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Painting Methods & Materials


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Haha! No way. It's just watercolor painting. Tons and tons of old ladies do it for fun! Besides, watercolor artists aren't gonna give anyone a disease (which is the primary reason I buy into to tattoo trade secrets idea, although there aren't really many secrets left anyway)

Well... yeah, it is and it isn't. It is just painting, but it's also your menu and it's has a specialized process. Especially if you sell prints of your flash in addition to tattooing it, that's a process that puts food on your table. Something tells me you don't tattoo though. Which is not to be condescending, but I would really appreciate someone's perspective who has solid years of experience to back up their view on this.

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Well... yeah, it is and it isn't. It is just painting, but it's also your menu and it's has a specialized process. Especially if you sell prints of your flash in addition to tattooing it, that's a process that puts food on your table. Something tells me you don't tattoo though. Which is not to be condescending, but I would really appreciate someone's perspective who has solid years of experience to back up their view on this.

You are taking this too seriously trust me. I have had many many conversations with tattooers about watercolor and flash painting. No one was ever tight lipped. Some shops even have open "paint nights" and lots of tattooers offer painting advice on YouTube. Not to be condescending but just take a look around. The mere existence of this thread answers your question. But you are right I am not a tattooer just a watercolor artist.

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You are taking this too seriously trust me. I have had many many conversations with tattooers about watercolor and flash painting. No one was ever tight lipped. Some shops even have open "paint nights" and lots of tattooers offer painting advice on YouTube. Not to be condescending but just take a look around. The mere existence of this thread answers your question. But you are right I am not a tattooer just a watercolor artist.

Cool. Thanks.

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You are taking this too seriously trust me. I have had many many conversations with tattooers about watercolor and flash painting. No one was ever tight lipped. Some shops even have open "paint nights" and lots of tattooers offer painting advice on YouTube. Not to be condescending but just take a look around. The mere existence of this thread answers your question. But you are right I am not a tattooer just a watercolor artist.

I don't want to overstep my boundaries as a non-tattooer here, but I think that sometimes things are said in a tattoo shop that aren't meant for the internet, and that it's very important to be conscious of this. Just because information is given to you, or that you've learned things from getting tattooed or by spending time in tattoo shops doesn't mean that you should share this information in a public forum. Sure, there's painting advice on YouTube, but there's also a lot about learning how to actually tattoo, and I don't think--again, as a non-tattooer--that this is right or does any service to tattooing as a craft. I don't think my opinion matters much here either way, but that's just my .02.

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I've been using a mix of Prismacolor micron style pens and Zig Millenium pens (http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B003TZTDTC/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=6738&creativeASIN=B003TZTDTC&linkCode=as2&tag=g0b5bb-21). Both flow super smooth over the paper and never skip like I've found with regular Micron pens have for me in the past.

I'm interested in trying out some nibs in the near future, too. Just want to learn more about them and how to use them properly so I'm not messing up the tips.

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Does anybody here have any advice about lighting? I've been trying to paint with oils more and more and I generally paint in the daytime in a room with plenty of natural light coming through a large window facing roughly northwest. I am finding it especially difficult to get nice even lighting on my canvas without too much glare. I am wondering if a translucent blind that could diffuse and even out the light would make things easier to work with? Does anybody have any particular suggestions for lamps?

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  • 1 month later...

I'm working as an artist/illustrator, and one of the things I picked up along the way is, that you can make great work with even the cheapest tools. No need to pay a fortune for high end stuff, although they might last a little longer (ink is gonna kill any brush real quick anyways). I just try to register how everything works together - how the ink, water, colors react to each other, how they flow on the paper etc. - and adapt my process accordingly. I rarely fuck things up beyond repair.

For lines, I use a nib pen. No idea what brand and size, though. If I want a thick line, I'll just add more pressure. It's not one of those broad caligraphy ones though!

For shading, I use two brushes; a kinda big one for the ink and a kinda small one for spit/water. No idea what brands or sizes, though - but the were cheap.

For colors, I use Ecolines. In my oppinion, they suck straight out of the bottle - way to bright for me, but they're easy to break, so I just mix them on a plate.

I'm using 300g watercolor paper. No idea what brand, but it was cheap.

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Does anybody here have any advice about lighting? I've been trying to paint with oils more and more and I generally paint in the daytime in a room with plenty of natural light coming through a large window facing roughly northwest. I am finding it especially difficult to get nice even lighting on my canvas without too much glare. I am wondering if a translucent blind that could diffuse and even out the light would make things easier to work with? Does anybody have any particular suggestions for lamps?

