smooth shading technique

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smooth shading technique

Post by UlfrMunr on Tue May 24, 2016 7:15 pm

Does anyone have any advice on getting nice smooth shading, every time I try it is either too dark or it looks patchy.
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by head on Tue May 24, 2016 10:56 pm

post a pic up of your shadin
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by UlfrMunr on Wed May 25, 2016 12:16 am



This was the last one I did on myself a couple of days ago so it's all scabby right now. My line work was terrible in some spots but better on me than someone else.
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by easy31st on Wed May 25, 2016 4:58 am

Good thing you're practicing on yourself, I hope That's your thigh and not somewhere viable. As for your patchy shading if you're moving in circular motions with a mag it'll leave lines while you're moving it in the sideways direction try shading in a sweeping motion. I only use circular motions when packing solid color. Now your lines need a lot of help. Now I'm nowhere near good at tattooing yet but the lines were easy for me to learn my depth and speed. Some directions might be a little harder to go but you just have to try and make yourself comfortable before you pull your lines. Work on your drawings to. If I was able to tattoo as good as I can draw then I'll say I'm good at tattooing but for now I'm still learning. Good luck, and practice, practice, practice.
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Loulou on Wed May 25, 2016 9:42 am

could be a numbers of things what needles are you using what macjine at what voltage and what technique do you use
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Whippet on Wed May 25, 2016 10:57 am

Great to see you trying and putting work out, but to deal with your issues while learning I would definitely think about practise materials like pig skin and fake skin, some of which is better than others.

Your lining looks a little out of control as if you're rushing it. I think slow and steady to start then as you improve you can pick your speed up.

I'm practising lining all the time (literally every day) before I hit skin, even my own. On fake the pressures off to some degree, so you can slow down and relax if you pull a bad line, then start again.

Here's a couple of bits from yesterday, not perfect but better than what I was doing even a few weeks ago:

Tiger is on the fake skin that comes with velcro straps (20x20 size double sided - £3 from ebay). It requires a bit more hit to get the ink in...its tough. The carp is on pigskin, which based on my previous experience feels closer to human skin, much softer than the fake skin. On fake skin I have to change needles more often as they start to splay and form tram lines, but I stll think it's a good surface to work on for practise...cleans up nice too.


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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Ketchup Kid on Wed May 25, 2016 4:48 pm

Whippet wrote:
Tiger is on the fake skin that comes with velcro straps (20x20 size double sided - £3 from ebay). It requires a bit more hit to get the ink in...its tough. The carp is on pigskin, which based on my previous experience feels closer to human skin, much softer than the fake skin. On fake skin I have to change needles more often as they start to splay and form tram lines, but I stll think it's a good surface to work on for practise...cleans up nice too.


can you send me a link for the fake skin you are using?, the results look o.k. for the price and i'd like to try it. alongside my reelskinz of course. i tend to get fucked buying random ebay shit so i would really appreciate guidance toward the exact product.

as for the tattoo, yes the technique is flawed but what i see most is how fucked up the design is.
towards the banner it gets so bad that i gotta wonder if you are freehanding shit.
i happen to be real good at fucking things up by freehanding shit.
if thats is not freehand then the stencil is fucked up and you should take time to make a better stencil with your letters right.

but all around you should chill, the shading is not your main problem, figure out what is



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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by UlfrMunr on Wed May 25, 2016 5:23 pm

Cheers guys I'll keep up with the practice. I was using a rotary machine and for lining 7RL at 7 volts and for the shading and color parts I used a 7 mag at 4 volts both needles made by monster point. I seem to do better lining with my coil machines so next time I'll just use rotary for the shading. I can't get any practice
materials right now as the practice skin available here is junk ( shipping from online takes months to arrive in Mexico) and pig skin is quite expensive (it's used for cooking) I do have some foam paper I've seen some people use that to practice lining so maybe I'll give that a go
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Whippet on Wed May 25, 2016 7:24 pm

The foam sheets are OK for movement and depth, to appoint, but they're really soft and even a really soft hitting machine will make a mark. However, they're a bitch to clean up and get really messy. But if nothing else, it'll move you forward.

RESET: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1-x-BLANK-Tattoo-Practice-Skin-with-Velcro-Straps-20-20-/250635400636?hash=item3a5b08b5bc:g:QjcAAOSwiLdV--ct

I specifically searched for the stuff with Velcro straps and size 20x20, I tried a smaller similar looking sample and it was really tough...useless. Was slightly more shiny too.
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Ketchup Kid on Wed May 25, 2016 8:12 pm

i never thought that foam shit was good. but actually nothing is good.

i take that foam and without using ink, just practice consistent motions over and over until speed and depth is steady. make sure you are holding the machine right etc.
its the kind of muscle memory that takes mastery, most of us are still working on it.

once you put ink into the foam its gonna make a mess when you wipe. the sheets do take ink but real messy and looks like shit.


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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Ketchup Kid on Wed May 25, 2016 8:19 pm

Whippet wrote:The foam sheets are OK for movement and depth, to appoint, but they're really soft and even a really soft hitting machine will make a mark. However, they're a bitch to clean up and get really messy. But if nothing else, it'll move you forward.

RESET: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1-x-BLANK-Tattoo-Practice-Skin-with-Velcro-Straps-20-20-/250635400636?hash=item3a5b08b5bc:g:QjcAAOSwiLdV--ct

I specifically searched for the stuff with Velcro straps and size 20x20, I tried a smaller similar looking sample and it was really tough...useless. Was slightly more shiny too.

thanks gonna give it a go...

question, why did you stop shading the tiger piece, seems like there are more spots you can shade and give it more depth all over. seems like you really skimped on shade and very minimal.

you have a trained eye so i'm sure you know this already, so there must be a good reason. are you not done, or you'd rather not push it with the shade/blending because its hard...? you seem to be acheiving decent values and shade effect overall... why not go further?
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by UlfrMunr on Wed May 25, 2016 10:10 pm

Yeah ive tried the foam before and hated it but for the time being my options are myself or foam haha I can throw out foam sheets so I'd rather practice on that until I can grab some pig skin
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Whippet on Wed May 25, 2016 10:21 pm

The unfinished tiger: it was just about the lining really, which is my focus right now, and the stuff around it is mostly freehand doodling. Like a shark...gotta keep moving... Razz
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by Dmerit on Fri May 27, 2016 6:52 am

I'd start at the beginning and worry more about your lining,, nice line work is the basis for a nice solid tattoo,,, it's easy to see that you have little control over your machine. The lines are all wobbly and the depth is inconsistent... so you need to see if it's your equipment or your technique, or both that's the problem..
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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by GM74 on Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:02 pm

If you use a mag and shovel it from dark to light controlling the saturation by hand speed machine etc.. You should be able to get the hang of speed vs saturation. If you find its coming out to dark either stop stretching or dilute your ink a bit it runs smoother but with speed you should be able to pull off all sorts of greys by application.

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Re: smooth shading technique

Post by UlfrMunr on Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:31 pm

Thank you I'm going to give it a go this weekend and hope it comes out decent
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