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Some People Have Green Thumbs


GreyHorde
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Spinning off from the link to Dark Sword's pics of the 2006 Gen Con Aces Charity Speed Paint event, there is a question I've been meaning to ask for a while. I've seen some folks do this here and there, and several pics reminded me. What's the deal with painting your thumb? :rock:

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It lets you get a good look/feel at the consistency of your paint and the load on the brush on a surface which is consistent from session to session. For those of us who don't see as well as we used to, it's also a surface which is closer to my eyes and magnifier than the distant palette. It's a particularly good test for drybrushing, since you're looking for a brush loaded to pick up the texture of your skin but not deposit in the grooves.

 

I have a lot of skin allergies, so I don't use soap to get the paint off. Most of it'll come off just rubbing with my other thumb, or sometimes I use the same scrub pad I use to clean my palette to get off persistent paint.

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Hmmm... the title makes one think this should be in sculpting...

Ah, I see what you mean. Unfortunately, I could not find a topiary gardening forum.

 

Really, though, thanks to everyone for explaining it. Oddly painted thumbs had started me wondering if it was some new fashion statement, a secret blending technique, a trick to speed painting, or some combination of the above. Now, I understand.

 

I wonder if I could make thumb-sized or wrist-strapped ceramic palettes. 1" or so glazed tiles, a little glue, some padding, a little velcro...? Naaahh.

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Just as a random factoid, I took a poll last ReaperCon of my painters and it was found that the majority of pros who use wet-blending as one of their primary techniques are likely to be thumb-painters (Amy, Marike, Laszlo). :;): We anal layering-intensive types appear to be less likely to have pigmented digits...of course, in my case, it's just because paint on me tends to be more likely to migrate to everything around me as well!

 

--Anne ::):

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I layer more then wet blend and I always paint all over my hands. I find it easier to get just the right amount of paint on brush by test and dabbing on my finger rather then on my palette or rag. I also do it to test the thickness of my paints. It helps me tell if I have it thin enough for washes and layering.

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I use my thumb, too...actually, more like the heel of my palm and my wrist. For me, it's a holdover from theatre makeup, but it works for the same reasons. I'm done with that color, but not with that brush. I have to empty the brush...and I never do it by licking the brush (stage makeup tastes worse than paint!), and the makeup discs (or the mini, if we want to be somewhwere near the topic) are in that hand. It works, it's convenient...and I like the mess :devil: !

 

I just have to remember to wash my hands before going to work (or going on stage).

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