Thursday, May 1, 2008

Friday Tip (early!)

Since I will be mostly away from my computer for the next few days, I'm giving you guys the Friday Tip today. :-D Shelby asks, "how to gloss the hooves,eyes, etc.? I always wonder what I should use, and apply it with..." Good question Shelby! As you can see in the photo above, I use Liquitex varnishes. I like them because they are easy to clean up and are thinner than the old go-to glosser, nail polish. Depending on what I am varnishing, I will use a different gloss for different effects.

For more durable high risk areas such as eartips, I like to use matte varnish in between spraying sealer coats. Always finish with spray sealer over the matte varnish to ensure there are no uneven areas. After finishing with the sealer spray, the other varnishes can be applied. For eyes, glossed hooves, tongues, and the little pink bits inside noses, I use high gloss. To help replicate the look of hoof horn, satin makes a great natural varnish as long as the horse has relatively clean feet. And finally, for those naturally slightly glossier manes and tails, I like to whip up a 50/50 concoction of matte and satin.

To apply the varnish on eyes, use a round brush with a sharp precise tip and do one thin layer at a time. Be careful not to build up too many layers, or the gloss will begin to look cloudy. The same method is used elsewhere, but larger brushes can be used where appropriate. Note that while most of the varnishes should be applied evenly over the entire surface they are meant to cover, the mane and tail gloss should be done sparingly in one or maybe two thin layers or it will seem too distinct from the body. Manes and tails do not have to be completely covered. A light touch on the medium to high spots will create the effect convincingly (and give a little extra protection against rubs).


Shelby said...


Mel Miller said...

:-D I hope this answered all your questions Shelby!