Friday, December 28, 2007

Friday Tip

*Mindy in progress - more hairs to come!

People have been asking how I do my roaned hairs, so for this week's tip I made a short video using the Mindy I am painting right now. Unfortunately it's still pretty hard to make things out, but perhaps this will help with the general idea.

First of all, I always wear a glove on the hand I hold the horse with. I usually don't on my paintbrush hand just because I go through so many gloves already and it doesn't really seem to matter. I wear a glove for three reasons: 1) To prevent the oils on my skin from rubbing off onto the model, 2) To prevent my hands from rubbing off work I've already done and 3) So that I don't have to put paint on my hands. Number 3 isn't really a big deal with acrylic, but it makes a lot of sense when using oils.

The process is really very simple, but time consuming and requires a steady practiced hand. I start by rolling my brush (in this case the Winsor & Newton Sceptre Gold II size 0000) through the acrylic. This helps to keep a point on the brush, and eliminates the excess paint. You should only have a tiny bit of paint on the brush and there should definitely never be a ball - even a small one - on the end of the brush. A sharp point is essential. With the brush loaded, it's then just a matter of getting the "hairs" onto the horse. On a mini like this, think more in terms of tapping rather than making strokes. There is a slight stroke movement to the tap, but the hair shape mostly comes from holding the brush at a proper angle and simply tapping down lightly. You will be able to get a few hairs before you need to load the brush with paint again.

One more tip: Areas that have hair whorls should be done before the larger masses of "straight" hair are done. By doing the whorls first, you ensure that they are the proper shape and are not cramped. You can blend the rest of the hairs right into the whorls as you come to them.


Tracy said...

Love the hand-palette =cD Yes, thats how I do it too. One billion little strokes with a teensy tiny detail brush!

Carol said...

Neat video, I wipe my paint on my glove, too, though I don't use my glove as a palette, that's funny!

Mel Miller said...

At least the hand palette is never far from reach! Sometimes I smear paint on my clothes when I forget about the paint on my hand though... :-p