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whitetail deer paint schedule

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by ToddT, Jul 23, 2013.

  1. ToddT

    ToddT New Member

    Could someone provide a quality and detailed link to a tutorial thread, or offer up a fresh paint schedule for a whitetail deer mount using lifetone, lacquer paints. Honestly this is my weakest link to very high quality work. I know from studying reference pics that actual colors can vary significantly from a fleshy appearance with a very slight amount of tan to a dark brown eye. Also, the nose can vary from a solid dark brown, to a lighter dark brown on the top half, fading into a lighter skin tone on the lower half. Lastly the ears can vary from a whitish waxy appearance to that of a fleshy pinkish hue. Anyway, with all of that said, I could use a quality paint schedule as well as advice on how to blend paints, etc.

    As an example, I currently use buckskin tan in the interior of the ears as well as within the nostrils and sometimes on the nose-pad itself as well as around the eye with a heavier concentration within the tear duct. Then I use dark brown to mist lightly around the entire eye attempting to leave the tear duct primarily flesh colored from the buckskin tan. I then use the airbrush to spray the actual lid darker then the rest of the surrounding eye skin. Lastly, I paint the nose-pad to the edge of the hairless pad and slightly into the hair of the nostril in an attempt to blend the two colors. After everything is painted, I use my sculpting tool to rub across any hair to remove excess paint - by removing paint from the hair, it seems to really change the appearance for the better of most any mount, giving it a softer more life-like and blended appearance, however, I have seen mounts with applied paints that look better than I produce.

    Thanks for your time and advice.
  2. ToddT

    ToddT New Member

    Come on guys, surely someone has a link to a paint schedule, or can offer some advice. Thanks.

  3. tem

    tem Well-Known Member

    search in the tutorials. theres a few in there. don't know ware. just half to look. or type it in the search box. lots of info will come up.
  4. You've been doing this for 14 years and wrote how many books on Taxidermy? Are you a member of your State Association?
  5. ToddT

    ToddT New Member

    To answer your question, I have written four books about taxidermy - I have also taught a couple of taxidermy classes at our local community college - and no I am not currently a member of my state taxidermy association. I used to be, but my life took a trek more towards outdoor writing and working as public relations for a couple companies about 10 years ago. Now however, my life has returned towards taxidermy more fully.

    Look, if you are asking out of actual interest I appreciate it and would be glad to tell you anything you would like to know about myself, my work, etc., but if you are insinuating that because I have been a taxidermist for 14 years and written four books on the subject that I shouldn't be asking such an elementary question, well, you are wrong. I do not know of anyone who is perfect on everything, and I would be willing to bet that the top taxidermists in the world are continually attempting to better their techniques, as well as their products. Just for the sake of assuming you are actually asking out of shear interest, as mentioned, I do a good job as a taxidermist. I absolutely love finishing bears, sheep, African gameheads and antelope, BUT, for those the paint schemes, at least to me, are extremely basic and simple. Now the whitetail deer, to me, and it may just be me, but to get a really great finish around the eyes, that isn't too dark and appears soft and very life-like, as well as the nose pad - if you will study them, and look at any fresh specimens brought in, they will vary in color, from a fleshy appearance throughout with dark overtones, to a dark pad across the board - an excellent reproduction of this has evaded me and I was hoping for some help. Just for the record, I can get by, I did enter two whitetail mounts at what used to be the Piedmont Taxidermy Convention and also one at the NWTF, at their annual convention. On the first one, I entered the professional division and received a white ribbon, and on the second, again in the professional division, I received a red ribbon. I have earned one blue ribbon with a mountain lion, which was at our North Carolina state convention.

    As for fish, which that wasn't part of my question, but with fish, I can mount a fish as good as anyone, but the painting,,, let's just say I really struggle with blending colors, choosing appropriate colors, etc. I used to subscribe to Breakthrough and Taxidermy Today and will most likely renew my subscriptions, and I have some older magazines, and the only thing right off the top of my head that I can recall was a tutorial on finishing a whitetail with oil paints - I have tried oil paints and maybe I lacked experience with them, but I didn't really like them. That is all my dad uses, however I prefer lacquers.
  6. I'm not insinuating anything but I do believe that there is not going to be the "magic" pill of painting a deers eyes. Everyone does it a little different based on what they want their deer to look like. There is a ton of info on this subject on this site and you could probably read for hours on many different ways people paint their deers eyes. If you read through all those and started trying some of them until you get the desired effect that you are looking for you wouldn't have to ask the same question that 100+ others have already asked and been responded to. Join your State Assoc again and go to the seminars and ask the other taxidermist there and I bet you will find what you are looking for. Most are more than willing to help and then you get it first hand from them on how they do it. Good luck!
  7. look on breakthrough magazines web site there have been some good articles in there on painting whitetail
  8. ToddT

    ToddT New Member

    Thanks guys. Actually I was planning to join our state taxidermy association once again. I checked and there annual convention is next week. I had hoped to get something put together for a competition piece, but due to my work log, I really haven't had the time. As for my question, I realize your frustration, I am certain that LOT'S of others ask the same question. And I must admit, I didn't do a search, I just looked at the first couple of pages of the gamehead and tutorial section, but that is it. I also have a few video references, but I really don't prefer their methods, and as you mentioned, there probably are literally 100 different methods, depending on individual preference and experience. As mentioned, I have been fortunate enough to do several things, and I have been doing taxidermy for quite a while at this point, but I am always eager to learn more and different methods. Thanks again, and I will give searching a try. But if anyone has a really great method or schedule, I would love to see it.
  9. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

    ToddT, I don't know anything about you, but the questions you ask on here seem pretty newb-ish. If indeed you are experienced, what is your angle? Are looking to write another book and make money off of this info? That being said, I believe the reason most aren't willing to offer you their secret, is that most have either payed for training or have spent many years of trial and error to find the winning combination, neither of which is cheap. Sometimes what sets us apart in this competitive world is how we do our finish work. May I suggest spending some time with some good reference pics and your airbrush to learn how to blend colors to match your pics. I use no less then 8 colors when I finish my deer. I am one that payed for training and then expanded on that after some years of trial and error. I wish you luck on your mission to get the perfect look. If that is in fact what you are after?
  10. B Jones

    B Jones Memeber of - NTA,UTA,AIT.Proud Member of NZTA.

    I was going to say the same 3bears 14 years and a weeks worth of beginner questions, just sayin. I am getting ready for the thin skinned response about to raise its ugly head.
  11. ToddT

    ToddT New Member

    3bears, thanks for the suggestion. And for the record, no, I do not plan to write another book and make money off of it. Also, I have no angle, other than looking for a BETTER way. As far as what you say about others being reluctant to share their techniques, actually I thought the taxidermy community was past that at this point, as most are willing to help others in the business, but maybe not. Again, you seemed hesitant, but sincere in your attempt to reply, so I appreciate that. Good luck to you in the future. Thanks again.
  12. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    Breakthrough Issue 59 pp17 - 19