Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Hairing a model horse, part two

Part two of Jennifer Kroll's hairing tutorial explains how to prepare the hair and attach it your model's tail. Thank you again, Jen, for sharing your secrets!

Hairing a Model Horse, Part Two: The Tail

by Jennifer Kroll

These are the four colors I'm going to use in my model's tail. The mohair comes in hanks and needs to be pulled before use. 
Pulling the mohair from the hank. The lighter red was VERY tight, so I actually had to slice it gently down the length with a blade.
In this picture the colors are pulled and waiting to be mixed.
To mix, I line it up in the same direction. Then I grab each end firmly and pull.
If I do it right, I'll end up with about half of it in each hand.
Place both ends back together and repeat.
As I blend it, I feather out chunks that don't seem to want to come apart. I also remove any short or clumpy bits. For this particular horse, I made three color blends: brown, brown with white and white.
Once the hair is mixed, I proceed similarly to how I did with the mane. I start by running a stripe of glue down my clear tape.
Then I glue the mohair to the tape. Notice this time that I glued it close to one end instead of down the middle. I always make more than I think I will need partly because I want mostly longer hairs (unless I'm doing a foal or rat tail Appaloosa, of course!) and also because there's going to be a lot of waste.
 After all the hair is glued down, I trim off the fluffy part above the glue line.
Then I carefully peel the glued mohair off the tape. If you leave this too long, you will not be able to peel it off.
As with the mane, clip the strip of glued mohair into sections. They should be wide enough to cover the top half of the tailbone.
I glue the end piece on, and continue to glue the sections upward, overlapping each so that the glue isn't visible.
After the first few sections, I start dividing the bits of hair in half so that half will fall naturally over each side of the tailbone.
I center the divide more or less, but it does not need to be perfect. It wouldn't be a perfect split on a real horse either.
I continue gluing the segments up the tailbone.
As I get closer to the rump, I start trimming the glued ends of the hair segments so they are rounded. When I am up almost to the horse's dock, I take two tiny segments and clip the glued area as short as I can without the hair falling apart.
 I then glue one of these tiny sections to the sides of the tail.
I squish it up along the edge of the previous glued segment.
After the two small sections are glued in place, I take one more wide segment of mohair from my strip and trim as much of the glue as I can without it coming apart. I glue that over the two small pieces from the previous section, so that it joins it together. I push this around with a small tool until it's the proper shape. Then I clean up any stray hairs with a sharp blade and some tweezers.
Now the hair is all attached to the horse! Yes, it's fluffy! No, your should not style it in any way for twenty four hours. The glue needs to set firmly or you will lose a lot of hair.
In part three, I will show you how to style your model's hair!

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