This is a bit of a companion piece to doll…
My name is stine and I am working on becoming a better repainter. I have been researching on online tutorials for AGES, and I work and work on trying to get things come together. Here’s my problem.
Whenever I work with my Faber Castell Watercolour pencils on my Monster High doll heads, it’s like the colour never really want to “Stick” to the doll. Unlike others, the colours just doesn’t get sharp looking at it, and it doesn’t get that wonderful flow to it. When I then try to paint more pencil colours on top of others, The colour that was already there, starts to dissappear, because it gets like; “rubbed off”. I have tried everything to get that sharp colourful look, but it just won’t work. I don’t know if it has something to do with the coatning beforehand. I just use matte varnish mixed with a little water before I paint on the doll.
Please, I really hope you can help me. I provided a link underneath, to show you an example of how it usually ends up looking like (It doesn’t get that strong colourful look like yours).
I truly hope you want to help a fellow hobbist out. I so want to become better but I don’t know how!
Believe it or not, this is a common problem among beginners and professional repainters. The problem lies in how the primer / sealant layer has been applied.
If you have not checked out my articles on the repainting process, this is a good time to read them!
Doll repaints are divided into three (3) main layers:
- Primed layer
Do not skip this.
- Repaint layer
All your work which may require 3-4 layers of sealant.
- Protective finish
One final coat of sealant to finish it all off. Add gloss or satin finish for detail work.
Once the factory paint has been stripped from your doll, the very first and important step is to prime the doll for repaint. Priming is simply the process of applying a base coat that protects the surface you’re about to work on below and allow your materials to stick properly on to surface that you’re about to paint on. This is a very important step. If you skip it, you’ll run into problems like the paint bleeding into the vinyl or your materials not adhering to the surface at all and more.
Whatever you use as a sealant/primer, a primed surface should be matte, feel like a 500-1000 grit sandpaper and fully dry. The most common sealant most repaint artists use is Mr. Super Clear Flat. Whether you use an airbrush to apply your primer/sealant or any other type of aerosol product similar to Mr. Super Clear Flat, the important factor is that the surface feels like a 500-1000 grit sandpaper. For comparison, it’s like feeling a surface dusted with talcum powder but without any powder sticking to your skin. Once you have achieved this consistency, pigment from watercolor pencils will stick to the primed surface better.
Achieving the ideal primer/sealant consistency relies on knowing how to use your sealant of choice, its quirks and a lot of experimentation to get it right. It’s best to have a spare doll or a piece of vinyl to practice on before trying it out on what you’re going to work on first to make sure that the sealant is going to behave exactly the way you expect it to.
Hope that helps and thanks for writing in! =)