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First facepaing

Discussion in 'Face Painting' started by Gladman, May 4, 2013.

  1. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    One of my coworker nurses hired me, the clown, for a birthday party next Saturday, and after telling her I didn't really do face painting and observing the pleading look on her face, I told her I'd give it my best shot. I have 8 tubes of Mehron fantasy F-X that I've had for a while. I'm going to order some stuff from La Rock's Monday as well as a few more balloons. The party is for a 4 year old, and there will be 20 or so little darlings. I figure it's a great place to learn. I've been watching and reading lots as well as practicing on my grand daughter. I'm expecting a fun day.

    I really appreciate this forum. There is such a wealth of experience in so many areas.


    P.S. I can't think of any corny jokes at the moment, but I'm sure
    one will come to me.:cool:
  2. Fitzwilly

    Fitzwilly COAI Secretary

    Good luck, and let us know how the party goes.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  3. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    Ok, I did some practicing on my grand daughter today, and things didn't go too well. She said the paint kind of stung before it dried. Also the stuff was somewhat difficult to manage. I used the Mehron Fantasy FX tube paint. After thinking about it, I realize that in all my viewing of face painting, I've never seen anyone use this product. I'm probably going to order a palette from Snazaroo or Kryolan. Anyone familiar with Ben Nye Aqua Crayons?
    Feed back anyone?
  4. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    In my opinion:

    Go to silly farm and order paradise makeup. I feel it is the best value for the money. If that's a bit too much you can do snazaroo.

    You will want black, white, lagoon blue, dark pink, red, yellow at a minimum. Also, order some pixie dust, some sponges, and a #2 and #4 round brush. This basic selection should allow you to paint basically anything any of the kids there are likely to ask for.

    Since you probably don't know who I am and might wonder if I know what I am talking about, here's some recent samples of my work:



    • Thanks Thanks x 7
  5. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    Thanks for responding, Smacky. I placed an order tonight and added a bunch of other stuff. I like your work. I've checked you out several times over the past few years.:cool:
  6. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    Cool! What else did you buy?

    Also, if you have any questions or whatever, feel free to give me a call at 903-624-3360
  7. Sir Toony Van Dukes

    Sir Toony Van Dukes Well-Known Member

    My suggestion is to keep it simple. Have a list of faces that you are willing to paint. In my opinion, full face designs are easier as they use the child's own mouth, eyes, nose, etc. which leaves fewer things to draw. A puppy dog with the tongue sticking out is easy to recognize. Girls like butterflies. Spider-Man is always popular with the boys. Maybe a pirate, tiger, and cat to round out the list of faces. Look at pictures and find a few to bring along as cheat sheets.
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  8. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    OK Smack, sens u asked; I also ordered an orange gecko brush holder, some white fairy dust, more sponges, an 18 color wheel palette, and some extra brushes. Since I'm by no means a purist, I ordered several
    nice stencils that should give me some nice crisp shapes to build upon.

    I also ordered something I've been wanting for some time, an invisible dog leash. My 10 year old grand daughter, Catriona, and I have several mime type antics, like throwing an invisible ball, tug of war, and others that usually leave me as the butt of the joke. This should make for a very nice invisible dog that the kids will be able to interact with. Anything goes once the kids click in. It amazes me what a group of them can come up with. I'll be 65 this week, and I don't seem to have the enduring energy I once had. I'll leave that to Cat and the rest of the kiddos.
  9. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    Nice! Sounds like a good start. Nothing wrong with stencils -- people are paying you for the result not how you did it.

    The trick with stencils is to always start drier than you think you need to. You will need to pat the color on over and over and over again, build it up slowly, but if you start too wet you have an immediate disaster.

    Also, I agree with Sir Toony -- keep it simple.

    For boys try: Pirate, Skull, Monster, Spiderman, Tiger, Hulk, Puppy
    For Girls consider: Butterfly, Kitty, Tiger, Flowery Princess, Puppy

    Of these, the trickiest are probably the cats (specifically the muzzle), but you can cheat those by skipping it and doing whiskers instead. Butterflies are cake once you discover the two 'secrets' I will reveal to you for the clown forum discount price of free...

    1. Let your sponge do all the work; 2. most people make them WAY too big for the person's face.

    When you go to your first event bring wet wipes. Never forget your wet wipes. And don't forget to tell parents how to get the makeup off. I always suggest gasoline and sandpaper as that never fails, but soap and water might work as well.
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  10. Sir Toony Van Dukes

    Sir Toony Van Dukes Well-Known Member

    Get the makeup off? I tell the kids that it is permanent and will last until their 16th birthday when it magically fades away.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  11. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    The following clown fell down and laughed while rolling in leftover face paint at Sir Toony's funny post:

  12. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I think I'll just use permanent markers and be done with it. Sir Toon, you've had that face for a few years. You might try a wire brush buffing wheel. I really wish you wouldn't though, I really like it.

