Oil vs Acrylic for Ventriloquist Figure Paint

Happy, A Ray Guyll Paint Job

I was having a great conversation the other day with Steve the webmaster about the painting of figures. You all know that Steve learned figure making from the best ” Ray Guyll” and he said he is using oils like the master.

Back before the 1970’s all the figure makers were using oil based paints because that was the norm and it took time for the paints to dry. Frank Marshall used to mix his colors using oil based house paint. I think this is the main reason why today’s makers like the acrylic paints. They dry in a matter of minutes and if you make mistakes you can redo them with not much trouble.

Well if you use cobalt dryer you can also get oils to dry rather fast. No not minutes but over night is very real. Also when you use oils for painting there is a depth to the paint that you just do not get with acrylics. So which do both Steve and I like ?? It is the oils of course.

If you want to try using oils all are available including the cobalt dryer at Michaels and you can purchase small tubes to try this and they are not expensive.



Dan Willinger is a ventriloquism enthusiast and ventriloquist figure collector. He has been collecting for over 25 years. He created the Ventriloquist Central Collection. It now has over 100 ventriloquist figures and over 50 of them are Frank Marshall figures. Because of his love for the art of ventriloquism, Mr. Willinger created the website Ventriloquist Central. For more information about the website, go to: http://www.ventriloquistcentral.com

Copyright 2009 by Dan Willinger

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2 Responses to Oil vs Acrylic for Ventriloquist Figure Paint

  1. LeeDean says:

    Do not like either oil or acrylic base, oil too slow drying and acrylic too flat. I came up with shellac base white, mixed, tinted and toned with yellow ochre and raw umber and a touch of red for flesh color. I came up with this forty years ago, and put in the public domain on old Tribute site back in 2004. Drying time is less than 30 seconds if use product BIN you can still find at Lowe’s. The thing about using a shellac base is the solvent denatured alcohol, and so when you work back into a piece you don’t get a hole or uneven finish. As paint is removed it is put back on fresh at the same time in the process, without any intermediate step of paint removal. You are welcome to try the formula, which is dry to the touch or to even wash in a half minute, but you have to work fast else different tints and tones of the flesh color. Also, it is a skinlike finish, is not shiny, and does not crack.

  2. Ray Guyll says:

    Thanks Lee, that’s one I haven’t tried yet. But I certainly will. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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