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Thursday, September 07, 2023

Sir Someone of Somewhere

Here's the first of two models I painted using a somewhat haphazard approach, attempting to put into practice several techniques suggested by Jeff, Sean, and others. I'm pretty happy with everything save the face, which looks a bit gloopy to me even now despite thinning the paint to near invisibility (or at least so it seemed on the brush). 

I didn't even realize the figure had a lion on its chest until I shot a photograph and zoomed in. I knew I was taking a chance, but I was compelled to apply my drybrush. Lo and behold, it worked. 


Jeff Shyluk said...

If you had reversed the colours, I think you would have made your knight into Scottish royalty - red rampant lion on a gold yellow field. The dry brush looks really good!

Jeff Shyluk said...

I was considering your "gloppy" paint situation... without watching you paint, I can think of a number of things that could be happening. Paint control is the hardest thing to master, which is why the Masters were so good. It takes years.

I know at one point you were drawing paint straight from the pots... never again, ever. If you don't have a palette with rounded indentations for paint, get one of those. You store the paint you will immediately use in those dents and you mix colours in the middle. Over time, after a few minutes, paint will settle in the dents, so you have to stir it once in a while.

Don't take paint from the middle of the reservoir, take it from the edge. Dip down more to get more, dip shallower to get less. As you bring up the brush, draw it against the side of the reservoir so excess paint drips off. It should ooze kind of like blood, and over time, it should dry like blood as well. If it's flowing like water, it's probably too dilute. There's a critical difference between diluted paint and thin paint.

Have a piece of paper nearby. Stroke the paper with your loaded brush to get rid of the excess at the tip. Paper towel is fine. Just a fine stroke, like you're trying to just barely tickle your wife, just at the threshold of her noticing, or maybe just a little bit less than that. If paint is glopping off here, your paint consistency is wrong.

When the paint goes on in your committed stroke, you should have an instant where it brushes on, and then after that you are pushing or pulling the paint across the surface. It's not quite as tacky as glue, but it should remind you of glue, and not water. Again, like blood.

Brush painting is not much more loaded than dry brushing. For all that tiny detail, you're going to underload your brush rather than overload it. Always test on paper first! Since paint changes over time - minutes - your tests should be frequent.

Also watch your brush to make sure there isn't dry paint on it. You may need to clean your brushes mid-project, no big deal.