Monday, June 11, 2018

4th of July Design Inspiration!

I thought I'd go back through my photos from years past and put together a collection of 4th of July inspiration pics! Here are some ideas to share! I will continue to add to this blog post and keep it as a sortof master file of all my own 4th of July designs!

As you're getting psyched up for your 4ht of July events, don't forget to check out our Patriotic Shop, which includes all the goodies you need for your upcoming events in one convenient place!














Click here for a blog with a step by step video of this design!


Some of the July 4th themed word art available in our custom word menu design service!

Thursday, June 7, 2018

NEW Products now shipping!

We've been busy adding more new products to our assortment lately! You may have seen us post some of these on Facebook but here's a roundup of what's been added most recently. Check out the shop to find all of these new goodies, and more to come!!

12" x 3" Bubbles stencil...great for arm bands & strips!
Great little butterfly assortment stencil!


Large 1.5" foam dauber

With Loew-Cornell discontinuing SO many of their brushes, we've decided to take on some beautiful new Princeton brushes!
Lots of new PRINCETON brushes!!!

Princeton 1/4" dagger brush!

We've recently added several colors of Pixie Paints to our growing assortment, including Fifi Royale, Cupcake Day, Labyrinth, and Valley Girl! Here's our full assortment of options:
Pixie Paint Assortment
With more Pixie Paint comes more ways to apply it! We are now carrying an array of pixie paint applicators! These are made of durable, washable silicone. I really like the little clear/white tipped one as it fits great into the little jars of Pixie Paint. The larger ones are great for bigger jars, and applying pixie paint and other glitter gels to larger areas of the body or in the hair!





I love this little one for the small jars of Pixie Paint!


 Our FAB assortment is growing, too! We now have Cameron Garrett's "Summer Sorbet" rainbow cake, and have added minty blue, and both regular and shimmer versions of Petrol Blue!


Henna kits are back! Check out this fun sized 25g henna kit which comes with henna powder, lavender, and a squeeze bottle! 

Fun size henna kit


25 gram bags of henna powder, sold individually too!


Check out the shop today! Don't forget to subscribe to our FREE monthly e-newsletter too, to receive 10% off coupons!!

Happy painting!

Monday, May 14, 2018

The Value of a Sketch!


Since I started my college career in Industrial Design I have really never been without at least one sketchbook in the works.  Early on I was taught the value of sketching, and especially "thumbnails" in particular. The term "thumbnail sketch" refers to a small, quick sketch. Whenever I was given a problem to solve through design, the very first place I'd always go was brainstorming through thumbnail sketches.  The beautiful thing about thumbnails is that they don't have to be beautiful. They don't even have to be seen by anyone but you. They can be chicken scratches on a napkin with a ballpoint pen, but if they get the idea out of your brain and into some visual form that you can look back on and recall as an idea, that's all they need to be.  

My current face painting sketchbook!


Focus on Quantity, NOT Quality!

I've found the best way to come up with any ideas, whether it was in my product design and retail display design days or more recently in face and body painting, is to get as many ideas out on paper as quickly as possible. Get it down just enough to convey the idea, then move on to another. I tend to be a perfectionist so I purposely sketch with pens or colored pencil so I can't erase and "fix" my mistakes. Fill the page with ideas, good or bad, and don't even critique them yet. Just get them out! 

Every Idea Has Value!

From there the creative process seems to flow so much easier when you have a page of ideas to explore, vs trying to evaluate them in your head first.  It enables you to perhaps go back to an idea you thought was bad, realizing it has merit, whereas if you had never sketched it in the first place, it may be lost forever. You never know when some old sketch will spark a new idea!

Conquer the Blank Page

When designing products I didn't usually use color much...just a pencil or ballpoint pen on white paper. However, color is important in face & body painting (and I want my face painting sketchbook to be FUN and full of COLOR), so I use colored pencils more now. Some of my sketches are just the start of a design, just enough to convey the idea, while some are almost exactly what I end up painting.

How most of my sketchbook pages start!

When I turn to a blank page in my sketchbook, I'll first quickly sketch out pairs of eyes with a nose...usually between 4 and 8 pairs of eyes per page.  So if you're imagining my page, each design sketch is usually 3 inches square or so. (I like to sketch small!)

The eyes of course don't have to be uniform or perfect!! This immediately removes any intimidation of a blank page staring back at you. Well, okay, now there are 10 eyes staring back at you, but we'll call that less intimidating than a blank page. ;-) The point is, now I have a goal: finish these 6 faces with 6 designs.  If I've sketched 5, it makes me push myself for one more! It gives me the drive to complete the page. My goal from here may be to draw 6 versions of snake designs, sharks, butterflies, dogs, or whatever. Maybe I'm working on something for a competition, and in that case they follow the theme of that competition.  But in the end, I'll have a page of concepts, and can choose the one I want to explore further, without losing all the other ideas that were in my head.

Sometimes I'll add another step to my design development before painting on an actual face, and paint a practice head or PainterTemplate. However, if I feel I've sufficiently worked it out on paper, I often go right to the face.

Sketchs vs Final Designs...

Here are just a few samples of my tiny sketchbook sketch, next to the final design...
Some of my sketches with their final designs!

As you can see, some of these vary in the end in their placement, detail, etc.  But the sketch gives me enough of an idea to paint from.  