I have a swing arm lamp that I use similar to this one: Daylight Combo Lamp - BLICK art materials I use a large frosted floodlight as the center bulb (full-spectrum, at the maximum wattage since I like lots and lots of light when I work.) Sometimes I'll use a second swing-arm lamp as well, but generally speaking that's only for night-time use. Don't have much glare with the right angles/distance of the lamp. I think a curtain/shade/blind would be a great solution.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm interested to hear what any of the older guys have to say about this as well. I am not a tattooer, but I do paint and have found that some of the artists I get tattooed by were very hesitant to share any knowledge with me until I had been hanging around the shop for a good amount of time. For example, I occasionally get tattooed at JD Crowe's Ancient Art in VA Beach, where all of the artists are very experienced painters. It wasn't until I had been hanging around for about 2 years that Scott Sterling would talk to me at all about painting, not surprising to me because he's a legend in my eyes. Regardless, if the artists don't like you or trust you, they probably won't be of any help, but once they saw that I take my studies and painting very seriously, they were shooting me a few tips.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I learned everything I know about painting, and spitshading by hanging out in the shops and watching, never asking questions but just watchinig in silence, then going home and trying what i saw untill i got the results i was looking for.

Whats the fun in some one telling you exactly what to do, where is the satisfaction in that. its much more rewarding to figure it out for yourself with trial and error.

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  • 6 months later...

I have a question about oil painting and I am wondering if anybody here with any experience with it can help me out. Right now I'm struggling with yellowing that I assume is related to my use of linseed oil as a medium. If there was any yellowing in early layers on my painting, I didn't notice it, but when I really thin out my paint with the linseed oil it turns noticeably yellow as it dries, so what should be a solid titanium white background is this patchy yellow-white field instead and it bums me out. I'm using Demco Artist Series purified linseed oil if that matters; I'm using Pebeo Studio XL oil paints, which kind of suck but I didn't want to invest in good quality paints when I was just trying out oils, but they seem to have worked out decently on previous paintings so I don't think the problem is the paint. It might also be that I have no real training in oil painting, which I am learning is an incredibly complicated thing, and am kind of figuring it out as I go along so I may be making some real bonehead rookie mistakes. Here's a picture to show what I'm talking about:

rr029u.jpg

Does anybody have any ideas?

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From what I can gather, using Titanium Dioxide with the linseed oil results in a less stable paint layer. Using Zinc Oxide/Zinc Sulfide with Titanium Dioxide with the linseed oil should result in less yellowing. Apparently the Titanium Dioxide is so inert that it allows the oil to rise to the surface, thus yellowing faster than other pigments. It could also be because of the canvas/ground being unable to absorb the extra oil.

You can bleach it out by letting it dry away from direct sunlight, then expose to direct sunlight for short periods of time.

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From what I can gather, using Titanium Dioxide with the linseed oil results in a less staple paint layer. Using Zinc Oxide/Zinc Sulfide with Titanium Dioxide with the linseed oil should result in less yellowing. Apparently the Titanium Dioxide is so inert that it allows the oil to rise to the surface, thus yellowing faster than other pigments. It could also be because of the canvas/ground being unable to absorb the extra oil.

You can bleach it out by letting it dry away from direct sunlight, then expose to direct sunlight for short periods of time.

Yeah, this is seemingly one of the most difficult things about painting with oils: not only is there the usual artistic stuff going on that makes any kind of drawing or painting hard at the best of times, but it practically seems like you need to be a fucking chemist in addition to all that to make sense of oils. I like the bleaching it with sunlight idea, though I'm wondering if it's just easier to paint over that part of it with either a more concentrated titanium white or have it diluted with turp instead of linseed oil.

Great advice on the titanium dioxide vs zinc oxide/sulfide too. I've been thinking that I'm going to invest in some artist-quality Gamblin oils (seems that there's a good balance between price and quality there compared to other brands) and they have a titanium zinc white that might do the trick.

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Mineral spirits or distilled turpentine would be a good choice for thinning out, for sure.

- - - Updated - - -

I spent the better part of two years working on just the right gesso recipe for silverpoint drawing - many many tossed boards, lots of dust and bad gesso batches later, I finally have the recipe that works just right for me and my needs. It's going to take time, experimentation and research, that's for sure!

