Repainter's Progress

There's still a long way to go, but I've looked at a few tutorials and figured out a few things that made a significant improvement compared to my last attempt. I'm glad I decided to give it another go, because this stuff really gets easier with practice. All I need to do now is wipe and repaint a few hundred times and I'll be an expert! 

A few closeups, warts and all (actually it's mainly dust) as inspiration/warning to fellow aspiring faceuppers: 

That's not dirt, that's poorly applied blush.


I'm pretty happy with the size and general placement of the Bratz' eyes, and the pupils are at least looking in almost the same direction. Steffi Love's eyes are way too small and really different in size, but I like the shape and I'll try to make something similar next time. 

More dust and fibres from the q-tip. 

Steffi looks okay from a distance, but up close... not so much. I never bothered with the eyebrows.

At some point I lost concentration and began trying every technique at once, which is never a good idea. If it's not too cold to work by the open window tomorrow, I'll wipe this and start over with a clean slate. I'd like to practice both the "many tiny lines method" and the "big dry blush brush" a bit, but I'll try to do one at a time this go. I should get another head too, so I can cut down on the wait between coats a bit.

Lumpy paint with wiggly lines on top. Also more dust. 

The main problem is I'm still laying on the paint too heavy, which results in a lumpy, uneven surface that it's impossible to paint straight, even lines and brush strokes on top of. 
I'm not sure about the best way to dilute the paint: the liquid acrylic medium I bought earlier is actually thicker than the Liquitex Ink!; the flow enhancer says to mix it in the water, but I'm not sure you can just substitute it; and several tutorials warn against using too much water since apparently that can make the paint flake later. Mostly I'm worried about getting comfortable with a method, then finding out about some hidden pitfall and having to relearn everything from the bottom up... And as usual, I end up overthinking it instead of just getting in there and trying stuff out! :)

I do need a smaller brush, or at least another 15/0 (the smallest they had) and cut it down some more. The tip on this one looks bent and frayed already, though, so either I'm being too rough or the quality is crap. Also a proper lamp, and I think a magnifier would be REALLY useful - I keep taking off my glasses to paint a few strokes, then putting them back on so I can see to dip and wipe the brush properly... X-/ (That's me, squinting.) Time for another trip to IKEA... 

Blurry pic of brush tip in bad condition. 


  1. They say if you want to become an expert you have to practice for 10,000 hours - that's a lot of dolls to be repainted. I hope the weather is better for you tomorrow (our problem this week has been the opposite - it's way too hot to have the window open during the day) and look forward to seeing your progress.

  2. Something to remember about repaints: We generally only look at them this close when we're looking at, well, photos of them this close. I know I'm not the best repainter around, but I do feel confident enough in my repaint abilities to say they look just fine at arm's length and in regular photos, and, since I mostly look at them on a shelf or in a photo, that's fine with me. (I do have a doll repainted by Retrograde Works, and, yes, that paint/pastel/colored pencil work is absolutely lump-and-lineless, but this is what she *does*...and I still generally only look at the doll at arm's length or in a regular photo, so...) --Andrea/Dolls Ahoy

  3. I think you are doing a good job myself. It's really hard to find the right balance of paint thickness and then when you have a brush whose bristles just go wherever the heck they want to it's even more difficult. Keep at it!

  4. @ Carrickters I can't even imagine how stained my poor practice head would be after 10 000 hours... A heat wave is pretty hard to imagine too right now, actually.

    @Andrea yeah, I was thinking about that too. I've never seen a repaint in extreme close-up, so I'm not quite sure what to aim for. This one was scary impressive, though:

    @muff Thanks! The brushes are annoying, but at least they were cheap enough that I don't feel bad about plucking out all the hairs.

  5. Your repaints look pretty decent so far. Keep it up! I'd like to try repaints one of these days, also. You do inspire me.

  6. Nice results, especially if you use paints and brushes! Acrylic pencils are far more easy to operate with, so maybe they would be helpful?

    1. Thanks! I'm sticking to the basic tools for now, but pens might be worth looking into later.