Problems for this beginner



As the title states this is my 3rd ever attempt of a portrait of a photo of my niece. The problem I'm having is that when I do a fine line it seems very sharp but seems to blend away as it dries and seems to appear smudged . I'm using an eclipse hp-cs on thick card and createx wicked reduced approx 50/50. Pressure has varied between 40 psi and then down to 20 psi. It also seems a bit powdery. Any advice would be great
a picture is worth a thousand words.
It is hard to see what you are talking about when there is no picture to see.

Mainly it will be practice time , You say your a beginner so that says to me you have not spent enough time on the basics like dagger strokes , lines and the other skills needed to build the muscle memory .
Next are you trying to paint the portrait or are you painting the shapes in the reference and letting the picture take care of it self?
Hi. Yes I also practice the basics of dots and lines and blending and dagger strokes and I fully appreciate that my few weeks of practice is nothing compared to how long it takes. I took a pic of the work but the forum says the file is too large. With regards to reducing the createx wicked is 50/50 a good idea?
The card stock is too porous for that thin of paint. A hot press Illustration board is better to use when airbrushing. You could even use a Strathmore Bristol paper smooth heavy weight. That's what I used to use when practicing, but I never reduced my paint as much. You should be able to get away with 20 to 25 psi with a cs.

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Hi nichard. Im a relative newbie myself and have the same sort of problem.
Ive accepted that its going to take a while b4 i can airbrush as sharp as i want to.
I have an inkling that spraying on card has the same effect as paper which is what i spray on at the moment. I think its just a case of the paper/ card being porous and absorbent so it will appear smudged.
Ive yet to try spraying onto a " hard " surface but i do have bristol board. This has a very smooth surface and ive had the best results on this type of paper.
Im in the middle of an iron man pic and im having the same problem in that it looks smudged and "dirty ". But im making do with what ive got as its all practice.
Keep going onwards and upwards
Mainly on the material you are using I would suggest giving it a coat with rattle can white or clear to make it not suck the paint .
When you are starting out most times you just use what you have around the house to first see if airbrushing is suited to you.
So sometime the material you have is not the best to practice with to get the lines the way you want due to it being to porous but a cheap can of any rattle can paint can fix that a lot of the time.
Thanks for the replies. I will try some of those ideas and move forward. How about the reducing at 50/50 do you think that is enough for createx wicked for this type of application?
I start with a 40/60 mix of paint to reducer and go from there spraying at 25/30 psias I add reducer I lower the pressure
if you go by MFG suggestion you start at 1 part paint to 3 parts reducer that is for a .35 set up at 35PSI. The more you reduce the lower you can drop the PSI. Mainly it is finding what works for the color you are using and the effect you are trying.
But what work on that porous surface may not work on a hard surface.
Buy com art and etac paints and try them
Createx wicked i found was outperformed by them for paper performance
I sometimes use Wicked 1 paint to 10 reducer at around 10 psi, although I'm usually at 1 paint to 3 or 4 drops at around 20 psi. Then again I've also used it neat at 40psi. What Im trying to say is that reduction can vary hugely depending on what you want to do. The surface can have an effect on your reduction and pressure, as mentioned Bristol board is fairly good for practise, a more expensive paper is schoellershammer 4g, and becoming more popular for some are synthetic papers such as yupo.