated area.
As you will be spraying on the mat, you will want to cover the rest of the mat with newspaper, just in case some wind decides to affect your spray trajectory.
SPRAY PAINTING THE JUDO MAT
You will first need to find and research whether a particular spray paint will suit your mat. If you're new to spray painting, practice on something else first and a test sample of the mat to make sure the paint adheres well to the mat
There is a drop of paint in the picture above, which luckily doesn't show on the end result. The can leaked slightly
You want to point your spray can towards your subject but not be too near it as well, spray the mist finely across the subject.
The mat is then left to dry in a well ventilated area
The End Result 3 years later
Turned out pretty good, huh! There is a slight difference in shade of blue, due to the lighting. The character itself does not seem to have worn off, or discoloured.
What do you think? Thank you Taketani Judo Academy in Melbourne for letting me complete this project