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My dad also paints and about a year ago he gave me a bottle of liquin (it says it resists yellowing on the bottle) which I hadn't used until now. Mixing it with the white seems to have masked most of the yellowing. I'll see how it holds up as it dries, and maybe touch it up a little bit if necessary. I'm not sure that I like the liquin because it has this strange gel-like consistency, but maybe I'll play around with it a little and see what I can do with it until I make my next trip to the art store. Thanks for the advice though, it was really helpful.

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  • 1 year later...

Hello Everyone,

I am not a tattooer but have been drawing and painting for fun for the last couple years. This thread was initially very helpful in regards to materials. Thanks to everyone who shared here. I have attached a few of the recent things I have done. These are all on Arches and painted using a combination of PH Martins and FW liquid acrylics. I have really enjoyed the process and watching things very slowly improve. It sure beats watching TV for late night activity. I'd love to hear some thoughts from those with more experience. Great forum!

Nate

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  • 1 year later...

Hey!

just wanted to say thanks. This thread has been a wealth of knowledge for me.

 

finally getting somewhere with a mix of FW acrylics, talents drawing ink, PH Martens, nib pens and brushes. Picked up some arches cold press recently but I'm not 100% sold on it jus to yet. It is VERY rough in comparison to the Langton Prestige paper which I normally use. So far that is the best paper I have used. Works well for me. Here is a recent one I did using the materials above, but with Langton.

IMG_9265.JPG

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  • 3 months later...

Hey guys, bumping this thread because it's a great source of info and was wondering if anyone had anything to contribute.

Lately my biggest problem is with trying to get bold, consistent lines around my stuff. I normally use either a sharpie or a thicker Sakura Micron pen. I'm trying to get the hang of their brush tip pens too, but the width of the lines changes depending on how you angle the pen, so it's been tough. I don't like the way the sharpie looks next to paint, but it's the only way I can consistently get those heavy lines. I'm interested in trying out using a brush and paint/ink because I think I'd like how it looks better, but not sure where to begin. I saw a lot of you guys talking about liquid acrylics but I'm pretty dumb about them...do they work like watercolor (able to be thinned out with water) or are they just like low viscosity acrylic paint? Because I already add a little water to my acrylic paint to make it go down smoother. Would liquid acrylic be suitable for doing lines or is that more of a shading thing? 

I'm also determined to master watercolor. Although I usually end up cheating and using Copics to simulate watercolor. I find Copics way easier to use but I want the bragging rights of saying I can do watercolor! :3_grin: I always hated painting as a kid because of the lack of control I felt I had, I'm trying to face my fears now. I think my biggest problem is with colors accidentally mixing. Like if I do red next to my black, some black ends up mixing with it and I don't have a nice clean distinction between colors. I guess that's just down to me being impatient and not waiting for things to dry enough, but I tend to get my paint re-wet by accident. This is a close up of one thing I painted that I was almost proud of. I still made a lot of mistakes and paint went where I didn't want it, but it was almost cool.

paint.jpg

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  • 2 months later...

Hi Everyone.

This thread of the forum has been so useful, I've been coming back to it again and again over the last year or so. I've just set up a blog for doing interviews with (mostly traditional tattoo) painters about their technique and tips, design choices and other stuff about tattoo history - I thought it might be of interest to someone reading this thread!

https://flashruleseverythingaroundme.wordpress.com/

https://www.instagram.com/flashruleseverythingaroundme/

Thanks!

 

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Oh, and in the spirit of the forum, here is the most recent painting I did. 

I tried using F/W acrylic black ink for the first time, with dr ph martins radiant watercolours and a waterpen for spit-shading. The acrylic ink is so much easier to get a smooth and short blend, but the watercolour seems to dry over it much more visibly than india ink, so I wouldn't use it again unless it was a black only painting, but then i'd use the ph martin's black to get the blue hue! Earlier in this forum some people said they got past this by re-lining again at the end, but as it took me well over an hour to line all this with a dip pen, i'm definitely not going to make a habit out of that! Just bought a pot of dr ph martins HI-CARB india ink to try instead. I have started mixing greens with a drop of white acrylic to good effect after seeing a famous italian traditional tattooer mix his pigment this way. Thanks!

(and please follow my instagram/wordpress page above!)

20446558_10154443307541157_485566704_o.jpg

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  • 6 months later...

This thread has been a goldmine for me as a newbie painter. I started out with cheap shit and struggled but upgrading my paper and paints made my life so much better.

Attached a painting with cheap paper and the works pain then a flower with decent (not arches but still) paper and student paints.

20180114_150526.jpg

20180201_212630.jpg

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