The grand finale of the expression series!

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This is the expression as it stands!

I started painting this expression back on the 7th November… it’s been almost three months and I’ve finally managed to get this far! It’s been a long journey!

At this point I’ve completed all the painting, I just need some finishing touches which I’ll do today! This includes getting rid of the shine on the face with a matte and adding in a little blush!!

You can find the previous posts in this series here:
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 9: Adding in Highlights
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 8: Applying the Gradient
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 7: Preparing to Apply the Gradient
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 6: Pupils and Shadows
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 5: Mixing Colors and Eyebrows
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 4: Preparing to Apply Color
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 3: Continuing to Paint the Eye Borders
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 2: Painting the Eye Border
Painting a Nendoroid Expression Part 1: Basic Knowledge & Tools
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Time to remove the gloss from the face!

Each time I ‘saved’ my expression using lacquer paint I did so using the ‘gloss’ spray you see on the right hand side here – the smooth surface it creates is much easier to paint on.

But now the face looks too shiny, so I’m going to apply the matte on the left to make the face look less shiny and more like skin again!

– Saving with Lacquer Paint (Gloss) –
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Spraying on the matte finish!

This works exactly the same way as the ‘saving’ did in the past – a quick spray, then some time to dry, then another quick spray… and so on!

A little unrelated, but the stick with the clip holding the expression up for me here was made by Seibu-san from the production team! (Strawberry Snow Miku’s sculptor!) Everyone uses tools like this, but I felt like a part of the sculpting team when I was allowed to use one! :P
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The shininess is all gone!

Ooh! It’s starting to actually look like a Nendoroid expression now!!

The bumpy bits from the lacquer layers and thicker paint that caused uneven areas actually also look a bit better now that I’ve put the matte layer on too!

Be careful though… if you put too much on it’ll end up looking a bit white and get a kind of rough texture, so be sure not to put too much on and mess up all the hard work!
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The blush will be added with pastels!

I’ve also got some sandpaper at the ready – you’ll see why in just a second…
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Rubbing two colors together on the sandpaper!

I can mix these two colors together to try and get the perfect blush color! The brush I’m using isn’t the same super thin brush I was using for the painting, but instead a brush with a flat head. This will allow for a cute, gentle blush!
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Added in the blush!

I definitely think it’s added a little bit of cuteness!! (*゜∀゜)=3

You just need to lightly apply the brush at the very top of the cheekbones to get this effect – pretty much just like real make-up! It was actually very fun applying the blush! I decided not to erase the darker blush lines, but you can of course choose to have them or not! (´∀`)
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Miku-san, complete!!

She’s finally done!! At long last!!
It makes me so happy yo see the final product of my work!!
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She looks quite cute from this angle!

Although I think I might just be biased about my own creation. ^^;

She is the Miku I poured all my heart into making, so of course she is super special to me!!
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Together with the original Miku-san!

I honestly tried to copy the original Miku as much as possible… but she ended up rather different. The biggest differences were:

・ The eyes should have been 0.7mm further apart.
・ Both eyes needed to be 1mm lower.
・ The eyebrows needed to be thinner.
・ The shadow on the eye needed to be lighter.
・ The line at the bottom of the eye should have been rounder.
・ The base color of the eye should have been lighter.

I think that sums up most of the differences… but there is nothing I can do about these things now! :P

When Aki took a look at it he was quick to say that the eyes should have been lower… after all my hard work he was so quick to point out the biggest error! Even though I saved the whole way along, it’s so depressing that I can’t go back to any of the places I saved at now… If I wanted to correct the position of the eyes now, I’d literally have to start from scratch!

The expression team is going to take a look and see if they can make any changes to make it look a little bit cuter for me, if anything comes out of that I’ll be sure to show everyone!
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Displayed with Strawberry Snow Miku!

If you look from a distance, the gradient on my version is very hard to make out, while the gradient on the Snow Miku and original Miku-san both look beautiful no matter what distance you look from – even the gradient in the pupil is perfect! I guess this just goes to show the skill of a professional!
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After three months, it’s time to bid this seat farewell!

I’ve been using this seat in the production studio whenever I worked on my expression… it’s quite sad that I won’t be using it anymore… although it was a lot of fun trying my hand at creating an expression, so perhaps one day I’ll challenge myself to do it once again!

The one thing I realized was that it takes much longer than you’d think to do all of this work by hand! (`・ω・´)

I honestly started this series expecting to finish this in just three days… I couldn’t have been more wrong! If you take one mistake too far you have to go back to step one, and each and every process takes time and careful preparation to complete.

I think the most difficult point was the outlines of the eye and the eyebrows. I’m sure with enough practice it would become much easier, but for me getting the lines to look right on a completely blank canvas was very difficult. You also need to be so careful to ensure that it looks right from any direction… if you focus too much from just one point of view it’ll end up looking distorted and off balance from another – and if you try and fix that you just end up messing it up from a different angle!!

But with all that said, the reward of completing the expression is amazing!
The face is the main part of any figure or doll, and if you’ve made it yourself it just means so much more!!

My conclusions:

· Expression painters are incredible!!

· Making things is lots of fun!!

Some people who can’t sculpt well at all sometimes have amazing talent with painting or creating expressions. When I tried my hand at sculpting it was a complete failure, but at least my expression came out looking alright – I think I’m much better at the painting side of things.

If you’re interested in things like sculpting and painting, consider taking part in the ‘Sculptors Tryout & Finishers Tryout 2013 Spring’! Unfortunately you do need to speak Japanese to apply!

– Sculptors Tryout & Finishers Tryout 2013 Spring – (Japanese)
But anyway, that’s all for today!
I hope to see you all again tomorrow!! (・∀・)ノ゛