3 Rewards of Sketching

There are many rewards of keeping a sketchbook, but one of them is just having a physical book of ideas to flip through and look back on. It's almost like a scrapbook or photo album of my face painting adventures! This doesn't happen with wipe-off practice boards. Among my design sketches, I have pages of notes from face painting workshops and conferences, ideas for my business marketing materials, etc! It's always rewarding to look back on where I've been and recall projects from the past, all while being inspired to paint something I sketched years ago and never painted.

Having a sketchbook also enables me to improve my face painting without face painting. Say I'm sitting on an airplane or in the car on a road trip. It may not be practical to be practicing with my brush and paints, but it's easy to sketch! So when I'm having an influx of creative ideas, they don't have to wait or get lost...sketching enables me to work through designs when I normally couldn't.

The third thing I love about having a sketchbook is that on those sometimes rare occasions when I have a kid around who's willing to let me practice on them, I have a pile of ideas to pick from! I don't have to sit and think about what I want to practice...I just open the book. Sometimes I'll let my boys flip through and pick a sketch they think is cool, and I'll paint that. They are always more willing when they pick the design!

So give it a try! You don't have to be an amazing artist or great at pencil drawings. Paint in your sketchbook with a brush if you wish! I can almost guarantee that if you give sketching a try long enough, you'll see just how much more polished your final designs will look, and will love looking back at your ideas!

Happy painting!! :-)



Thursday, March 22, 2018

NOW SHIPPING!! "Jewelry for Face & Body Artists" by Gretchen Fleener

Get yours HERE!

It's an exciting day here at Paintertainment!! My latest book, "Jewelry for Face & Body Artists," is now in stock and ready to ship!!




Whether you've arrived at a princess party and left your gemstones on your kitchen counter, need to come up with something extra special and sophisticated for the party hostess on the spot, or just want to wear a new piece of gorgeous, custom jewelry without the price tag, having realistic jewelry in your painting repertoire is a must!

What's In the Book?

In this new book I go in-depth on the subject of jewelry with over 80 pages of more than 240 full color photos. Among it's pages you will find pages that analyze the range of colors used to render 4 kinds of metals (silver, gold, bronze and copper).  In the section on chains, I'll take you step by step through 7 types of chains: curb chain, rolo chain, rope chain, popcorn chain, snake chain, bead chain and figaro chain.  

Next, we'll tackle transparent stones.  You'll start by learning how to paint a smooth stone, then learn how to add facets. I'll walk you step by step through 12 different types of gem cuts: round, oval, drop, princess, trilliant, cushion, heart, marquise, square, baguette, emerald, and diamond. Once you master the shape of a stone and it's facets, I'll explain how to incorporate depth in your stones. But we don't stop there.  Besides transparent gemstones, I'll walk you step by step through how to paint various opaque stones, including pearls, mother of pearl, agate, tiger eye, turquoise, and wood.

I'll then share some great tips and tricks to tackle the intricate diamonds and beads with speed, show you how to use gemstone shaped stencils, and show you how to make your own jewelry painting tool. To top it all off, I've included a super helpful troubleshooting section to help you identify and fix some of the most common mistakes artists make with jewelry.  This book is sure to be a valuable resource that will help you hone your realistic jewelry painting skills and push you to take your talent to the next level!

Paintertainment Exclusive Package Deal!

You didn't think I'd launch a new book without a special package deal now, did you?! Of course not!! I have put together this exclusive package deal to set you up for success with some of the most important tools that I find essential when painting jewelry...and you save money in the process!

Get your package deal HERE!

Get your copy today!! Due to overwhelming requests from European retailers to stock this book, my first run is already selling out quickly!! But if you're too late, don't worry, we already have more on order that should be coming in about a week. Stay up to date with the latest by following our Facebook page!

Thanks SO much for your support! Happy painting!!




Monday, February 5, 2018

More BLING Now Shipping!

We've recently added a bunch of new bling to the shop!! Check our huge assortment of gems today! Here are the new ones just added today:

Holographic round gems - way prettier than they look in the photos!

Neon adhesive backed gems

Super cute dolphins and starfish!

Multi-faceted round and ovals are super sparkly and adhesive backed!

180 piece bags of neon 5mm round gems (loose, no adhesive)

Big, flat hearts...awesome for Valentine's day!!

Premium crystals in assorted pastel colors and sizes

Premium crystals, clear/holographic in assorted sizes
Thanks for stopping by, and happy painting!

Friday, February 2, 2018

I'm On a Jewelry Kick!

I've been busy lately working on painted jewelry!! For two reasons...this fall I will be traveling to Belgium to teach at the JAMvention again, and will be teaching jewelry! I am SO excited and SO honored to be invited to teach again, and for their big 10th anniversary!! And the second reason, I'm working on a new book about jewelry painting...so excited! My "Realism for Face & Body Artists" book does touch on jewelry a little bit, but there is SO much more to cover, it definitely warrants it's own book. So, stay tuned this year for a new ultimate reference for painting jewelry! I'll be covering gems as well as many other types of stones, different kinds of chains, different types of gem cuts, and a bunch of great tips and tricks for speeding up the little details!

Here are a few paintings I've done in the past week...







Aaah...SO much fun!! I have a few others I did today that I'll share later, so stay tuned to the blog, Facebook, Instagram & twitter for more! Thanks for stopping by, and happy painting!!