    Thanks guys for all the pointers. The birthday girl is only four though, so I'll probably start off twisting puppy dogs and making elaborate hats to warm them up to me.

    "Let the sponges do all the work"? Interesting. I needa practice more for sure.
  13. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    Yeah, let your sponges do the work. In reality, most facepainting is really very simple. The technical challenge is relatively easy and can be mastered quickly with only a little practice -- the art is in understanding proportion and shading and modifying designs to each customer's unique face.

    In the case of the butterfly, a lot of newer facepainters are concerned about getting it symetrical and alligned at an attractive angle. Your sponge will handle this for you. First, here is a butterly done wrong:


    Note how it begins away from the nose, basically at the corners of the eyes, and then it curves both up and down -- eventually arriving in the proper place -- but giving it a pinched look. Worse, it fails to cleanly draw the viewers eye to the center of the face -- something that EVERY design should attempt to do.

    The dotted line shows where it should have been properly placed, beginning on the side or even the top of the nose and running straight (rather than curving) to where it naturally ends. Note as well that this is a natural 90 degree angle between the top and bottom wings, which means if you start it in the correct place your sponge is going to automatically give you the correct line for both the top and bottom wings. Do this on both sides and you are all but assured of symetry. Remember as well that the base color is more or less irrelevant, it doesn't need to be perfect because everyone will be looking at the linework on top. Here is an example of what happens when you start correctly:


    For linework I suggest you keep it simple and use painted teardrops. Lay down your base, glitter it while it's damp, then do the left side lines, then the right side lines, then go back and add some white dots to give it some flash. The teardrop butterfly, done neatly, looks fantastic and it's bloody easy to do. Pay attention to how wide it is and don't get crazy.

    Once you have "mastered" the correct angles for the butterfly, note that this pattern (or similar) is used for the upper portion of your cats (see the image posted previously), spiderman (the bottom is obviously curved but the top follows this shape and dimentions), and many other designs. Even on this half-faced monster I used this angle to bring the viewers eye back to the center of the face.


    Your sponge will give you the correct angles, it will give you the smooth color transitions, and it will give you your shading. If you drag it dry it can even be used to create fur if that's your thing.
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  14. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    By the way, here's a couple pictures of my business setup from last season. It took a lot of work to get it to this point and we are proud of it. Hopefully this year we will replace the top banners with something more colorful:


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  15. Sir Toony Van Dukes

    Sir Toony Van Dukes Well-Known Member

    I think that is a great looking setup. All that is missing is the line of customers.
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  16. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    I hear that my friend. Fortunately they are there more often than not or we would be out of business pretty quickly. That particular event was something of a bust. If you look closely at the night shot, note the lights waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay off in the background. Those lights were the carnival. Some clever event coordinator came up with the novel idea that it would be more interesting to put the carnival and vendors on opposite sides of very large and very dark park.

    But there's a "bright" side. The other side might have had a nice carnival and great rides, but we had a stage where we were treated to music that would have put Lawrence Welk into a coma. Every time one of these bands would fire up the crowds would depart -- all except for this one old lady who was either sleeping or departed in one of the chairs. It was one of THOSE events. Three days on the road and we didn't even net a grand.
    Last edited: May 9, 2013
  17. Gladman

    Gladman Well-Known Member

    The birthday party went well today. It was a learning experience to say the least. For 3 hours I did face painting and balloon twisting nonstop for around 25 kids age 2 to 7. Lots of the kids were happy with stenciled stars, hearts, flowers, lightning bolts and rainbows, and I must say they looked great on their dark little faces. It was fun doing the free hand stuff like the rainbows using the sponges and brushes too. It's amazing what a little glitter does to an otherwise simple creation.

    I did a large Spider-man on one kid's face which he promptly smudged off in the bouncy house. The paint was dry, but this is South Georgia, so he got really sweaty in the 85 degree temperature. He came back later and wanted me to clean it all off and make a Hulk. I cleaned it off and gave him a couple of nice lightning bolts which made him happy. I guess when you get paid by the job, everything is essentially free in the kid's minds.

    I'll be better organized next time. Thanks to Smacky, Sir Toony, and the forum and Silly Farm tutorials.
    Last edited: May 12, 2013
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  18. Smacky

    Smacky New Member

    Sounds like a good party to me. If the customers were happy then it was a success.
  19. sean wilson

    sean wilson New Member

    Glad to hear it went well for you, it's all about the practice.

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