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I don't have a mahlstick so decided to use a feather duster instead.  Trouble is, I suddenly realised there was a whole lot of dark cut-hair on the feather duster and it has scattered all over Lucia's forehead!  And just when I got the gist of the color-mixing for skin, and just when I fixed that bizarre right eye.... I couldn't believe my eyes.  Anyone got any tricks for getting rid of it?  I presume I will just have to pick it all off with tweezers, or sticky tape, and then repaint the forehead again. Luckily it was only over the top half of the face. The feather duster is now wrapped in Glad Wrap.  Kind regards  Dianna


  • well, as my grandmother would say, "you'll never do that again".  If we bumped our heads on something, she would always say that and it was true, we learned to duck.  You can also use a cane or just regular stick as a mahl stick -   don't fret though, you're using Geneva so they will stay wet for enough time for you to get your tweezers out.  I would recommend reading glasses as well to make sure you are seeing every piece of hair.  

    Your painting is looking beautiful!  I like it that she is putting on lip gloss - very clever!  So , just tweeze those hairs out before you continue on your journey :)
  • OK Julianna, thank you for your grandmother's words of wisdom. She must have been very nice. I'm quite happy to use the feather duster as a malhstick now that I've covered the end with Glad Wrap. It's really quite good. But anyway, I will get the tweezers out tomorrow and, with reading glasses on, fix the problem.  I suppose I'll have to touch it up again, but what the hell.. ..I seem to be in a steep learning curve anyway, so why break the trend.  Anyway, thanks again.  Glad you liked Lucia.
  • My mother said peanut butter would get anything out of hair but I don't think that would work other way around. I'd be tempted to scrape away the hairy paint with a palette knife (good for spreading peanut butter BTW) and paint again with less hirsute paint.
  • No mahl stick . . . dear, dear.  Get thee to a thrift store where you can buy an old cane or golf club . . . anything about 25 to 30 inches long with a hook of sorts on one end so you can hang it from the edge of the painting and grab it when needed.

    Years ago, I bought a three-quarter inch wood dowel and a small, brass bathroom door hangar and put the two together.  Cost was around $4.  Use anything but a hair-infested floppy-moppy thing that will ruin your next work.
  • Hi Bob - thanks for your comment.  I finally came up with a good solution. I bought a dental implement on eBay once which I thought would be quite good for cleaning teeth. Turned out it's so sharp it's dangerous so I never used it, but in fact it came in very useful for picking the hairs off the canvas. Tweezers aren't sharp enough.  Anyway, I got all the hairs off, and now I make sure the Glad Wrap covers the entire end of the feather duster so that should be the end of the problem. I can't image what your mother could possibly have had in mind when she said Peanut butter would get anything out of hair....... Anyway, I was glad to salvage the paint and it needed only minor adjustments when I'd finished.  Thanks again   Dianna
  • Hello Broker12 -- Good idea to buy an old cane, or golf club -- I will keep an eye out for these things - but strangely enough, once I'd forgiven the feather duster for nearly ruining my work, I grew quite fond of using it. But I think something with a hook would be better because I tend to have to wave it around in the air a lot, picking it up off the table and putting it back down every single time.......  Anyway, thank you for your advice.  Dianna
  • FWIW, I read somewhere that chloroform will remove paint.  I wanted to try it once, but could not find chloroform.  I remember as a kid seeing it for sale in drug stores.  I mention this in case you're considering this.
  • Dianna, among the many things my mother removed from my or my sister's hair with peanut butter were asphalt, bubble gum, rubber bands (tightly wound into hair by model airplane), skunk spray (catsup works for this one too), dog/horse/cow poop, dried paint and hardened tree sap.
  • Two things I've seen recently:  1) supporting your painting hand with the pinkie finger against the canvas, and 2) an extremely long and thin knitting needle.  Not the end all be all of solutions, but I can see them working in some.  Something to keep in mind anyway.  :)
  • Well Bob73  You obviously had a very interesting and intense childhood. Skunk spray? Guess you're in the States. What the hell is catsup?  God I'm so confused, it seems some of the solutions are worse than the problems. Anyway, thank you all for your advice and I'm glad to say that the feather duster is now working well, I finally worked out the problems with the wonky right eye and apart from a bit of exaggeration with the highlights in the eyes, I've more or less finished them. So things can only get better.  Cheers  Dianna
  • Ketchup. I liked to play in the woods (forest), so do skunks.
  • BOB73 said:
    Ketchup. I liked to play in the woods (forest), so do skunks.
    Weren't you wearing a hat?
  • Oh, very funny --- ketchup.  Never heard it called that before. And of course we don't have skunks so you must be in the States.....
  • I was @Richard_P it was the fifties and Davy Crocket coonskin hats were popular and the skunk was lonely.
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